What is Hemosiderin Staining and How Long Does It Last?
- Asked by Gigi1980 in DFW
- 3 years ago
I had a mommy makeover March 1st, 2010. This included tummy tuck, breast lift, breast augmentation, hernia repair, and liposuction of the hips. I recently noticed that I have discoloration (bruising) in the area where I had liposuction. The bruising is almost symmetrical on both hips. Is there anything I can do to get rid of the bruising? My doctor has diagnosed me with hemosiderin staining. Will it be permanent? Can someone explain this condition to me?
Hemosiderin VS Hyperpigmentation
In conditions where there is constant bleeding into tissues (such as venous ulcers etc), the red cells in the blood break down and their contents are taken up "pac man" style by the macrophages, the cells responsible to eating up germs and debris in the body. Inside the macrophages the hemoglobin, the iron containing molecule which holds on to oxygen is broken up and its iron is combined into a storage form of iron and proteins with a dark yellow-brown pigment called hemosiderin. In effect, it is a natural form of auto-tattooing.
That being said, I do not think you demonstrate hemosiderin which is seen in chronic condition but just a case of inflammatory hyperpigmentation. You should be able to correct it with a course of bleaching cream (such as Hydroquinone). You may want to speak to a good dermatologist.
Hemosiderin staining of skin following surgery
Hemosiderin is a pigment that is a byproduct of hemoglobin that has spread into the tissues following injury with bleeding and bruising of the tissues. It contains iron pgiment and may take along time (years) for the body to metaoblize the iron and pigment that has spread into the tissues.
Hemosiderin staining usually resolves in time
Hemosiderin staining is the result of the iron left in tissues after blood loss into the tissues and the body's attempt to recycle the valuable parts of the blood lost in the tissues. In this case, the hemosiderin is the iron that is left behind after other elements of the blood have been resorted. This is common after bruising and hemotomas and sclerotherapy.
Most people do not have hemosiderin stains regardless of the amount of blood in the tissues. Others have hemosiderin stains because of the failure of their body to completely retrieve this lost iron. In time though, most individuals are able to slowly and completely resorb the iron and thus the stains become less apparent. I am not aware of any medications or treatments to encourage this absorption although heat in the area should increase the blood flow and increase the elements that resorb the iron.
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Preventing bruising after a tummy tuck
it is natural to bruise in areas of liposuction. Bruising could take up to a year to really go away depending on the skin color and tone. Early sun bathing can make the bruising and the hemosiderin deposit stay longer and even become permanent. I recommend taking Arnica before and during your tummy tuck recovery.
Web reference: http://www.anewfigure.com
Dark Spots after Surgery
I agree with others here, dark areas may be post inflammatory hyperpigmentation rather than hemosiderin staining. Perhaps a Dermatologist's opinion would be valuable.
Web reference: http://www.drkoneru.com/procedures/body/mommy-makeover
The compund that brings oxygen to your body cells is called hemoglobin. Its breakdown product is hemosiderin which gives a stain appearance like we see in leg ulcers from bad veins. The body has to break down the chemicals before the color disappears. This takes time, and in my experience, the stain disappears. I am not aware of any treatments that helps this process.
Hemosiderin is just a big word for the iron content within the red blood cells. They usually go away after a few days. You can also call it bruising
Long term brusing from tummy tuck and liposuction
Hemosiderin staining from bruising is an unfortunate side affect of liposuction with or without a tummy tuck. This is more likely in darker pigmented skin in some ethnicities. The good news is that it will eventually go away. The bad news is that it may take up to several years for the body to slowly metabolize the iron breakdown products under your skin. Give it time and be patient.
Best of luck
Hemosiderin Staining After Liposuction - What Is It, How Long Does It Last?
Hemosiderin (a breakdown product of hemoglobin) causes staining of tissue after liposuction or other surgical procedures. Since hemoglobin is made up of iron plus a protein, and since oxygen binds to this hemoglobin iron protein complex, once the red blood cell is rupture releasing free hemosiderin under the skin, one often has a discoloration.
The immune system combines this hemosiderin with melanin (skin pigment) which creates a very dark area, either speckled or in large clumps. Because the melanin is very sensitive to light, exposing these hyperpigmented areas to sunlight can increase the chance of even darker or more permanent discolorations.
My treatment of choice for this form of discoloration is to use a bleaching cream that contains kojic acid. A second topical agent that I often use is DMSO. DMSO is one of the world's best anti-inflammatories and the melanin that combines with the hemosiderin is an inflammatory process.
The length of time for this hemosiderin stained/hyperpigmented area to clear itself can take months to years depending on the size of the area and the amount of melanin present in the staining. This time frame can be shortened by the use of appropriate topical agents.
Hemosiderin staining vs hyperpigmentation vs laser burn
These marks look very much like laser burns. Was laser liposuction used during your procedure?
Hemosiderin deposits can occur with chronic venous stasis, of course, but they can also occur with a single lower blepharoplasty in a susceptible patient. Fortunately, these tend to go away over time.
Hyperpigmentation from dressings, adhesives, etc. may require specific treatment such as creams, laser treatment, etc.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.