*Disclaimer* My case is not normal so please don't get scared by it. After much research I have found that my experience was not typical.
After 3 kids, I figured it was time for a tummy tuck. No matter how much I worked out the pooch would not go away. During my consultation my Dr. discovered I had an Umbilical hernia. Not a huge concern, just figured I could get it repaired while getting tummy tuck. Local Dr. performed surgery during Thanksgiving holiday's last year. By all accounts it was a routine procedure, I left office with drain and meds. On the third day, while getting out of bed I heard something (my stitches) pop inside my stomach. My stomach began to swell and I was rushed back into emergency surgery to stop the internal bleeding. I was placed on bed rest for few weeks to ensure proper recovery. I still believe the stitches breaking were just a fluke and not something my doctor did wrong. He said that it had never happened to him before and I believe him.
After the second surgery I returned for post-op check up and my drain was removed on day 5. I begin to notice swelling on my lower stomach area and Dr. found a seroma. He aspirated it in the office with a huge needle. My stomach was still pretty numb from surgery so it was not painful. He told me these things usually subside and not to worry, so I did not. That is when the chronic doctor visits to drain the seroma began, they lasted 4 months. I begin to research the Internet, including this website, for information on seromas and their treatment. I kept coming across post and doctor responses that said persistent seromas needed to be surgically removed. But my doctor was still telling me to be patient and that eventually he could just Lipo the remains away once it went down. I think he really believed this would work and did not have experience in this area. By this point I was months into this process and decided I needed a second opinion.
So I began looking for an “expert” in seromas or fluid management, and I read about the drainless tummy tuck. Not really the same thing, but I figured it was close enough. On the Internet I found Dr. Todd Pollock, who created and was published in the technique for the drainless tummy tuck called the progressive tension suture technique. I contacted him via email, because I live in another state, and sent pictures of my seroma. By then it looked bigger than the pooch I started with, and was deformed looking. He agreed that I probably had formed a fibrous capsule and would need surgery. So I flew in for a visit with him to confirm his observations in person. He did not hesitate when he said he could fix it, so I said lets get it scheduled.
During the Easter holiday I flew to Dallas and had my third surgery. Dr. Pollock was the “expert” I was looking for. The doctor and his staff were very courteous, and professional helping me every step of the way. During this surgery the seroma was removed and my tummy tuck corrected. The drainless procedure was so much better. Having the drain was pretty gross the first time, so I was happy to not have it again. Also, my recovery time was a lot less. I stayed in a local hotel close to his office and was pleased with every aspect of his services. Immediately I could tell the difference in his technique. My abs were tight and slim, not swollen and full of fluid. The two procedures were really like night and day. The regular tummy tuck was not horrible, but in my opinion Dr. Todd’s technique is really superior. I realize it is not as popular with doctors because it requires more surgery time for them. But if travelling to Dallas in an option for you, you should consider him for your tummy tuck. I cannot recommend him enough. It has been almost a year and my stomach looks great. No drain tummy tuck is the way to go!