Modern liposuction techniques make liposuction recovery much faster and more comfortable than older methods.
Immediately after liposuction, the affected areas will be swollen and tender. Patients wear a compression garment for a few weeks to minimize swelling and reduce fluid build-up. With tumescent liposuction, the patient can be back on his or her feet in a matter of days. However, he or she will need to refrain from exercise for at least a week, potentially longer if recommended by the doctor.
Following liposuction, some anesthetic fluid remains under the skin and will drain away. Excessive drainage is prevented by wearing a compression garment.
During liposuction recovery, it is important to follow the doctor’s recommendations closely. The doctor may recommend the following: avoid alcoholic beverages for 2 days before and after surgery, do not apply ice packs or heat packs to areas where liposuction was performed, do not soak in a bathtub, pool, ocean, or Jacuzzi for at least a week, do not apply hydrogen peroxide or plastic bandages to incisions, and move slowly when standing up from a seated position. The patient may require assistance when taking his or her first post-op shower or bath.
The doctor’s recommendations should be taken very seriously to speed healing and prevent complications during liposuction recovery.
The complete results of liposuction will not be apparent for some time. Liposuction creates tunnels under the skin where fat has been removed. As these tunnels shrink and swelling diminishes, the body will begin to assume its new shape. Complete results may not appear until six months after the procedure. During this time in particular, it is important that the patient maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen to avoid weight gain as it may alter the results of liposuction.