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What is liposuction recovery like?

Shirley M. Madhere, MD
Plastic Surgery

After your body has gone through surgery, there are a number of instructions that many plastic surgeons agree upon to assist you during the recovery process. These include wearing a compression garment for a number of weeks; specific medications to help reduce bruising, swelling, and to reduce the possibility of infection; activity restrictions; scar care; and other helpful advice. It is important to follow such instructions as closely as possible to help ensure maximal positive results.

I also believe that recovery is a mindset. The more engaged you are in your care and the more motivated you remain in helping to achieve your best possible outcome, then it is an optimal outcome for all involved. Moreover, the better one is prepared for surgery, the better one may recover from it. Also, in my practice, I recommend complementary therapies to help my patients to prepare for and recover more comfortably and efficiently from surgery. These include the use of homeopathic medications, supervised juice cleanses, acupuncture, and other modalities. While these may not be for everyone, your plastic surgeon will help to create a post-operative plan that is most suitable for you.

Stuart A. Linder, MD
Plastic Surgery
Recovery from liposuction is usually quite quick. Depending upon the areas that are sculpted, full recovery can take up to 6 weeks for the remaining swelling and edema to resolve. Our patients are placed in compression garments for 6-8 weeks to help reduce the swelling and allow for better contouring and skin tightening. Patients undergoing tumescent liposuction in my practice may return to work in about 3 days. Our patients are given oral antibiotics for 7 days, and pain medication for the first 3-4 days. Ice compression may also be very helpful for both pain reduction and decreased swelling.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.