Upper Abdominal Pain 8 Weeks PO? (photo)

Hello. I am 8 weeks PO from TT and muscle repair and am experiencing significant pain above and to the right of my belly button. I did some light lifting of weights at the gym about a week ago (after being cleared to do so by my PS) and am afraid I hurt myself. This pain has been occurring consistently for over one week and seems to be getting worse rather than better. I have done no more activity and have done my best to rest to try to recover. Is it possible that I injured an internal suture?

Doctor Answers 11

Pain after tummy tuck

Your result looks great and it is unlikely that you injured something.  If you experienced pain after your exercise, I would try starting again when the pain subsides with lighter exercise.  Please follow up with your plastic surgeon as well so that he can fully examine you and make sure everything is fine.  Best wishes!



Honolulu Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Pain following abdominoplasty

At 8 weeks post op from an abominoplasty you are still in the early healing period and the soft tissue will be stiff.  It is possible that you have aggravated a sensory nerve or caused the muscle to go into spasm.  In any event it should be temporary.  Modify your activities according to how you feel and if the condition does not improve over the next few weeks get it evaluated by your plastic surgeon.  It is unlikely that you have caused any permanent harm.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Upper Abdominal Pain 8 Weeks After Tummy Tuck

     Did you feel anything pop or intense pain when you were working out?  You may have popped a suture.  This is difficult to answer without examining you.  However, if you abdomen looks the same as before, you probably did not do any significant damage to your plication.  As always, see your plastic surgeon for an exam.

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 reviews

Pain after tummy tuck

You could have torn some stitches at the fascia closure site near your belly button. It generally will get better with time. Check with your PS if if does not get better in a week.

Neil T. Chen, MD
Albuquerque Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 74 reviews

Upper Abdominal Pain 8 Weeks PO?

You would be best to chat with your surgeon, who can decide if an actual exam would be in order. 

It is quite common to develop discomfort after resumption of activities, and usually this is self-limiting, and not a sign of anything needing treatment or correction.

Thanks for your question, best wishes. 

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

Pain after exercising

More than likely the repair to the muscles is holding strong, as there does not appear to be a contour deformity in the upper abdomen in the photograph.  Since you haven't exercised in several weeks, even what you consider a "light" workout could have been more than what your body was ready to do.  If the pain persists, I would definitely contact your plastic surgeon to have him/her evaluate you.

Good Luck

Robert Kratschmer, MD

Robert Kratschmer, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Aggressive Exercise Postop Can Cause Pain.

Thank you for your question and photo.  While it is safe to resume exercise at 8 weeks postop, it is advisable that you gradually resume regular activity. Weights at 8 weeks postop is very agressive and it is not surprising that you have pain.  Back off a bit and go to light activities like walking on a tread mill or elliptical.  Your body should heal itself and resolve the pain.  Ibuprofen at this point is safe and should help your musculoskeletal pain resolve more quickly.  You are unlikely to have torn your sutures,but an exam by your plastic surgeon will confirm this.  Good luck!

Robert F. Centeno, MD, FACS
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Upper Abdominal Pain 8 Weeks PO?

Best to see your surgeon very soon to be examined to determine the cause of this right paramedic upper pain. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 174 reviews

Pain 8 weeks after tummy tuck

Thanks for your question and picture.  You appear to have a good result so far.  If your pain started after exercising, it is possible that you are experiencing some muscle spasm.  You are still early in the process of healing and your tissues are not as compliant as they will be with time.  If the pain seems to be getting worse, then you should see your plastic surgeon so he or she can evaluate you in person.

Naveen Setty, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Abdominal Pain 2 Months Post Abdominoplasty With Exercise - Did I Injure An Internal Suture?

Having abdominal pain in the early post abdominoplasty period, especially after exercising, is not uncommon at all. 

In the process of repairing your rectus diastasis (abdominal muscle separation), all plastic surgeons use some form of suture technique to hold the muscles together until your body forms a strong scar.  At 8 weeks post abdominoplasty, your scar is between 70-90% of its full tensile strength, therefore it is unlikely your disrupted the scar which eventually will keep your muscles together.

Your theory that an internal suture may be causing your belly pain makes perfect sense.  These sutures have not been completely replaced by scar tissue and a twist or a turn during your exercising probably pulled on one of these sutures causing pain and inflammation.  Taking an anti inflammatory such as Ibuprofen and resting awhile before beginning exercise again is appropriate.

Don't worry.  I would bet you didn't hurt anything significant. 

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.