I Got a Tummy Tuck Dec 19th and my Stomach is Big and Hard is That Normal?

Doctor Answers 3

Post-Operative appearance of a tummy after abdominoplasty

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Some swelling and hardness is normal, but if you're concerned about anything I would go immediately to your plastic surgeon to make sure you don't have a fluid collection that needs to be drained.

Concerns After Tummy Tuck?

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There are a number of reasons for a big hard stomach after tummy tuck including but not limited to swelling, fluid collection, bleeding, recurrent abdominal wall laxity, scar tissue and intra-abdominal disease. The diagnosis can only be made by an examination. You absolutely need to see your plastic surgeon to find out what is going on!

David S. Motoki, MD
Draper Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Bulge after tummy tuck

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There are many reasons for a bulge after a tummy tuck.  You shoud definitely see your doctor again to make sure you are on course.

Fluid collections may need to be drained.

Patients on narcotics tend to have slow bowel motility and more volume in their intestines.

A postoperative bulge may occur due to decreased motility for other factors as well.

It is possible the fascia was not tightened (hopefully not).

Sometimes, underlying anatomy such as a uterus, fibroid, etc. may become visible when lots of fat and looseness are removed.

Some patients have lots of fat insider their abdomen (intraabdominal fat), and the fascia can only tighten so far, so a bulge persists despite an abdominoplasty.

So there are some of the things that can result in a persistent bulge after surgery.  Your surgeon can see if any of those apply.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 195 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.