What is Seroma?

Seroma is a clear or pale yellow fluid that accumulates under the skin following surgery or injury.

Why Does It Occur?

Seromas are commonly seen after certain surgical procedures. They frequently occur after breast surgeries, liposuction, and tummy tuck operations. After such surgeries, damage to the lymphatic vessels can lead to fluid accumulation. Seromas typically appear within a few weeks post-surgery and are mostly temporary.

Seromas are usually not serious, but if left untreated, they can cause discomfort and lead to complications like infection.


Symptoms include localized swelling, a lump under the skin, tenderness, and sometimes mild discomfort. Seromas usually feel like a soft, fluid-filled area.

Seroma vs. Hematoma

Seromas are different from hematomas; hematomas are collections of blood that typically occur due to damaged blood vessels. Seromas contain lymph fluid and form as a result of damaged lymphatic vessels.

Lymphedema vs. Seroma

Lymphedema is a chronic condition caused by a blockage in the lymphatic system, whereas seromas are generally acute and localized fluid accumulations.

Lymph Fluid

Lymph fluid is a clear, colorless liquid that circulates in the body’s lymphatic system. It is similar to blood plasma and contains proteins, salts, glucose, urea, and various white blood cells (especially lymphocytes).

Lymph fluid collects waste materials from tissues and helps the immune system. It is filtered and cleaned as it passes through lymph nodes before returning to the bloodstream. Lymph fluid strengthens the body’s defenses against infections and helps maintain fluid balance.


The treatment of seromas typically starts with the drainage of the accumulated fluid. A needle and syringe are used to withdraw the seroma fluid. This procedure can be supported by compression garments to prevent the fluid from re-accumulating.

Small seromas that do not cause pain may not require treatment and can resolve on their own. However, larger and more uncomfortable seromas may need more intervention.

Seromas carry a risk of infection. Therefore, sterile techniques should be used during the drainage procedure, and signs of infection should be monitored afterward.

Exercise and avoiding intense physical activity can help prevent the formation of seromas and speed up the healing process. Dietary and lifestyle changes can also prevent seromas. Especially, a high-protein diet and adequate fluid intake can contribute to the body’s healing process.

Risks and Complications

Seromas are generally not serious, but if untreated, they can cause problems. They can become infected, leading to fever, redness, and pain. Infected seromas require antibiotic treatment. In some cases, they can turn into abscesses requiring surgical intervention.

Seromas can also lead to long-term discomfort and restricted movement. Sometimes they do not resolve on their own, resulting in continuous fluid accumulation, necessitating repeated drainage.


Using compression garments after surgery can help reduce fluid accumulation. It is also crucial to follow the care instructions provided by your doctor. Keeping the wound area clean and dry can minimize the risk of infection.

In Conclusion

Seromas usually heal on their own within a few weeks. However, they can cause pain, in which case medical intervention may be necessary.

In summary, seromas are a common postoperative condition that can be managed with proper care and treatment. Recognizing the symptoms of seromas early and starting treatment can accelerate the healing process and prevent complications.