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Rib removal surgery done. Large, hard and tender bumps appeared under the incision. Concerned

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Hi. I am a 53 year old woman whe is 3 months post op for a partial 11th rib removal. ( previous non union fracture with resulting constant pain). I have a 6" incision. 2 days ago, I noticed a large, hard bump had formed directly under the incision. It is not red or hot to the touch. I did have an allergic reaction to the dissolvable stitches, but that was right after the surgery. The lump is tender to the touch. Should I be concerned.
Posted Sun, 24 Mar 2013 in Bones, Muscles and Joints
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 25 minutes later

Thank you for the query.

Large, hard and tender to touch lump in the area where the surgery were performed can be caused by tissues irritation and infection. Such infection most likely is caused by stitches which were left under the skin. Especially if you have had such reaction before, this is the most possible reason.
Tenderness indicates an inflammation and probable fluid (pus) collection in this area.
I suggest you to have soft tissues ultrasound of this area and visit general surgeon for revising of this area.

Hope this will help. Feel free to ask further questions.
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Follow-up: Rib removal surgery done. Large, hard and tender bumps appeared under the incision. Concerned 8 minutes later
Thank you for your prompt advise. Would you consider this to be an "emergent" problem, of can I hold off on seeing the surgeon right away? Is there any home treatment I can do? We are having a major snowstorm here today - can I wait until the week- end is over?
Answered by Dr. Grzegorz Stanko 6 minutes later

Generally this is not so urgent. As long as you do not have fever, chills and the pain is bearable, you can wait few days. No home remedy, small incision should be performed for fluid (if present) evacuation. Some fluid collections cab get out through the skin by itself.

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