Breast implant removal explant. Swelling is occurring. Seroma? Hematoma?

I had breast implants for only 50 days. Then, I had my breast implants removed with capsulectomy 13 days ago, drains were used for a week then removed. First day I drained 30ml then 10ml then 8ml then 6ml then 3ml then 1ml in the left breast. Drains were removed 4 days ago. Now, the left breast ONLY is swelling on the side by the armpit, even though I wasn't draining that much. Is this indicative of a seroma, or a hematoma? I can feel swelling, discomfort, soreness when my arm is at my side.

Doctor Answers 5

Hematoma, seroma or infection

If you had drains removed and then developed swelling, it is most likely a seroma or hematoma, although it could be an infection.  Both fluid collections require the same treatment options.  Infection presents a different set of problems.


I would suggest meeting with your surgeon and let him/her examine you. You may have another seroma, but may have a hematoma or infection.  Please do not delay in seeing your surgeon.

Connie Hiers, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Swelling After Drain Removal Following Explantation

You should bring your concerns to the attention of your surgeon. An exam will be important to determine what is happening - seroma vs hematoma vs infection. Seroma may be the most common explanation, but hematomas can occur (rarely) following drain removal, and infections (though also uncommon) can occur with any operation. Appropriate recommendations can then be made if further treatment is necessary.
Best wishes.

Kenneth Dembny, II, MD
Milwaukee Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Swelling after explant

This is commonly a seroma.  I would recommend a breast US on that side.  This could also be a hematoma.

Susan Kolb, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 22 reviews


Thank you for your question.  If you have unilateral swelling you should consider seeing your surgeon to be evaluated.  It can be swelling, a seroma or a hematoma.

George Bitar, MD
Fairfax Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 48 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.