Is this normal swelling under arm area after a BR/BL or could it be fat? (Photo)

I had a BL/BR 3wks ago along with a tummy tuck revision. Both sides of my breast under the part seem to be swollen. It looks like my breast rap around towards my back area where the incisions end..Is that normal swelling or could that be fat? I did not have any lipo done with my procedure..should I be concerned?

Doctor Answers 10

Swelling Concern After a Mommy Makeover Procedure

Healing will continue for 2-3 months for the early period. This includes some swelling, bruising, malposition, color differences. Sensation in the breasts may also be abnormal and scars will be evolve. Tingling, burning or shooting pains in the breasts will disappear with time and should not alarm you. It is simply a result of the regeneration of your sensory nerves. If these sensations cause pain, repeated, local self-massage per your surgeon's permission may help. The purpose of the post-procedure #garment is to provide some gentle #support and to reduce swelling following a #TummyTuck or #Abdominoplasty. If it feels too tight or causes pain, take it off. Patients wear the #elastic garment for several weeks after surgery, as directed by their doctor. Some choose to wear it longer for several months for comfort.

If you have concerns about your #healing, or pain that you question to be unusual, it is important to call your plastic surgeon to discuss these further asked to be examined.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 107 reviews


Swelling is not uncommon after a tummy tuck and typically lasts quite a while. 80% has resolved by 3 months and the rest takes up to a year to resolve. You have to be patient with the healing process.Enjoy your new look!Sheila Nazarian

Sheila S. Nazarian, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Mommy makeover aftercare

After a mommy makeover, it takes time for the implants to settle (if you got implants) and it takes time for the swelling to resolve. This can take up to 6 months so I don't usually recommend any revisions for that time. Specific questions about problems with the surgery are usually best directed to the plastic surgeon who performed your surgery. Thanks for your question!

Jeffrey E. Schreiber, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 201 reviews

Swelling after breast lift and augmentation

thank you for your mommy make-over question.
The swelling at the side after your breast reduction/breast lift looks like normal post-operative swelling.
Have your surgeon check you at your next visit to discuss how long until it subsides. best wishes.

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Lateral swelling after a breast reduction

It appears that this is just swelling in the lateral portion of your breast.  Your overall breast shape looks good. Given time this will shape up as well.

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Lateral postoperative swelling after a mastopexy.

My best guess is that this is swelling in the lateral area the breast that will improve as the overall breast mound redraped. It looks as though You have gotten  a good result so far.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Great Result

I would wait 3 months before making any decisions on the final result but the photos appear to demonstrate an excellent starting point. 
There is some lateral fullness to each breast that is not aesthetically displeasing; rather, it appears quite normal. 
There is always some axillary fat related to longstanding drooping breasts. The best way to correct this is an extended incision towards the underarm at the time of breast reduction. If this is not done, and the area is still prominent, liposuction can be performed at a 3 month interval. But in conclusion I think you look great. 

Adam J. Oppenheimer, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 189 reviews

Postoperative swelling and timing.

At 3 weeks, it is far too early to determine whether you have simple swelling or residual fat. Either way it is something to address with your surgeon at your next followup appointment. Although photos can help, nothing replaces an exam.

David Bogue, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

At just 3 weeks you are in very early healing phases

You are very early in healing phase and any swelling is just due to that.   When you are at 4 to 6 months this should be all gone.  If not gone then other causes can be entertained.   My Best,  Dr C

George Commons, MD
Palo Alto Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Is this normal swelling under arm area after a BR/BL or could it be fat?

At 3 weeks still to early to tell if excess swelling or a residual dog ear deformity. What does your PS say? 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 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.