Posted on 23 Jan 2020
You have just had a tummy tuck and want to know how soon you will be able to return to work. The time it takes to recover can vary from person to person. A quick answer to the question would be anywhere from two to six weeks.
Once the surgery is completed, you should be able to return home on the same day. Even so, once you go home, you will need to have some assistance. There is a garment for compression that needs to be worn for at least four to six weeks to make sure the tummy is held in place the proper way. This helps it heal the correct way. Then you will need to have multiple visits with the surgeon in the weeks following the procedure.
The back to work time depends on your basic fitness and health. Health and fitness levels can determine how quickly you heal. It also depends on what kind of job you have. For a desk job, it may only take 10 to 15 days of recovery to return to work. However, if the job is physical, such as standing, manual labor and even dancing, there should be more time to wait.
If you are a smoker, this could also impact your recovery time and the time it takes to go back to work. The blood vessels are affected by cigarette smoke and can slow the process of healing. Smoking can also cause serious problems so quitting for four to six weeks prior to and after surgery would be a good idea, not to mention quitting altogether.
Each person’s body is different and that also applies to recovery time after a tummy tuck. Walking a bit after surgery is a good way to help with healing and will also lessen the chance of blood clots forming. It can help avoid too much swelling and keep muscles from being too stiff.
During the first few days there may be some swelling, bruising and tightness. The garment for compression will still be in place even after the drains are removed. No lifting, heavy exercise, drinking alcohol, smoking or working should be done during the first week.
After two weeks, the surgery site should have less swelling and bruising and the tightness should begin to disappear. All throughout the recovery period, the surgeon and specialist should be consulted to know what can and can’t be done. Also, if there are any unusual complications during this time, the physicians should be promptly notified. They are also the ones who will be able to determine the best time that you can return to work.
Dr. Keith Neaman
Dr. Neaman is a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in surgical body contouring. He prides himself on being on the cutting edge of plastic surgery. He takes an informative approach to each consultation, and through open dialogue and communication, he helps his patients decide on a treatment plan that meets their needs.