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12 things I wish I knew before tummy tuck surgery

  • 4 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!
If you have any questions please let me know.  You may reach out to me at Kimmers25

PART 2 :9 feelings You Will Go Through Before/During/After Tummy Tuck Surgery >>

Comments (716)

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For those who have had C-Sections (I have had two, 2008 & 2011) how would you compare the two surgeries, pain and recovery wise??? Thanks!!
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I have not had C-sections, but have had two lower abdominal surgeries (hysterectomy and bladder repair - both along the bikini line). Gotta say I didn't really notice the pain this time in that area. I maybe took 4 percosets total for abdominal pain.
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I had no issue w/pain but DID feel crummy (nausea and then headache from not eating) from the narcotic.
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Was the TT similar to a c-section?
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Yes. Very comparable. Now most of the nerves now seem dead around the multiple incision site which is why I don't think it bothered me much. Other than the fact that you have had major surgery (so you should feel a little punky for a week or so), I double that you will feel the level of pain that you felt with your C-sections. I could be wrong, but the basis for my opinion is rooted in the fact that I have been told that even though some nerves regenerate over/through an incision site, not all do. And multiple incisions, means even less regeneration. I'll be interested in hearing if you agree after your surgery and hope you will post here.
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BTW, as of tomorrow, I am 6 weeks PO. I feel great and am just as delighted as I possibly can be. Still losing weight, but without that unsightly - 9 POUNDS (yep, you read right) - of extra flesh hanging around my abdomen, all my new clothes fit beautifully. May not have been the easiest way to lose this 9 lbs, but I'll take it...lol
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Your advise has really made me feel better about going through with this surgery next week. I am so proud of you!!! You have been through so much and you are still glad you did it, That's so lovely to hear!! AND - 9lbs is amazing - what a load off your back. I am hoping my skin removal will also help with back pain. Thanks so much and I will be updating for sure!!
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Have you had any C-sections? Thanks for the advise, I will be taking anti nausea med's because I got sick after both C-sections, my PS said it would be good to get ahead of that. :)
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My c section was 25 years ago and I stayed in the hospital for several days. This time 1 night ant hospital, 2 nights on couch and then VOILA a new woman. I lost 100lbs about three years ago. This surgery (TT w/muscle repair, no lipo) HAD to happen. I'm about 17 days out now. Back at work, clothes fit (actually needed smaller), sleeping and eating well, walking for exercise and can't WAIT to get back to the gym.. Now, my husband is a SAINT and our children are adults living in other states which makes things as easy as possible.
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WOW - sounds like things are going really good for you! I can only hope to be in the same boat you are in 17 days PO. :) I too am having a TT with muscle repair and no lipo. Do you regret not getting lipo? Thanks, Congratulations on your TT and speedy recovery! :)
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Yes, I do!! Going back in to get it this winter. On the other hand, since it had the complication of tearing out my sternum lacings,it was probably better for me. I still have to have my upper arms and thighs excised too :-(. I'm down 135 so far and my upper thighs are sagging almost to my kneecaps ... LOL
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oh man..... I have a feeling I might regret it but like you I can always go back and get more done later. One step at a time. :) LOL - you are too funny. 135lb loss is amazing! You go girl!!!
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Nope no regrets about no lipo. My surgeon doesn't do them together anyway and I can work off any fat on my own ( but nothing else gets rid if skin!). Best of luck!
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That makes sense! Thank you!
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I found them to be completely different..tummy tuck much worse.
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Thanks for the heads up but - Yikes. :/
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My surgery is scheduled for 9/24/14 and I'm feeling like backing out. I have 2 weeks off from work and am getting scared that's not enough time. I sit at a desk and don't have a physically demanding job. Any thoughts? :/
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Everyone heals differently sobo. I Initially took off 2, then 3, then 4wks. Went back last week part time. I'll be 5 wks post op tues. Just know recovery is no picnic & you may only need the 2 wks, or you may need more. My best advice is be prepared & educate yourself as much as possible prior to your surgery! We have all survived it but it's a long process (I'm not myself yet & belly is still numb & walking slow, but so much better than b4). Best of luck on your surgery!! We are all in the same boat & this a great community to help get you thru it!
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I think it's just so different for everyone. I went back to work at a desk job at exactly two weeks-tired and rest when I get home but am fine. Be as fit as possible before surgery, eat clean and rest during recovery and you will give yourself the best chance of an easier recovery.
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Sobo, Without the complications I had (I began vomiting 4 hours post-op and tore out my sternum lacing ... it was my own fault), I could have easily gone back to work in two weeks. I would have been moving a bit slower, and definitely would have been indulging in a power nap at lunch, but it would have been doable.
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Thank you for the advise and kind words. I really appreciate it. Best of luck to you and your recovery. :)
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Excellent advise. Makes me feel better about only having two weeks off. Work is ok if I do a few half days when I return. Thanks!! :)
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Oh my gosh. Sorry for your troubles. More good words though. Thank you! How po are you?
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Knowing how I feel and look now, I'm glad I didn't back out. But I will admit just the first few days I wondered what I did to myself and why. I will be 4 weeks PO on Tuesday and other than being tight, I feel really good. Energy levels are back and everything. I went back after 3 weeks, and I too have a desk job. You will probably be tired, especially before you get back into the swing of things, but I have no doubt you can do this!! It's a long Process, but when you look down and see complete flatness, you'll remember exactly why you did it. Good luck to you, and always remember we are here if you need to vent!!
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I had surgery almost 2 years ago. I didn't have a lot of complications and I actually went back to work after about 5 days, for only like 2-3 hours of desk work. Then worked my way back up to full time, and that only took about 1-1/2 weeks. You will do fine. It's the best decision you can make. Good luck!
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