Is This Normal? TT 8 1/2 Weeks out W/ Pooch. (photo)

I'm almost 9 weeks out and i still have a pooch. My PS says its swelling, but I'm not so sure. Everyone else who has TTs has a flat stomach by 8 weeks. Its embarrassing. Is this normal to have a pooch this far out?

Doctor Answers 4

Normal Healing After Tummy Tuck?

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Thank you for the question and picture.

I do not agree with your statement that “everyone else who has  had a tummy tuck has a flat stomach by 8 weeks”. Residual swelling may exist for several additional months and it may take a prolonged period of time for full skin re-draping to occur (especially if liposuction  surgery has been carried out).

I would suggest that you continue to follow up with your plastic surgeon who is in the best position to advise you and/or rule out complications that may cause prolonged swelling.

Best wishes.

Swelling this late after an tummy tuckmay be due to a fluid collection

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Hi Mrs. Rod,  I would agree with you that you look a little too full in the lower abdomen.  It is hard to know for certain without seeing how your abdomen looked before surgery and doing an examination.  At 9 weeks mot patients have tight, flat, shapely abdomens with no stretch marks remaining and a scar that is hidden inside their underwear.  You may want to go to your surgeon and have them assess you.  You may have a fluid collection (a seroma) or a collection of old blood (a hematoma).  These are rare but can cause the swelling that you show in the picture.  Altenatively, if the surgeon did a muscle plication (tightening), some of the lower sutures may have released and the bulge my be secondary to the muscle.  To know for certain, a quick ultrasound will show you if you have a fluid collection.  If so, it can be treated in minutes with a little needle placed through the numb lower abdominal skin and the fluid aspirated.  You will be back in shape in minutes, if this is the case.  Best of luck.

Scott Barr, MD
Sudbury Plastic Surgeon

Is This Normal? TT 8 1/2 Weeks out W/ Pooch. (photo)

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From the posted photo the issue is either a post operative complication of a hematoma or seroma. Or the surgical technique was done poorly. Best to obtain in person second opinions. 

Swelling after 9 weeks post TT

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At this point in your healing you should be quite happy.  Some residual swelling and contour irregularities are normal and usually subside over the coming months.  However what you are describing may be more than residual swelling.  Others have outlined some possibilities.  I agree with colleagues and feel that you should also discussed this with your plastic surgeon.

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