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Massaging After Liposuction?

How long after Liposuction do you have to start massaging? Does this hurt? What about areas on your back where you cant reach to massage?

Doctor Answers (13)

Massage after liposuction


It is really not necessary for you to massage yourself after liposuction. The idea of lymphatic drainage massage is a special type of massage technique used to decrease swelling by increasing the lymphatic flow. If you feel that you would benefit from that type of massage, call your surgeon and ask him/her for advice on someone they trust. In terms of timing, you are ready for massage when you feel you are able to move around with minimal soreness. Good luck,

Portland Plastic Surgeon

Gentle Massage & Stretching Exercises Following Liposuction


There are no scientific studies that conclusively demonstrate that massage is helpful following liposuction. Despite this, many plastic surgeons utilize massage as a routine component of postoperative care following this procedure. They believe that massage minimizes internal scarring, decreases edema, and helps remodel soft tissue.

It’s not unusual for patients to complain of swelling, tightness, and stiffness following this procedure. Massage and an early return to physical activity seems to help with these issues. For these reasons, plastic surgeons often recommend gentle massage and stretching exercises after liposuction. These are usually started 7 to 10 days following the procedure. Initially these maneuvers cause mild discomfort which quickly resolves with time.

If you’re planning liposuction, it’s important to discuss this issue with your plastic surgeon. In many cases, massage will be an important part of your postoperative care.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 78 reviews

Massage after liposuction

You should begin gently massaging the treated areas usually by day 7-10 after surgery. Massage will help to decrease the swelling faster and to smooth out any irregularities. Massage each area in all directions using your hands, or, a soft paint roller for hard to reach areas. Massage should be done once or twice a day for up to 20 minutes. However, every surgeon has different guidelines so please ask your surgeon what would be best for you.

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

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Massaging after liposuction is a must


massaging after liposuction is invaluable. massaging after liposuction helps to reduce swelling, smoothen out the skin irregularities or folds, and to make the skin less sensitive.

S. Sean Younai, MD, FACS
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Massage and Lipo


I do not specifically recommend massaging the treated areas afterwards. It can be helpful to have a lymphatic drainage massage after surgery to reduce inflammation. Your plastic surgeon may or may not recommend this as part of your post care.

Jeffrey W. Hall, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
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Massaging After Liposuction


Massaging is actually important to begin about a week after liposuction. Lymphatic massage will enhance recovery and decrease swelling. I recommend 2-3 sessions per week for 2-3 weeks after liposuction.

Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Massaging after Liposuction may be helpful but not a must


Although Therapeutic or "lymphatic massage" may be helpful it is NOT mandatory. Endermologie is also very helpful after liposculpture/liposuction but again, not critical.  Although deep tissue massage following liposuction can aid in smoothing out  contour irregularities that invariably accompany this procedure it has limited effect on the final outcome and  is not mandatory. Some plastic surgeons recommend it to all  patients as they feel the edema resolves faster.  Ask your surgeon to show you or a significant other how to do this if cost is an issue.That "significant other" will be able to get to the hard to reach places like your back.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Massage after liposuction


I do not specifically recommend massage after liposuction.  If however, there is an area of swelling and firmness, I will sometimes recommend working the area to soften it. 

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Don't massage after Liposuction


There is no evidence that massage has any positive benefits for the liposuction patient. As a matter of fact, it might even do harm if too agressive. The area that has been treated by liposuction is a surgical wound. A repairative process must ensue that takes many months. The healing mechanisms in the body (that have evolved over thousands of years) are very efficient at repairing what the procedure has created. Let your body do the job it knows how to do.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Massaging After Liposuction


There is no need to massage oneself after liposuction.  A few years ago ultrasound was prescribed for fibrotic areas.  Endermologie has also been used with some success.

Paul Vitenas, Jr., MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 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.