Medical questions & health advice by board certified doctors
"What is the healing like for abdominal surgery on an obese woman? "
as far as the stitches tearing when the incision is made on the pelvic line. and is healing time increased.
Wound healing after abdominal surgeries for obese patients does not differ very much from the average population. All things considered, wound healing is best supported by good nutrition. If you have not been able to eat for a number of days before your surgery or if you are not able to take in adequate calories after your surgery, it can affect your wound healing. If you are a smoker, it is best to quit because this really affects your wound healing and predisposes you to get wound infections or wound break-down. Patients with other medical conditions such as diabetes need to control their blood sugar. Additionally, the incision takes up to several months to get to near pre-surgery strength so care is needed to avoid strenuous exertion that can cause your incision to tear. Your incision undergoes multiple stages of wound healing in the first 4-6 weeks. Then, the wound maturation and remodeling can take up to a year. Lastly, obese patients often have excessive skin folds on their abdomens that can make the incision difficult to see and clean. Therefore, you have to make sure that you are able to visualize your incision everyday by using a mirror or have someone look at it to make sure that there is no dampness, drainage or redness. If any of these situations occurs, you need to let your surgeon know. I would recommend a consultation with a primary care physician for evaluation and referral to a surgeon.
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