When to return to work after tummy tuck surgery?


When to return to work after tummy tuck surgery?

When people undergo plastic surgery, they commonly ask the question about what they can return to their normal work routine. Although the pace of recovery is different for every person, a period of two to six weeks is outlined for a tummy tuck procedure.  The recovery time depends on the type of tummy tuck procedure and the person’s general health before the surgery. People must always consider playing it safe and take all the time they require. 


A tummy tuck is a major surgery that involves the removal of fat from the abdominal area. A tummy tuck procedure requires several weeks to heal properly as it involves the muscles of the abdominal area and the surrounding parts. Liposuction may well be part of the tummy tuck surgery, which requires the insertion of drains. This aspect also leads to the requirement of a longer resting phase. The recovery period also requires avoiding long car rides or airplane trips. If the patients become active too early or rush things up, many complications may arise. Therefore, taking the appropriate time off is highly recommended.


Patients in good health will report a faster, smoother recovery. Patients need should have a healthy diet and maintain a consistent weight before and after the procedure.  Other factors that affect recovery period are:

  • Not having an ideal weight 
  • Having poor health before surgery
  • Smoking can interfere with the healing process. If one is a regular smoker, then quitting 4 – 6 weeks before surgery is recommended
  • An extended tummy tuck means a larger incision and broader operated area, which requires  more time to heal
  • If liposuction is used, it might add to the recovery time
  • If the underlying abdominal muscles are tightened, it will need extra recovery time


Of course, the person’s overall health is the biggest factor in deciding the recovery period after the surgery. The other factors include the person’s job responsibilities. If an individual mainly has to do a desk job, then returning in 10 – 15 days will be sufficient. However, a physically demanding job requires a longer recovery period. At least two weeks off should be taken by the person to rest and recover.


Preparing beforehand can help the patients recover better. Just follow these tips:

  • Organize the recovery space and have books and movies accessible 
  • Stock up the grocery requirements
  • Rope in a friend or a relative to help you in getting support for the first  few days
  • If you are planning to work from home, ensure that you take at least 3-5 days entirely off