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Seroma or something else going on? (photo)

I'm 28 days PO from tummy tuck with hernia repair. I had this seroma or bump area come up at about day 7 on my right side below belly button, It has it's not going down. My doctor drained 50cc last week but it didn't affect this area (in pic). He inserted the needle about 5 times in it and nothing came out, except the last time he inserted the needle and got the 50 cc's, but again it never went down. I could feel the fluid above it went away.

Doctor Answers (7)

Irregular contours follow a tummy tuck

+2

that change rapidly are often related to fluid collections such as yours. Stay with your surgeon as he/she is experienced in managing this and also evaluating you for potentially other causes. Any persistent irregularities after you have 'healed' can always be managed with revisions so try not to fret and focus on your healing and following the instructions of your surgeon.


Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Fluid after tummy tuck (abdominoplasty)

+2

This could be more fluid, or it could be residual swelling. If there is any doubt at all an ultrasound is a non-invasive way to find out what is going on. If there is fluid that your doctor could not remove sometimes a small drain can be placed under ultrasound guidance.

Daniel Greenwald, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Seroma or something else

+2

When a tummy tuck is performed there about 3 months of swelling. 50% of the swelling will diminish in the first month, 25% more the second month and the last 25% the 3rd month. It is mandatory that you have as many checkups as possible to monitor your recovery. Anything can happen during the first few months and your doctor will need to monitor is carefully. Each person heal differently but it is very important to folow the post surgery instructions to ensure the best results. There are special tests that can detect if you have seroma or any other complication. But the most important point is to discuss this with your doctor.

Alfonso Gonzalez Cepeda, MD
Mexico Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Seroma or something else

+2

Without examining you it is impossible to say. I would rely on my PS.If you are still concerned then have an ultrasound or cath scar performed and that will clearly elucidate what is going on

Frederic H. Corbin, MD
Brea Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Swelling after Tummy Tuck?

+2

Thank you for the question.

As always, it is best to be seen in person ( by your plastic surgeon) for precise diagnosis and treatment.

Generally speaking, abdominal wall "swelling" after tummy tuck may be related to:

1. Swelling in the soft tissues. This may take several months to resolve and may worsen with increased activity or at the end of the day. Patience is required to allow for resolution of the swelling. The swelling occurs because of the interruption of venous and lymphatic channels that occurs during the tummy tuck operation.

2. Fluid accumulation in the space between the skin and the abdominal wall muscle. this may consist of blood ( hematoma) or serum (seroma). This fluid accumulation can generally be diagnosed by physical examination ( occasionally ultrasound may be helpful). Treatment consists of aspiration; several episodes of aspiration may be necessary.

3. Separation of the abdominal wall muscle repair may lead to a swelling/bulge appearance. This may be diagnosed on physical examination with your surgeon examining you in different bodily positions. One of the steps of a tummy tuck procedure involves reapproximation (plication) of the rectus muscles. These muscles have spread apart during pregnancy and/or weight gain. Bringing them together again in the midline helps to “tighten” the abdominal wall as well as to narrow the waistline.

4. Residual adipose tissue may be confused for swelling. Again this is most easily diagnosed by physical examination. Additional liposuction surgery maybe necessary to improve the results of surgery.

Generally, it takes many months for swelling to resolve after tummy tuck surgery and it may take up to one year (or greater) a complete skin redraping to occur.

I hope this helps.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 702 reviews

Seroma and swelling after TT

+1

Dear Robin, swelling and seroma are both made out of fluid. When the fluid is free and is easily aspirated then we call it a seroma but when it is locked up within your tissues and cannot be aspirated then we call it swelling. Normally after a TT the fuid goes to the lower portion pulled by gravity and that place is the middle of your lower tummy right above your incision. That is also the place where it will linger the longest and the last place to clear it. The fact that it was only 50 cc and hard to find tells me that you are actually getting better. Unfortunately that lower swelling sometimes takes months to go away. Good luck!

Juan A. Brou, MD
Oklahoma City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Seroma or something else going on? (photo)

+1

Not sure what the issue is over the internet... Best to seek IN PERSOMN opinions as soon as possible.

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

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.