Is it important to keep the ice packs on at all times?
How Much Should I Ice After Smart Lipo?
Doctor Answers 4
Icing is not necessary after smartlipo
The swelling after liposuciton is due to wound healing and there is no evidence based study of which I am aware that icing tissue after liposuction reduces swelling.
Ice is not recommended after Smartlipo.
I have a vast experience with liposuction (conventional, ultrasonic) and laser-assisted liposuction (Smartlipo, Smartlipo MPX and Smartlipo Triplex). I have never recommended that patients use ice in any shape or form after any type of liposuction. I do not recommend it after Smartlipo. Liposuction in general has an effect on the circulation to the skin. Ice placed directly on the skin after liposuction, will cause the blood vessels that nourish the skin with blood and nutrients, to constrict, narrow and even shut down. This can cause skin necrosis (death of the skin due to loss of blood supply). In addition, most surgical procedures, liposuction included, cause a temporary loss of sensation of the skin. If ice is placed on the skin, and the skin is "numb", then the patient does not know that the skin is too cold and the normal, protective "reflex" to remove the ice from the skin because it is freezing. A frostbite of the skin and skin necrosis can therefore result from placing ice on numb skin. I never have patients place ice on the "operated skin", in any of the following surgeries---liposuction (all types), face/neck lifts, breast lift, breast reduction, abdominoplasty, or any type of skin lifts where the skin is undermined and numb. I try to explain the anatomy and physiology of the surgical procedures that I perform, so that my patients are empowered with information and understand the rationale for choosing certain procedures, rejecting others, and know what to expect during the recovery phase.
Ice packs after liposuction
Be very careful using icepacks after liposuction. The skin may be numb even if you're sore deeper. You might not know you're hurting the skin by applying to much ice and leaving it on too long if it's numb. Check with your surgeon what your specific instructions are.