Foul odor/seroma for 2 weeks: Opening after tummy tuck. (photo)

I've been dealing with this seroma for approximately two weeks now. The opening is actually getting larger . I've been instructed to pack it twice daily and I understand that it's going to heal from the inside out. The last several days it has a very foul odor. My concern is this foul odor. Is that part of the seroma and should I be concerned?

Doctor Answers 17

Foul odor/seroma for 2 weeks: Opening after tummy tuck. (photo)

Thank you for your question.Despite good intentions, online consultants will not be able to provide you (in any responsible fashion) with specific enough advise to be truly helpful. Given your concerns, you'll be best off seeking follow-up with your plastic surgeon, earlier that already scheduled if necessary, for in person evaluation.


Best Of Luck!!

Open wond

Wound care should be addressed by your surgeon. If it is closing down, then that is good. It can take several weeks for this to occur.  A foul smell may or may not be present, if so it should be investigated.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Foul odor/seroma after a tummy tuck

Thank you for the question and the photo. It is rather difficult to guarantee a reliable evaluation of your concern without an in-person exam.  Seroma (i.e., a collection of fluid under your skin) is one of the most common complications after a tummy tuck. This complication is also responsible for a great deal of post-op swelling.  Odd smell, on the other hand, may indicate a potential infection. For this reason, I would strongly advise you to get in touch with your plastic surgeon and share your concerns. 

An in-person exam with a board-certified plastic surgeon would be the best way to assess your needs and obtain a reliable medical advice. Best of luck! Dr. Michael Omidi.

Michael M. Omidi, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Open area after tummy tuck...

Hello!

I think I just answered another question from you-- but it just had the opening-- not the odor...The drainage can have a slight smell, depending on how your nose detects smells-- but a foul odor is a sign of an issue. I would continue to pack and check with your doctor!

Good luck.

Anne Taylor, MD
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Foul Smelling Wound

The smell suggests bacterial contamination which can also lead to infection. I would contact your plastic surgeon and let them help you solve this problem. The wound could close spontaneously if properly treated. Any sudden chance with the wound has to be evaluated, the sooner the better. The smell alone is not the problem, what the smell suggests could however be serious. Best of luck.

Peter D. Geldner, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Seroma/wound of tummy tuck

Thanks for your inquiry and sorry for your struggles, but only with an exam can we tell what may be going on.  A foul smell may indicate that the current wound therapy is not enough.  Please let your surgeon know about the odor, good luck.  

Tummy Tuck/Abdominoplasty/Liposuction/Vaser High Definition Procedures/Tummy Tuck Revision

I appreciate your question.

Since there has been a change in your post op course, please contact your surgeon so he/she can examine you and recommend the most appropriate treatment plan at this time.

The best way to assess and give true advice would be an in-person exam.

Please see a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in aesthetic and restorative plastic surgery.

Best of luck!

Dr. Schwartz

Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

#RealSelf100Surgeon

#RealSelfCORESurgeon

Foul odor/seroma for 2 weeks: Opening after tummy tuck.

Any type of "foul odor" is always going to be a possible cause for concern. You should follow up with your surgeon just to make sure you do not need to be placed on a round of antibiotics. Packing and treating the wound will cause closure from the inside out, but the wound should not be getting bigger..

Lawrence Bundrick, MD
Huntsville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Opening after tummy tuck

Sorry to hear that you are having problem after tummy tuck.

If foul odor is new and your are concerned about it, you should visit your plastic surgeon to be examined.  You may need debridment/antibiotics... After examining you in-person, your plastic surgeon should guide you with his/her wound care regimen and post-op instruction.

Good luck with your healing.

I have a foul odor from my abdominal wound opening, as well as having a draining seroma

This is such a good question to ask at this time.  The surrounding skin does not yet look infected and necrotic, but this is the time to stay close to your Plastic Surgeon's office and follow the advice given very carefully.  If it hasn't been done yet, you may need a culture taken from the opening to find out what type of organism is causing the odor,  what if any antibiotic would be recommended, is an Infectious Disease Specialist physician might be needed, and whether in the near future  further debridement of the skin opening  may be needed.


Good luck to you.


Frank Rieger M.D.  Tampa Plastic Surgeon

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.