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Unread 06-23-2002, 12:54 AM
post-op apron like appearance

I am very discouraged with the appearence of my tummy now. I have been a ballet dancer and a yoga instructor prior to my hysterectomy. I had a total abdominal hysterectomy in March. I now have a very strange looking tummy. It has an apron of fat that hangs out beyond the tight pubic area below. I would like to know if anyone else had this happen to them. I really don't want to teach my classes with this strange looking abdomen. I had asked my surgeon before surgery if the operation would cause any deformity to my stomach and she told me it would not. After the surgery she told me that the incision had to be much longer then she normally makes and that is what has caused the apron appearence of the abdomen. She told me that I would just need to go on a diet to correct the problem. I am not overweight and know that diet and exercise will not correct an apron that sticks out such as this. Any thoughts on this problem?
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Unread 06-23-2002, 02:59 AM
post-op apron like appearance

my hysterectomy was June 4th, and I too have a strange looking belly. I assumed it was just swelling and would go away. My husband says it looks like I am carrying around a fanny pack!
Unread 06-23-2002, 08:39 AM
Hi Ladies,

I think what you are describing is "swelly belly" . It is swelling caused by the surgery and will, eventually, go away. How long that takes depends on your recovery time and other factors. Sometimes overdoing it can cause increased swelly belly.

Hopefully, it isn't a permanent condition, though I've never seen where anyone could give a definite answer on how long it lasts.


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Unread 06-23-2002, 08:48 AM
post-op apron like appearance

My stomach does this too and I had a LAVH. Asked doc about it and he said some of it is me (small spare tire) and some is that the muscles are so weakened by the surgery, anesthesia etc... your tummy will take awhile to tighten up again. Plus that uterus is no longer there to pull up and out. It will take time but I'm sure it will return to a more normal looking tummy. Mine is definitely smaller now than it was pre op. I found a site that shows pictures of what all they have to do during a hysterectomy and it was amazing how many ligaments are cut and sutured to perform even the VH. Keep up your exercising it will get better.

Unread 06-23-2002, 09:06 AM

Hello fellow Princesses,

I'm sorry you ladies have this apron thing too, I thought it was only me. It is a hideous looking thing. I avoid the mirror at all costs! I am only slightly overweight (20 pounds maybe) and although I had a slight tummy before surgery it didn't look anything like this. I have been sooo depressed over it. I have been kicking my self in the rear for not looking into having a tummy tuck at the time of my surgery. If I had known it would be like THIS, I certainly would have.

I too had my surgery on June 4, and my DH hasn't been allowed to see my incision because I don't want him to see the "apron", while it is obvious to him and everyone else that I have swelly belly, I couldnt bear for anyone to see this thing.

I hope and pray that Shashi is right and this is only temporary, I can't wait until I have recovered enough to start doing some exercising on it.

Love you Guys, Thanks for all of your support, don't know what I would do without you Ladies!
Unread 06-23-2002, 09:50 AM
post-op apron like appearance

I'm with ya, Ella!

Thank goodness I read about the apron thing pre-op, because it would have been quite a shock.

I am quite trim and fit and although my belly was distended because of the size of my uterus, it was tight before my hyst. Now it's kind of sectioned off with a part that hangs over. Flat as a pancake when I lie down, though!

I'm looking forward to hearing from other sisters about what to expect because my mother and sister, who both had hysts a long time ago, don't even remember this happening.

Thanks for asking this question.

Unread 06-23-2002, 12:52 PM
post-op apron like appearance

I have the very same belly as you. Thank heaven's I read about it on her prior to surgery or I would have freaked and thought I was deformed. I have also read on here that it takes quite a while to go away. The good news is that it does go away.

Good luck
Unread 06-23-2002, 01:40 PM
post-op apron like appearance

Dear Sisters,

I too have an apron like belly. I had a TAH/bladder tack on June 13th. I was a little over weight before surgery but did not have this "shape" of a belly.

Because it is summer time and hot, I have been able to disguise or cover up my swelly belly by wearing shorts and a large t-shirt, untucked, over my shorts. This seems to work.

It is my understanding that during a TAH, the DR doesn't cut the stomach muscles but separates and STREEEEETCHES them in order to get to the uterus. What we're all waiting for is for those stomach muscles to tighten again.

Remember, we only get ONE chance to heal right so please be patient and, being women, I'm sure we're clever enough to disguise our bellies through our wardrobes until that one special day when we feel the need to wear our hip-hugger pants again!!

Love, Lauren
Unread 06-23-2002, 08:05 PM
post-op apron like appearance

I am coming up on my 2nd anniversary since my hysterectomy. It took me over a year to get rid of the apron. As time went on, the apron went down little by little. There were times I started to wonder, if it would ever go away. At the time of surgery I was 135 lbs. It took me a full year to loose the weight. By my 1st anniversary I was 113, but I still had some of the apron. I believe it was in Jan. of this year, that I started to notice that the apron was going away. Now it appears that it is gone. I weigh now 110 lbs. I do not know if weight has anything to do with this apron taking longer to go down or if it just takes more time for that part to heal.

I really do not know how long it takes to get rid of the apron. It took me over a year, but for the rest of you sisters, it may not be that long.

Here are some 's 's for all of you post op sisters!

Unread 06-24-2002, 09:50 AM
Swelly Belly/Apron

I am 4 months post op and I still have this thing. My DH keeps telling me that I have gained weight but I haven't. I don't know what this thing is but I need to get rid of it and fast! I have started training for the Chicago Marathon in October and hopefully all the walking and running will help.

Does anyone out there have any suggestions for exercises that will help get rid of the apron? Will sit ups help? I lost so much weight prior to my surgery and was very proud of my new figure now I look like a square instead of an hour glass! What happened?!!(LOL)

Seriously, any exercise tips would be great. My DD says it's okay for me to walk to train for the marathon so I think I am ready for more execises. I feel great (WAY better than prior to the surgery) and am ready to tackel something more. Any pointers would be greatly appreciated!


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