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How Long Does It Take to See Final Liposuction Result?

I noticed immediate results a few days after having lipo, then weeks later, the results vanished. How long until I see the final and lasting result of my liposuction procedure?

Doctor Answers 33

Four months.

To Yigall,

Hi! The reason your results from liposuction " vanished" is that swelling developed to create fullness. This swelling gradually fades and you begin to see again the improvement in contour.

There is another reason besides swelling that the contour improves over several months. In addition to the fat cells removed with liposuction, many other fat cells are not removed but only injured by the liposuction cannula. These injured fat cells slowly ATROPHY over several months and then of course the treated area (thigh, abdomen, etc.) SHRINKS!


Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

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6 months to a year

Yigall,

It takes at least 3 months for most of the swelling to go away after liposuction. Truely final results are not fully apparent until 1 year.

You will have 80-90 percent of your final result by 6 months. however I have seen patients who looked even better after 1 year than they did after 6 months.

I always encourage patients to wait a year before considering any revision or repeat liposuction. Only then can we evaluate the full extent of fat removal and skin tigthtening and make a reasonable plan for any revision or further liposuction.

Your final result can usually be seen by 3 months, although this varies by individual and body area.

Liposuction helps to improve the shape of a body area by removing fat. Multiple tunnels are made underneath the skin, preserving the supporting structures while suctioning out the fat.

The resulting tissue scaffold is similar in concept to a honeycomb. The empty channels from which the fat has been removed tend to fill with fluid postoperatively. Compression garments are recommended to limit the amount of fluid that can accumulate in the suctioned areas, thereby shortening the time until you see your final result.

Your body will resorb all of this fluid over time. Although the rate of resorption varies among different body areas and among different individuals, in my practice most patients attain their final and lasting result by 3 months.

It can take 3 to 6 months for your final results.

Yigalll,

Often after liposuction, you see very nice results right away. Then, over the next day or two the areas become very swollen and it looks like nothing was ever done. It can take several months for this swelling to go completely away. Approximately 80% will resolve in the first month and then three to six months for the remaining 20%.Also, if you wear a garment, it may help keep down the initial swelling.

Finally, just because you had liposuction, it does not mean that you can let your body go. You need to continue to exercise and eat a nutritious diet. Liposuction is not a miracle, it is just a second chance after letting your body go the first time.

Good luck with your recovery.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Final liposuction result

Results after liposuction can be very tricky initially if you look at yourself in the first day or two after the procedure and while you're in the garment it appears that you seen marked improvement but then swelling sets in and even with the garment on its hard to sometimes see the result but usually by the end of 4 to 5 weeks you start beginning to seeing the results and at the end of about three months you really can tell the difference.

Liposuction Healing

Lipo is great for instant-gratification seekers, but don't fret if you still see imperfections in your shape several weeks later. It can take 4 months, even a year, to get an accurate picture of how the body will look once the swelling subsides and everything settles into place. Lipo patients who started out especially overweight will have to bide their time before realizing their dream results, because it takes several weeks for skin to redrape over the new area and for tissue to heal completely.

Michelle Copeland, MD, DMD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Liposuction results

Results are seen the after surgery. Swelling varies from person to person. On average it could take up to 3-6 months to see your final result. Keep the areas compressed and less swelling will occur.

Jaime Perez, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

4-6 Months

Swelling varies from person to person, but generally, it takes 4-6 months to see the final result.  There is fluid retention for the first few weeks after any surgical procedure. You can get some bloating with pain pills as well.  Exercise with help immensely at this point.  Be patient.

William H. Huffaker, MD
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

How Long Does It Take to See Final Liposuction Result?

The final result after liposuction can take up to one year. Most of the swelling decreases over the first several months, but there may be some residual swelling that takes a few more months to resolve. After the fat is removed the skin should contract to re-drape over the body. This can take up to 6 to 12 months for the process to be complete. So, most patients notice an improvement in their appearance after the first one to two months, with some continued improvement up to one year after the procedure.

Austin Hayes, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

What you're describing is absolutely normal

Contour improvement from liposuction will be apparent at 48 hours when the garment is first removed. For the next several days, there will actually be some increase in swelling, partly because there is no longer a firm compression garment, and partly because this is the nature of how the remaining fatty tissue recovers from liposuction. The vast majority of swelling will be resolved by about 1 month following the procedure, with all swelling generally gone by 3-4 months following the procedure. Liposuction of low areas such as the calves may take up to 6 months for all swelling to resolve. Similarly, secondary or revisional liposuction may be swollen for up to 6 months.

David Rapaport, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 22 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.