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Pitting Edema After Tummy Tuck

I am 3 weeks post op with my tummy tuck and my incision and the area around it is hard. There is some pitting edema as well. Is this normal? It's right above the Mons and is only located in the pelvis area, every where else feels fairly normal.

Doctor Answers (2)

Persistent Pubic Swelling after Tummy Tuck

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''3 weeks post op with my tummy tuck and my incision and the area around it is hard. There is some pitting edema as well. Is this normal? "- "Pitting Edema" - Hmmmm...sounds like nurse / doctor talking or someone who spent a lot of time reading medical literature...

Swelling is caused both by the sheer trauma of surgery as well as by the interruption of lymphatic channels. The latter take much longer to reconnect and their responsible swelling takes longer to resolve than the inflammatory swelling caused by the injuries associated with surgery. Lymphatic swelling is seen mostly in the midline where the distance to groin lymphatics is maximal and is characterized by a softer, not strictly "pitting" swelling as is seen with heart failure (with which the medical profession is quite familiar).  I cannot give you medical advice, but in my patients I stopped using compression garments with Tummy Tuck surgery as they increase discomfort and swelling without, in my opinion, a corresponding increase in the healing rate. That may improve your symptoms.

Memphis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Persistent pitting edema (swelling) of tummy after tummy tuck (abdominoplasty)

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SEE LINK FOR PHOTOS BELOW:

This is commonly the area which takes the longest for the edema to resolve due to the length of the scar and interruption with lymphatic circulation. It typically takes 3 months to completely resolve. Make sure you are not wearing compressive garments or bands above the incision that aggravate the edema. Lymphatic massage by an experienced practitioner may help.

Web reference: http://bodysculptor.com/gallery-tummy.html

Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 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.