Asymmetrical Waistline 12 Weeks After Lipo. Asymmetrical Swelling, Lipo, Musculoskeletal Imbalance? (photo)

I had a full tummy tuck with muscle repair and lipo to upper and lower abs on 11-19-12. I am now 12+ weeks post op and most of my swelling has gone away. I feel that my waistline appears asymmetrical...more indented on the left side than on the right side. I feel that my shape on the left side is much prettier! Do you think touch up lipo is an option, or is this a musculoskeletal imbalance that causes the right side to look "fatter?"

Doctor Answers 4

Asymmetry After Abdominal Liposuction

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After a TT with liposuction the post operative swelling can last for several weeks.  Asymmetry can be due to pre-existing musculoskeletal imbalance and can often be seen in your Pre-Operative photographs. It appears that you have a very nice result and I recommend that you wait at least 6 months before you consider a small touch up with your plastic surgeon. After all, it appears that your swelling has improved over time. Dr. Richard Wellington Swift

Tummy Tuck and Liposuction at 12 Weeks

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    I think the tummy tuck and liposuction result looks good overall.  It is difficult to assess the thickness of the subcutaneous tissue from a photo.  It is also possible that you have residual swelling that may be asymmetric.  Musculoskeletal asymmetry can be an issue, and it is usually unmasked in body contouring procedures.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Asymmetrical Waistline

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Unfortunately, all these photos have either shadows or distractions in the background making it quite difficult to evaluate. Furthermore, in none of them are your arms evenly placed at your sides. If the arms are raised unevenly, your torso may not be straight, making it still harder to evaluate. 

But even with ideal photos, that show the difference, it will probably not be possible to distinguish between fat or muscle as the offending feature, so your best option will be to have this evaluated by your surgeon at a post op visit. 

Best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

Asymmetrical Waistline 12 Weeks After Lipo. Asymmetrical Swelling, Lipo, Musculoskeletal Imbalance?

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It is difficult to discern details  from your photos but you may still have some swelling present.  I would wait at least 6 months and followup with your plastic surgeon to see if you will need a minor revision.

Thomas Guillot, MD
Baton Rouge 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.