Post to Forum

12 things I wish I knew before tummy tuck surgery

  • 3 years ago

  1. It is going to take a long time to heal. I went in thinking I was going to be up and running in two weeks. What the heck….I am an intelligent woman but this was really stupid thinking. Please plan on taking a minimum of two full weeks off work and three to four if you can swing it.
  2. They tell you that you will have swelling…whoa. That is an understatement so hang tough.
  3. Your clothes won’t fit for a while so don’t think you are jumping into a pair of skinny jeans any time soon. So not going to happen ladies. I guess I had visions of the tummy being removed, fat being sucked out of my hips and running out to a party the next week. Dreamer….
  4. Do not…and I repeat do not weigh or measure yourself for the first 8 weeks. Your weight will most likely be up and you will be swollen and full of fluid for at least the first month. Well the swelling lasts for weeks so hang on tight.
  5. Do not eat Mexican food the day before your surgery! Totally stupid idea on my part. I got to the hospital and while waiting to be taken back my IBS kicked in. Holy mother of God…I really didn’t think I would stop pooping in time for the surgery. I had visions of being on the OR table, ready to be put under and screaming STOP. I need to go poop. LOL
  6. Please let people take care of you and wait on you hand and foot. Don’t be a hero and try to run any marathons or be super woman. Yes ladies we all know we can run the show and manager everything and everyone in our life….but not now! Just surrender to your care takers and heal properly! Oh yes; and if the spouse is not doing things the way you would normally do it just let it go. You can straighten everything out later. Nobody will die if you are not running the ship for a while.
  7. Eat a light diet the day before surgery; trust me on this one!
  8. They tell you pre op that you will have some discomfort for a while after surgery. That is a lie because it hurts like hell. Obviously the people telling you this have never had a tummy tuck. As long as you don’t laugh, cry, sneeze, take a deep breath, move, poop, try to push and pass gas or any other sudden movements you will be fine. Basically just lay in the bed and play dead for about a week and you will be fine.
  9. Ok the pain meds do a number on your system. Constipation sets in quickly and hurts like hell. Make sure you take Milk of Magnesia the day after surgery; or some sort of stool softener. It hurt so bad that I felt like I had an army of little men with swords in my belly. Miserable!!!! I was gripping the rails of my bed as if I was giving birth. This was the time I wished my IBS would kick in. All I wanted was a nice easy pooh.
  10. Three to five hours after you take the MOM your tummy will start to rumble. Please be near a bathroom and start heading there right away. I was moving so slow after surgery that it took forever to get anywhere. Well when the rumbling started I laid in the bed thinking I had time….hmm. Really I swear I am an intelligent person. I couldn’t run so this was going to be a challenge!
  11. Make sure you have all the necessary supplies on hand before the surgery day. You won’t be able to drive to get anything after. I will include a supply list shortly.
  12. Do not watch any funny movies the first two weeks. I made that mistake and it hurt like hell. You do not want any deep gut laughter for a while. My son laughed so hard watching me try not to laugh. I thought he was going to wet his pants laughing. Apparently the face of a woman in pain after a tummy tuck is quite comical to a teenager. The little shit!

NEXT:  9 feelings You Will Go Through Before/During/After Tummy Tuck Surgery >>

Comments (430)

Sort by

OMG..your list is freaking hilarious!!
  • Reply
My life during this process was a bit like a circus:)
  • Reply
This list is priceless! Thankyou so much. I'm 20 days PO and starting to feel better after a trying week last week. Glad I'm this far PO though...cos I was laughing more as I went down the list! Brilliant.
  • Reply
Hang on girl and it will all be back to normal before you know it!
  • Reply
I cant tell you how much better I feel from this time last week! Unfortunately, my appetite is back though...I was hoping to shed a little extra poundage while I wasnt looking *laughing*
  • Reply
LOL..glad to hear you are feeling better.  Eat healthy foods and you will be fine.  Double up on the fresh veggies.
  • Reply
*still chuckling ever so gently* Thanks Kimmers, that's what I'm doing, lots of fruit too....you know...to keep the rest moving!
  • Reply
LOL..oh yes!   
  • Reply
Thank you for posting this :-)
  • Reply
You don't need a nurse to stay up all night. I spent one night in the hospital and then my husband took care of me the next day. After that, my 14 yr old daughter helped me. I'm 6 days post tt and can get up and down by myself no biggie!
  • Reply
Ok, I am post op day 20. Love your list but you are telling people not to laugh. I was rolling around on the couch laughing hysterically with tears coming down my face at your description of everything! I am still in some mild pain. Especially with sneezing. I have terrible heart burn or something. It only feels better when I sit up. My drains were in for 12 for the left and 19 days for the right. I finally slept on my hips last night. Oh my, the soreness/stiffness in my hips! It has got to get better. I go back to work this Monday!
  • Reply
Omg isn't laughing the WORST!? My husband doesn't seem to know how to NOT be funny. I keep getting scared I'm going to pop a stitch from laughing so hard. (I'm 6 days post op)
  • Reply
LOL..sorry:)    I still laugh when I think back to the first month post op.  

I had the heartburn as well.  I took Cimetadine and that totally helped.  Your first couple of weeks back to work are hard so hang on.  Try to keep focusing ahead to the end of the journey.  That will get you through this process.
  • Reply
End of first week back to work! It was hard, I was sore and tired when I got home from just half days! Tomorrow I am PO day 30. It has gotten better. Now I itch like I have fleas! I am work trying to sneak and scratch my butt, hips with anything long enough to get inside the binder and spanx! My co-worker just laughed at me! Had to buy the arnica today to help with swelling and bruising. Hope it helps.
  • Reply
Oh, please don't sneeze! Even at PO day 32, it hurts like the dickens to sneeze! Oh, the pain!
  • Reply
Week one was ok. I didn't walk much around the hospital. Stayed in my office . Today, is another story. First day of week two, now I think I know what everyone is talking about "swell hell". OMG. I thought I was gonna burst out of my CG! And I had on spanx too! HELP ME!
  • Reply
I know, it stinks!   Hang on and it will get easier.  When you are in the middle of recovery it feels as though it will never end.  
  • Reply
I'm 12 days post brachioplasty of upper arms with liposuction, removal of dog ears from 2010 tummy tuck and some lipo of lower back and flanks. I feel fine and I'm ready to return to work, but I've noticed my hips/thighs are fuller and larger than prior to surgery. Is this normal? Does it go away within time? Has anyone experience this before. Please share, I'm really concerned. Thanks!!!
  • Reply
At only 12 days PO it's most definitely swelling.  Give it some time and it should go down.  My swelling taunted me for 7 months, but it did improve a bit each month.  
  • Reply
6 days post op and I 100% agree with your list!
  • Reply
Hang on and everything will all be up hill from here on out:)
You will love the results and get through all of this.  Totally worth everything you go through.
  • Reply
I feel like crap I'm 4 months now and I was feeling good I went in airplane and now I am all swollen again and feel sick :( just fighting through this hell love results everything looks good but I feel crappy.
  • Reply
Rest my dear...that is your body's way of telling you to kick it down a few notches.  I know this is frustrating:(
  • Reply
I m 8 days posy op n i feel horrible my tummy is tighter than i can explain dont know its gas swelling or toomuch removal of skin or what but I AM I PAIN! Still hunched like my day2, no improvement! All i know is that it hurts it pulls it aches n trust me my pain threshold is normally bit bad atall! I had most pleasant experience of 2 csections so i thot tt will be easy! But ut isnt... I am in pain..
  • Reply
(Sorry abt typo errors earlier) I m 8 days post op n i feel horrible! my tummy is tighter than i can explain! dont know if its gas? swelling? or toomuch removal of skin? or what !! but I AM IN PAIN! Still hunched like my day2! no improvement! All i know is that it hurts, it pulls, it aches! n trust me my pain threshold is normally NOT bad atall.. I had most pleasant experienced of 2 csections.. so i thot tt will be easy! But it isnt... I am in pain..
  • Reply