Messed Up Tummy Tuck First Day?

I just had a tummy tuck and implant change 2 days ago. The night I returned home from surgery I was trying to get into bed like they showed me using my arms but the pain in my pecs made me lose my balance a bit and I fell back onto the bed. It felt like I was ripping apart in the upper abs and now I'm deathly afraid I've messed it all up. I am scared to lie down now and spend most of my time sitting or standing. I'm a competitive bodybuilder and my PS said he stitched me 3x knowing my strength.

Doctor Answers 6

Messed Up Tummy Tuck First Day?

It is so common for patients to feel a pop after movement or a fall, and so uncommon to find any damage done. The sutures are quite large and strong, and should tolerate a mild fall such as you describe. You should be able to safely lie down. You won't be able to just sit of stand for very long. 

When you see your surgeon for drain removal, he/she can offer better reassurance after seeing you and examining you than all the on-line consultants in the world.

Thanks for your question, and best wishes.

Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Did I mess up the tummy tuck

Many patients have a feeling of tearing something after a tummy tuck. It is difficult if not impossible to immobilize your belly, and there are many sensations that occur in the immediate post operative period. Fortunately, most of these resolve without any long term ramifications.

It is unlikely but not impossible to tear your muscles with that type of activity. I would suggest being evaluated by your plastic surgeon so that they can examine your belly. While they may not be able to definitively determine if everything is OK since you are only 2 days out, it would be good to be seen.

Best of luck and hang in there during the recovery.

Jeff Rockmore

Jeffrey Rockmore, MD
Albany Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 67 reviews

Messed Up Tummy Tuck after Fall?

I'm sorry to hear about the stressful experience after tummy tuck surgery.  These types of experiences are not uncommon, and patients tend to report these types of events frequently.  Although I cannot give you precise advice about your situation, the vast majority of patients end up doing very well despite “scary episodes”  similar to what you have described. For real reassurance follow-up with your plastic surgeon will be necessary.

Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 reviews

Did I Tear The Repair Of My Rectus Diastasis?

I doubt seriously that you have torn apart a 3-layer repair of your rectus separation, but you may have challenged it.  This is when you need to call your plastic surgeon, tell him exactly what happened, and make an appointment to see him. 

The repair of the rectus diastasis is done with multiple sutures at multiple levels.  These are normally permanent sutures.  Jerky motions such as falling into bed can cause the sutures to pull on the fascial fibers into which they have been sewn.  As you noticed, this really hurts but rarely does a singular incident as you reported cause complete suture dislocation and subsequent muscle separation. 

I empathize with you.  I had a similar circumstance after having my rotator cuff repaired, felt a searing pain, but the sutures stayed intact and my shoulder works just fine now.  All plastic surgeons, and for that matter, all orthopedic surgeons put in extra sutures to defend against just this type of "not unusual" post surgical incidents. 

Tummy tuck messed up first day?


  It would be very doubtful that you would have hurt your surgery in any way with the fall back onto the bed.  This kind of event would almost never injure the surgery but the pain has every right to come from the tightened muscles.  

  The midline muscle adjustments give you the nice appearance after a tummy tuck but sharp pains from time to time are normal.

  Keep the faith...all should be fine.  Check with your surgeon and make sure that nothing is hurt but the majority of cases of this complaint are attributed to your new surgical procedure

Steven M. Lynch, MD
Albany Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Post op Tummy Tuck

Contact your surgeon.  Most likely, he will want to check you within the next couple of days. It is very important to have good patient/surgeon communication.

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 60 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.