Did my Musle Repair Come Undone? (photo)

I'm 10 weeks PO with a fleur de lys tummy tuck following 140lbs weight loss. My upper stomach is still bulging out enough that it creates an indent at my BB. When i flex my abs, they feel tight and not split anymore but why am I still sticking way out? I certainly don't have a flat stomach.

Doctor Answers 7

Tummy tuck and post op look

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you look great. One of the main things I try to reinforce to all of my patients pre-op is that we are working with tissue that likes to stretch. And for patients who have at one time in their life been 140 lb's heavier, they like to stretch even more. With all that said you are still in a period of swelling and with time that will get better. I think you should be very proud of your accomplishment of losing that weight and your PS did a very nice job with the abdominoplasty.

Virginia Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

Muscle separation after abdominoplasty

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Hi Busymomx4

Good work on your weight loss and commitment to reshaping your body.

Your photos do not indicate any evidence of muscle separation. It seems that you have a reasonable result from the procedure. Any residual bulges in your upper tummy are likely to respond to continuing weight loss or liposuction.

Dr Gavin Sandercoe

Did my Musle Repair Come Undone?

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Can not determine over the internet even with posted photos! Best to seek second opinions in person. A before photo always helps! 

Persistent upper abdominal bulge following fleur de lys TT

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A weight loss of 140 lb is a great achievement - well done!

As you know the pattern for a fleur de lys Abdominoplasty involves a tapering vertical excision of skin in the upper abdomen. I think your photographs show a very good result for a procedure that dealt with what I imagine was a large amount of redundant skin.

The way to determine whether there is an issue with the muscle repair is with a hands on examination but I don't think the repair will have weakened.

I think the reason for some persistent fullness in your upper abdomen is because there is a degree of (unavoidable) 'dog earing' in that area. As I mentioned above, I think your result is a good one and it's virtually impossible to create a perfectly flat abdominal profile in your circumstances.

At 10 weeks the post operative swelling is beginning to subside but your abdominal shape probably won't stabilize until around 6 months.

If you still have concerns at that time a small liposuction revision may help. Keep in touch with your surgeon and I'm sure he / she will help you out.

Douglas McManamny, MBBS, FRACS
Melbourne Plastic Surgeon

Muscle Separation after Tummy tuck Surgery?

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Congratulations on your successful weight loss and, what appears to be, a well executed operation. There is no evidence on the photograph that you have muscle separation, but your plastic surgeon will be your best resource when it comes to ruling out any complication.

 Given your statement about “flat stomach”, I would wonder about your preoperative education and/or achieving realastic expectations prior to surgery.

 Follow-up with your plastic surgeon for more precise advise;  enjoy the probably quite significant improvements you have achieved.

 Best wishes.

De lys tummy tuck following 140lbs weight loss

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Many thanks for the question. Its as good a result as it can be. Infect there in no need for you concern and your question. It will end up with a perfect result. Although it can be better if you posted pre op pictures but this is what I can say to help you. Wish you good luck.

Did my Muscle Repair Come Undone?

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Even though there are no photos from before, I would say that you have an excellent result. By your description, I doubt that you have had any disruption of your repair, but only an exam by your surgeon can begin to answer that. During your time at heavier weight, all of your soft tissues were stretched, and recovery of contour does not always meet expectations, which are often not realistic. 

It is always best to discuss areas of dissatisfaction with your own surgeon. All the best. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle 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.