Should I just work this out or I'd something wrong ?? See doc Oct 14 just want your thoughts on it. (photos)

Hi I. Am 5 months post op tummy tuck I still wear compression garment every day I have this bulge still in my stomach it looks weird I see my doctor October 14 but I want to know could something be wrong or should I just start working out?? Will it get better from working out or what do u guys think

Doctor Answers 5

Compression Garment After TT

Most patients will be placed in an abdominal binder, which they will wear the first week. There is usually a fair amount of swelling and the binder should be opened several times a day so that there are no pressure points. After the first 7 to 10 days the patient is placed in an elastic garment for compression over the next six weeks. You can return to full activity without restrictions at 6 weeks.

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.

With the length of time that swelling and bruising may remain, it is up to your surgeon as to how long you should remain in the compression garment to assist with healing. The best thing to do is to ask this directly at your appointment with your surgeon and determine whether or not the swelling is going down. Good luck.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 109 reviews


You may have swelling still and it is best to give it time to settle, an exam in person is helpful to determine what this might be. Follow with your doctor.. Best of luck.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Tummy tuck

Thank you for your question and photographs.

I would recommend discussing your concerns with your surgeon but you probably still have some swelling present. Swelling is completely normal and will begin to resolve over the first 4-6 months. You can perform daily lymphatic drainage massages and switch to a compression garment if your doctor clears you to do so. Continue to follow your surgeon’s aftercare instructions and you should notice your results begin to refine and swelling should dissipate leaving you with your true result.
Best of luck in your recovery!

James Fernau, MD, FACS
Board Certified ENT
Board Certified Plastic Surgery
Member of ASPS, ASAPS, ISAPS, The Rhinoplasty Society, AAFPRS, OTO/HNS, ASLMS, International Federation for Adipose Therapeutics & Science

James Fernau, MD, FACS
Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Bulge after tummy tuck

thanks for your query.

You are right, there is a lower abdominal bulge. It's possible that you may have a seroma. Does the swelling change shape when you lie sideways ? It's best to meet your surgeon once and get a clinical examination done.

Bijoy Methil, MCh, MS, DNB
India Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Asmmetric after Tummy Tuck....


There are a several reasons to have asymmetric fullness after a tummy tuck like different amounts of fat, asymmetric muscle tightening, seroma or hematoma, pseudobursa, asymmetric undermining...

It is hard to know which of the above is causing your asymmetry without an examination.

Otherwise, I think your muscles are essentially healed at this point and it is OK to remove the garment and go about your normal activity without it, including gradually exercising.

Have a great day!

Alicia Sigler, MD
Mexico Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 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.