How long is the recovery for a tummy tuck with liposuction and fat transfer to buttock?

Doctor Answers 7

Recovery from Tummy Tuck w/BBL

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Thank you for your question. 

The evening of surgery, you will be encouraged to get out of bed for short walks to promote blood circulation. Although you may not be able to stand up completely straight, it is best if you do not sit for long periods of time during the first several days. Straining, bending and lifting must be avoided, since these activities might cause increased swelling or even bleeding. You may be instructed to sleep on your back with a pillow under your knees.

Any surgical drains probably will be removed within a week following surgery, at which time your dressings may also be changed or removed. For the most part, doctors do not feel that abdominal binders are beneficial and in many cases may hinder wound healing. The reason for this is that the pressure caused by abdominal binders probably inhibits blood flow to the abdominal skin flap. Generally, stitches will be removed at two weeks after surgery.

You will notice swelling, which is to be expected. Although bruising is uncommon even if concomitant lipoplasty is performed, it occasionally occurs. The bruising and much of the swelling will disappear over a period of weeks. However, it may be months before all swelling subsides and you see the final result of your abdominoplasty. You may also notice some numbness over portions of the abdominal area, and this may persist for several months. Incisions will initially be red or pink in color. They will remain this way for many months following surgery and may even appear to worsen before they finally begin to fade.

Also remember with the Brazilian Butt Lift you must avoid sitting the first 2-3 weeks. You do not want to suffocate the newly transferred fat. Best of luck!

Dhaval M. Patel 

Double Board Certified 

Plastic Surgeon 

Hoffman Estates 




Hoffman Estates Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 100 reviews

Recovery for tummy tuck and fat transfer, Brazilian Butt Lift

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Tummy Tuck fat transfer to buttocks Recovery

The first 2-3 days after surgery there is a good amount of pressure and tightness from repairing the stretched rectus muscles. The feeling is similar to a hard workout. We usually prescribe pain pills such as Norco (Vicodin) or Percocet and a muscle relaxant such as Soma or Flexeril. You will need help from someone the first 2-3 days.  You cannot lay on your back for 3 weeks, so you will be on your side.

A drain is placed which is removed at approximately 1 to 1.5 weeks. Most people usually go on with light normal activities at that time. No heavy lifting or exercising for 6 weeks. The results will be visible right after the procedure. It takes several months for the swelling to subside. Generally, patients wear the compression garment 6 weeks and longer if necessary.

Best of luck, Dr. Michael Omidi

An in-person exam with a board-certified plastic surgeon is the best way to assess your needs and provide true medical advice.

Michael M. Omidi, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 120 reviews

Multiple procedures, some advices:

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Thank you very much for sharing your concerns with us.
For safety reasons, to be a good candidate for those procedures you want at the same time, your labs and cardiovascular preoperative evaluation must be optimal.
Therefore, you must be a healthy person, within an appropriate BMI and no history of diseases that increase the surgical / anesthetic risk degree.
Finally, I recommend you a skilled certified plastic surgeon in body contouring surgery and experienced in cases like yours where the planned operating time is less than five hours.
Dr. Emmanuel Mallol Cotes.-

Emmanuel Mallol Cotes, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 366 reviews

Recovery after tummy tuck and fat transfers.

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It depends on your situation. We have found that most women actually do not need their muscles repaired so we are only doing this in about 20% of patients which has greatly shortened the recovery time. We used to do it routinely in everyone. Also performing a lipoabdominoplasty (Saldanha technique) instead of the traditional American style with undermining of the flap has reduced the time necessary for drains and recovery in general. So without muscle repair the time is about 2 weeks for full recovery. The fat grafts to the buttocks are also not very painful and will be stable at two weeks. Otherwise assuming you require muscle repair , it could take a full month. 

Grady B. Core, MD
Birmingham Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

BBL Recovery

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Thank you for your question.  The recovery time for a BBL is approximately two weeks at which time the majority of your discomfort will be resolved.  However, you would have 3-4 weeks of restrictions during which time you would not be allowed to sit or lay on your buttock to avoid pressure on the grafted fat.  Should you decide to move forward, your board certified plastic surgeon will have specific postoperative instructions for you.


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Thank you for your question. Every surgeon has a slightly different Postop protocol but in general I tell my patients they will most likely be out of work for 2 weeks. No heavy physical exercise for 6 weeks. After 6 weeks my patients may resume full activity with no restrictions.

James Shoukas, MD
Lake Mary Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Recovery / Multiple Procedures

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Thanks for your question. The recovery time for these procedures is about 4 weeks. In this period you will have to take a rest from your routine activities and receive ultrasound  massage and lymphatic drainage. 

Derby Sang Caputo, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 99 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.