Is tummy tuck underwear recommended after a tummy tuck?

Until now I couldn't afford a tummy tuck procedure and I've been using tummy tuck underwear as a cheaper alternative and discovered it is quite comfortable. I finally can afford a tummy tuck now, but I wouldn't want to give up the underwear. Is tummy tuck underwear recommended after this kind of surgery? How long after the surgery can tummy tuck underwear be worn?


F, 47, Pennsylvania

High waist control panties are very popular in the United States, allowing those who wear them to conceal panty lines and feel contained beneath form-fitting clothing. Slimming panties often have tummy panels which exert light control and compression over the abdomen, flank and buttocks, creating appealing body contours. They represent an excellent, cost-effective option in place of a tummy tuck, but cannot emulate the permanent effects and benefits of abdominoplasty. However, shapewear that’s worn too frequently and is too tight can limit circulation and restrict breathing, so it’s advisable to be moderate and careful in your use of such garments.

After undergoing tummy tuck surgery, your surgeon will ask you to wear a compression garment for several weeks. Compression garments feel quite similar to high waist control panties, placing gentle compression on your tummy and around your abdomen. The compression garment holds the vital function of keeping tissues in place while you move around so your incision lines don’t pull or strain. It also helps to smooth out and flatten any contour irregularities, lumps or bumps that may be present.

During the postoperative period, it’s vital that you wear the compression garment recommended by your plastic surgeon. When he or she indicates you are sufficiently healed from surgery and can stop using the compression garment, you should be able to return to wearing the body shaping underwear if you want and if your surgeon approves. After tummy tuck surgery, however, it’s likely you’ll want to show off your new, flat stomach and not feel the need to use body shapewear as much.

Many women use underwear known as control panties or body shaper underwear to help with tummy control and provide body contouring. Women's shapewear often has a high waist and a boyshort cut, and can offer a cheap and temporary alternative to plastic surgery, enhancing the silhouette beneath clothing.

Following a tummy tuck, you will, in fact, be required to wear a particular type of undergarment known as a compression garment. Compression garments are in many ways similar to shaping panties.  A tummy tuck compression garment is essentially a heavily elasticized cloth that extends around your mid-section, fits snugly and applies a low level of constant pressure to the area. The garment typically covers from below the breasts down to the hips or pelvis,  and helps ensure that your postoperative recovery is swift, minimizing complications.

The pressure exerted by the compression garment pushes down on tissues that were rearranged during your surgery so pockets where fluid could collect are minimized or eliminated. The garment also promotes circulation, encouraging the flow of nutrient-rich blood to the treated areas to promote healing while simultaneously reducing the chance of swelling, bruising and the risk of blood clots.

Damaged tissue and incisions are protected from strain by the compression garment, meaning you can move around with less fear of inadvertently injuring yourself or your wounds. Some patients actually like to wear their compression garments for weeks after their surgeon has told them they no longer need to, simply because they feel more comfortable.

If you’d like to continue wearing shaping briefs after your surgery, so long as you’ve worn your compression garment for the specified length of time there shouldn’t be any problems. Be sure to consult with your surgeon to check that he or she approves of the tummy control panties. Chances are, however, that you’ll no longer feel the need to wear shaper panties following your procedure. Tummy tuck surgery generally produces beautiful results, with patients delighted with their newly flattened abdomen and sculpted waist.

Dr. Frederic Corbin has 2 Tummy tuck before & afters:

Tummy tuck before image performed by Dr. Frederic CorbinTummy tuck after image performed by Dr. Frederic CorbinTummy tuck before image performed by Dr. Frederic CorbinTummy tuck after image performed by Dr. Frederic Corbin

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