Tummy Tuck

Q: Dr. Eppley, Is there amount of weight you have to lose to get a tummy tuck… what is the recovery time after tummy tuck surgery?

A: It is always best to lose whatever amount of weight one wants to, if  possible, before having a tummy tuck. Once one is within 10 to 15 lbs of their weight goal, then one can have the tummy tuck. Doing a tummy tuck and then losing 20, 30 or 40 lbs after will adversely affect the tummy tuck results creating some additional loose skin. Or at the least making the once taut abdominal skin feel more loose.

Recovery after a tummy tuck depends on how you choose to define recovery. A complete recovery, feeling like you do now, will take 6 to 8 weeks. This is the time when you will feel like you can do anything that you do now and feel comfortable doing it. Some people do return to work, for example, two to three weeks after a tummy tuck. But they are usually struggling to do and only do it because they have to. So recovery could be defined as two or three weeks but I would call it a minimal recovery and an incomplete one at that.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana