Swelling 6 weeks after tummy tuck? (Photo)

Immy mommy makeover was Sep 7 2016 today I am officially 6 weeks post op from surgery, I have noticed these past 2 days that I am swelling more and my stomach feels heavy and hard, is this normal I am not excersiseing and not over doing activity still wearing my garment. Thank you

Doctor Answers 9

Swelling after Tummy Tuck

Hello, 

Your small, upside down picture does not seem to indicate any real issues, however only a physical exam would rule out any treatable issue. It is likely you just have swelling.  It would be best if you follow up with your surgeon. Best of luck!


Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

Post op Swelling

You are still very early in the recovery process.  This is a major surgery and due to the process of surgery it is very common to have swelling following a tummy tuck.  It is very normal to have still have some swelling in the abdomen 6 weeks after surgery. Most people notice that swelling increases at about the 6 week mark. While the majority of the swelling resolves within the first two months, but it is not uncommon for someone to have some swelling for up to a year following a tummy tuck.  Your swelling may take slightly longer than most since you did not appear to have any drains put in.  Swelling can sometimes extend into the hip region as well. In order to aid in reducing the swelling faster, wearing a compression garment on your lower half can help. If you notice an increase in swelling or pain over time be sure to follow up with your plastic surgeon.

Swelling will fluctuate over first 3 months

Hate to call uncomfortable sensations "normal", but unfortunately, it is not unusual to experience many days of improvement and then feel like things go backwards for a few days before improving again.  Though it is not entirely visible, the healing process goes through many phases over the course of a YEAR after surgery.  The first couple weeks are different from the following 3 months.  Then the next 6 months after that are different from the previous 3 months.  As a plastic surgeon, I know to warn my patients not to begin judging the appearance of their result until a minimum of 3 months after their surgery.  Frequently, results will look very good before that, but, as you have noticed, the healing process is not nearly finished yet; weird sensations, "lumps and bumps", and hardening/softening/colored areas are not uncommon and seem to come and go randomly.  Your results at six weeks look mostly encouraging.  If something unusual becomes overly persistent or seems to be worsening, then you should contact your plastic surgeon to have them take a look.  Hope this is reassuring, best of luck!

Post op 6 weeks

Thanks for your question and photo.  It is normal to have swelling on and off for several months after surgery especially in he first 12 weeks.  If you're still concerned make an appointment with your plastic surgeon for an in-person follow up.

Best Wishes!

Jamie Moenster, DO
Tucson Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Tummy Tuck

Most patients will continue to have some tightness, swelling and a pulling feeling for 3-6 months after their surgery.  This is normal as that area has been tightened so much from surgery.  It will eventually get better over time. Just continue to wear your compression garment.

Kevin Dieffenbach, MD
Oahu Island Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Swelling 6 weeks After Tummy Tuck

Dear itss.leesliiee,

Thank you for your picture.  You will have swelling on and off over the next 3-6 months.  This is normal.  If during the upcoming months you may need some light compression (Spanx) to help manage the swelling until the body heals the lymphatic system (manages the body's swelling).

Best wishes


Swelling 6 Weeks Post-Op

Most patients will be placed in an abdominal binder, which they will wear the first week. There is usually a fair amount of swelling and the binder should be opened several times a day so that there are no pressure points. After the first 7 to 10 days the patient is placed in an elastic garment for compression over the next six weeks. You can return to full activity without restrictions at 6 weeks.

Swelling can persist for several months and will gradually improve and will look better at three months, six months, and even one year. Frequently the pubic area and the scrotal and penis area for men can become very swollen and discolored during the first two weeks due to gravity as this is the lowest area for swelling to accumulate.

While swelling has the potential to last for months, if you find yourself concerned or worried at all about your healing then it would be best to visit your surgeon to have the area examined for proper healing. You should never be hesitant at all to schedule a follow-up appointment with your surgeon to make sure that healing is going well. Good luck!

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 96 reviews

Tummy Tuck - Post Op Swelling?

Thank you for your question and photo. You are still early in the post-operative period and should expect to have swelling for three to six months following your tummy tuck surgery, Use of a properly fitted compression garment will help decrease the length and severity of the post-operative swelling. As the swelling decreases, the contour of your abdomen, flanks, and hips will dramatically improve. Please follow your plastic surgeons specific advice regarding your level of physical activity. Hope this helps and good luck with your recovery.

Swelling 6 Weeks Post Op

Hello,


If you haven't changed your routine at all, to swell up more at 6 weeks is unexpected. Sometimes when patients discontinue their garment, temporary swelling can occur or with increased activity but if you have none of these factors then tell your Plastic Surgeon so that they can advise you.


All the best

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.