How Abdominoplasty Can Improve Low Back Pain and Other Surprising Benefits
Posted on April 8, 2022
An abdominoplasty can do more than restore your pre-pregnancy body shape. Research published in Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery in March 2018 suggests that tummy tucks that repair the abdominal muscles can improve back pain and urinary incontinence after childbearing. While a tummy tuck is a cosmetic procedure, it can offer improvement for the two most common physical complaints facing women after they give birth, providing a functional incentive on top of a better figure.
Our board-certified plastic surgeons in Jupiter and Miami offer the tummy tuck and other procedures that can give you back your pre-baby contour.
Abdominoplasty Improves Diastasis Recti
The 2018 study involved 214 women undergoing tummy tuck and repair of the rectus abdominis muscles. These muscles — the same muscles that make up the so-called “six-pack” — are stretched during pregnancy and may even separate, causing diastasis recti.
Diastasis recti is common in pregnancy and postpartum and can’t be fixed with exercise. It can lead to lower back pain, urine leaking, constipation and other symptoms. Some medical professionals believe this is because the abdominal muscles help to support and stabilize the spine, and diastasis recti may contribute to chronic low back pain. A tummy tuck can help by tightening these muscles and pulling them back together for a flatter stomach.
Abdominoplasty Research Study Results
On average, the women in the study were 42 years old with 2.5 deliveries. Before their tummy tucks, 51 percent of patients reported “moderate to severe disability” from back pain, and 42.5 percent had significant issues with urinary incontinence.
Researchers reevaluated these scores six weeks and six months after their tummy tucks with reports that both problems improved majorly at six weeks. Only 9 percent of women still had a moderate disability due to back pain at the six-month mark, and less than 2 percent still experienced significant urinary incontinence problems.
Tummy Tuck Improves Diastasis Recti
These improvements after a tummy tuck with muscle repair are likely due to stabilizing and strengthening the abdominal and pelvic regions, including diastasis recti. This rectus repair leads to a better quality of life for women who have given birth and experience back pain and incontinence.
Many postpartum women seek a tummy tuck to contour their body shape and eliminate loose skin left over from pregnancy. However, these results show that abdominoplasty can have functional benefits for the postpartum population in addition to cosmetic improvements.
Contact Aqua Plastic Surgery in Jupiter and Miami
If you’re interested in learning more about the tummy tuck procedure, contact our board-certified plastic surgeons to discuss your body contouring options. Schedule your consultation by calling our offices in Jupiter at (561) 776-2830 or Miami at (305) 918-1750 to schedule your consultation.