One of the most common points of mutual complaint on the tummy tuck internet forums is post Tummy Tuck “Swell Hell.” This refers to the tendency of patients after tummy tuck surgery to swell in the abdomen and flanks. It can last months, but planning can make it less severe or avoid it entirely.
The patients most plagued by the problem tend to be larger cases meaning cases in which more work is done. Swelling after surgery often follows with the degree of trauma the tissue sustains. Swell Hell most commonly affects patients who have had tummy tucks with liposuction in the abdomen or flanks at the same time. Liposuction does not have to be part of a tummy tuck to get good results. In fact, I personally avoid liposuction in those areas with tummy tuck surgery to optimize healing and minimize tissue trauma. I am also a huge fan of properly fitted post-operative garments.
All tummy tucks are not the same. Technique and your surgeon’s post-operative attention in follow-up are big parts of the equation. These differ enormously in different practices.