Is It Normal to Feel a Bloated in Stomach After Breast Aug?

Been feeling bloated in my stomach since surgery. I'm 3 days post op. Still pretty swollen up top like normal. Actually wouldn't feel that bad if I didn't have this bloated feeling. Is there something that will help? I already have been using laxitives.

Doctor Answers 11

Bloated feeling 3 days after breast augmentation is combination of two things.

Anesthesia drugs can decrease normal GI tract function, and even as they wear off, narcotic pain medications and reduced activities can slow intestinal movement of food and gas through the gut. Bloating and constipation result. Laxatives stimulate peristalsis, but may not work uniformly in all areas of the GI tract, leaving cramps and a more bloated feeling. Try to stop your pain pills as soon as possible. Tylenol will not disturb gut function!

The second cause of that bloated feeling is actual fluid swelling from your chest and breasts moving by gravity (as you are upright most of the day) towards your abdomen, hips, and eventually legs. This can add to an already bloated feeling.

Do not restrict fluids or take "water pills;" you need to stay hydrated to return to normal bowel function. Be up and active (do not exercise) as movement helps restore gut function. Take stool softeners and go easy on the stimulants (laxatives).

Relax; this will pass in another day or two. If your bowels have not returned to normal function by day 6, you should call your doctor. Best wishes!

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 220 reviews

Bloating After Breast Augmentation

This is probably related to swelling, which you can help get rid of by drinking plenty of water, going to the washroom regularly and walking leisurely around to keep your circulation going. Over the course of a few weeks, your bloated feeling will most likely away. Maximum swelling occurs at about 3-5 days post surgery breast augmentation. Most bruising and swelling will resolve within 14 days. Best of luck! 

Bloated after breast augmentation

Thank you for the question. You are still early in the post operation recovery stage. It is not uncommon to feel pain, itchiness, and slight abnormalities during this period. It usually takes about 8-12 weeks for the wounds to heal and around 4-6 months for the implants to fully settle. It would be best to visit your board-certified plastic surgeon and get a full assessment if you have any concerns. Best of luck. Dr. Michael Omidi.

An in-person exam with a board-certified plastic surgeon is the best way to assess your needs and provide true medical advice.

Michael M. Omidi, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Abdominal swelling after breast augmentation

Thank you for your question. Abdominal swelling is normal after breast augmentation. Swelling follows gravity and thus your abdomen (and sometimes the thighs) will experience more swelling and add confusion to the post-op period. You may even notice that you've added many pounds on the scale that cannot be explained solely by the addition of implants. You should notice a decrease in the abdominal swelling with each week that passes by.

Bloating after surgery

Without examining you it is difficult to say what is causing your bloating. However, the narcotics that patients take post surgery can cause the patient to become constipated. This might be one cause for your bloating. Best to call your surgeons office and let them know your concerns. 

Francis X. Fleming, MD
Kennewick Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Bloating is common, this should resolve in 5-7 days

It’s not unusual for patients to have a sensation of bloating following breast augmentation surgery.This can occur for several reasons including localized swelling in the upper abdomen and constipation from narcotics use.
When patients undergo breast augmentation, they typically develop swelling in the lower chest and upper abdomen from the surgical dissection.In most cases, this swelling resolves in 5 to 7 days following surgery.
Patients also frequently develop constipation and bloating from narcotic pain relievers.For this reason, patients should maintain hydration, ambulate frequently and switch to nonnarcotic pain relievers as soon as possible.In some cases, laxatives may be necessary as well.

Bloating After a Breast Augmentation

Good question. It is normal to experience Bloating After a Breast Augmentation procedure. Keep in mind that your stomach may react due to all the medications in your system including the general anesthesia, pain medications and antibiotics. In the next few days after the procedure, your body will filter out the medications and your stomach will return to normal. Please contact your surgeon immediately if symptoms persist longer than a week. I hope this has helped.

Rady Rahban, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Bloating after Breast Augmentation

It could be the effects of the anesthesia medications or your postop pain medications.  Narcotics can slow down your bowels producing that bloating feeling.  It can also delay bowel movements.   You shoudl not need any narcotic pain medications very soon.  Keep walking.  This shall pass. 

Bloating after Breast Aug

Its not unusual to feel bloated after surgery.  If you are constipated this certainly could account for your feeling this way.  Many patients also get some swelling in their abdomen presumably from the breast swelling being pulled down into the abdomen by gravity.  If this is what is happening then it should resolve soon.  If laxatives do not work for you then contact your doctor to discuss before the problem worsens.

Richard Kofkoff, MD, FACS
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Bloating after breast augmentation

While I can not say specifically why you feel bloated without further info and an exam, most of my patients feel bloated initially because of pain medication which slows their go tract and consitpates them.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 23 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.