Depression After Tt

how common is depression after tt and how long should it last before seeking help? do meds often help? I have been really down and hard for me to function normally. i don't like anything about the way the surgery looks and I think I made a big mistake - it's been little over a month. I only had a small pooch with umbilical hernia and good skin and had a mini tt. I feel like i made a big mistake that is irreversible.

Doctor Answers 9

Depression is fairly common after any operation including an abdominoplasty.

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Traumatic events can trigger depression particularly in patients that are prone to large mood swings.  A tummy tuck is a substantial operation and patients can experience the blues for a few weeks after the operation.  Medication occasionally is indicated but most of the time the problem resolves itself.

Tummy Tuck - Depression After TT

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It's a question of degree.

Ideally, of course, you would be happy with your procedure, and not having any second thoughts.  You've invested time, money and emotional energy into this process and now, for some reason, it isn't what you expected.

And that's where you have to start.  Speak with your PS about your concerns.  Perhaps you were expecting more from your procedure than was reasonable; in that case, going over your pre-op photos and your progress since then may be extremely helpful.

If, however, you're still not comfortable with what's happened, and you're still feeling depressed, then I would urge you to seek the advice of a psychiatrist or another mental health care provider.  These feelings are serious, there are many ways to be treated, and there's no reason for you to suffer without seeking intervention.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Depression after tummy tuck

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Unfortunately, after large elective procedures, there is sometimes a period of time where the patient asks themselves, "Did I do the right thing?". You are sore, incisions are fresh, tissue is bumpy, your activities are limited. You wonder why you voluntarily did this. Usually this lasts a few days to 2 weeks and the healing process proceeds, these questions are replaced by happiness over your result.

Richard Dale Reynolds, MD
El Paso Plastic Surgeon

Depression after plastic surgery should be taken very seriously.

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1)  You say you cannot function, and it has been a month.  That is not anything to ignore.  My first suggestion is go out -- today! -- and buy a paperback book called "Feeling Good", by Dr. David Burns, or get it on Amazon.  And start reading it, and doing the "homework" that he describes.  It is a very powerful book, and I have seen people's lives really picked up by just reading it.

2)  If in another two or three weeks, you are still feeling way down, see a psychotherapist.

3)  We sometimes see temporary depression after a face lift, but it is much more rare after body surgery.

4)  It could be that you did make a mistake.  It could be that you have a bad result.  But these are different issues that you will deal with when you feel stronger. Now just deal with your depression.   You may look a lot better in six months.  Or you may benefit by a revision.  Converting to a full tummy tuck can sometimes help.

Feel better!

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Depression After TT

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Depressive reactions following any cosmetic operation are known post operative issues. Before you think of starting any meds you need a heart to heart with your chosen surgeon. And more in office hand holding , daily if necessary. If still depressed than seek a psyh. evaluation with meds if needed. Start with small steps before entertaining medications. 

Depression after tummy tuck

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Many patients experience depression after surgery due to hormonal shifts caused by the body's response to surgery. It usually subsides on it's own. If it is severe or prolonged you should discuss this with your surgeon and they may refer you for treatment. This is different than simply being unhappy with your results. It may be too early to adequately judge what your results will be like...the worse your tummy was, the earlier you will the improvement because it is more dramatic. More subtle changes take longer to see.

Depression after tt

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These feelings are very common. They will subside. If they don't or worsen you should see someone. Discuss this with your ps on next visit.

Michael A. Fiorillo, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 107 reviews

Depression is common

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One month after surgery is a common time to have depression after surgery.  You still have swelling and fresh incisions.  You are starting with more activity and you body has to relearn thing.  Uncomfort  aches and pains are common.

I am not fond of the min-tt procedure unless a person has an excellent body to start with.   Patients are thinking mini but want the results of a full.  You will do fine i am sure. send photos.

Miguel Delgado, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Depressed after Surgery

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It is not uncommon to experience what you are experiencing at this time in your recovery. Severe emotional “ups and downs” are common after the major surgery that you have undergone. Requiring reassurance (that what you are experiencing is normal) is also common and to be expected. I would suggest closer follow-up with your surgeon–call and request earlier follow up.
Hopefully, after follow-up with your surgeon you will find that the depression will improve. Usually this occurs as patients become more active and return to their previous activities/lifestyle.
If this depression continues you may want to discuss your concerns with your plastic surgeon and consider counseling/professional psychiatric evaluation.
Keep in mind that the worst part of the recovery is over!
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.