Lumps Post-Tummy Tuck

I had a Tummy Tuck 12 weeks ago. I feel a lump about 1/3 of an inch slightly above the belly button and another smaller one below the breastline. When I sit for about 5 minutes or more and I go to stand it is uncomfortable. It takes a few seconds before I feel better. Is this common? What can I do about it?

Doctor Answers 9

Suture knots


These lumps are most likely the knots of the sutures used to tighten your abdominal muscles, assuming that you are very thin. If you are not very thin, then they may be small nodules of scar tissue that form in areas of fat that are no longer alive. See your surgeon for a more definitive answer. Good luck!

Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Lumps after tummy tuck

I may  have answered this question already,.  This can be palpable sutures that are felt through a thin flap. It can also be some fat necrosis, of fatty tissue that is palpable through the skin.  But, either way you should probably see your doctor so that he/she can carefully examine you.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Best to be seen

Hi- It is difficult to say what may be causing your findings and symptoms- the best thing to do is to call your surgeon's office for an evaluation. Only your surgeon will understand the details of your surgery and what might be causing this in you- so give them a call.

Armando Soto, MD, FACS
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Lumps after a tummy tuck

Tummy tucks are a very popular and effective way to contour the abdomen tighten your waist. Patients who received a tummy tuck should anticipate a significant recovery process. In our practice, we provide all our patience with two separate compression garments to help them manage their postop swelling. This swelling can last for as long as 6 to 8 months after the surgery. In your case, you may be feeling a small pocket of swelling but regardless it is important to return to your plastic surgeon and let them know of your concerns. They will help determine whether this is tissue swelling, a small collection of fluid or blood that may need to be evacuated, or your body's reaction to some suture material was used during surgery.

To learn more about tummy tucks, see photos, and help you decide which one is best for you, please visit us at the link below:

Pat Pazmino, MD, FACS
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 101 reviews

Lumps after tummy tucks -

Thanks for your question -

These lumps could be several things -

They could be hematomas or seromas (fluid collections below the skin).

The could be fat necrosis (small hard lumps of fat that hasn't survived).

It could represent sutures or part of the muscle plication.

It could even (much less likely given the presentation and location) represent a hernia.

The only way to be sure is to see your plastic surgeon and have a conversation and examination with him or her.

Also important parts of the story would include when these issues first came up, are they getting better, etc.

It may be something that will resolve on its own over time.

I hope this helps.

Steven H. Williams, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Lumps after Tummy Tuck

As stated in the other answers, there are many possible causes for these lumps.

In any case you should see your surgeon for the explanation but it does not sound a problem that should cause you any immediate concern.

Given that you are only about 12 weeks after surgery, your muscles and scar tissue are still acitve and may explain the tighness you describe after sitting for 5 minutes. I have found that performing core strengthening exercises as advocated by Pilates and Yoga instructors is beneficial in this regard.

However, I would advise that you seek your surgeon' s permission before undertaking an exercise regimen.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

See your surgeon


These may be suture "reactions" and if so they usually get better over time. Fortunately not all sutures are associated with this kind of response. Your surgeon should follow you while these things are in evolution to guide you. Sometimes massage helps.

Best Regards.

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Not necessarily a problem. See your surgeon.

Lumps after an abdominoplasty are not necessarily indicative of something wrong.  Many things can cause this but your surgeon knows what sutures were used, where they were used, if liposuction was done, etc. so it is best to see your surgeon if you have these concerns after your procedure.

Scott Greenberg, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Lumps after Tummy Tuck

The areas you describe could be scarring or collections of blood called hematomas that may be causing discomfort as your body tries to resolve them on its own.

I would check with your surgeon for an examination to reassure you. Being 12wks out from surgery should be comforting that they are not urgent issues but a follow-up exam by your surgeon is warranted.

Bahram Ghaderi, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 21 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.