3 Weeks After TT My Belly is Hard and Feels Full of Fluid, is this Normal?

I am 17 days post-op. My drains have been out since day 8. But today I fell like I have belly full of fluid. I can feel it when I move my belly from side to side.is this ok.it feels very full.but on the outside its hard.

Doctor Answers 4

Seroma after Tummy Tuck?

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Thank you for the question.

Your description is classic for seroma ( a benign collection of serous fluid).

This fluid accumulation can generally be diagnosed by physical examination ( occasionally ultrasound  may be helpful).  Treatment consists of aspiration;  several episodes of aspiration may be necessary. 

I would suggest follow-up with your plastic surgeon for accurate diagnosis and treatment.

Best wishes for the remainder of the recovery.

Seromas following TT

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It sounds like you have a seroma or collection of fluid that needs to be drained.  The first few times (often more than one aspiration is needed) your surgeon will likely use a needle to aspirate the fluid.  This is not a painful procedure so don't worry.  If the fluid keeps collecting you may need to have the drain put back in, but I have had to do this only a few times in 22 years so don't worry.  Do see your surgeonsoon, though.

Seroma after drain removal

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This definitely sounds like a seroma, a collection of watery fluid that needs to be drained out using a needle and a large syringe at your plastic surgeon's office. This happens occasionally and will need repeated visits, probably twice a week to get under control. Over time the drainage usually goes down and you absorb more than you make so it eventually goes away. In the unfortunate event it doesn't go away then you might need a drain put back in under local anesthesia, or rarely a second procedure to strip out the "neo-bursa" lining which might form. Get back with your plastic surgeon immediately...

Victor Au, MD (retired)
Chapel Hill Plastic Surgeon

Fluid needs to be Removed

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It sounds as though you need to see your surgeon relatively soon. The amount of fluid that you descibe will not absorb and will probably need to be removed, either through aspiration or having another drain placed. Good Luck!

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