6 Weeks After Surgery, Full TT and Instead of Feeling Happy, I Am Frustrated, When Will I Feel No Discomfort at All?

Although the pain has gone away slowly throughout the weeks, I feel UNCOMFORTABLE, SWELLING, some mornings I wake up and my tummy is flat, but by the end of the day it looks like I am two months pregnant. Some mornings I wake up and my TT is already swollen and by the end of the day my skin burns from the stretching of the swelling of the muscle. I want to use pants or jeans, I can't stand to feel anything hugging my tummy, I want to sleep in another position not my back. I want to enjoy sex.

Doctor Answers 3

Frustrated instead of happy post tummy tuck

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Thank you for your question. I'm a little surprised that the postoperative course was not discussed with you in more detail.First of all, what you are experiencing 6 weeks out from surgery is normal. Some patients even go through depression in the first month after their surgery and even question why they even done this to themselves. I reassure you, these symptoms and feelings are temporary and in the long run you will be pleased with the transformation. You are flat in the morning and puffy and swollen by evening, because the drainage of the abdominal flap is still not normal and more fluid is retained. This might take months to get back to normal. You can sleep in different positions now, don't have to on your back only. You can also have sex, might need to be creative about position. You can't hurt or undo anything at this point. Be patient, talk to your surgeon about your concerns. Good luck.


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It is normal to feel the way you are. It usually takes 6-9 months for your body to go back to normal. Most people at 6 weeks are feeling pretty good. You should be able to sleep however you like at this stage. The best person to see what is going on is your PS.


Stuart B. Kincaid, MD, FACS (in memoriam)
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon


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Everyone recovers at her own rate. Most feel quite well by six weeks, but not all. I think the best reassurance you can get will come from your surgeon, and it is totally appropriate to discuss these issues. 

I don't know if you are still wearing some compression, but an abdominal binder with velcro that can be adjusted will often control the swelling that occurs over the course of the day, and so long as you put it on in the morning and adjust it as needed, you can probably tolerate the compression. 

As far as sleeping in a position you want, again check with your surgeon, but by six weeks the wounds have reached 90% of their strength. 

Do call your surgeon. Best wishes for a speedy recovery from here on out. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

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.