I Am 12 Days PO. The Bottom of my Stomach (Below Belly Button) is So Hard and Numb. Normal?

Doctor Answers 8

Hard and Numb after Tummy Tuck

   Although hardness and numbness is the norm after tummy tuck at this early stage, any concerns for fluid collection, infection, or increased pain should merit exam.  A physical exam by your surgeon could alleviate your concerns.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 492 reviews

Numbness after tummy tuck

During a tummy tuck procedure all of the skin and fat below the belly button are separated from the nerves that give them sensation.  This will cause this area to feel numb in almost everyone for a period of time.  Most of this sensation will return over the next 6 months.  The hard feeling that can develop in this area is a product of swelling in most people and should resolve with time as well.  If the area starts developing redness, worsening swelling, foul smelling discharge, fevers or chills then I would call your surgeon immediately.  Otherwise, this is normal post-op swelling.

Sacha Obaid, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 133 reviews

Numbness and Hardness 12 days post Tummy Tuck. Normal?

You are very early in your post operative course.  Numbness between the umbilicus and the incision is normal and usually will improve.  It may not get completely sensate.  The firmness is most likely from swelling.  If you have any questions at all, do not hesitate to call your Plastic Surgeon.

Jeffrey J. Roth, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Hardness and numbness after tummy tuck

It is quite common for patients to have numbness and hardness during the early post-op phase. This usually gets better with time.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Hard and Numb.

Most of the nerves giving sensation to the abdominal skin are divided during the operation, and numbness is the rule. Some to most sensation usually returns over the course of a year. An explanation of the hardness can be made only with a physical exam, so a call to your surgeon and a visit is in order. 

Thank you for your question, all the best. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Hard and Numb after Tummy Tuck

It is perfectly normal to have numbness after a tummy tuck which is expected to slowly have sensation return to normal after many months and even years following your surgery. Although uncommon, permanent numbness and tingling can occur after tummy tuck surgery, especially in the lower mid line area between the scar and belly button. In most cases there is some sensation present, just not the normal pre-surgical amount. Please speak with your plastic surgeon about your concerns.

#tummytucknumbness #tummytuckpost-op

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 154 reviews

Numbness and Swelling post tummy tuck

Thank you for your post. In a tummy tuck or abdominoplasty surgery, the tissue above the abdominal muscles is lifted off of the muscles from the lower scar to the ribs in a full tummy tuck and to the umbilicus in a mini tummy tuck. The superficial nerves that travel through the muscle to the skin are cut in order to do this. This is what causes the numbness afterward. The numbness usually extends in the entire area that was lifted up. On occasion, a superficial nerve to the thigh could be pulled causing numbness in this area as well. Swelling happens after surgery and also tends to be in the entire area that has been lifted up and any area that has received liposuction. Both numbness and swelling may take months to years to go away, and the last place for both to go away is the area right above the incision centrally, and sometimes right below the belly button. It may take up to 2 years to get to baseline sensation. sometimes, certain areas never feel totally normal, especially the area right above the incision centrally. If tingling or itchiness develop, that is a sign that the nerves are growing back. This is normally well tolerated, but occasionally, a nerve type pain medication is needed such as neurontin.
Best Wishes,
Pablo Prichard, MD

Pablo Prichard, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Tummy Tuck Surgery in Los Angeles

Recovery from a tummy tuck may include a period of time with residual swelling and numbness.  Having performed many tummy tucks, I would recommend that you wait as this is likely normal.  Raffy Karamanoukian, Los Angeles

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 94 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.