Compression and Support Garments and Binders

Abdominal support garments and binders are used after abdominoplasty to help reduce swelling, ease discomfort, and support your tissues while they are healing.

Many tummy tuck patients said they got a painful pulling sensation when they did not wear an abdominal support garment in the first weeks. Many surgeons tell you keep your compression garment on 24 hours a day for the first 2 to 3 weeks. This depends on the invasiveness of your tummy tuck procedure and how fast you are healing. Some surgeons say that the support is no longer necessary after the first week or so, but that you can use a compression garment for comfort after that if you want. Follow your surgeon's advice on this.

How Do Abdominal Compression Garments Look?
Compression garments and binders fit tightly around your abdomen, but not so tightly that they cut off circulation. A compression garment can resemble an extra-strong girdle or a longer garment with zippers and compression pads. Some just resemble a girdle and others extend from just below your breasts to your knees. The longer garments might be useful if you have liposuction to your thighs and legs in addition to your tummy tuck.

An abdominal binder is a wide piece of strong elastic material that is usually closed with a Velcro closure. They come in a variety of lengths and widths and can be purchased at many pharmacies or surgical supply stores.

In the photo below, Heather has on a binder, plus a black sports bra because she had a breast lift and augmentation procedure as well as a tummy tuck. You can see that she has drains in place and that the bulbs have been squeezed to aid in drainage. She clipped her drainage bulbs to her bra. Some surgeons prefer that you have the drains pinned or clipped below your incision.

There are a lot of variations of compression garments and binders out there. Some zip, some tie, some Velcro, some do all of that. Some are available in different "stages" that have progressively less support. You can buy one for the first stage of your healing, and another during the last stage, for lighter support.

Of course, the more bells and whistles on the garment, the higher the price, and the higher the quality, the higher the price. But don't think of price, think of ease of dressing, but more importantly, think of proper support. Remember also that you get what you pay for. You may need to wear the abdominal support garment for 6 weeks or longer. I once bought a less expensive garment and it didn't last the 6 weeks I needed to wear it so I wound up getting a Design Veronique garment. That one lasted me 12 weeks (for my original surgery and a revision).

Here are some photos of some binders and garments made by Design Veronique:

Single Panel Abdominal Support Garment. This support garment with Velcro is ideal for after abdominoplasty recovery.

Double Panel Abdominal Support Garment. This support garment with Velcro closure is ideal for after abdominal surgery recovery.

single panel binder double panel binder

Abdominal Support Gridle Garment with Zipper

High Back Compression Support Body Gridle with Zipper

Abdominal Support Brief with Zipper
Zippered Abdominal Girdle Zippered High-Back Body Girdle Zippered Abdominal Brief


Photo3: abdominal-support-garment-girdle.gif Alt: Abdominal Support Gridle Garment with Zipper <no link to shop>
This zippered support garment is ideal for abdominal procedures.

Photo4: high-back-body-gridle.gif Alt: High Back Compression Support Body Gridle with Zipper <no link to shop>
This zippered compression support garment is perfet if you had abdominoplasty, abdominal liposuction, thigh or back liposuction.

Photo5: abdominal-support-brief.gif Alt: Abdominal Support Brief with Zipper <no link shop>

Zippered brief is designed for easy on and off after abdominoplasty surgery.

How Compression and Support Garments Do I Need?
This is entirely up to you. It is far easier (although more expensive) to buy two support garments because you will need to wash them at one point and so you need one to wear while the other is being washed and dried. Some garments and binders need to be line-dried, which means that they can take several hours to dry. Also, you may be instructed to shower with your binder or compression garment on, and switch into a dry clean one afterwards.

Compression and Support Garments Price Range
Support garments may cost anywhere from $15 for a simple Lycra wrap to $115 for a high-quality full-support garment designed specifically for tummy tuck patients. The price depends upon the quality, the name brand, and whether it is custom-made.

Support Garments and binders usually come in white or off-white, however more and more companies are offering beige and black color choices to their catalogs. Compare prices from your surgeon's available garments and from online garment companies. Some large pharmacies or surgical supply stores stock them as well. Most importantly, go for the best quality that you can. The last thing you need is a garment ripping as soon as you go to pull it on after your first shower.

Visit our Design Veronique Surgical Garment Shop now!