How Long Until I Look Good and am Fully Recovered After Tummy Tuck and Breast Lift?

I am 32 and in good health and am very fit. If I have a tummy tuck and breast lift, in general how long will it take not just until I'm recovered enough to return to work and normal activities, but to actually look *good*? As in, good enough to wear a bikini and not have it be obvious that I just had major surgery done?

(swelling down, scars fading, etc) I realize this is relative and may depend on a lot of factors, I am just trying to get a sense of what is normal.

Doctor Answers 12

Time necessary for post op show and tell after Breast and tummy surgery.

Optimal appearance of a tummy for bikini wear is 3 months post-op.  Most women look great at 6 weeks post op breast augmentation.  Limit activity for 4-6 weeks after surgery.  Don't perform sit ups for 3months after the tummy tuck.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

How Long to Recover after Tummy Tuck and Breast Lift

Recovery all depends on how it is defined. For example if you simply sit at a desk and answer the phone or just do computer work than many return to work in as short as 10 days. If heavy lifting is involved then it can be as long as 6 weeks. The time for recovery for Breast Lift is about the same as for a tummy tuck.

Here is what to expect. -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 withintwo weeks of surgery.

It may take several months for a tummy tuck and breast lift patient’s scars to soften, for sensation to return, and for relaxing of the tight sensation in the abdomen. In the case of extensive surgery, abdominoplasty recovery can be uncomfortable and may take longer. Scars take a long time to mature to look their best but if done well and hidden in a bikini, then you could be back on the beach in 3 or more months.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Postop appearance following breast lift and tummy tuck

The postop appearnce and recovery varies from patient to patient. Generally the thinner the patient the less postop swelling of the abdomen and, therefore, the quicker you will "look good". Most patients can return to non- strenuous work about 2 weeks following a tummy tuck and breast lift. You should be able to start working out about 4-6 weeks after surgery, but you may have to hold off doing stomach crunches for 2- 3 months following surgery. You should  look pretty good after a few weeks but interms of getting into a bikini you may have to hold off 4-6 weeks. But most patients are thrilled following a tummy tuck and breast lift and have real enhanced self-esteem.

George Lefkovits, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Breast lift

It takes about 2-3 months to get into a bathing suit and have the swelling almost gone. some women can recover sooner, but this seems to be the average. everything also feels normal by that time. scars take 9-12 months to fade.

Michael Hueneke, MD
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Recovery from a Tummy Tuck and Breast Lift: A Mommy Makeover

This is a great question since so many woman want a tummy tuck, have worked hard to get in shape and do not want to sit around for 6 weeks after surgery and let their conditioning drop off.  They also have kids to take care of and want to get back to work as soon as possible.  If you have a rapid recovery protocol combined with a NO Drain technique, you will find that you can get back to working out very quickly, back to work within days and able to take care of your kids in just a day or so WITHOUT NARCOTICS.  I usually allow my patients to get back to the gym at a week.  At that time they start on limited exercises such as a spin bike, light lap swimming or the elliptical machine.  Fast walking works as well.  From there, my patients start working up to harder exercise.  The only restriction I place on them is to be careful with their abdomen (avoid heavy duty crunches and lifting) and let pain be their guide.

I have added a video that speaks to this issue for you. 

I hope that helps.

Best regards.

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Brian Windle, MD
Kirkland Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Recovery after Tummy Tuck- Bikini Ready?

 Thank you for the question.
As you know, you are contemplating major surgery with a significant recovery time period.
I would suggest you give yourself at least 3 months before contemplating bikinis. The results of your surgery will improve for at least the first year after surgery. Patience is critical during this recovery time.
Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 reviews

Mommy makeover recovery expectations

I tell my MM patients to expect 4-6 weeks of fatigue before returning to full energy and activity schedule. I tend to place my tummy tuck scars very low on the pelvis, so bikini wearing can commence whenever you feel ready. Most of my patients have returned to 'normal' at about the 4-6 month point. This is a big operation/

Scott C. Sattler, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

How long to look good after a breast lift and tummy tuck?

Most patients are fully recovered after a breast lift in terms of return to normal activity after a few days, but I have my patients wear a support bra (and not a bikini) for 6 weeks and not exercise for 2 weeks and not bounce for 6 weeks.  A bikini that would cover the scars at that point would look fine.  A tummy tuck has a longer recovery, and it takes a few weeks (4-6) to really snap back and be back to full activity including exercise.  Some swelling can persist for a few months, and unless the bikini you mention would cover the scars, they will go through a red phase and take months to over a year to fade.

Robert M. Grenley, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 87 reviews

Tummy tuck, breast lift, mommy makeover

A large part will depend on how much liposuction will be performed as part of the tummy tuck. More liposuction will lead to additional swelling and will newbies more recovery before you fell comfortable in a bikini. Most people feel comfortable in a bathing suit at 4-6 weeks but healing process lasts about 6 months.

David L. Abramson, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Tummy tuck: looking good

Most people will look good after about 6 weeks. Maybe not bikini good, however! That's more likely to take 3 months.Have fun with your new look!

Hugh McLean, MD
Mississauga Plastic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 7 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.