How Do I Know if the Fluid is Just an Infected Seroma or if the Actual Mesh is Infected Post Hernia Repair?

I am an obese 32 year old female. I had an emergency lateral hernia repair on 12/16/12. I had two drains that were removed 6 days after surgery. After 14 days, the staples were removed and 2 days later I noticed small beads of yellow-orange fluid trickling from the incision. The doctor cut a small incision in the scar which allowed the foul-smelling liquid to run out. I have had no fever, redness or nausea. How can I know what's really going on? I'm in Germany. The dr isn't really telling me.

Doctor Answers 4

Signs of infection after hernia repair

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Worrisome signs for infection after surgery would be increasing pain, foul smelling drainage, redness, swelling, fevers, chills, etc..  Good luck.

Infection? Seroma? Mesh?

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   These are all good questions.  Clinically, an exam would be necessary to sort these things out.  If the fluid collection was drained and you were placed on antibiotics, that may be optimal management depending upon how you look and feel.  I think it is also important to ask the doctor if he believes there was an infection or just a fluid collection.

Tummy tuck

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If the incision continues to drain and doesn't heal, then that makes one more suspicious of an underlying infection. You need to ask your doctor point blank.

How Do I Know if the Fluid is Just an Infected Seroma or if the Actual Mesh is Infected

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Your only option to get your answer is to ask the physician who saw you, or another one for a second opinion. No one will be able to answer your question online without the benefit of examination. If the mesh itself is infected, it is likely to continue to drain until it is removed. When you are back in Texas, see your surgeon.

Best wishes.

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

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.