How Much Time Is Needed Off From Work After A Tummy Tuck?

By: Dr. Sean Kelishadi, M.D. FACS


One of the perks of minor cosmetic treatments, such as BOTOX or fillers, is that patients can return to work and other activities almost immediately afterward with no need for downtime. When it comes to more extensive procedures, however, patients will likely need to plan for a dedicated recovery period. For patients considering tummy tuck specifically, it is important to understand what to expect after surgery, including how much time to schedule off work. Use this helpful information from board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sean Kelishadi and the award-winning team at SSK Plastic Surgery in Newport Beach, CA to find out how to prepare for your tummy tuck, how long recovery may take, and when you’ll be able to return to work and other activities.

How does a tummy tuck work?

Tummy tuck surgery, formally known as abdominoplasty, is primarily performed to sculpt and reshape a patient’s midsection after weight loss, pregnancy, aging, and other life events. During a tummy tuck in Orange County, which is performed using general anesthesia and may take up to 2 – 3 hours to complete, Dr. Kelishadi makes a horizontal incision on the lower abdomen, just above the patient’s pubic line. Through this incision, Dr. Kelishadi is able to strengthen and reinforce the abdominal muscles, remove extra skin, and create a slimmer, smoother, more natural-looking contour. Oftentimes, liposuction is performed in conjunction with a tummy tuck to remove stubborn pockets of fat. Common concerns that lead patients to undergo tummy tuck surgery include:

  • Extra skin after weight loss
  • Loose skin after pregnancy
  • Diastasis recti
  • Mommy pooch or pouch (always look pregnant)
  • Abdominal stretch marks
  • Stubborn fat

How long is tummy tuck recovery?

Full recovery after tummy tuck surgery can take up to six months or longer, though patients are typically able to resume work and other activities much sooner. Almost immediately after the procedure, patients can expect some level of discomfort and swelling. During the first few days or weeks of recovery, patients should plan to sleep on their back with their upper body and legs slightly elevated. This helps to reduce tension on the incision. Patients will also need to walk with their upper body bent at a slight angle to prevent pulling or tension on the incision. After about 4 – 6 weeks, the majority of the patient's swelling should be resolved, revealing their striking new figure.

When can I go back to work after a tummy tuck?

Generally speaking, patients are able to return to work and other light activities about 2 – 3 weeks after tummy tuck surgery. This can vary based on the physical demands of the job, the type of surgery performed, and other factors. Patients who undergo a mini tummy tuck may be able to return to work sooner, while patients who have a combination procedure – such as a mommy makeover – may require an extended recovery period. During your initial consultation for tummy tuck surgery in Orange County, Dr. Kelishadi will discuss in detail what to expect during tummy tuck recovery and how much time you will likely require away from work.

Regain your confidence and transform your look with tummy tuck surgery in Newport Beach, CA

For many men and women, tummy tuck offers the opportunity to finally achieve or restore a physique that makes them feel confident, sexy, and desirable. If you are interested in learning more about the exceptional transformations that are possible with abdominoplasty in Orange County, CA, call SSK Plastic Surgery to schedule your one-on-one consultation with renowned board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Sean Kelishadi today!

* All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.