When Do You Stop Aspirating Seroma?

I developed a seroma 2 weeks post op TT. I was aspirated 4 times (each aspiration was less than 20cc) and then a seroma catheter was placed. It was in place 10 days and was putting out 15cc on the last 2 days. It was removed on Thursday and on Monday my PS aspirated 5cc. He says he doesn't need to continue to aspirate it any longer. But i can still see the fluid pocket and that concerns me. Because I'm so thin, my PS states this tiny amount of fluid is seen. Aspirate until visual fluid is gone?

Doctor Answers 3

Seromas of 5 cc should be reabsorbed by the body

Thank you for your question. It is important to follow the advice of your plastic surgeon. From your description it sounds as though the surgeon is managing your seroma properly.

The trauma of attempting to aspirate a 5 cc seroma is likely worse than allowing the body to reabsorb the fluid in my opinion.

Seromas after abdominoplasty are usually handled by aspirations in the office.

Postoperative seromas after abdominoplasty usually require several aspirations. As the volume of the aspirate decreases there reaches a level where there is little to be gained by introducing a needle and tapping off small amount. 5 mL is a very small amount and probably signals the end of your surgeon' s intervention.

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

Swollen 3.5 Months Post Op?

Even in a thin patient it seems unlikely that a 5 cc seroma would provide enough of a target to aspirate. I would probably also stop, but would see you back regularly in case that is a wrong guess. If seroma recurs, consider injecting betadine or tetracycline or alcohol to sclerose the cavity. 

Best wishes.

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

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