Is it safe to stand straight after a full tummy tuck? Can it ruin results or split the muscles apart?

I had a full TT with flank lipo 8 days ago. My muscles were quite far apart and my surgeon also used SERI scaffolding mesh to further secure the muscles. I am still walking fairly hunched over, which is causing major back pain. I am very nervous about standing straight because I am afraid it will tear the muscles apart. My doctor says to just listen to my body, but it all feels so tight, and I am afraid to push it. Should I keep trying to stand straighter or will my abdomen loosen up soon?

Doctor Answers 12

Is it safe to stand straight after a full tummy tuck? Can it ruin results or split the muscles apart?

Of course your surgeon is the best person to answer this question. In my experience with a good abdominal repair there is no reason not to stand up straight if you are able to do so. Go slow in stages. Once you stand straight you will find it easier each time you try.

If you are concerned see your plastic surgeon and have him/her help you stand up straight the first tiem.

Go slow for straightening up

Thank you for your query. After a tummy tuck there is substantial tension on the skin closure and the muscle separation is also corrected. I normally recommend to go slow and it can take upto 2weeks for patients to completely straighten up. This can be difficult due to back pain but you basically want to protect the tummy against any major pulls and pushes for the initial healing period in particular. 

Wearing a well fitting abdominal garment is a key and avoid abdominal distension by following a small, frequent meal plan will help. Constipation also needs to be avoided. 

Your abdomen will almost certainly loosen up and you should find things improving as you go along. So best of luck in your healing and final result.

Sanjay Azad, MS, FRCSEd
Thunder Bay Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Safe to stand straight after a full tummy tuck

Thank You for your inquiry.

The sooner you straighten up the better it will relieve your back discomfort. Go slow in stages. You won't hurt anything.

Best wishes and luck on your cosmetic endeavors

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Standing post tummy

I think caution is better here.You can stand up straight but if you feel severe pain then I would pull back.Caution is needed here. 

Robert Brueck, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
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Take it Slow

In our office we have our tummy tuck patients walk haunched over for at least the first week.  We also have them sleep in a reclined position for the first 5 to 7 days.  After that we encourage them to stand straight.  Your surgeon is correct listen to your body and take it slow.

Mark W. Greene, MD
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Standing straight post tummy tuck

Since every surgeon has his or her own post op protocol, I would follow your surgeon's advise. Having said that, the more that you try to stand straight, the easier it will become. Just push yourself a bit more every day. Best, Dr. Nazarian

Sheila S. Nazarian, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews


Thank you for the question and I would follow my surgeons advice as every surgeon has his own post op protocol and he also knows where you are at with your recovery.

Dr. Corbin

Frederic H. Corbin, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Listen to your body

Your surgeon gave you right advice. Follow it and you will be fine. Most patients can stand straight in 7-10 days after surgery. Do not resist straightening.   

Vasdev Rai, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Is it safe to stand straight after a full tummy tuck? Can it ruin results or split the muscles apart?


Thank you for your question. In my practice, it is typical for patients to stand upright somewhere between 1-2 weeks post op, however some patients will experience tightness and discomfort a little longer than that. I would agree that listening to your body is fine as you slowly increase upright standing. Follow up with your Plastic Surgeon and let them know if you have any new discomfort or concerns.

All the best

Is it safe to stand straight after a full tummy tuck? Can it ruin results or split the muscles apart?

Thank you for your question and congratulations on your surgery!  It is common to have tightness in your abdomen after a tummy tuck, especially if SERI mesh was used as it is soft but does not stretch.  Over time your tissues should relax with most patients able to stand up straight within 1-2 weeks after surgery.  I would continue close follow up with your surgeon, and voice your concerns.  They can provide you with further reassurance during your recovery. 

Nelson Castillo, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 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.