Can a Gentle Vibrating Recliner Be Used After TT Surgery? What About Foot Massager to Prevent Clots?

I saw a recliner chair that has a gentle vibration on the back and seat. Will this help or hurt my recovery? Also, blood clots are of worry to me so I wasnwondering if those foot/calf massagers would help prevent DVT.

Doctor Answers 9

Preventing DVT after Tummy Tucks

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Foot and calf massagers are used regularly in the hospital to prevent blood clots. If you have the money to have one of those machines in your home, they can help.  They are not a substitute for walking however.  The best way to prevent blood clots after surgery is to get up and get walking!  I insist all my tummy tuck patients walk multiple times the night of surgery.  The massage chair is of no therapeutic value but also should not hurt anything.

Ambulation after Tummy Tuck

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   I would ambulate after surgery to reduce the risk of blood clots, and I would not recommend the vibrating chair.  It is always best to get your surgeon's opinion.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Foot massager after tummy tuck to prevent DVT

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If you are really interested in preventing DVT after tummy tuck frequent walking is actually the most important to exercise the muscular pump in your calves and improve venous circulation. Get up and resist sitting in any one position, with or without massagers and you will have the lowest risk.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Recliner Probably Safe After Tummy Tuck

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Thank you for your question. The vibrating recliner is probably safe and comfortable after a tummy tuck.  Foot massagers have not been tested for blood clot prevention.  I would advise discussing other VTE prevention strategies with your surgeon.  Good luck.

Vibrating Reclining Chair after Tummy Tuck

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I doubt a vibrating reclining chair will be a problem after a tummy tuck. However, it will not help with preventing blood clots. 

Karol A. Gutowski, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Vibrating chair

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The vibrating chair is not a great idea. It could vibrate you into post op bleeding. Also don't count on the foot squeezers to be a substitute for what you realy need to do to avoid clots. That is, getting up and walking frequently enough to prevent the clots.

Ronald J. Edelson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Tummy Tuck recovery

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A recliner with vibration might be soothing after tummy tuck surgery but otherwise doesn't make much difference.  Its important in any recliner to prevent bunching of your garment and dressings since the pressure can cut off the blood supply to the skin above the incision and cause complications.

Moving around or pumping you feet up and down at the ankle is generally enough to prevent clots after surgery assuming you are not prone to them.  Its also good for your lungs after surgery for you to get up out of bed.

Blood thinners increase your risk for a postoperative bleed after tummy tuck but may be used if your risk for a blood clot is high.  Weigh the risks with your surgeon.

Deborah Ekstrom, MD
Worcester Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Prevention of Clots after Tummy Tuck Surgery?

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Thank you for the question and pictures.

The chair/device that you have photographed may help you in terms of comfort and will certainly not “hurt” your recovery. I'm sure your plastic surgeon will recommend frequent ambulation as an important  part of your recovery.

 In terms of more specific methods to help prevent DVT,  I think you would be wise to review your specific medical history,  any medications that you are currently using and  the variety of “prophylactic”  modalities/medications available with your plastic surgeon.

 Best wishes.

Can a Gentle Vibrating Recliner Be Used After TT Surgery? What About Foot Massager to Prevent Clots

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Anything comfortable will help in recovery.In terms of a mechanical device to prevent blood clots, use a proven device--a sequential compression device, which can be rented at any surgical supply shop. 

You should discuss DVT prevention with your surgeon, and determine whether you would benefit from blood thinners. You can do your own screening by calculating your Caprini score (google it) and determine your risk and the recommended preventative treatment.

Thanks for your question, best wishes. 

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.