What to Expect While You’re Recovering from Liposuction

Bloomfield Hills, MI – A fast and dramatic procedure, liposuction is gaining popularity worldwide. And it’s no wonder: you can lose the fat that diet and exercise alone weren’t able to eliminate. But what happens when you get home? How do you achieve the best possible outcome from your procedure? Award-winning plastic surgeon, Dr. Ali, of Amae Plastic Surgery Center, sheds some light on the matter.

“First and foremost, before you have liposuction, be sure to consult with your doctor about the post-operative care you’ll need,” advises the Detroit-based surgeon. “Be sure to ask any and all questions you have, including whether or not you’ll have stitches, where to get the appropriate compression garments, and how long your recovery is expected to take. As always, communication is key.”

What are the first steps after my liposuction?

Depending on whether you’ve had general or local anesthesia, you’ll likely be out of the medical center 30 minutes to a few hours after your procedure. You’ll want someone who can drive you home, and then you’ll need time to rest in a comfortable environment. Expect to be sore and swollen after the anesthesia wears off.

Sometimes, you will be given pain medication for comfort and possibly antibiotics to prevent infection. It’s also important to walk as soon as you can after the surgery, as this will help prevent blood clots in your legs and lungs. While you should avoid vigorous exercise for a few weeks still, it’s important to keep your circulation going strong.

How long does it take to heal?

“If you’ve had just a small area treated, you should be feeling all right in a day or two. The bruising can last for a little while, usually a few days, and swelling sometimes lasts several weeks or months,” says Dr. Ali. “Luckily, most people can go back to work or school very soon after surgery.”

Of course, recovery times vary significantly from patient to patient. Although bruising and swelling are common at first, you will likely be back to your routine activities within a week or two. You may be surprised that you can jog, golf, and do light exercise fairly shortly after liposuction. After a month or so, you should be feeling back to normal. You can expect to see your final results in one to six months after liposuction after your body has adapted to your slimmer shape.

If at any time in your recovery you feel extreme pain or discomfort, have difficulty breathing or swallowing, or notice any signs of infection like fever or excessive swelling, it’s important to contact your doctor right away. “Though liposuction is now a common procedure, it is still a surgery, and all surgeries have risks,” says Dr. Ali. “It’s important that you communicate any problems to your surgeon immediately so that you receive the best care possible.”

Compression Garments

For the short-term, you’ll need to wear a compression garment to maintain the new contour created by your doctor. This clothing helps your body adapt to its new tissue and reduces looseness in your skin. Such compression also helps reduce swelling, which will speed up your healing process. Expect to wear your garment at least a month after surgery.

Long-Term Care

In the months and years to come, you’ll want to maintain your new body weight as best as you can. While liposuction removes existing fat, it cannot prevent you from gaining new fat cells. Thus, it’s crucial to keep a healthy lifestyle with consistent exercise and a good diet.

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons has an entire area of their website devoted to liposuction. You can also consult the Food and Drug Administration for more information.

The Final Word on Healing Properly from Liposuction

With liposuction, you can have great control over how your body looks and feels. Since this procedure is very commonly done, you can have a good idea of what to expect after talking with your doctor.

To learn more about liposuction or any other plastic surgery procedure, schedule an appointment with Bloomfield Hills Plastic Surgeon Dr. M. Azhar Ali today.

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