How Do You Know if Leg Pain is Nerves or DVT After Tummy Tuck?

28yr Male, 175 lbs. Just had Full TT with no muscle tightening 1 week ago. I was up and walking normal 4 days post-op. But on the 6th day I was holding my sons hand and he decided to drop to the floor and all his weight was left on my arm and I felt a sharp pain run down my leg and now it is pretty bad. Still walking just have a pain in my right thigh that feels like a nerve is pinched or ripped. Is this most likely a nerve and not DVT? Treatment?

Doctor Answers 4

Leg pain is nerves or DVT after tummy tuck

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Better seek medical advise NOW if you have any concern that this is a POTENTIAL DVT!!! Otherwise a phone call to the surgeon and my guess is a lateral femoral cutaneous nerve pinch.


When is Leg Pain after a Tummy Tuck or prolonged operation NOT DVT

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I agree with Dr. Moelleken. The dire implications of unrecognized and untreated deep blood clots (DVT) are so serious that ANY not readily explicable leg pain after surgery should stay labeled as "potential DVT" until tests rule it out. It may well be that you MAY have a strain but what if it is DVT? It behooves you to make sure it is not. You should be seen in the ER of a hospital which can do such a work up and begin treatment. Your doctor knows what to do. Ask him.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Leg pain after tummy tuck - deep venous thrombosis or pulmonary embolism

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Any suspicious leg pain should be treated as a DVT (deep venous thrombosis).  I advise my patients to go immediately to the emergency room and be evaluated when this happens. 

Waiting if this is actually a DVT can turn an annoying episode into a tragedy.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

This needs evaluation

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The event you describe will most likely cause a nerve compression injury or muscle strain. Leg pain from a DVT is typically in the calf and is made worse by extension of the foot.

That being said you never want to miss a dvt. I would return to your surgeon for evaluation. Physical exam will dictate the appropriate course of action. A simple ultrasound of the legs will reveal the presence of a dvt.

Good luck.

Robert W. Kessler, MD, FACS
Corona Del Mar Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 130 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.