While a tummy tuck is an elective cosmetic procedure, it is also surgery. The skin is cut and tissue is removed. The body may react to this surgery by bruising and swelling. The degree to which bruising and swelling occurs will vary from patient to patient, but there are ways to minimize them both.
The best way to minimize swelling after an abdominoplasty is through the use of a compression dressing and bandages. The surgical incision will be covered with a tight bandage and the entire abdomen will be covered in a tight dressing called a compression garment. Think of this compression garment as an extremely tight tube top that is worn around your belly. This garment keeps the area squeezed so that fluid cannot build up in the skin.
Fluid may be Drained
Another way to keep fluid from accumulating deep in the abdomen, involves your surgeon placing one or more drainage tubes. These drains are not painful but simply allow fluid from the belly to drain to the outside world. The outer end of the tube is covered by a plastic bulb that is kept under vacuum to help suck out excess fluid. These drains are removed along with the sutures or staples.
Talk with Professional Tummy Tuck Surgeons
If you are concerned about the swelling following your tummy tuck, ask your surgeon what interventions are possible to keep swelling down. You plastic surgeon may suggest dietary changes to implement before the surgery and during recovery. Also, you will need to stop blood thinners and perhaps aspirin prior to the abdominoplasty, which will decrease bruising. Ask your doctor before stopping any prescribed medication.