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Liposuction on Upper Arms 1 Week Ago- Swelling and Fluid Make Compression Garment Uncomfortable, Is This Ok?

Almost one week ago, I had liposuction done on my upper arms. My arms are too swollen and filled with fluid to apply the compression garment....what should I do? The Dr. first said to "make sure to wear the garment" but my arms hurt and are bruised. The incisions have already healed and no longer draining. Every time I call the Dr office they are saying not to worry and to find someone that does massage lymphatic drainage, and they are not sure when the compression garments will be delivered.

Doctor Answers 5

Liposuction Aftercare?

 Thank you for the question.

It sounds like you're postop care is not being managed as carefully as it should be;  It may be in your best interest to see your plastic surgeon earlier than scheduled for evaluation and recommendations. Request this follow-up appointment. Online consultants cannot provide the specific  help you need.

Best wishes.

Care after surgery

Your post is not clear. First you say you are too swollen to apply the compression garments then you say the garments have not arrived yet. I cannot understand why your surgeon did not apply the garment at the conclusion of surgery which is the normal practice. You need to be seen by your surgeon sooner rather than later and you need to talk to him or her not their office staff. Get the surgical aftercare you paid for when you paid for the surgery.

My response to your question/post does not represent formal medical advice or constitute a doctor patient relationship. You need to consult with i.e. personally see a board certified plastic surgeon in order to receive a formal evaluation and develop a doctor patient relationship.

Aaron Stone, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon

Too swollen for compression garments

Thank you for your post.  Without more details it is hard to answer, however, I believe that if you are too swollen for the garments, you need to be evaluated to make sure that there are no hematomas or seromas present or that the garment was incorrectly sized in the first place.  The compression garment should feel snug but not overbearing to where your limbs hurt.  Furthermore, make sure that when you put it on, there are no wrinkles in the garment and that your skin underneath does not fold over on itself.  I hope that you resolve your swelling issues soon.  Please give us a follow up on this site.

Arm liposuction

It sounds like from your description that you need to get better instructions and direction from your doctor. You should probalby go in to see him/her.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Swollen Arms

If there is water under the skin (a feeling like a waterbed) then your surgeon may have to drain this fluid in their office.  However, this is very rare in the arms.  If you are concerned at all, then you need to go to your doctor for an evaluation.  If you have trouble putting on the garment or do not have one, you can easily go to any drug store and get a few ACE wraps and have someone help you wrap them around your arms to give slight compression.  It is also very helpful to keep your arms elevated on a few pillows.


Good Luck.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 66 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.