Is this much swelling normal after one week after a tummy tuck? (photo)

I am 1 week post op. I had a full tummy tuck with liposuction and muscle plication. My lower stomach is very swollen and protrudes quite a bit. I sent my PS these pictures and he said it looks like I haven't been wearing my compression garment, but I have been wearing it, 24/7. Is this much swelling normal? Is there anything I can do to reduce it? I'm drinking plenty of water and eating very healthy.

Doctor Answers 1

Swelling after Tummy Tuck

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You may have a fluid collection (seroma), but a visit to your surgeon is required to determine that.  It is best to not only wear your garment, but limit your physical activity.  Be ware of how much bending, twisting and movement you are doing.  I frequently have patients that say they were "only doing housework," which actually requires a lot of movement and strength!  Limit your activity at this time and visit your surgeon.

Are you having regular bowel movements?  Constipation can cause discomfort and distention of the abdomen, but can also cause retained water that makes you feel bloated.  It is best to take a stool softener daily in the immediate post-operative period, as your pain medication and surgery can cause the bowels to greatly slow down.  If you need more than a daily stool softener to get things moving, try other over-the-counter remedies or ask your surgeon's office for recommendations.

Best of luck!

Fort Worth Plastic Surgeon

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