I am almost 4 weeks post op of full tummy tuck with muscle repair and breast lift. I have some swelling still, but overall feel like I am recovering within the normal range. I have read posts of patients having post surgical lymphatic message to expedite the healing process. What is the opinion of the doctors on this site? I am going to ask my PS also before doing anything of course, but wanted to know what there doctors here advise. Also, are there any other things to aid in faster recovery?
Benefit of Lymphatic Massage After Tummy Tuck?
Doctor Answers 11
Lymphatic Massage beneficial after Tummy Tuck
Since you are 4 weeks post op, lymphatic drainage massage may be beneficial in reducing the swelling. However if you are still experiencing pain or discomfort, this may limit how aggressive the lymphatic drainage massage can be performed. I would definitely recommend a discussion with your plastic surgeon before doing it.
Stewart Wang, MD FACS
Massage reasonable 6 weeks post-op.
In the early post-operative period, compression garments are utilized to minimize swelling.Compression garments are typically worn for three to six weeks following surgery.At six weeks, it’s reasonable to consider lymphatic massage if residual swelling is still present.
Before proceeding with this technique, it’s important that the wound edges be sealed and surgical drains be removed.It’s also important that lymphatic massage be performed by an experienced therapist.This minimizes the potential for complications such as wound separation.
Patients who have prolonged post-operative swelling should discuss this treatment with their plastic surgeon.Their surgeon should be able to tell them if lymphatic massage is appropriate for them.
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Lymphatic Massage Aids Recovery
Lymphatic drainage massage techniques have helped many of my patients.
When done properly, massage aids reduction of swelling and congestion, leading to improved circulation in the surgical areas.
Many of my patients report how good the massage feels and how much improvement they see and feel after lymphatic massage.
Ask your surgeon for a referral to a massage therapist with experience and skills in performing these techniques on someone post-op from cosmetic surgery.
Lymphatic massage after tummy tuck
Lymphatic Massage 4 Weeks after Tummy Tuck
Lymphatic massage may be of benefit, but the massage at 4 weeks should be carefully orchestrated. The incision should have healed, and healing must have been uneventful.
Lymphatic Massage After Surgery
Thank you for your question.
I am glad that you are saying that you will be checking with your surgeon because he/she is the one who knows you and your case best.
In general, lymphatic massage can be helpful. You need to make sure that it is performed by an experienced therapist and that you are at a point in your recovery that it will not do any harm.
Benefits of lymphatic massage
I generally recommend lymphatic massage to my patients after liposuction. After a tummy tuck, I would be more wary on any aggressive massage. Since you are now 4 weeks out after surgery, you may be able to tolerate a slightly more aggressive massage but I would be careful. Please get advice from your surgeon.
Post Operative Lymphatic Massage Beneficial In Recovery
Thank you for the question. You are obviously very early in your healing. The first 3 months of this period is marked by inflammation caused by the body's response to surgery as well as the disruption of lymphatic vessels. This swelling will resolve spontaneously as the body heals itself from the surgery. A lymphatic massage, when done by an experienced therapist, will aid in the facilitation of lymphatic drainage from the surgical site. Other benefits of this therapy include an increase in the blood supply to the region and the fact that it is very soothing and relaxing to the patient. Patients will also see a definite amelioration in their contour initially after the massage.
However, lymphatic massage does not decrease your healing time. Healing is a very complex series of events which take place over 12 to 18 months in order for the tissue that has been wounded, whether by accident or on purpose (surgery), to regain its' tensile strength. At this point in time there are no therapies or remedies which will effectively reduce the time needed for a patient to heal.
I hope this helps. Best wishes.
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.