Tummy Bulge After Mommy Makeover

6 days post-op Mommy Makeover TT, BL, BA, woke up and I look 3 months Pregnant?

Doctor Answers 10

Swelling post-op surgery

After having multiple procedures, swelling and bruising is to be expected. Since swelling does travel south, your abdominal region will look distended and bloated. Swelling will subside after a couple weeks but could take up to 4-6 months. Final results may be seen up to one year post surgery. If you feel that there is something to be concerned about, consult with your plastic surgeon as soon as possible to avoid any complications. Take it easy, you have a lot of healing to do. Good luck. 

Swelling After Tummy Tuck Surgery

 It’s not unusual for patients to experience significant swelling following abdominoplasty. This swelling typically resolves in six to eight weeks, but small amounts of swelling may persist for up to a year. The procedure inevitably interrupts the abdominal lymphatic drainage and this takes time to re-establish itself.

         In some cases, abdominal distension may be related to other causes. One possible cause is seroma formation. Seromas are collections of fluid that accumulate beneath the skin. They usually require drainage which results in significant improvement in symptoms. Occasionally, this problem may be related to continued weakness of the underlying abdominal muscles and secondary surgery may be necessary to address this issue.

         When persistent swelling is present, consultation with your surgeon is important. Your surgeon should be able to evaluate you and make an appropriate recommendation. In most cases patients can minimize swelling with compression garments, massage and limitations on activity levels. It’s important to remember that swelling is a normal part of wound healing and should resolve with time. 


Swelling after an abdominoplasty

Swelling is obviously normal after an abdominoplasty.  This can be either soft tissue swelling or a collection of fluid under the skin.   It really requires an examination to understand the issue at hand.  This type of lower abdominal swelling can take up to 3 months to resolve.  If it is a seroma then you will require needle aspiration.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Six Days After Tummy Tuck - Why Is My Abdomen Swollen?

Swelling after significant surgery such as a tummy tuck increases for the first 5 - 7 days.  In the abdomen, there are at least two separate causes for swelling.  One, the elevation of your skin and fat all the way from your pubic hair to your breast bone causes a lot of tissue injury which leads to swelling.  Second, because your muscles were separated from pregnancy and were sewn together as a part of the Mommy Makeover, this leads to significant swelling of the muscles themselves, both because they were pulled from their post pregnancy position to the midline in order to give you a flatter stomach and because sutures were placed into the covering of the muscles leading to tissue fluid release. 

Normally, swelling begins to decrease about the 8th day post op, and continues to improve over the next 3 - 4 months.  The majority of your abdominal swelling should be gone in 3 - 4 weeks, and the swelling from your muscle repair should start improving in 6 - 8 weeks. 

What I tell my patients is that at 2 weeks, you are going to think it is the worse thing you ever did to yourself.  At 3 - 4 weeks, you are going to think maybe your surgeon knew what he was doing.  By 6 weeks, you are going to think your surgeon is a genius. 

Bulging six days after mommy makeover...

Six days after your mommy makeover, this severe bulging you describe could be attributed to several things.  I am most concerned about a blood collection (hematoma) or a fluid collection (seroma).   I would also inquire if your abdominal muscles were tightened.  Please visit your plastic surgeon for an evaluation.

Tummy Bulge 6 days After Mommy Makeover

At 6 days after your procedures several possibilities may explain your abdominal bulging including a fluid collection or blood collection, soft tissue swelling, abdominal bloating and uncommonly disruption of the muscle repair among others. You should see your surgeon and have him help you.

Dr. Peter Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 100 reviews

Tummy bulge after Mommy Makeover

From the limited view here, it appears your fullness in intraabdominal and not subcutaneous. Possible causes of this include fluid retention, constipation/bloating, poor muscle tone, ascites (rare), visceral adipose tissue deposits. Discuss these with your surgeon. Frequently, I find that this improves with diet, probiotics, ambulation, and core strengthening when permitted by your surgeon

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Swelling in the abdomen after tummy tumm, mommy makeover

In some patients, it is not unusual to have significant swelling after tummy tuck surgery.  The important issue is to rule out serious causes such as bleeding, seroma formation (fluid build up under your abdominal skin)  or a loose fitting abdominal binder which is not providing adequate pressure on your abdomen.  I assume you have drains.  Have they been removed? If not, are they functioning?

I recommend contacting your surgeon so he/she can rule out the above causes.  If it is due to swelling, it may take 6 months for the swelling to completely resolve. 

Best of luck.

Michael A. Jazayeri, MD
Santa Ana Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Swelling after Mommy Makeover

This may be due to several things. First of all it is normal to have a moderate swelling following surgery particularly in the breast and abdomen. Swelling may be diffuse as well. This may include the hands and feet.

Postoperatively drains and compression garments may be used to decrease the amount of swelling in these areas.

Localized swelling may be related to fluid accumulation in a specific area or to incomplete tightening of the abdominal wall during the procedure. Usually with time any of these causes become apparent and may be treated appropriately,

Nick Masri, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Bulge after a tummy tuck

Either the surgeoh was not done properly or you had a lot of bleeding after the operation. Better go back to your plastic surgeon.

Howard T. Bellin, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
2.5 out of 5 stars 3 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.