44 Hours Post Op Tummy Tuck with Lipo and my Left Side of Tummy, a Little Below Diaphragm is Swollen?

Is it normal to have some irregular swelling? My left is noticeably bigger than right abdomen?

Doctor Answers 10

Asymmetrical Swelling after Tummy Tuck?

While swelling in and of itself could be slightly asymmetrical, the worry here is that there is a fluid collection in part of the abdomen that is not being drained by the drains.  Make sure you are wearing the abdominal binder smoothly over the abdomen with no bends or folds. Follow up with your plastic surgeon to be seen to make sure there is no abnormal fluid collection.

Best Wishes,

Pablo Prichard, MD

Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Asymmetry Following Tummy Tuck and Lipo

     At 44 hours after surgery, this may represent swelling and this may resolve.  However, you may have a fluid collection, which needs to be drained.

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 reviews

Asymmetric swelling immediately following a tummy tuck.

Asymmetric swelling is uncommon, but usually indicates a benign process such as a fluid collection which is not getting to the drains. A rapidly expanding area is more indicative of a hematoma or collection of blood and is more concerning. Compression garments can be of some help in fluid collections. Notification of your plastic surgeon is recommended.

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

Asymmetrical swelling of the abdomen 2 days after a tummy tuck

Photos would be helpful in being able to better answer your question. These may better illustrate the extent and significance of this swelling. Some asymmetric swelling is normal but if it is quite massive, that could represent a more significant problem.

Your best bet it to contact your plastic surgeon and discuss your concerns. He/she may very well want to see you fairly immediately.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Asymmetric swelling in the early post operative course following an abdominoplasty

Just a few days post op from an abdominoplasty it is certainly not unusual to have asymmetric swelling.  It is nothing to be concerned about at this point.  Hopefully your drains are functioning normally.   If the swelling continues to enlarge then a call to your plastic surgeon is indicated.  Possible problems would include a seroma, hematoma or soft tissue swelling from any associated liposuction with your procedure.  

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

Swelling after tummy tuck

Swelling frequently isn't symmetrical but the concern is always for development of a seroma or hematoma so contact your plastic surgeon to discuss it and be seen in followup. This brings up a very important point, namely, that whenever you have a potential complication, call your doctor first! Real Self is a great backup but once in a doctor-patient relationship, your first point of inquiry needs to be the surgeon who operated on you. Happy holidays! Dr K

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Swelling at this stage is very normal

It is extremely common to have irregular or asymmetric swelling.  You do not need to be concerned about these issues at this stage of recovery.  Please rest, follow your postoperative instructions and best wishes for your recovery.

Shim Ching, MD
Honolulu Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Concerns after Tummy Tuck Surgery?

Congratulations on having undergone the tummy tuck procedure. If you were my patient, describing the “noticeably bigger” swelling present on one side, I would want to see you ASAP  for direct examination. Call your plastic surgeon's office and request follow-up ( earlier than scheduled if necessary).

 Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,503 reviews

Left Side of Tummy, a Little Below Diaphragm is Swollen

Swelling is the rule, and it is often not symmetric. However, this question really is best addressed to your surgeon. No one on line would want to give false reassurance.

Thanks, best wishes. 

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



It is very normal to have one side of your body heal a little better than the other. Nobody knows why it just happens. You need to ask your surgeon to make sure everything looks the way it should.


Stuart B. Kincaid, MD, FACS (in memoriam)
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
3.3 out of 5 stars 9 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.