Urgent care diagnosed me with superficial cellulitis. Is this normal? (photo)

Had body sculpture of abdomen on 2/17/14 still had painful burning and sharp pains. Went to urgent care and they diagnosed me with superficial cellulitis. Does it look like it? She prescribed bactrim and a topical bactrim

Doctor Answers 5

Post-operative complication

Thank you for your question and I am sorry to hear about your problem.
On the photo there is redness and swelling -often it can be signs of soft tissue infection called cellulitis. All liposculpting  techniques have that risk -entry for infection is the wound through which fat was aspirated.To reduce that chance doctors normally prescribe antibiotics. I hope you can sort it out soon as there is potential risk of infection spreading and becoming more serious.

London Dermatologist
4.7 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Urgent care diagnosed me with superficial cellulitis. Is this normal?

Hello dear, thanks for your question and provided information as well.. This is the surgical procedure that revolutionized cosmetic surgery becoming one of the most performed cosmetic procedures. Subcutaneous tissue or fat is removed in order to contour the body in a way that is harmonious and pleasing to the senses. It can be performed in almost all regions of the body such as the neck, chin, abdomen, back, buttocks, thighs, arms and ankles. Usually done through a small incision in the skin through which a cannula connected to a vacuum is applied, it can be performed alone or in combination with other procedures. After liposuction your body is going to be really swollen for at least 2 to 4 months after your surgery. It is important for you to wear your compression garment for at least 6 months, the first 3 months 24/7 and then the last 3 months at least 12 hours per day for your body get use to not having the faja for so many time. When you remove it, your body can get swollen and also you can have pain. Remember to also compress your body to prevent a seroma which is an accumulation of liquid that has to be drained, it is hard to touch and also really painful. Bruises are completely normal for almost 3 months from surgery, that’s why is better for you to use a bruising cream and apply it all over your body 3 times a day. To prevent bad circulation and swollen legs, use compression socks. Brazilian butt lift can be performed with the same procedure and for a month it will be swollen and it will drop a little bit without losing it’s shape if you use your garment.. If you’re going to perform liposuction on your inner, outer, anterior, lateral, postetior thighs, be careful and consult with your surgeon what’s best for you, sometimes we have more extra skin than fat, that can cause severe sagginess on our legs, which can be only be reversed performing a thigh lift….

Tania Medina de Garcia, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 418 reviews

Your procedure was almost one year ago

If I'm reading your question correctly, you had body sculpting about a year ago.

If you are having symptoms from your procedure, you should be communicating with your surgeon. 

The redness in the picture does not look like cellulitis. An in-person exam is needed to confirm. It still could be cellulitis and should be taken seriously.

If someone develops cellulitis one year after an otherwise normal procedure, it may not have anything to do with the procedure.

Cellulitis or any infection can be very serious and even life-threatening.  

Please let your plastic surgeon know what's going on as well as your primary care doctor. If the urgent care told you to follow up, then do so.    

Continue to take the medications prescribed and get attention immediately if you think you are getting worse.

Best of luck,

Mats Hagstrom, M.D.

Mats Hagstrom, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

See a plastic surgeon for questions about post care

I do not think that at the urgent care center they had any idea at all what they were looking at.  You need to see the plastic surgeon who has experience in the appearance of the skin after liposuction. I absolutely would not use topical antibiotics in this situation.

Gary Lawton, MD, FACS
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 136 reviews

Urgent care diagnosed me with superficial cellulitis. Is this normal?

YES! But why have you not seen your operative surgeon??? Was your surgery out of country??? If YES Now you understand the risks of this pathway YOU chose. No post operative care... 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 174 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.