The following post from our tummy tuck forum is from a woman who had a had a horrendous case of Deep Vein Thrombosis after a tummy tuck and who suspects that a clogged surgical drain was an early indicator of the DVT.

Date: 01/02/2011 Submitted by: Marianne Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) From A Tummy Tuck

I had a tummy tuck. 3 Days later one of the drains clogged up. The doctor took it out. One week later I had a horrendous case of Deep Vein Thrombosis (formation of a blood clot) and had to go to hell and back. I can’t shake the suspicion that the clogged drain was already an indication of thrombosis building up.


Date: 01/02/2011 Submitted by: Tanner


I could see how you would suspect that the clogged drain was an indication of the first stages of Deep Vein Thrombosis. After reading your comment I did a little research on Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT). From what I understand, a tummy tuck operation poses the highest risk for developing DVT than any other cosmetic surgery operation and that it is difficult to recognize in the early stages of development.

You say you went to hell and back with your DVT. Could you please explain what happened and what you went through with the DVT? Most people (including me) don’t recognize or understand the seriousness and consequences of developing DVT after a tummy tuck.

I hope you are fully recovered from your ordeal and are happy with the results of your tummy tuck.

Best regards,



Hello Tanner,

Thanks for your reply.

I am far from recovered.
2 weeks after my tummy tuck I developed a swollen left ankle.
An ultrasound up to my knee showed nothing.
2 days later my whole left leg was badly swollen und reddish and burning.
In the emergency room they found massive blood clots from my groin down the whole leg.
In order to protect my lungs from embolism, a Bard Eclipse Filter was placed.

Another surgeon placed two stents in different critical places and tried to take out the biggest blood clot.
A large piece broke off and shot straight up into the filter.
I was in Intensive Care for 2 days.
Heparin and Coumadin treatment was started.
After 5 more days in the hospital I was released into a Rehab Facility.
There they treated me with high doses of Coumadin and Heparin shots for a whole week
before testing my blood again. By that time my PTINR was at 7.16. It was never supposed to go higher than 2.5
Medical negligence.
They took me off all blood thinners at that point and after 2 days I was at 2.5.
I went home.
Now I am under the care of my family physician who set me up in a Coumadin clinic.
My diet is of course severely restricted, my life has changed drastically. I am very depressed and scared.
My left leg is still badly swollen, I don’t see any improvement. I was told my leg would never be completely normal again and
I would have to take Coumadin for the rest of my life.



Thank you for your explanation.

Wow. I am really sorry for everything that you went through (and are still going through).

The seriousness of tummy tuck risks and complications really strikes home when you “talk” to someone who has them. Most patients are aware that they exist but assume it will never happen to them (at least that’s what I thought). Getting a tummy tuck was suppose to be a life changing experience, but not in this way.

I see know what you meant by “to hell and back”.

Again. Sorry for your problems.

I wish you well in your recovery.