I Had Surgery One Week Ago to Remove a Hematoma. The Area is Still Swollen and Hard and I Am Bleeding a Lot. Is This Normal?

I had a TT in October. I had to keep the drains in for 16 days because I was told I had a hematoma. Last Monday I had surgery to remove it. I have not stop bleeding. I change the gauze and padding more than four times a day. I am bleeding a lot. The area is still swollen and hard. I appy heating pads and I am massaging the area. My PS said its normal and I am suppose to bleed. I am concerned and would like other answers from other doctors. Please HELP!!

Doctor Answers 6


Best advice is to see your plastic surgeon, and if you are not comfortable with the answer--get a second opinion.

Fort Lauderdale Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Ongoing Bleeding after Tummy Tuck

   Any instance of ongoing bleeding is always a concern after tummy tuck.   However, presumably the drains were pulled due to a low volume that was draining.  If there was low volume drainage and, thus, little bleeding, there may be little to do in this situation.

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 492 reviews

"Bleeding after a tummy tuck and evacuation of a hematoma

You do not clearly describe the "bleeding" that you are having. Is is coming from around the tubes or through openings in your skin? Is is a bright red color or a darkish color? These are important questions that need to be clarified in order for you to receive appropriate advice.

If there is bright red blood seen in the collection container, you need to contact your plastic surgeon right away. A darker color indicates "old" blood which can be expected after having had a hematoma and is generally not worrisome.

It sounds like there may be a communication or understanding issue between you and your plastic surgeon which needs to be resolved. Even if you are not presently having active bleeding as evidenced by bright red blood, it would be in your best interest to schedule an appointment with your plastic surgeon in the next few days to review all your questions and concerns including proper aftercare. An examination is also recommended.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Bleeding following an Abdominoplasty

A hematoma is a complication that can occur with any operation.  It is essentially a collection of blood under the skin.  When performing an abdominoplasty it is not uncommon to place drains and place the patient on a blood thinning type agent such as Lovenox.  From you description it seems that you developed a significant hematoma that required surgical evacuation.  For large hematomas that is the appropriate management.  Most likely the source of bleeding was isolated at the time of your second surgery.   As the hematoma resolves there will be continued drainage from the wound and drains.   This is most likely due to a resolving condition.  Your plastic surgeon is in the best position to determine if this is an ongoing problem or one that requires closer attention.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Post tummy tuck hematoma

If you are bleeding bright red blood, then you need to see your plastic surgeon as soon as possible---yes, give him a call even on Thanksgiving day. If the bleeding is rusty color, then this would indicate residual bleeding from the hematoma that has been evacuated. It is extremely important to stay in touch with your plastic surgeon. I would not recommend massage as this can stimulate additional bleeding. I hope that you are not taking aspirin or any other medications or supplements which would promote bleeding.

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Hematoma after Tummy Tuck

Hematomas or blood collections can happen after a tummy tuck, but is rare. It sounds like you had a hematoma that was drained but are still "bleeding". You should not be bleeding bright red blood. This indicates that there is still active bleeding going on and needs to be addressed right away. It is possible that you are draining some residual liquid from the old hematoma. This liquid will look more dark and sometimes brownish. If this is the case, then it is probably ok but follow your doctors instructions and keep close followup.

Matthew Schulman, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 324 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.