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Do I Have To Have Surgery For A Diastasis Recti?

Do I need surgery?



There is so much we can do to heal the abdomen (and pelvic floor) that we can help people avoid surgery.

If you just skip pelvic therapy then you wouldn’t be using the right muscles even once you had surgery.

Surgery is mainly used for cosmetic help. Which yes is very important to some people (myself included) but I would rather have a functioning core that keeps me continent and protects my joints than having a flat stomach where the muscles don’t know what to do.

So what I am saying is that even if you need surgery because your diastasis is the size of a football, you should still heal with pelvic therapy and work first because that will improve the likelihood of a successful surgery.

Here’s the deal about Diastasis

Everyone by the end of pregnancy is going to have some degree of separation at the linea alba (so a space between the rectus abdominis muscles) that’s just fact. But when it comes time to get back to the gym or healthy movement postpartum (or a bathing suite) sometimes we are left with the separation (diastasis recti or rectus abdominis or DRA) or umbilical hernias (where the belly button almost sticks out and there is an actual break in the fascia which is the linea alba between the rectus abdominis muscles. (Insert pic of diastasis from book or pelvic guru)

We measure the diastasis based on how many fingers we can fit between it and the amount of tension below our fingers, if it’s empty or there is no firmness, then we have a clinically significant separation.

Here’s the deal. Some people don’t get a clinically significant separation til postpartum. Want to know why?????

It’s because they go back to sitting up out of bed or doing activities like reclining self back into the couch without engaging their core. It’s really important that postpartum until you begin to heal and re-coordinate your core (with a pelvic expert) that you still use all the safe mechanics from when you were pregnant (if you need a reminder of what those are or are currently pregnant please watch this to protect yourself and prevent DRA:

Diastasis doesn’t just heal itself. It requires intention and healing the pelvic floor and the belly. If you do an online program to heal the diastasis the reason most of those don’t work is because there is no actual physical body work to help improve the visceral motility aka organ movement, the fascial and muscles of the abdomen and the pelvic floor. Yes there are exercises to heal both but it’s really important that you help the right muscles get healthy! Heal the scars, adhesions and shortened or elongated tissue (which is all best done with hands on work).

I have personally seen miraculous diastasis healing. I have had clients where I had less hope for helping them close and heal their DRA and they have almost shocked me by how much the body can heal with the right help and treatment.

If you were left with a diastasis after babies, reach out and we will help you heal your abs! This will save your joints for the rest of your life. Right now if you have a DRA your core is not fully functioning and therefore your core can’t absorb all the forces that your joints experience.

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Cheers to 2023!
Dr. Allison


Allison Feldt

Body Motion Physical Therapy

"We Help Women Through Fertility, Pregnancy, Birth, Postpartum and Beyond So They Can Live Active, Confident, Healthy Lives Without The Need For Medication Or Surgery"

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