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Hoe Can I Tell if Swelling is Seroma or Hematoma Post TT?

I am post TT and am wearing a binder 24/7. Today I noticed an area of swelling around my incision that is slightly painful. The pain is what caused me to peak at the area. It looks normal. How will I know if it is a seroma or a hematoma?

Doctor Answers 9

Pain following Tummy Tuck

Although you didn't mention how far into recovery you are, I would always recommend that you contact your surgeon for a followup visit to see what is causing the pain. Some pains are normal. However, a seroma or hematoma may need care from your physician, with possible aspiration of fluids with a needle. As physicians, we would rather see you early on so if there is a problem we can treat it quickly. Don't worry if it turns out a false alarm.

San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

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Swelling around incision after a tummy tuck

There are many causes of swelling, both normal and problematic. You did not describe the size, nature, etc. of the swelling that you have or how long postoperatively that you are. My recommendation as you are concerned would be to contact your plastic surgeon for possible evaluation.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Hematoma vs seroma

it may be neither.  perhaps it is a stitch reaction or some swelling in the tissues,  see your surgeon but dont worry

Jonathan Saunders, MD
Newark Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Complication after Tummy Tuck?

Thank you for the question.

You need to be evaluated by your surgeon who will aspirate the area necessary and determine if you're dealing with a seroma, hematoma, or swelling in the subcutaneous tissues.

Best wishes.


Hoe Can I Tell if Swelling is Seroma or Hematoma Post TT?

As you can read the majority of the previous expert posters ou need to see your operative surgeon ASAP. I agree follow up care is as important as wearing the binder. 

Sonogram will diagnose seroma or hematoma after tummy tuck.


You need to call and see your plastic surgeon right away.  You might be fine, or you might have a complication that needs to be drained promptly.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Please see your surgeon

You may have normal swelling ,but you need to see your surgeon for follow up and further evaluation. The surgical care starts with consultation and and continues till patients fully recovered and in some cases like augmentation never ends.

Kamran Khoobehi, MD
New Orleans Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 70 reviews

Hematoma vs Seroma

Based on the limited information given, you may have normal swelling but to determine this, you should notify your plastic surgeon. Your surgeon can use a needle to determine what type of fluid is present. 

Karol A. Gutowski, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 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.