Does Skin Tighten Up Again After Seroma?

I developed a seroma 3 weeks after having a full tummy tuck and muscle repair. A drain was inserted through my belly button and up into the pocket for one week (collecting a total of 60cc's) Two days after the removal of the drain, the seroma returned. Since then it was aspirated four times (only draining 10cc's or less each time), and now I have a Penrose drain in place. The skin is now very loose and I am worried it might stay this way. How long should it take to tighten up again?

Doctor Answers 4

Skin contraction after seroma drainage


From your description either the seroma is very small or it is not being drained completely.  A small seroma probably won't stretch your skin significantly.  A large might and it will affect the final outcome.  How much, that is difficult to tell.  It may be barely noticeable if at all.  You should certainly wait at least 3 months after all of the seroma is drained and healed.


Martin Jugenburg, MD

Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 458 reviews

Allow 4 months for skin to contract after seroma

I would agree with my colleague in stating that within 4 months, you should be able to assess the results of skin contraction following complete resolution of the seroma.

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

Small seroma after tummy tuck

It sounds like your small seroma, while bothersome, won't be much of an issue in the long-run.  Give everything at least 6-9 months before making final judgment.

Carmen Kavali, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Skin tightening after a seroma

Give it 4 months after there is no more fluid and you will know what the final skin shrinkage result will be.

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 67 reviews

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