Ask Dr. Hilda

Question: I gave birth to my daughter 8 months ago and I still feel movements in my stomach. I've been to my OB/GYN and she insists that it's just my uterus, after having a tubal ligation. I'm told constantly that I still look pregnant. My upper portion of my stomach still protrudes as if I'm pregnant where as the lower part has come down. My question to you is what can I do to get faster results in getting my upper portion to flatten like the lower part? Are there any exercises to get the uterus back in it's place?

Answer: You may have a hernia. That is, the muscles that run down the length of your abdominal wall and help to keep your belly flat, may have separated during your pregnancy. When these muscles separate, your intestines may push forward and cause your abdomen to protrude. Your abdomen is also a common area for fat to deposit both during and after pregnancy. The sad part is that, sometimes, no matter how much exercise you do, the belly still doesn't become flat again. My suggestion would be to lose weight, if that is a problem, and perform abdominal exercises, like crunches, every day. If that doesn't work, you might consider consulting with a surgeon to determine whether you have a hernia that can be repaired with surgery. --Dr. Hilda

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