What would happen if I become pregnant after Abdominoplasty?
- When you get pregnant, your skin and abdominal wall will stretch. In this event, you may need to have additional surgery to regain the improvement, if the abdominal skin becomes lax again.
Is there a greater risk if I am a smoker?
- Abdominoplasty patients who are smokers have a higher risk for loss of skin, delayed wound healing, infection, pneumonia and blood clots in the leg veins which may result in pulmonary embolism and death. It is essential that you refrain from smoking for 3 weeks before and 3 weeks after the surgical procedure.
What can be done to improve the appearance of scars?
- The scars will fade nicely as time passes. If the scars become somewhat thick or red, RVB may recommend treatment with silicone gel strips or liquid or even laser treatment of the scars to lessen the redness. This is mainly the reason for your follow-up visits, so that the medical staff at BHMG can note the progress of your wound healing.
How long do I need to wear the binder or girdle?
- The binder or girdle diminishes the amount of swelling and bruising in the abdominal area, especially after having Liposuction together with abdominoplasty. It prevents accumulation of fluids under the abdominal skin, and helps to maintain the contour of your new abdomen. You should wear it continuously, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week (except while showering) for the first 3 to 4 weeks after surgery. After that, an additional 3 weeks of usage in the daytime is recommended.
Why are drains necessary for Abdominoplasty?
- Suction drains are used together with external pressure from an elastic abdominal binder or girdle to remove serum and blood fluids that usually accumulates between the abdominal wall and the underside of the tightened abdominal skin. The drains help by removing the fluids so that the skin can re-attach to the abdominal wall without further problems or delay.
How long will my drains remain in place?
- The drains, which are normally two, will remain in place until the daily volume of drainage decreases to a minimum. This is usually between 5 days and 2 weeks.
When can I shower or bathe?
- You may shower after the first office visit/dressing change, which is within 24 to 48 hours after surgery. Do not bathe or immerse the incisions or drain sites under water in a bathtub, pool, etc., until the drains have been removed and the incisions completely healed.
When can I resume exercise?
- Patients are encouraged to begin walking immediately after surgery. After a week to 10 days, you may walk on a treadmill, or have mild upper body weight training. Most patients can resume full, unrestricted exercise activities in approximately 4 weeks.
When can I resume driving?
- Most patients may resume driving in 48 to 72 hours after the abdominoplasty procedure. However, do not drive if you are taking narcotic pain medication, sedatives or muscle relaxants.
When can I start going back to work or doing my normal social activities?
- Most abdominoplasty patients are able to return to work or resume normal social activities after 5 to 10 days. You are to take frequent breaks to stand and walk to promote circulation and deep breathing. Wear loose-fitting clothing to hide the drains and abdominal binder or girdle.