Ask a doctor

What Happens if You Wear a Compression Garment That is Too Tight After a Full TT and Lipo?

I had a full TT and lipo of the flank 3 weeks ago. I ordered another 2nd stage compression garment because I felt my other one was too loose. Naturally I ordered a smaller size and it seems a little tight. When I sit down my stomach actually creases in the middle with the smaller one. This did not happen with the larger one. It's not so uncomfortable that I can't breathe but it sure is VERY snug. Is this okay to wear or should I go back to the larger one?

Doctor Answers 7

Compression Garment Too Tight

   Any concerns of the compression garment being too tight or not fitting properly should be addressed in person with the plastic surgeon.  The compression garment could cause a burn or pressure necrosis if too tight.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 336 reviews

435 North Roxbury Drive
Beverly Hills, CA 90210

Compression Garments Not Without Risk

Compression garments are commonly recommended after aesthetic procedures to manage swelling, fluid accumulation and for support/comfort.  While they help to reduce problems and with recovery, there is scant evidence that they improve the aesthetic outcome.  There are some risk to wearing an ill-fitting or tight compression garment.  Creases can form in the skin which become adherent and result in a contour irregularity.  This is common in the adominal area when you sit and creases occur as you are describing.  If too tight and worn while drains are in, they can cause skin death due to too much pressure.  If your garment is causing skin creases, I would recommend going to a size that fits without causing skin creases.  Best wishes.

Robert F. Centeno, MD, FACS
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

6499 E. Broad Street
Columbus, OH 43213

Compression garment too tight

A compression garment should be snug but not tight. It is supposed to manage swelling. Anything too tight can compromise blood flow. See your plastic surgeon. 

Raj S. Ambay, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

27716 Cashford Cir
Wesley Chapel, FL 33544

Compression garment

These compression garments are necessary for structural reconstruction after liposuction but tightness to the extreme can do more harm than good 

Norman Bakshandeh, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

1035 Park Ave
New York City, NY 10028

Tummy Tuck Compression Garment

Hi Lhasara,

Go back to the loose garment until you have checked with your PS. Even after three weeks, a too tight garment could cause problerms depending on the area of compression:

  • Too much elastic tightness in the TT area below the belly button could lead to poor circulation in the skin and healing problems.
  • Fluid collections (seroma) might occur if the compression is not properly distrubuted.
  • If the garment extends onto the thighs and is too constrictive, it could affect the circulation in the veins.

When in doubt, always call your PS for advice.

Good luck!



Stephen M. Lazarus, MD
Knoxville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

801 North Weisgarber Road
Knoxville, TN 37909

Post op compression garments

Compression postoperative garments should be never to tight  because lymphatic drainage can be blocked .

Thanks for your question,  take care  Dr. Vega  Tijuana,Mexico

Ricardo Vega, MD
Mexico Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Blvd. Agua Caliente 4558
Tijuana, BC 22014

Compression Garment That is Too Tight After a Full TT

I would favor going back to the looser one. After TT your sensation is diminished and you could actually cause injury because your protective sensation is not normal. you might check with your surgeon about using Spanx or some other mildly compressive garment at this stage.

Thanks for your question, best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

1110 112th Avenue NE
Bellevue, WA 98004

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.