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Will I Get Better After Tummy Tuck Problems?

Is it normal or am I supposed to have so much pain after Tummy Tuck? Will the numbness ever go away? Was it something I did that caused me to bleed so much? My scars are ugly; why is this? Should he not have done the surgery all the way around my body? I'm so afraid that one day I will injure myself somehow in the numb areas and won't know it! Will I get better?

Doctor Answers (8)

Anything that could go wrong did go wrong


Abdominoplasty is a procedure that is done thousands of times each year in this country. If the patient is appropriately evaluated preoperatively and the correct surgical technique is performed, including precautions for blood clots, than the risks can be minimized. Unfortunately complications do happen but usually not all of them at once! Why the bleeding etc I have no idea. The numbness usually resolves over the course of several months. Although it is possible to have permanent numbness around the belly button or between the belly button and the incision.

The abnormal pain is likely related to the bleeding which is highly irritating to the body. If you're 6 weeks out of surgery and still having significant pain you should see a pain specialist. At least get started on Lyrica. For the answers to all of your questions you'll need to have a one on one which your doc and don't leave until you get the answers you need.

Fairfax Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Tummy tuck pain and numbness


You do not state how far are you from your surgery, what was your weight and height. People who are closest to their ideal body weight will have the best results and the least possible complications. It is common to have pain especially after muscle repair and numbness as well. I tell my patients that the numbness resolves in about six months, but in an occassional patient I've seen it last over a year. This is mainly in the lower abdomen, between the belly button and the pubic area. Did you bleed after surgery, had a hematoma? You are not clear in describing this. Scars can be raised and red initially, but they do fade and settle down. A small percentage of patients do heal with thick scars (maybe too much tension during closure of the incision or some people do form more scars) and they might require a scar revision months later to improve this. I always do extensive liposuction of the back, hips, buttocks and sometimes the thighs with my abdominoplasties to get the best results in reshaping the midsection. The numbness will go away. I never heard anyone injuring themselves because of this. I caution my patients to stay away from heating pads in this area, since it is possible to sustain a burn injury to the numb area.

George Marosan, MD
Bellevue Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

All of your questions are valid and you deserve some answers


I would strongly recommend that you schedule an appointment with your plastic surgeon and discuss your concerns. All of your questions are valid and you deserve some answers. Your plastic surgeon knows you the best and understands what surgical techniques were utilized, and is the most capable of providing you with the best information. It sounds like you have experienced a very difficult post operative course. Let your plastic surgeon and his/her staff assist you doing your recovery.

I hope this helps!

Stephen A. Goldstein, MD
Englewood Plastic Surgeon

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Return to your surgeon for answers


It is implossible to know the answer to your questions without knowing more about your surgery, the extent, the techniques, the timing, etc.

You have many, many questions that need to be addressed by your surgeon or his staff. It sounds as if you may have lost some trust but remember it is in your surgeon's best interests to make you a satisfied patient. Give him or her an opportunity to answer your questions.

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

You need your doctor's answers, not the internet's


You are very fragile and have anxiety about many issues that may be perfectly normal after a tummy tuck.  Only your doctor knows you best and you trusted them to do your suregry.  Honor that trust and keep these questions addressed to your doctor.  They will want to help you!!

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

Numbness and scar problems after Tummy Tuck will subside


Depending on how long you are since your Tummy Tuck surgery, everything sounds fine. The numbness will go away. The scar will get better. Just give it all time--it can take a year.

G. Gregory Gallico III, MD
Boston Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Numbness after tummy tuck


It's hard to answer most of your questions because you don't indicate how much time has passed since your surgery. I tell my patients that numbness can persist up to a year postop but should improve slowly during that time. The same goes for scar maturation. With regard to pain and discomfort, this usually improves faster (over 6-8 weeks). I suggest you voice your concerns to your surgeon as they are probably easily addressed. Good luck!

Elan B. Singer, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Numbness after tummy tuck


The good news is that your numbness will definitely improve, and this takes time. The same thing can be said of scars. The process can take as long as 6 months or more but is progressive. You do not indicate the time frame from your surgery and how long the bleeding persisted, etc., so that others questions cannot be answered just yet.

Theodore Katz, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 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.