Is intermittent pain normal three weeks post op abdominoplasty, mastopexy and lipo?

I had the full mommy makeover. Mastoplexy without implants, full abdominoplasty with lipo on 5/31/16. Recovery has been pretty much standard- no complications at this time. That being said, however, I have episodes where my breasts feel like they're being stabbed - and it is unresolved with otc pain meds. So I thought I was off the narcotics, but twice this week I had to take a stronger pain med to help relieve the breast pain. It's depressing to be uncomfortable. Is this remotely normal?

Doctor Answers 5

Mommy make-over - stabbing breast pain after 3 weeks

Thank you for asking about your mommy make-over.

  • The pain you describe is absolutely typical of breast surgery -
  • Starting around 1-2 weeks, many women get sudden, sharp, electric pains across the chest
  • Often the pain is severe enough to make them gasp and stop whatever they are doing.
  • These feelings seem to indicate nerve recovery after surgery and tend to subside after 6 weeks.
  • Please let your surgeon know what is happening - since the pain is severe, s/he may want to see you to be sure there is no other problem.
  • Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.
Best wishes - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Is intermittent pain normal three weeks after TT, mastopexy and lipo?

Thank you for sharing your question and congratulations on your surgery!  Though each patient heals at different rates, and with different pain thresholds, it is not uncommon to still have times of worsening pain at this stage of your recovery.  As long as there has not been any significant change in your appearance all is likely well, but discuss with your doctor different treatment options for your pain.  Hang in there, each day should show a little improvement. 

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

Stabbing pains after Mommy Makeover

Thank you for your question.  Our office takes post operative pain management seriously.  Our current protocol includes a pain pump, (with numbing medicine), that will instill the numbing medicine in the area for the first three days after abdominoplasty.  Patients typically
move off the pain medicine to Tylenol after a few days.  We try to avoid ibuprofen and aspirin products for a couple weeks post op.  Each patient has their own pain tolerance.  What you are experiencing is normal.  Small stabbing pains are normal after this type of surgery.  Best to talk to your Board Certified Plastic Surgeon as each surgeon will approach the operation and the postoperative management differently.

Jeffrey J. Roth, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

You might also like...

Yes It's Normal!

Thank you for your question.
Yes! This is normal! In fact, it this sharp #pain means that you are #healing form your #breast surgery and #mommymakeover.  These pains mean that your nerves are healing and regaining feeling.  I know it is uncomfortable, but this pain will subside about six weeks after surgery.
If you have major concerns, please contact your #boardcertified plastic surgeon so you may be examined in person.

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


The brief answer to your question is yes intermittent pain after that amount of surgery is totally normal. Having said that if you are concerned or it is becoming bothersome I would certainly follow up with your operative plastic surgeon.

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.