4 weeks post op and I am in a great deal of pain. I am extremely swollen on my tummy, lower and top and also on the side of my breasts. I begin the day pretty normal by noon, I am so swollen my skin hurts, by the end of the day I can barely walk! I feel like an old lady. I am on my third girdle, as the doctor says compression is the only way to minimize the swelling. I feel the girdles crush my ribs and the pain at times is unbearable. But, the doctor says I have to wear it! Is this normal?
4 Weeks Post Op, Tt and Breast Lift, Lipo and I Am Still in Pain, Especially at Night? (photo)
Doctor Answers 6
Pain tolerance varies from patient to patient.
Although pain tolerance varies from patient to patient following Mommy Makeover surgery, atypical pain such as yours should be thoroughly investigated.
Although it’s difficult to make a specific diagnosis without a physical examination, your pictures and history suggest the presence of a large seroma.This should be investigated and possible aspirated.In some cases, placement of a drain with ultrasonic guidance is appropriate.
It’s important to discuss this issue with your plastic surgeon.Treatment of a large seroma might result in the resolution of the pain that you are experiencing.
Pain after an abdominoplasty
Sharp pain is not uncommon after an abdominoplasty. There are many sensory nerves in the area and they get bruised and caught up in post operative swelling. Sometime you move one direction and just put a little pull on the nerve and it can cause this type of pain. If It becomes persistent then you need to be examined.
Still in Pain, Especially at Night
Sorry to hear about your post-op course, which is out of the ordinary.
From your photo I wonder if you don't have a fluid collection in the lower abdomen. Your surgeon should be able to tell rather easily, and to withdraw fluid if present, hopefully with some resolution of your discomfort. I don't see anything unusual in the breast photos.
A couple of suggestions to discuss with your surgeon:
- switching to an abdominal binder which you can adjust for comfort.
- Using a longer acting pain med at night-- either alleve if you are off the narcotic pain meds, or an extended release narcotic pain tablet so you can get a night's sleep.
Once this is all resolved, hopefully you will enjoy your improved appearance and have minimal recollection of this difficult time.Thanks for the question and for the photos. Best wishes.
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Follow-up is Essential for Optimal Mommy Makeover Results
A Mommy Makeovers is a truly transformative process. The recovery, though, takes a bit of patience. It is normal to have intermittent swelling in the operative sites 4 weeks post-operatively. To reduce swelling, I recommend to my patients that they wear the compression garments, limit salt and sodium, and drink plenty of water. If fluid retention persists, a diuretic (water pill) is prescribed. Lymphatic message may help. Localized swelling of the of the lower tummy is common, but your plastic surgeon will want to make sure that it is swelling and not a fluid collection (seroma). Pain of the calves and ankles due to swelling may occur at 4 weeks post-operatively, but should be checked to make sure that it is nothering more serious. Close follow-up with your Plastic Surgeon and his/her nursing staff is essential for the optimal results. I encourage my patients to follow-up with me regularly and frequently for the best results. Best wishes during your recovery.
You may have a seroma in the lower abdomen. See your doctor for ordering a sonogram, that will confirm if you have a seroma.
If confirmes then it should be aspirated or drained.
Experience 4 weeks post breast and tummy surgery
I'm sorry to hear that you are experiencing pain 4 weeks after surgery. Severe discomfort where you can't walk 4 weeks postop is not normal after your procedures. I recommend you followup with your PS to communicate your concerns. Based on what you describe, I think your surgeon is correct: compressive garments will help manage the swelling. Please make sure you followup with your PS as you do have some fullness in the lower tummy area. Just make sure you do not have a fluid collection (aka seroma). In addition, you do have visible irregularities to your areolas and breast shape. Ask your surgeon about scar management. Once your swelling resolves, you can better assess your results and evalaute whether a touch up would be warranted. Wishing you a speedy recovery.
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.