Surgeon is on holidays - Does it look like I am healing ok for 13 days post op and can I shower? Thanks. (photos)

Making sure I am healing ok

Doctor Answers 3


You look good after your TT! OK to shower as far as my guidance based on your photos. Keep healing! And check in with your surgeon's office. They will likely know his protocol. 

Healing 13 Days Post-Op

Most patients will be placed in an abdominal binder, which they will wear the first week. There is usually a fair amount of swelling and the binder should be opened several times a day so that there are no pressure points. After the first 7 to 10 days the patient is placed in an elastic garment for compression over the next six weeks. You can return to full activity without restrictions at 6 weeks.

Swelling can persist for several months and will gradually improve and will look better at three months, six months, and even one year. Frequently the pubic area can become very swollen and discolored during the first two weeks due to gravity as this is the lowest area for swelling to accumulate.

It may take several months for a tummy tuck patient’s scars to soften, for sensation to return, and for relaxing of the tight sensation in the abdomen. In the case of extensive surgery, abdominoplasty recovery can be uncomfortable and may take longer. Scars may stay red, become thick or widen. It can take 12-18 months for the scars to settle.

These can be improved with topical treatments such as BioCorneum, Scar Guard, Scar Fade and Mederma. Redness can be improved with laser treatments and the scars can be kept narrow with products such as Embrace.  On occasion, keloids or hypertrophic scars can develop and will need treatment including Kenalog, 5FU and laser.

Without your doctor in his office there should be a help-line that you can call for another office or surgeon to visit and have an examination to have your questions answered. You are still early in the healing process, so there should not be much to worry about, but if you are concerned then you should call the office and speak to one of the nurses to get the number of a line to call for post-op assistance. Good luck.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

When can I shower?

As far as your incision goes, from what I can see, it appears that your healing adequately. When you can shower is certainly a question and as many answers depending on who does your surgery. For my patients, I let them shower 24 hours after surgery. There is good scientific evidence now that this does not increase the chance for wound complications. Certainly there must be someone in the office of your chosen plastic surgeon who could offer you some guidance. Best of luck.

Marc J. Salzman, MD, FACS
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

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