Excruciating Nerve Pain in Thigh After Full TT & Lipo?

The day of surgery I had a nerve pain on the front of my left thigh and PS said it would resolve itself. It did, and I was happy. Now PO14, and three days ago it came back 100 times worse. I can't walk, sit, or stand without feeling the pain. The frustrating part is that I had been doing wonderfully; off of narcotics at PO3 and haven't had to take Ibuprofen in days, even walking upright. Will I ever feel normal again? I will speak with my PS again, but the more qualified opinions the better.

Doctor Answers 6

Thigh Pain After Tummy Tuck

Your pain is classic for compression or irritation of the lateral femoral cutaneous nerve on that side.  Luckily it doesn't happen often, but in your case unlucky it happened to you.  It can be helped.  Ask your surgeon if he can inject steroids into the area.  If you can localize the source of the pain steroids may help.  Your other options are with a physical therapists help such as massage, ultrasound.  Lastly if none of those help surgical release may be needed.  Most of us use absorbable sutures so that may not be needed.

Mobile Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Excruciating Nerve Pain in Thigh After Full TT & Lipo?

You are describing an rare TT post operative complication of Lateral Femoral nerve entrapment or compression. Treatment could be localized injections of steroids/long acting local, aggressive massages and external ultrasound to directed incisional release operation. Best to discuss with your surgeon ASAP. 

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

Thigh pain after TT

It certainly sounds like you have entrapment of the Lateral Cutaneous Nerve of your thigh.

The nerve may be caught up in a deep suture or it may be compressed in a ligamentous tunnel with post operative swelling the culprit.

If the trigger point can be identified sometimes the injection of some local anaesthetic to numb the area followed by vigorous massage  can free up the nerve if it is caught up by a suture.

Douglas McManamny, MBBS, FRACS
Melbourne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Pain after cosmetic surgery

It's good that you're following up with your plastic surgeon, but when you do ask him/her about possible nerve compression.  Physical therapy might benefit you at this point to help loosen any tightness around the nerves causing the pain.  Good luck!

Excruciating Nerve Pain in Thigh After Full TT & Lipo

All of us who do a high volume of tummy tucks see this problem on occasion. Usually it follows the distribution of the "lateral femoral cutaneous nerve", affecting the front and side of the thigh. I have on occasion sent a patient to a neurologist, and the suggested treatment has been neurontin. The good news is that this is self limited and should resolve over the course of several months. 

All the best. 

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

Pain in thigh after tummy tuck?

Hello and thanks for your post. It sounds like you're having a issue involving the cutaneous nerves in the thigh. One study showed that up to 1/3 of TT patients can get this condition and it typically improves over time. The most likely cause is stretching of the nerves. In cases when symptoms are more severe a temporary dose of medicine to calm the nerve as you continue to heal might be necessary. Several medications your doctor might consider are neurontin or Lyrica. Speak with your surgeon and make sure you have an examination to diagnose the cause of your pain. Best wishes, Dr. Aldo.

Aldo Guerra, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 202 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.