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Abdominal Binder

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 2, 2022.

What is an abdominal binder?

An abdominal binder is fitted elastic material that goes around your abdomen. It may be used to support your muscles. It also keeps bandages in place, or helps incisions heal after abdominal or pelvic surgery.

What do I need to know about an abdominal binder?

  • Wear your abdominal binder as directed. Do not take it off until your healthcare provider says it is okay to do so.
  • Use the right size abdominal binder. The abdominal binder may irritate your skin or not work correctly if it is too big or too small. Your healthcare provider will show you the correct size to wear.
  • Care for your skin and incision under your abdominal binder. Remove your abdominal binder as directed to clean your skin and incision. Wash your hands before you touch the incision. Clean your skin and change bandages as directed. Check your skin for redness, warmth, swelling, or numbness.
  • Care for your abdominal binder. Follow the directions on the label to clean your abdominal binder. You may be able to hand wash it in cold water and hang it to dry.

How do I use an abdominal binder?

  • Place your abdominal binder around your abdomen. Place it over bandages and under your clothes unless you are told differently by your healthcare provider.
  • Fasten the 2 sides of your abdominal binder as directed. Start from the bottom and work up if you had a tummy tuck or other abdominal surgery. If you had a C-section, your healthcare provider may tell you to begin at the top and fasten down.
  • Make sure the abdominal binder fits comfortably. It should be snug but not too tight. Adjust it as needed. Make sure it is even and that there are no wrinkles. Make sure that you can breathe normally and go the bathroom. Make sure any tubes or drains are not pinched and fluids can empty.

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

  • Your abdominal binder will not stay in place or frequently comes apart.
  • The skin under your abdominal binder is red, raw, or blistered.
  • You have questions about how to wear your abdominal binder correctly.

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.