Thank you for your pictures. If you have recurrent seroma that is rapidly accumulating I would not wait two weeks. The longer a seroma stays it has the potential to either become infected or persistent. You need to have it drained again and possible placement of a catheter with continued use of your compression garment to resolve this issue.
Seromas are common after tummy tucks and are drained with a needle or plastic drain. It may be better to drain it before it gets too large. Let your surgeon know if it comes back before 2 weeks.
A seroma after a large abdominoplasty is not uncommon. One study estimated the occurrence rate to be 9% greater for every additional pound excised. 13Lbs is a significant amount. The good news is that the seroma does not present any significant danger to you. The bad news is that seromas may take weeks to resolve completely. Follow up with your plastic surgeon as directed. He/she will guide you through the most prudent course of therapies to cure your seroma. Be patient. Best of luck!
Thank you for your post. Seromas can be painful and cause a cosmetic deformity, as well as sometimes leak. The whole point of drains is to keep a seroma from happening in the first place. If a drainless procedure was performed, and you had a seroma, or you had drains that were pulled and you subsequently had a seroma, then you should be drained, otherwise a capsule builds around the fluid making it permanent. If a capsule builds around the seroma (pseudo bursa or encapsulated seroma) then the only way to remove the seroma is to surgically open the areas and excise the capsule, and close over drains to prevent another seroma from happening. If the seroma is encapsulated and is tight and painful, then it can be confused with just swelling or fat. An ultrasound is useful in distinguishing these and identifying the extent of the seroma. If the seroma is not yet encapsulated, then it is usually loose and has a 'fluid wave' or water bed type feel. Occasionally, a seroma can also become infected, especially if a permanent braided suture was used. This will have a hot, red appearance, and will eventually open up. I have never seen an infection from sterile aspiration of fluid. If seromas continue despite multiple aspirations over an extended period of time, then you need to start thinking about re-openning the incision and excising the entire capsule, both from and back walls, to treat the seroma. Drains need to be placed, internal sutures placed, possibly using a tissue glue or irritant to encourage the tissues to grow together.
Pablo Prichard, MD
A seroma is nothing to worry about but it's recommended to drain the fluid as soon as possible to avoid the persistence. It takes some time (weeks) to be completely removed. Contact your plastic surgeon to check it out.
Congratulations on your Tummy Tuck. Seromas that need to be drained are not an unusual occurrence. The fluid is not in your belly but in the space between the belly wall and the skin. It is not uncommon to drain the fluid repeatedly, but eventually it stops.
Hang in there