Is putting on some weight after surgery, normal?

I'm a bit concern due to no activities cause of my tummy tuck, I've gained 5 pounds. I started some Cardio and a lil using weights no more than 10 pounds. Should this get me through til I go back to the gym?

Doctor Answers 6

Weight after tummy tuck

You’d be surprised at how much swelling can affect your weight. Fluid retention can add a few pounds to your post-operative weight. However, if you follow a healthy eating plan after surgery and follow your surgeon’s care instructions, you should not gain any weight caused by fat. Once you’re cleared to exercise again, you’ll quickly regain your tone.

Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 66 reviews

Post-Op Tummy Tuck Healing

Within a few hours following surgery, abdominoplasty patients will walk in a slightly bent-over position. Strenuous activity and lifting of more than 10 pounds should be avoided for six weeks after surgery. Most patients are able to return to work and daily activities within two weeks of surgery. You can return to full activity without restrictions at 6 weeks.Likely you have not gained any body weight but swelling or holding water in the area where the incision is healing. Swelling can persist for several months and will gradually improve and will look better at three months, six months, and even one year. Frequently the pubic area and the scrotal and penis area for men can become very swollen and discolored during the first two weeks due to gravity as this is the lowest area for swelling to accumulate.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Is putting on some weight after surgery, normal?

Thank you for the question. It is not unusual to gain weight post operative because of fluid retention. As the swelling subsides in 3-6 months you will feel and look different. It is best to discuss with your board certified plastic surgeon to discuss their protocol to resume exercising. Good luck.

Himansu Shah, MD
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Is putting on some weight after surgery, normal? = it means diet hasn't been modified after surgery #tt #tummytuck

After a tummy tuck, patients have strict activity restrictions for at least 6 to 8 weeks after surgery ( to avoid jeopardizing the healing process). Therefore, during this time patient are usually not allowed to do gym training.
In my practice, I tell patients that during the tummy tuck healing process, patients should modify their diet so they don't gain weight during the period of mandated activity restrictions. Eating unhealthy or diet with a lot of carbs during  while not been able to exercise (tummy tuck healing process) will undoubtedly result in weight gain. 

John Mesa, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 125 reviews

Concerned about Gaining Weight After Tummy Tuck #tummytuck

  • It is normal to gain some weight after the tummy tuck procedure.
  • I tell my patients never to weigh themselves for the first couple weeks or so after their tummy tuck because the body will definitely retain fluid after this procedure.
  • Because of this fluid retention which is the body's way of protecting itself, most patients will weigh more than they did (early on) after their tummy tuck.
  • However, as the weeks go by after the tummy tuck, your body will definitely become less swollen, and this extra fluid will go away.
  • Additionally, as you point out, most patients aren't exercising as much as they did prior to their tummy tuck during the first month after their operation.  Most of my patients are quite afraid that they will gain weight due to this decrease in exercise. BUT, I always remind them not to worry!  With time they (and you) will be back to exercising normally and will lose any extra weight that may have been gained during the post-operative period. 

Joshua Cooper, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Post op tummy tuck

I don't exactly know where you are in your post op course to answer your question. Too much initial activity can result in more swelling which takes longer to resolve. Consult your plastic surgeon to be sure.

Susan Kaweski, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 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.