Lower abdomen is bulging? (Photos)

I am 3 months post op for a full tummy tuck with muscle repair. I am concerned about the swelling in my lower abdomin. It has always been present. Even at my flattest time which is in the morning it is still protruding and does not seem to be getting any better. Is this normal??? my doc and he says it's not a seroma so he did not want to drain it and wanted to wait But it jiggles and seems to be soft to the touch. I don't want to compromise my final results by not having it drained if needed

Doctor Answers 6

Tummy tuck

Thank you for your question.I would recommend having your doctor schedule you for an ultrasound to put your mind at ease, that is the best way to determine if a Seroma is present. It is hard to diagnose what is causing the lower abdomen swelling from a photograph but at this point in your recovery period, swelling is completely normal and will continue to resolve over the next 4-6 months. Continue to follow your surgeon’s aftercare instructions and you should notice your results begin to refine and swelling should dissipate leaving you with your true result.
Best of luck in your recovery!
Sincerely, James Fernau, MD, FACS
Board Certified ENT
Board Certified Plastic Surgery
Member of ASPS, ASAPS, ISAPS, The Rhinoplasty Society, AAFPRS, OTO/HNS, ASLMS, International Federation for Adipose Therapeutics & Science

Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Lower abdominal bulge after TT

Thank you for your question. By looking at pictures I can not diagnose seroma. If your doctor says no seroma it is most likely. If you want you can ask your physician to order Ultrasound for evaluation.

Ven Erella, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Abdominal bulge 3 months post Tummy Tuck.....

It's impossible to tell from a picture what is going on here.   This could be a seroma, hematoma, rupture of your muscle repair stitches or just swelling.  I would recommend discussing this further with your surgeon or getting a second opinion. Good Luck

Daniel P. Markmann, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 113 reviews

Lower abdominal swelling

That's hard to know from a picture. If you had a fair amount of lower abdominal pannus pre-op this would likely be normal. it is fairly simple to see if there is seroma or not either by a non-invasive ultrasound or simply be attempted needle aspiration.

Robert H. Hunsaker, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

Lower abdomen is bulging?

Congratulations on having undergone the tummy tuck procedure. What you describe is commonly encountered after this procedure. Patients will like their “flatness” immediately after surgery; then, these same patients are disappointed for a period of time once swelling of the tissues occurs. In the longer term (this may take several months and even up to one year), the swelling dissipates and the skin of the abdominal wall "redrapes"  over the smaller underlying  musculoskeletal framework (where the abdominal wall muscles have been brought together again in the midline).

Sometimes, fluid accumulations (seroma or hematoma)  may cause the appearance of increased swelling; best to have your plastic surgeon evaluate you if you have noticed significant changes and/or have concerns. I hope this, and the attached link, helps. Best wishes for an outcome that you will be very pleased with long-term.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,486 reviews

Lower abdomen is bulging?

As far we can see in your pictures you will need to get back to your doctor to check if there is only swelling in your lower abdomen or you have a seroma, a second opinion could be needed you can ask your doctor to prescribe you an ultrasound in your abdomen to double check that you dont have a seroma. Good Luck!

Australia Fragoso-Baez, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 425 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.