Swelling 3 months after tummy tuck! (photo)

So I ever swelled bad, but now that I finally got the OK to excercise all I been doing cardio (light running) and I swell SO BAD ! Will it eventually go away or will it worsen?!!!?

Doctor Answers 8

Post op swelling

You look great. Yes, it is totally normal to still be swollen at 3 months post op. It may take anywhere form 6 months to a year for the swelling to fully subside. Hope this helps.


Kouros Azar

Thousand Oaks Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Swelling 3 months after tummy tuck!

Hello dear, thanks for your provided information and pictures as well, you look really good after having your tummy tuck. Is really normal to be swelling after 3 months post op, the swelling can last also fro 8 months to a year. I recommend that keep a good communication with your dr. about your concerns.

Good luck!

Tania Medina de Garcia, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 397 reviews

3 months post op, some advices:

Thank you very much for sharing your concerns with us.
At this point (3 months post-po) the swelling has to be minimal.
To reduce it, I recommend you perform daily lymphatic drainage massage therapy over the abdomen and wear a postoperative girdle from thigh to the breasts.
Kind regards,
Dr. Emmanuel Mallol Cotes.-

Emmanuel Mallol Cotes, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 256 reviews

Swelling after tummy tuck

Hi and congratulations for your great result after tummy tuck. If you feel like you are getting swollen I would go even lighter maybe walking for a short period of time and increase it progressively.

Best wishes

Hector Milla, MD
Mexico Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 34 reviews


Excellent results so far!! It is quite normal to swell after a tummy tuck, especially as you increase your activity. As your body adjusts to the exercise, the swelling will start to go down more quickly and over the course of the next 1 or 2 months all should be back to normal.

Best wishes!

Kevin F. Ciresi, MD, FACS
Fresno Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 117 reviews

Swelling 3 Months After Surgery

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.

It may take several months for a tummy tuck patient’s scars to soften, for sensation to return, and for relaxing of the tight sensation in the abdomen. In the case of extensive surgery, abdominoplasty recovery can be uncomfortable and may take longer. Scars may stay red, become thick or widen. It can take 12-18 months for the scars to settle.

These can be improved with topical treatments such as BioCorneum, Scar Guard, Scar Fade and Mederma. Redness can be improved with laser treatments and the scars can be kept narrow with products such as Embrace.  On occasion, keloids or hypertrophic scars can develop and will need treatment including Kenalog, 5FU and laser.

These are just some basic post-op points, but you can be sure that swelling will persist at intervals for months after surgery. If you are every worried or concerned about the healing process it would be best to visit your surgeon to have the area examined for proper healing. Good luck.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Swelling after TT

Thanks for your question, and you appear to have gotten a beautiful result. Some patients report bouts of swelling here and there even 6-9 months after a bigger surgery like you had. I would not be overly concerned unless you are feeling pain or other symptoms. Just keep up with your diet and exercise routine. Best wishes.

Paul J. Leahy, MD
Leawood Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Swelling 3 months after tummy tuck!

Yes, longer-term swelling after tummy tuck surgery is not uncommon;  swelling may persist for many months and even up to one year after the procedure is performed. Often, patients will report that the swelling increases as their activity level increases and gets worse later on in the day. Sometimes, the use of compressive garments may be helpful to control the edema. 

 I would suggest that you continue to follow up with your plastic surgeon, who will be in the best position to assess your situation and provide you with specific recommendations. Best wishes for an outcome that you will be pleased with long-term care.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 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.