Infection 8 Days Post Fleur De Lis Tummy Tuck?

I had a tummy tuck on the 19/12/2012 interstate here in Australia. Eight days later after returning home, I noticed redness and a smelly discharge from around my belly button. I promptly took myself to my local GP who changed the dressings and prescribed Cephalexin 500mgs of which I take 4 per day. I have been taking this antibiotic for the last 2 days and am not yet seeing any improvement. How long before I should see a result from taking this medication? or do I need something stronger?

Doctor Answers 5

How long for antibiotics to help tummy tuck ?

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Within 48-72 hours you should see an improvement of any infection that you treat with antibiotics.  If you do not see any effect of the antibiotics by 72 hours, you should contact your surgeon to see if a different antibiotic should be considered and to make sure there is no infection that is deep that needs to be drained. Good luck.

It will depend if there is necrotic tissue

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Thank you for the question.  You should have, if he/she has not done so already, send a culture of the discharge which will indicate the type of bacteria and the sensitivity to antibiotics.  If there is an appraicable amount of necrotic tissues or infected suture material the antibiotics will partially improve the situation but debridement of the tissue will be needed for definitive healing to occur.

All the best,

Dr Remus Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Tummy tuck and infection

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It was a smart thing to go to a doctor to be checked out, but I would say that it would be better still to see a plastic surgeon to make sure this is not a serious problem.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Infection after Tummy Tuck

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    Any concern for an infection after tummy tuck should be treated by a plastic surgeon.  Antibiotics are a start, but if you have not noticed improvement after 48 hours, someone with specific knowledge of the operation, potential complications, and treatments should be sought.

Infection 8 Days Post Fleur De Lis Tummy Tuck

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This question should be addressed to your surgeon. If you have not had improvement in 48 hours, consideration should be given to changing antibiotics, hopefully based upon results of cultures taken of the draining fluid.

Thanks and best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle 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.