When is Muscle Repair Strong Enough to Not Worry About Pulling Sutures?

I am currently 5 weeks post op from a full tummy tuck with muscle repair. I am so happy with my results and feel great. So great that I am worried about overdoing it. I have been walking for the past week. Before the surgery I worked out every day for 2 hours so I am looking foward to getting back to that. My question is when is the muscle repair strong enough that I don't have to worry about pulling a suture out any more. Would like to put my mind at ease about that.

Doctor Answers 7

When is Muscle Repair Strong Enough to Not Worry About Pulling Sutures?

I tell my patients to not do anything strenuous for at least 6 weeks. Prior to that, walking is fine as well as some light exercise, like the stationary bike. After that, gentle increase in activity like yoga and running....

Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Strength of muscle repair following tummy tuck

Congratulations on great results and doing well! Regarding the length of restrictions of activities in order to avoid any possible breakage of the muscle repair, you need to find out from your plastic surgeon what his/her recommendations are. For may patients, I usually recommend waiting 8 weeks before doing heavy lifting, sit-ups, etc.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Muscle repair

I'm glad to hear you have had the tummy tuck and glad to hear you are doing and happy with the results so far.

I have never seen a patient have an issue with the muscle repair after this operation or in fact injure a repair after any operation although it is a frequent concern among patients.

I have my patients start walking after two weeks for exercise and increase up to 4 weeks after surgery at which time they can start lower body weight training.  At six weeks I tell my patients they do not have any restrictions.

You should check with your surgeon to be sure and remember to start slow since you have taken some time off.

Thanks for the question.

Ralph R. Garramone, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

Tummy tuck worry can stop after eight weeks

Many worry about rupture of sutures after muscle repair, and as a rule eight weeks should get you out of the danger zone, just as for other surgery and hernia repairs. Do be careful though, as you will be starting without a base of fitness. Slow down for fatigue or soreness. Remember, twelve weeks to train up, only four weeks to lose it.

Best of luck, peterejohnsonmd.com

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Tummy Tuck and Muscle Repair Strength?

Congratulations on having undergone the tummy tuck procedure;  I'm glad that you are doing well. You are wise to avoid over  doing the activity given that you are feeling well. Your plastic surgeon will guide you as you slowly increase your activity level.

Generally, I asked my patients to avoid heavy lifting for the first 6 weeks after surgery;  again, best to check with your surgeon.

You should have some peace of mind that (generally speaking) it is difficult to disrupt a well executed muscle plication.

Best wishes.

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

Abdominoplasty Muscle Repair and Exercise

I believe the concensus among plastic surgeons across the country is that you can start doing sit ups 6 weeks after a tummy tuck.  That being said, each person is different, each surgeon's opinion is different, and each surgery is different. 


You entrusted your body and your life to your plastic surgeon and it sounds like he or she did a great job.  Therefore, I would take his or her opinion on when to get back to exercising as gospel.  In my practice, long walks begin at 2 weeks, swimming and light weight training at 4 weeks, fast walking and running at about 5 weeks, and return to complete exercising including sit ups at 6 weeks. 



Muscle repair and tummy tuck surgery

If you have had tummy tuck surgery and it involved tightening the muscles in your abdominal region, it is imperative that you follow your surgeon's recommendations regarding exercising and strenuous activity. At Gayoso Plastic Surgery, I require my abdominoplasty patients to refrain from any exercising that involves the abdominal region or strenuous activity for 3 months after tummy tuck surgery. Light activity, such as walking, is allowed immediately after surgery.  

Antonio Gayoso, MD
Saint Petersburg Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 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.