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Sudden Numbness 3 Weeks Post Op After Tummy Tuck- Normal?

after my tummy tuck i had numbness at stitch site and a bit above that, now i am 3 weeks post op and the numbness has spread up to my belly button. I just had drains removed 1 day ago. Is this normal...just afraid of fluid collecting. I am prone to water retention so I am worried about fluid collecting now that drains are gone. Also is drinking alcohol a bad idea? I drink water all day long and have stopped my pain meds but donnot want to add to any swelling.

Doctor Answers (3)

Numbness after tummy tuck


While performing a tummy tuck some sensory nerves are unavoidably severed.  Thus, there can potentially be some areas of numbness on your tummy.  Most of this resolves over time but some numbness may be permanent. It is highly unlikely that any nerves that are motor in nature have been severed during a tummy tuck.  You should follow up with your plastic surgeon and relay your concerns to him or her.

Tampa Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Numbness and Tummy Tuck?


Thank you for the question.

All of my patients who have undergone tummy tuck surgery experience “numbness” along the majority of the abdominal wall ( from pubic bone up to rib cage); this numbness can last up to several years.  This numbness is to be expected given that the small nerves and blood vessels have been divided during the tummy tuck surgery.

It is very likely that you are recently noticing the numbness,  that has been present since your surgery.

Continue to follow up with your plastic surgeon with specific questions and concerns.

Best wishes.


Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 681 reviews

Numbness after Tummy Tuck


The vast majority of women undergoing a Tummy Tuck, similar to those having a C Section, have a large numb area above their scar. The area of numbness is maximal after surgery but it narrows over the following 10-12months. It is NOT normal for a previously normally sensate area to suddenly become numb weeks after surgery. Are you sure this area was not numb after surgery? You should discuss this with your surgeon.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

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