Has anyone had effective treatment for Diastasis Recti?

Posted by sash @sash, Feb 18, 2022

Anyone received effective treatment using EmSculpt Neo?

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@sash. Treatment for diastasis recti usually involves pelvic floor and deep stomach muscle exercises. I'm unfamiliar with Emsculpt Neo. Here's an article about high-intensity focused electromagnetic devices.
– The role and clinical benefits of high-intensity focused electromagnetic devices for non-invasive lipolysis and beyond: A narrative review and position paper: https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/abs/10.1111/jocd.14203

Do you have diastasis recti as a result of pregnancy? Have you worked with a physical therapist?

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Had original surgery was sigmoid colectomy in January. The reversal was beginning of May. I just received my results from a CAT scan and was told I don't have a hernia, but rather Diastasis Recti. Definitely not from pregnancy as suggested, since my daughter is 34 yrs. Surgeon cannot do anything and said insurance codes this as "plastic surgery". Cramped, uncomfortable, look 6 mos. pregnant due to what feels like a full-hard balloon high above my navel. Has anyone heard of this before?

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@dwgksr

Had original surgery was sigmoid colectomy in January. The reversal was beginning of May. I just received my results from a CAT scan and was told I don't have a hernia, but rather Diastasis Recti. Definitely not from pregnancy as suggested, since my daughter is 34 yrs. Surgeon cannot do anything and said insurance codes this as "plastic surgery". Cramped, uncomfortable, look 6 mos. pregnant due to what feels like a full-hard balloon high above my navel. Has anyone heard of this before?

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Welcome, @dwgksr. You'll notice that I moved your question about Diastasis Recti to this discussion
– Has anyone had effective treatment for Diastasis Recti https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/diastasis-recti/

I did this so you can connect with @sash as well as @lisag03 @rt061069 and @musicbart who have experience with diastasis recti.

The condition isn’t limited to pregnancy. It can affect anyone, including newborn babies and men. In some cases, it can result from lifting heavy weights incorrectly or performing excessive or unsafe abdominal exercises.

I'm sorry to hear that your insurance labels surgery as cosmetic. Have you considered working with a physio therapist to see if targeted exercises may help in your situation?

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@dwgksr

Had original surgery was sigmoid colectomy in January. The reversal was beginning of May. I just received my results from a CAT scan and was told I don't have a hernia, but rather Diastasis Recti. Definitely not from pregnancy as suggested, since my daughter is 34 yrs. Surgeon cannot do anything and said insurance codes this as "plastic surgery". Cramped, uncomfortable, look 6 mos. pregnant due to what feels like a full-hard balloon high above my navel. Has anyone heard of this before?

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I had four abdominal surgeries in a six month period. Three were open surgeries (colon resections) and one was laparoscopic (to fix a bowel obstruction). Shortly after my last open surgery (November 2019 was the surgery), I started feeling a stinging pain above my belly button and noticed a lump (this was around March 2020). I had a CT enterography for surveillance and my surgeon noticed an umbilical hernia. He suggested I wait for a full year to fix it. I had another CT done about six months later and it showed a larger ventral hernia and significant diastasis recti as well as a few smaller incisional hernias. Mayo advised it would be a very complex risky surgery and recommended I wait until I couldn’t wait anymore. Also, there were some other concerns they had that complicated things.
I waited until around April of 2022 and then went to a surgeon I had used before for gall bladder surgery. She was a general surgeon. She recommended abdominal wall reconstruction (component separation surgery) to fix both the disastis recti and insertion of a large sheet of mesh. I had that surgery one year ago (6/14/21). It was covered by my private insurance as it was the result of prior surgeries. I think a lot of the reason insurance claims it’s cosmetic is because a lot of times, skin tightening and removal is done. I didn’t have this done. My BMI was around 18 so not really much excess skin although the hernia and DRecti did cause a noticeable pooch. I am still working to get my abdominal muscle tone back. It’s challenging and the lower abs are still quite loose even though I exercise daily. If I really wanted to have a completely flat stomach again, I would probably need them to tighten that skin and remove a small amount of fat. I had such a struggle with all of my surgeries that I would never consider undergoing anything else. I struggled with whether to repair the ventral hernia and diastasis recti, but the surgeon recommended it because she said it would continue to get worse and could become impossible to repair.

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@colleenyoung

Welcome, @dwgksr. You'll notice that I moved your question about Diastasis Recti to this discussion
– Has anyone had effective treatment for Diastasis Recti https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/diastasis-recti/

I did this so you can connect with @sash as well as @lisag03 @rt061069 and @musicbart who have experience with diastasis recti.

The condition isn’t limited to pregnancy. It can affect anyone, including newborn babies and men. In some cases, it can result from lifting heavy weights incorrectly or performing excessive or unsafe abdominal exercises.

I'm sorry to hear that your insurance labels surgery as cosmetic. Have you considered working with a physio therapist to see if targeted exercises may help in your situation?

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Thank you for the information. My insurance didn't say it but rather, a surgeon in my Dr's office made the statement about it being cosmetic. I see my surgeon on Wednesday. I have no doubt the surgeries caused the weakness in my stomach muscles. I am struggling with cramping, sometimes shortness of breath and overall uncomfortable.

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@lisag03

I had four abdominal surgeries in a six month period. Three were open surgeries (colon resections) and one was laparoscopic (to fix a bowel obstruction). Shortly after my last open surgery (November 2019 was the surgery), I started feeling a stinging pain above my belly button and noticed a lump (this was around March 2020). I had a CT enterography for surveillance and my surgeon noticed an umbilical hernia. He suggested I wait for a full year to fix it. I had another CT done about six months later and it showed a larger ventral hernia and significant diastasis recti as well as a few smaller incisional hernias. Mayo advised it would be a very complex risky surgery and recommended I wait until I couldn’t wait anymore. Also, there were some other concerns they had that complicated things.
I waited until around April of 2022 and then went to a surgeon I had used before for gall bladder surgery. She was a general surgeon. She recommended abdominal wall reconstruction (component separation surgery) to fix both the disastis recti and insertion of a large sheet of mesh. I had that surgery one year ago (6/14/21). It was covered by my private insurance as it was the result of prior surgeries. I think a lot of the reason insurance claims it’s cosmetic is because a lot of times, skin tightening and removal is done. I didn’t have this done. My BMI was around 18 so not really much excess skin although the hernia and DRecti did cause a noticeable pooch. I am still working to get my abdominal muscle tone back. It’s challenging and the lower abs are still quite loose even though I exercise daily. If I really wanted to have a completely flat stomach again, I would probably need them to tighten that skin and remove a small amount of fat. I had such a struggle with all of my surgeries that I would never consider undergoing anything else. I struggled with whether to repair the ventral hernia and diastasis recti, but the surgeon recommended it because she said it would continue to get worse and could become impossible to repair.

Jump to this post

Thank you for this information; it is very helpful. The surgeon said I do not have a hernia; however, the pooch is very large, so I am not sure what causes it unless it's organs protruding beyond the stomach muscles. It causes me concern. If I were in an accident or if I was accidently hit hard in my stomach, it could be serious. I will see what the Dr. says on Wednesday. I am very nervous.

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@dwgksr

Thank you for this information; it is very helpful. The surgeon said I do not have a hernia; however, the pooch is very large, so I am not sure what causes it unless it's organs protruding beyond the stomach muscles. It causes me concern. If I were in an accident or if I was accidently hit hard in my stomach, it could be serious. I will see what the Dr. says on Wednesday. I am very nervous.

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What did you learn at your appointment, @dwgksr?

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I went to a plastic surgeon based on my general surgeon's recommendation. I did not agree with his assessment so I went to a hernia doctor this week. He believes I have a hernia and not the diastasis rectus. We are working on a plan to have hernia surgery. Since my surgeries were so recent he wants to wait until a year from the ostomy take down to avoid any future problems. Ugh. The hernia is painful and now I'm concerned about the intestines getting tangled. It's a lot to process. Thank you for asking.

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Over the last few weeks, I noticed that my stomach was sticking out…Then after exercising one day, I happened to look in the mirror and almost had a heart attack. I looked like I was in my second trimester. It happened so suddenly. The doctor initially thought I had a hernia, but after ultrasound and CT scan, the doctor now thinks it is diastasis recti. I will start PT. Would love to hear others' experiences. Thanks.

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