Tummy tuck seroma. My PS isn't draining it anymore but it's still bulging and nasty looking. Is this normal? (Photo)

I had a Tummy tuck & flank lipo 6wks ago and seemed to be doing ok and healing well. At 4 an a half weeks I started bulging out on one side and I could hardly lift my left leg underneath the area. The pain was excruciating!! PS said it had a seroma and celulitas. Since then it's been drained 3 times and every time he's given me a shot of antibiotics along with taking daily antibiotics! The fluid that came out was white. Now at. 6 wks it not as painful but looks bad due to the wounds opening,

Doctor Answers 3

Tummy tuck seroma. My PS isn't draining it anymore but it's still bulging and nasty looking. Is this normal?

You can be examined to determine if there is any residual fluid that needs to be drained.  In addition, you should be examined to determine if there is anything more that can be done with scar care at this point.  I do think that it is best to address these postop questions with your surgeon.   It is always best to ask these questions of your chosen surgeon as recommendations may be different.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Persistent seroma after tummy tuck

Thank you for your question.  The concern at this point is whether you have an ongoing infection.  I am not sure what type of fluid it was that you described as "white".  Although difficult to completely assess without a physical examination, it sounds like you have a persistent, although smaller seroma and that it is not overtly infected.  What may be indicated by your plastic surgeon is another aspiration of the fluid collection and perhaps microbiology assessment of the fluid if it is not a characteristic clear color.  A small seroma will resolve with your body eventually absorbing the fluid, but larger seromas may persist.  A long lasting seroma - fluid collection - may form something called a 'bursa' which may be firm with scar tissue formation.  Should the seroma be large and/or continue to persist, an insertion of a drain may be indicated to collapse the seroma pocket.  Keep in contact with your plastic surgeon regarding this, and speedy healing.

Bradley Remington, MD
Kirkland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Tummy Swelling

Good morning. The swelling initially could have been a seroma, but that fluid would normally been straw colored. It appears now things are on the mend, but you may want to check in with your surgeon to see if the swelling is completely normal. It would not be unusual fr the skin to be thicker there especially in the face of cellulitis. When all has settled I am sure your surgeon can revise the scar if necessary to make this look better. Best wishes!

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