An abdominal binder is a medical support garment designed to compress and support the abdominal region. It mainly helps the abdominal muscles after surgery or injury.
However, it is typically made of elastic or neoprene with hook or Velcro& loop closures. It is worn around the midsection to stabilize and gently pressure the abdominal muscles and tissues.
Abdominal binders are commonly used after surgeries such as C-sections, hysterectomies, abdominal hernia repairs, and after injuries or trauma to the abdominal area.
They can help to decrease swelling and pain, improve circulation, and promote faster healing.
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What Abdominal Binders are Used for?
An abdominal binder is mainly used to speed up recovery after an abdominal surgical procedure. Your surgeon may recommend wearing an abdominal binder after the following:
- Spinal Surgery
- ATummy Tuck
- ACaesarean Section
- An Exploratory Laparotomy
- Bariatric Surgery
- A Hysterectomy
A carefully-positioned abdominal binder may be used in people with spinal cord injury, helping in:
- Support the Abdomen
- Improve Respiratory Function
- Maintain Abdominal Pressure
Primary Purpose of an Abdominal Binder
Offer Comfort and Security
The compression and warmth provided by the abdominal binder can offer comfort and security to individuals with abdominal muscle strains or injuries.
Support Post-Operative Recovery
Abdominal binders are often used after abdominal surgeries, such as hernia repair, tummy tucks (abdominoplasty), or cesarean sections.
They help hold the incision site securely and reduce strain on the healing tissues, promoting faster recovery.
Some abdominal binders come with additional back support, which can help improve posture and reduce lower back pain.
The gentle compression of the binder can help reduce fluid buildup and swelling in the abdominal area, enhancing comfort and aiding recovery.
Provide Core Support
Abdominal binders can support the core muscles, particularly useful for individuals with weak abdominal muscles due to pregnancy, injury, or medical conditions.
Abdominal binders can be used to help reduce the waistline. However, no scientific evidence supports the effectiveness of abdominal binders for weight loss.
Abdominal binders come in various sizes and designs, and choosing the right one depends on the individual’s needs and specific medical conditions.
Benefits of Using an Abdominal Binder
- It may also decrease psychological distress following your procedure.
- Wearing an abdominal binder may decrease post-operative pain.
- They also may promote deep breathing.
Abdominal Binder after Surgery
- Reduce Swelling
- Support your Surgical Incision
- Get you moving more
- Relieve pain
There’s not a lot of scientific evidence on the benefits of abdominal binders. A 2014 systematic review found that abdominal binders may decrease early post-operative pain and reduce psychological distress.
There’s some evidence abdominal binders may also promote coughing and deep breathing after surgery and improve overall mobility.
More research is needed to prove abdominal binders definitively help prevent fluid buildup (seroma) after abdominal surgery or improve overall physical function.
Abdominal Binder after a Hysterectomy
- Strengthen Abdominal Muscles
- Hold your Abdominal Muscles together to relieve pain
- Make the physical activity more comfortable
- Increase circulation at your surgical site to promote healing and decrease swelling.
Warning & Risks
- These garments may cause skin irritation.
- You may also find breathing to be uncomfortable.
- Compression around a surgical site may cause some discomfort.
Wearing an abdominal binder is generally well-tolerated. Some people find it uncomfortable and hot.
Although it’s meant to ease pain, compression around a surgical site may increase discomfort. It may also make breathing uncomfortable, although there is no evidence using an abdominal binder causes or worsens breathing problems.
Compression garments may cause an allergic reaction, itching, rash, and other irritations. To reduce your risk, use an abdominal binder that fits appropriately and is made of hypoallergenic fabric.
There’s some debate about whether or not abdominal binders increase the risk of deep vein thrombosis (DVT).
It occurs when a blood clot matures in at least one of the deep veins in your body. One 2007 studyTrusted Source showed that abdominal binders increase intra-abdominal pressure.
This may be associated with the development of DVT. Because abdominal surgery alone increases DVT risk, some question whether using an abdominal binder after abdominal surgery is a good idea.
On the other hand, a major DVT risk factor is immobility after surgery. So, in theory, abdominal binders may decrease DVT risk because they may help increase mobility after surgery.
Essential Guidelines to Follow While Using an Abdominal Binder
- Do not wear the binder for more than 8 hours per day.
- Remove the binder if you experience any discomfort.
- Take breaks from wearing the binder throughout the day.
- Wear the binder as directed by your doctor.
Abdominal binders can be a helpful tool for a variety of medical conditions. An abdominal binder, as a healthcare professional directs, is essential, as improper use or fit can lead to discomfort or complications.
Tips for Selecting an Abdominal Binder
- Pick a binder that is comfortable to wear. You should be able to move around and breathe easily while wearing the binder.
- Choose a binder that is the right size for you. The binder should be snug but not too tight.
- Choose a binder that has Velcro or hook and loop closures. This will make it easy to adjust the binder as needed.
- Choose a binder that is made of a breathable material. This will help to prevent sweating and skin irritation.
Abdominal binders come in different sizes and styles and can be adjusted to fit the patient’s needs. They are typically made of a stretchy, breathable material that allows for comfortable wear over an extended period.
It is important to note that abdominal binders should only be used under the guidance of a healthcare professional, as they can cause complications if not used properly.
When used correctly, an abdominal binder may aid in your recovery after abdominal surgery. Patients should follow their healthcare provider’s instructions for wearing and caring for the binder and report any discomfort or issues to their healthcare provider immediately.