How Tight Does a Girdle Have to Be After a Tummy Tuck?

Doctor Answers 5

Girdles are not always needed after tummy tuck

I do not use girdles or compression garments immediately after tummy tuck. When I used them in my training, I found that they often rolled down and made creases in the skin. They were also painful for postoperative patients to wear on fresh surgical incisions. A gentle compression panty is sometimes helpful several weeks after surgery to help gently control swelling, but not in the early postoperative period

Bay Area Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 54 reviews

Compression after Tummy Tuck

Following abdominoplasty, you need something that keeps the superficial tissues tight against the muscle. This needs to extend all the way to the top of the abdomen and provide even support everywhere. It does not have to be very tight, but the firmer it is, the more support you also have of the muscle. This helps relieve some of the post-operative discomfort.

Robert T. Buchanan, MD
Highlands Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Using a Girdle after a Tummy Tuck is NOT Necessary

Tummy Tucks are a large part of my practice. I have used surgical garments with tummy tucks for years but stopped using them over three years ago after considering the lack of logic in using them. We perform an operation which decreases and jeopardizes the lower tummy skin blood flow and then - we expect these patients to heal better by - putting them in girdles which put pressure on and FURTHER potentially decrease the blood flow in that skin. Makes no sense to me.

After NOT using girdles after Tummy Tucks, I found out that
- my patients were MUCH happier and more comfortable
- the healing rate was the same with LESS complications
- there was a lower rate of fevers due to easier ability of patients to take in deep breaths and fully expand their lungs
- there was a lower rate of interference with blood flow in the lower skin of the tummy due to pressure or creasing by the girdle with less healing complications
- there was not a higher rate of fluid (seroma) formation

So if for some reason you feel you MUST wear a post-surgical garment after your Tummy Tuck, make sure it is NOT tight and does not crease.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 108 reviews

How Tight Does a Girdle Have to Be After a Tummy Tuck

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. It should be firm and supportive without causing pain. 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.

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 109 reviews

tight girdle after a tummy tuck

The postoperative binder/girdle should be snug but not uncomfortable or too restrictive. Discuss with your plastic surgeon in detail.


Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 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.