Post - Op? Massages, Garment, Recovery, Aftercare?

After having a tummy tuck it's known you should have massages, Where and what kind of spas provide the specific massage needed? Im having a mommy makeover AND lipo of the thighs, how long do I have to wear a knee length body shaper? Are you able to get up and move around next day? nothing strenuous, drive for example?? What are signs of infection? Can you go a few hours (4-5hrs) without wearing it after 7/8wks post op?

Doctor Answers 10

Recovery After a Tummy-Tuck and Liposuction

Massages often help with the reduction of swelling and to even out irregular areas after liposuction. It is best to wait several weeks or at least until you are no longer tender in the treated areas. It is important to walk the same day and the following days after surgery to help prevent blood clots. Walking to the bathroom and/or the kitchen helps with this. The compression garment, in general, is worn for at least 3-4 weeks after surgery. It can be left off for a few hours, but it is best to wear it as much as possible to keep the swelling to a minimum and allow the skin to heal evenly over the newly contoured fat. Driving should wait at least 7-10 days after a tummy-tuck, but some patients feel better sooner. These are all important questions, so be sure to get all the after care instructions from your surgeon.


Schererville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Care after mommy makeover.

These questions are best answered by your plastic surgeon. In general, postoperative garments and massage are good ideas after surgical procedures you have mentioned. In my offices we offer a comprehensive or surgical plan to include garments, scar care as well as lymphatic massage and Endermologie / Smoothshapes. Please check with your plastic surgeon regarding the services prior to engaging.

Kevin Tehrani, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

Mommy Makeover Recovery

It is very common for mommy makeovers to include both breast and tummy procedures.  After surgery, your pain should be well managed with 1-2 oral pain pills every 4-6 hours if needed.   All my mommy makeover patients are ambulating a few hours after surgery (of course walking flexed at their waist given the tummy tuck).   Most surgeons will likely recommend no heavy lifting or strenuous activity for 5-6 weeks.  Most of my mommy makeover patients are comfortable with driving 7-10 days after their surgery.  I generally recommend taking 7-10 days off from a desk job after a mommy makeover procedure.  Doing too much too soon can definitely increase your risk of healing problems or fluid collections (seromas).

Every surgical plan is unique/different so I encourage you to direct these questions to your surgeon and his staff.  It is very important you allow enough time for yourself and your recovery.  Mommy Makeovers are truly transforming procedures.  I'm sure you'll love your results.   Please plan and give enough time for your recovery.  Best of luck.

Dr. Basu
houston, tx

Healing and Activity Following a Mommy Makeover

Healing after a Mommy Makeover will require time. Some patients are out of bed and walking the night of surgery and every hour while awake. I allow my patients to return to work at one to two weeks with 14 days preferred.  However, no lifting or straining.  At three weeks, increased level of activity and full with no restrictions, at 6 weeks. 

As I advise my patients, if your work keeps you sedentary, you may return whenever you feel up to it. If your work is strenuous, wait until your work activity does not cause any superficial pain.  The purpose of the post-procedure #garment is to provide some gentle #support and to reduce swelling following a #TummyTuck or #Abdominoplasty. If it feels too tight or causes pain, take it off. Patients wear the #elastic garment for several weeks after surgery, as directed by their doctor. Some choose to wear it longer for several months for comfort.
Some employers will modify a person’s job duties so they can back sooner, but without physical activity. Our office can provide our patients with a note stating they are not to engage in strenuous activity for a specified period of time. The note will not disclose what procedure they have underwent. Therefore, you may have to request a similar note from your surgeon if you are not independently employed. I recommend avoiding heavy lifting and strenuous #activity for six weeks following your surgery. With that said, it may help you plan your return to work accordingly.

As for heavy lifting and other #strenuous #activities, it should be avoided for until you have clearance from your surgeon. You may, however, do normal activities at any time if they cause no pain or #discomfort. Let your body tell you what you can or cannot do. Aerobic exercise will raise your blood pressure, which could cause late bleeding and harm your result. Once you begin exercising again, start gently and let your body tell you what it can tolerate. Don’t rush!!  If you have concerns about your healing, or pain that you question to be unusual, it is important to call your plastic surgeon to discuss these further asked to be examined.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 96 reviews

The Tummy Tuck will dictate your recovery.

The most limiting aspect of a Mommy Makeover is the tummy tuck.  You should expect to be limited to your house for about the first week after an abdominoplasty, and really should not even consider driving while taking pain medications!  Almost everyone will take pain meds for 3-5 days, so it would be illegal for you to drive during that time.  Somewhere between 7-10 days it will be reasonable / safe for you to consider driving, but that depends on how you feel.  You have to feel comfortable jumping on the breaks or swerving if something happens while you are driving.
Dr.B

Mommy Makeover Post Operative Instructions

You need to address these questions to your surgeon during consultation.  Follow his post op instructions for your best result.

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Post - Op? Massages, Garment, Recovery, Aftercare?

All these questions are best addressed to your surgeon who is the one responsible for your post op care. Almost all surgeons will want you up and about as much as possible beginning the day of surgery. We all have differing opinions on how long to wear compression garments, (for me it's 6 weeks maximum) but it's hard to imagine that if you were still wearing one you couldn't go without as you ask.

All the best. 

Massage is not indicated after abdominoplasty.

There is no evidence that massage is any good to the progress of the wound or the ultimate result after abdominoplasty or any other operation. In the near-term it's probably contraindicated. Nevertheless all postop instructions are handled by the surgeon.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Mommy Makeover surgery requires good pre-op education

The questions you are asking would be reviewed in detail during our pre-operative consultation visits. In general, 'lymphatic' massage is beneficial a couple of months after a tummy tuck or liposuction procedure.

Questions about care after an abdominoplasty

All of your questions are best answered by your plastic surgeon but in general:

  1. Post operative massage can help temporarily alleviate swelling
  2. Most patients will wear a support garment for 2 - 4 weeks
  3. Most patients should be up and out of bed and light walking beginning the night of surgery and advanced as tolerated
  4. You will not be able to drive until you are off of your pain medications, expect not to be able to drive for 7 to 10 days
  5. Redness, drainage, warmth, fever, chills are all signs of infection

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

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.