How Long Does It Take To Recover From A Tummy Tuck?

Q:  Dr. Eppley, How long does it take to heal from a tummy tuck? What is the success rate to keep the contour? How much does the procedure cost?

A:  Recovery from a tummy tuck depends on how you want to view the concept of recovery. To be 100% full recovered (feeling like before the surgery and doing all normal and strenuous activities), it will take a full 6 weeks. If you are talking about returning to work in a sitdown job, it will be closer to 10 days. Returning to a more strenuous job will be closer to three weeks. Up and about after surgery around the house will be a few days.

The success of tummy tucks in terms of long-term contour preservation is actually pretty good. The excess or loose skin is never going to return provided one does not get pregnant again, which is the primary skin-stretching mechanism for most women. (extreme weight loss is the other) One can thicken up the fat layer around the trunk and waistline based on one’s weight and diet. I have seen that in a few patients over the years. It all depends on the stability of one’s weight and the type of body build one has.

There are different forms of tummy tucks that may or may not include liposuction. For the sake of simplicity, I would look at the concept of a full tummy tuck with flank liposuction which is the most commonly performed one. As an out patient procedure this more complete tummy tuck is in the range of $6500 to $7500, all costs included. This is an approximation and may change based on an actual examination of the patient.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana