Tape/binding to keep everything in place 1 week after TT, more swollen than before. Is this normal?

I am on day six of a tummy tuck with ventral hernia repair. I have tape/binding to keep everything in place and I am now more swollen than I was at the beginning!! I just want to know is this normal? I am feeling much better in myself but am struggling to stand straight due to the tightness of the taping!

Doctor Answers (2)

When one week post-op

+1
you must discuss your concerns with your surgeon rather than reaching out to unknown entities, viewing this from the grandstands.  Your surgeon knows what was done, what complications could happen, and what should be best for you.  Trust your surgeon whom you selected to do the best job for you.


Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Tape/binding to keep everything in place 1 week after TT, more swollen than before. Is this normal?

+1

As always, it is best to be seen in person (by your plastic surgeon) for precise diagnosis of the swelling present and evaluation of the taped area. 

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 710 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.