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Sensitivity and Burning After Tummy Tuck

I am 7-8 weeks post op from a tummy tuck and am experiencing extreme senstivity, burning, shocking feelings throughout my abdomen, scar and pubic area. Is there anything I can do to ease these feelings?

It is really starting to wear on my nerves. I cannot wear anything that is going to move against my skin. I am working on weaning myself from the support garments. The only thing that helps some is a vinegar bath. I have taken OTC pain relievers but they barely take the edge off.

Please provide me with ANY suggestions or recommendations that will relieve these feelings.

Doctor Answers (7)

Sensitivity and burning after a tummy tuck


Tummy tucks are extremely popular and effective way to contour the abdomen. Patients should remember that there is a significant recovery process after the surgery. You should expect to have swelling, bruising and sensitivity or tingling around the edges of your decision. The nerve sensations that are feeling are your nerves repairing and becoming accustomed to their new positions. These should resolve within several months. During this time, your sensation will return as well.
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Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Pain after Tummy tuck


Dear Beaches

What you are feeling is not abnormal but it sounds like it is starting to get to you. These complaints are often heard at this time as the nerves start to grow through the scar and the abdomen starts to have more innervation. Sometimes the numbness is just as unsettling.

You might want to speak to your doctor about adding some additional therapy like Lidocaine patches or TENS units if it really is bothering you. I hope oyu feel better and start to enjoy your results.

Steven Schuster MD FACS

Steven Schuster, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Hypersensitivity following tummy tuck


Sensitivity and pain as you describe is an uncommon long term problem with tummy tucks. However, it is not uncommon to experience these symptoms for brief periods of time during the healing process. The use of desensitization exericises to help decrease the hypersensitivity may help to improve the recovery.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 41 reviews

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Significant pain 7 weeks after a tummy tuck is unusual.


As the nerves repopulate the abdomen, the patient may experience some unusual sensations.  Pain is generally not one of them.  I would recommend you revisit your surgeon just to make sure that everything is healing properly. 

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Sensitivity after tummy tuck


I very sorry so hear that you are having sensitivity issues after surgery. You should first be evaluated by your doctor, but you may need to see a pain management doctor if this persists. Sometimes lymphatic massage and  desensitization exercises can be helpful.

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Hypersensitivity after a tummy tuck


It is uncommon to have the symptoms you are having but it sounds like "hypersensitivity." This is the opposite of numbness on the spectrum of nerve issues and is an indication that nerves are intact or growing back and are irritated. Usually, time and gentle massage fix all of this. Unfortunately, it can take some time. Stay in close touch with your surgeon.

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

You may have a nerve injury


I'm so sorry to hear about your problems after a tummy tuck. They may be due to nerve injury. It is common for patients to have numbness in the area of the incision and the area under the belly button after a tummy tuck. However, the burning pain and shocking feeling may be due to injury of the ilioinguinal or iliohypogastric nerves or the genitofemoral nerve. This may not go away with time, and you may need to have another surgery to remove those nerves. Medications like Neurontin or Lyrica may help. I hope this helps.

David S. Rosenberg, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.