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Ovarian Cysts Community
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Avatar universal

Tips for exercise after laparatomy + bloating problems

Hi, I had a laparatomy 19 days ago for removal of cyst on left ovary.  Fortunately they didn't have to remove ovary and my recovery seems normal having read a lot of the posts.. I'm a fairly fit 51 yr old.  Can anyone give me advice about any exercise I can do to help strengthen my tummy and pelvic muscles post-op esp with lg rubbrer ball that you can sit on ?. Also I understand the drs pump a lot of air into your body during the operation.   How do we get rid of this as my stomach is really bloated ?  Any suggestions ?  Thanks very much.
4 Responses
356929 tn?1246393356
I can't speak to the laparotomy particularly since I had the laparoscopy, but I think 19 days out is pushing it .. I was told no heavy lifting, no driving , no heavy housework for 2 weeks . I think I'd wait for at least 4-6 weeks before attempting anything strenuous. It takes longer to heal internally than it appears on the "outside" .. The bloating will disappear in time as well.. Don't rush things.....
Avatar universal
Thanks for the advice.  I've been surfing the net a lot and find lots of advice up to 6 weeks and then the info fades away.  I am anxious about how to start off my exercise program in 6 weeks' time to ensure I don't do the wrong thing for my tummy muscles and stretch and pull the wrong way.  There doesn't seem to be any follow up advice from the hospital and you're left to your own devices.  The docs seem to forget we're women and don't want to live with saggy, bloated stomachs for the rest of our lives.  Plus if I need further treatment I want to ensure my body is fit for it. There must be a physiotherapist or fitness instructor on this forum who could suggest what we should do !?
672990 tn?1235147238
Hi! I had a lapratomy about 4 months ago. I'm very active and was used to working out everyday, lifting weights and running before surgery. Like you, I was antsy to get back into the routine.

It's very important that you don't push it. I walked a lot during my recovery. Then at about 5 weeks, I felt okay enough to go back to the gym. I started my workouts only 3 days a week at the gym. I did weight machines that didn't engage my abs and I did a lot of cardio, mostly on the eliptical so I didn't have to deal with that pounding when you run. A week or two of following that routine and I felt like I could lift weights like regular and do all the weight machines. I also started doing about 200 regular situps everyday.

It took me another week or two of that until I was back to working out 5 days a week and doing my complete normal schedule of abwork, lifting weights, weight machines and cardio.

You'll find when you start doing ab work, it feels VERY weird at first. It takes a few sessions until you start to feel normal again and like you're working your abs properly. You just have to get back into the routine of it, which takes a while, but then you'll be surprised how quickly you'll feel normal again.

Stick to just walking until about 4 weeks out though!
Avatar universal
Hi Kelly
I'm really grateful for your advice.  You've made me feel so much better today.  Everyone is very supportive but I find this lack of info. difficult. What weight machines did you you first use ?  I phoned my gym but they were surprisingly ignorant of what I should or shouldn't do - they're used to the routine questions from 20 yr olds wanting to lose weight.. I'm scared of pulling my muscles the wrong way and doing more damage.  I had just started getting back into cycling (after a gap of 36 years !) and was about to buy my 1st mountain bike so want to ease myself back into the gym first.  My v basic handbook from the hospital says 8 weeks before I start cycling and gym but my general practice dr who I saw about something else yesterday says I'm in good shape for 3 weeks post-op. although my stitches still pull.  I'm walking 2 hrs per day (split into 2 x 1 hr) and fairly active around the house.  I'm having a good declutter as I haven't spent this much time at home in years !  I'm trying to be positive about this.
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