Ask a doctor

14 Days After Lipo and Still Extreme Pain and Minimal Flexibility. Normal?

After 14 days of liposuction, in my arms and inner legs, I'm still experiencing intense pain. I'm able to go to work (desk job) and walk to very few places, then come home and rest/elevate my legs. My knees do not completely bend and my arms cannot extend completely over my head. Is this normal? My doctor is on leave for the next week, so I'm not able to ask him at the moment. I've stopped taking prescription medication and am only on Tylenol. Also, how can I tell if there is fluid build-up?

Doctor Answers (4)

Two weeks out and not back to normal

+2

Sorry to hear that your post-operative course is not going as smoothly as hoped.  Most of the initial pain from liposuction will resolve within a week, but the swelling can take several to resolve.  The pain and lack of mobility you are experiencing is probably due to the swelling.  I usually allow my patients to start anti-inflammatory meds (Advil, aleve, etc) at this point to help with the swelling.  Gravity will cause the fluid to migrate down so the knees and ankle can get swollen from the thigh liposuction.  The elbow will do the same.  I would try to get back into a routine, but contact whomever is covering for your surgeon to make sure everything is okay.  Fluid buildup or seeromas you can sometimes feel as a sloshing and movable pocket, but not always.

Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

2 Weeks after Liposuction and Flexibility Issues and Pain

+1

   The arms and legs can swell to an extent that flexibility is impaired, and the pain should be improving.  You should see your plastic surgeon or a plastic surgeon.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Web reference: http://www.hughesplasticsurgery.com/Liposuction.php

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 149 reviews

Extreme pain after liposuction

+1

I really do think that you need to see another physician, if yours is not available.  He/she will have someone covering the practice for emergencies, and I strongly feel that you should see someone in the event that you do have an infection, hematoma or seroma. 

Jonathan Ross Berman, M.D. , F.A.C.S.

Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Intense pain after liposuction

+1
I am sorry to hear about your problem. It is likely related to swelling. When the extremities swell too much, they can be painful. I hope that you were given and have worn compression garments. If your doctor is away, his practice should be covered by another physician who would be able to see you if necessary.
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.