Ask a doctor

When Should I Start Worrying About a Seroma That Has Formed Post-abdominoplasty? (photo)

I still have one drain (collecting less than 20ml per day for the past 3 days), but despite this and 24/7 compression, fluid is building up in my upper belly 18 days after my abdominoplasty. I am 100% sure this is a fluid pocket, not swelling. Since my surgeon is out of state, I email him photos/video. The PA acknowledges my issue and isn't concerned yet, but... I am! Is it reasonable to see a local interventional radiologist for evaluation now, or should I wait? I dont want a pseudobursa.

Doctor Answers (3)

Seromas should be adequately drained after in abdominoplasty.

+2

You should be concerned about your seroma until it quits accumulating. If left unchecked it can create a chronic problem that will require revisional surgery.

Web reference: http://www.zubowicz.com/subpag,21-atlanta-abdominoplast.htm

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

When Should I Start Worrying About a Seroma

+1

This is a tough call absent a physical exam. 

Usually one drain will drain the entire abdominal cavity. I can't make much out of the posted photo, which I assume is not current since there see to be two drains. I don't see anything obvious on the photos suggestive of fluid collection. 

I wouldn't hesitate in recommending the IR consultation. All the best. 

Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Possible evaluation of an abdominal bursa or fluid accumulation.

+1

You may want to see a local Plastic Surgeon and have a proper examination at this time.  It ,ay be too early to evaluate, but if you truly believe that there is an expanding fluid collection and a local evaluation may confirm that, then a CT scan or MRI could be ordered that would confirm it.  If there was a collection, a needle aspiration by the Radiation Interventionalist may be indicated.

 

Good luck to you.

 

Frank Rieger M.D.  Tampa Plastic Surgeon

Tampa Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 37 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.