How Long Is Liposuction Recovery? | Parfaire Medical Aesthetics
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How Long Is Liposuction Recovery?

If you’re thinking about removing stubborn fat cells through a liposuction procedure, it’s important to know what to expect from your recovery process. After all, any popular cosmetic surgery treatment is a big step, and you can achieve better results when in recovery when you know what to expect.

While liposuction surgery safe treatment performed by a certified plastic surgeon, you’ll still want to put care and attention into your recovery. Doing so will help make the whole process easier.
Fortunately, Parfaire Medical Aesthetics has extensive experience offering liposuction surgery, and can address all of the most important questions you may have about the liposuction recovery process.

Long Is Liposuction Recovery

How Long Is Liposuction Recovery?

While Liposuction is typically an outpatient procedure, meaning you can return home the same day, full recovery takes around 6 months. Factors contributing to recovery time include how much fat has been removed and the treatment area in question.

To learn more about the recovery process, from the first few weeks to months later, here is what you can expect:

What To Expect Immediately After Your Procedure

After your treatment is completed, it will take some time for local anesthesia to wear off. Once it does, you should anticipate some discomfort, swelling, and bruising. You can also expect temporary fluid drainage from your incision.

If given general anesthesia, you will awake after surgery is completed, and can expect some grogginess. Do not drive or operate heavy machinery while recovering from general anesthesia.

Either way, your surgeon will prescribe medications for pain relief and infection prevention, and it’s important that you take these medications as prescribed.

The First Few Days After Liposuction

After your liposuction surgery, your surgeon will provide a compression garment or elastic bandages for your treatment area. Especially within the first few days, consistently wearing your compression garments is crucial for minimizing swelling and shaping your body.

Your surgeon may also insert small drains into surgical sites to prevent fluid buildup. These drains aid in the healing process, and your surgeon will guide you on how to care for them.

As far as pain and activity levels, here is what you can expect in the first few days:

  • Pain: Moderate pain and soreness are typical right after your procedure. However, your surgeon will prescribe pain medication during this time. Be sure to follow the prescribed pain medication schedule closely for effective management.
  • Activity: During the initial days of recovery you should limit activity. Focus on wearing your compression garments correctly and seek assistance at home if possible.

First Few Weeks

In the first few weeks, ensure that you continue wearing your compression garments, as the compression is still necessary for shaping your treatment area.

Here’s what you can expect:

  • Pain: Your soreness and discomfort should decrease significantly when compared to the first few days. Continue taking any medications as prescribed.
  • Activity: Unless your job is physically demanding, you should be able to return to work after a week or so. Normal activities shouldn’t be an issue during this time, but avoid rigorous activity for a more comprehensive recovery.

First Month (3-5 Weeks)

Typically, you can remove your compression garments after 3 weeks. At this point, you will start to observe the changes to your body. However, do remember that as your swelling and bruising continue to heal, your results will improve further.

  • Pain: By the end of your first month you should no longer experience regular pain or soreness. While bruising and swelling may still be present, this is normal and can take several months to fully diminish.
  • Activity: Light exercise and activity are encouraged after 4 weeks, but it’s important to continue avoiding any intense or strenuous activities.

Long-Term Liposuction Recovery

Beyond the first months, most of your bruising and swelling show diminish. While some may linger for a time, you should expect a full recovery after 6 months.

At this point, there shouldn’t be any restrictions on your activity levels unless specifically advised by your doctor. This means you can continue pursuing any continued weight loss journey that suits you. Doing so is actually ideal post-procedure.

Most excitingly, this is when you can fully appreciate the results of your liposuction.

What is Liposuction?

What is Liposuction?

Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure that removes excess fat from a specific part of your body. More specifically, the process involves suctioning unwanted fat cells from various areas of the body.

During the liposuction treatment, a surgeon makes a small incision in your skin where a tube called a cannula will be inserted. The cannula specializes in fat removal, and is the tool that will be used to suction unwanted fat and sculpt the targeted area.

Depending on the area, you may receive local or general anesthesia.

Once fat is removed from the area, the incision is closed. While Liposuction is minimally invasive, this may result in a small amount of scar tissue.

While the removal of excess fat will result in some weight loss, it’s important to note that the process is not a weight-loss method or a weight-loss alternative. Instead, liposuction focuses on the shaping and contouring aspects of fat removal. This is especially useful for those who’ve undergone bariatric surgery, or have already achieved weight loss through other methods.

How to Prepare For Your Liposuction Surgery

Preparing for your liposuction surgery will set you up for a good recovery process. Many preparation necessities and tips will be provided by your surgeon, but we’ve also created a list you can refer to:

  • Inform your surgeon about any medications you may be taking
  • Ensure you take note of and follow dietary or alcohol restrictions
  • Take any medications your surgeon may prescribe
  • Avoid certain medicines and vitamins, such as blood thinners and nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory
    drugs (NSAIDs)
  • Get lab testing to ensure your health and safety
  • Limit, or ideally stop smoking prior to your procedure

What Are Liposuction Surgery And Recovery Risks?

As with cosmetic surgery, liposuction and the recovery from the procedure come with certain risks you should be aware of. Remember that your surgeon, anesthesiologist, and treatment facility are professionals who will do everything in their power to mitigate these risks, but being informed is still important.

Here are rare risks you may encounter:

  • Fluid buildup: Temporary fluid pockets, known as seromas, may develop beneath the skin. Large seromas may require drainage using a needle.
  • Swelling: After your procedure, you may experience swelling in the treatment area. Most swelling is not a concern and should go away over time.
  • Scarring and Skin discoloration: Scarring and skin discoloration around the treated area are possible. This may or may not be permanent.
  • Contour deformities: When a compression garment isn’t worn properly after your procedure, the chances of permanent contour deformities increase.
  • Bleeding: Bleeding from the incision area is possible. Most bleeding isn’t a concern, unless severe and consistent.
  • Numbness: Temporary or permanent numbness in treated areas is possible.
  • Internal puncture: In rare instances, if the surgical tube penetrates too deeply, it may puncture an internal organ, necessitating emergency surgery for repair.
  • Infection: Although rare, skin infections can occur. In severe cases, infection can pose a life-threatening risk, so be sure to contact your surgeon or doctor if you believe you have one.
  • Lidocaine toxicity: Lidocaine, a pain management medicine often used in liposuction, is generally safe. However, lidocaine toxicity can occur in rare instances, leading to serious heart and central nervous system problems.

Be sure to discuss any concerns you have about your liposuction surgery with your surgeon before and after your treatment.

When To Call Your Doctor

You should contact your doctor immediately if you’re experiencing life-threatening conditions. However, if you’re unsure, here are some instances where you should consider contacting a healthcare provider:

  • Long-lasting pain (longer than a few weeks)
  • Severe pain
  • Persistent swelling
  • Fluid or blood leaking from the surgical site
  • Chest pain or shortness of breath
  • High fever
When To Call Your Doctor

Liposuction Recovery Tips

If you want a speedy recovery time and ideal results, there are some important tips you should follow. After all, while some aspects of recovery are uncontrollable, others are in your hands.

Here are our top recovery tips:

  • Rest well

Your body uses rest as an opportunity to heal, so give your body the time it needs to recover. Focus on getting ample rest and quality sleep while in recovery.

  • Stay Hydrated

Drink plenty of broth and water, as staying hydrated will help your body’s healing process. Excellent options are non-caffeinated tea, soup, and water infused with fresh fruit.

  • Eat Healthy

Adequate healing requires proper nutrition, so watch what you eat while in recovery. You can enhance your recovery and minimize inflammation by incorporating a variety of fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet.
We recommend preparing healthy meals prior to your liposuction, as cooking may be challenging post-surgery.

  • Move Gently

While strenuous exercise is not recommended during recovery, light movement can contribute to the healing process. If possible, take short walks to stay active without straining your body.

  • Seek Assistance

Whenever possible, enlist the help of friends or family. Having others help with cleaning, caring for young children, or running errands will aid in your recovery.

The Results Of Liposuction

Many patients are ecstatic seeing their results following liposuction, with 86% reporting an improved sense of self-esteem. After recovery, the treated area will look less bulky, slimmer, and more shapely.

Of course, results can vary depending on your age and weight gain following the procedure, as there is a reduction in skin laxity over time. However, if you can maintain a healthy weight post-procedure, your results should be long-term.

Will I Have Scars After Liposuction?

Yes, you will likely have scars after liposuction. Though this is a normal outcome, your plastic surgeon will guide you on the self-care needed post-surgery to reduce noticeable scarring.

However, because the incisions used for liposuction are small, most patients have very small scars following the procedure.

Is Liposuction Permanent?

Yes, liposuction shaping and contouring should be permanent, barring you don’t experience significant weight gain post-surgery. Liposuction results are achieved by removing fat, so if more fat returns to the same area, it will affect the results.

Will I Need Multiple Liposuction Procedures?

Whether or not you’ll need multiple liposuction procedures will depend on your circumstances. For different areas, you can have them all treated at once in one procedure, or return later on to treat future areas.

However, if you’re thinking about treating the same area twice, this isn’t recommended. You’ll achieve much better results through proper nutrition and exercise after your procedure.

Begin Your Weight Loss Procedure Journey Today

If you’re ready for weight loss solutions and a journey toward a life free of excess fat, you’re in luck. Parfaire offers comprehensive liposuction treatments. These customizable treatments are highly effective, and performed by board-certified plastic surgeons.

So, if you want to tackle your excess fat, or take the next step in your weight loss journey, contact us at 626-844-7273, or visit our office in Pasadena, CA.

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