Is a Tummy Tuck Painful?

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) in Philadelphia, PAWhen considering any form of cosmetic surgery, many of the patients that come into our office are concerned about how painful the procedure is going to be. While there will be discomfort through any type of surgery, we don’t want our patients to be so scared of their healing process that they lose sight of the benefits they get with their procedure. Let’s talk about post-tummy tuck pain and how you can manage it for a smooth and swift recovery.

What is a Tummy Tuck?

Before getting into the nitty-gritty of how to manage your post-operative pain, let’s go over what will cause your discomfort following surgery. A tummy tuck is a surgical cosmetic procedure that involves tightening the skin around the abdomen for a tighter, flatter silhouette. During your procedure, Dr. Emily Pollard will make an incision from hip to hip. Through this incision she will tighten your abdominal muscles and pull the skin tight over the abdomen before trimming away excess tissue and closing the incision. The entire surgery typically takes a few hours to complete.

The Pain After a Tummy Tuck

When it comes to post-operative pain, it’s important to know why you’re feeling the discomfort that you’re feeling. Prior to a tummy tuck, the patient typically has a large amount of loose skin around their abdominal area, and their abdominal muscles or abdominal wall is generally weak. This may be caused by pregnancy, child birth, or an extreme weight loss. During your tummy tuck, Dr. Pollard tightens these core muscles and pulls the skin taut against the body for a brand new silhouette. This tension throughout the body is not something patients are typically used to, causing a great deal of discomfort before healing and adjusting to their new body.

Managing Your Post-Operative Pain

Dr. Pollard wants to ensure that you’re as comfortable as possible throughout your entire healing process. When it comes to managing your post-operative pain, we encourage you to take the following steps:

  • Take prescription medication as instructed. Prescription pain medications can be intimidating, but are prescribed for a good reason. In small doses, these prescription medications allow for pain relief without causing blood thinning or bleeding. Keep in mind that these medications may cause constipation in small doses and can be dangerous when taken outside of Dr. Pollard’s instruction.
  • Over-the-counter medications are great too. Pollard, along with many other surgeons, may recommend taking over-the-counter pain medications like ibuprofen within the first few days of recovery to reduce swelling and help your prescription medications work more smoothly.

We hope we were able to answer some of your most pressing questions about tummy tuck pain. If you still want to learn more about the procedure, or believe you’re a good candidate for a tummy tuck, contact us to schedule your one-on-one consultation with Dr. Emily Pollard today. We are also offering virtual consultations, so you can get all of your questions answered in the comfort and safety of your very own home.