Smartlipo Swelling (Upper/lower Abs) and Skin Irritation

I had smartlipo on my upper and lower abdomen...

I had smartlipo on my upper and lower abdomen because I had a large roll that would appear over the tops of my pants. No matter how much dieting and exercising I did, it would not go away. It wouldn't even shrink a little bit. So I decided to have the lipo so I could sit and bend down more comfortably.

Hi. I had Smartlipo on my upper and lower abdomen about 5 weeks ago. I am still swollen - I look like I have an inflated bicycle inner tube around my lower abdomen - and my abdominal skin feels like a bad sunburn. How long before these issues go away? I am 50 years old if that makes a difference in my recovery time.
Name not provided

Very knowledgable, personable and skilled.

Was this review helpful? 2 others found this helpful

Comments (33)

Sort by

No one else yet. That doesn't mean that there isn't anyone - just that I haven't found them. As far as my swelling, it seems to be improving SLIGHTLY as long as I am wearing the garment. But still gets worse if I go a time without it. I am afraid that if I go for long without, I'll be back to square one.
  • Reply
Hi cupid, i know it's been a long time but i am curious what your outcome was? Did you have the procedure repeated? I am in the same boat and having mine redone in 3 weeks. Wanted to know more from anyone who has had it done twice.
  • Reply
Hi Yochelle Went to my PCP yesterday and he is sending me to a gastroenterologist for evaluation. He (physician) didn't have an answer for me as to why I am still so swollen-said it doesn't seem like fluid since its hard-so that's why he referred me. I have an appt in a couple months. Also, bought the Arnica tabs-3 tabs 3x daily is what the bottle says. We'll see if that makes a difference.Keep me posted on your healing.
  • Reply
Cupid, please keep me posted about the Arnica tabs. If they help, that will be my next step. I can't believe, though, that you have to wait another couple of months to see another doctor. Is your swelling changing at all? Mine seems to take the shape of whatever I am wearing - waistbands will cause an indent and the swelling will shift to above and/or below the waistband. I'm still massaging and wearing a garment constantly. It seems to be getting a bit smaller, but I'm afraid if I keep the garment off, it will come back since it keeps shifting. Why is this taking so long and causing so much aggravation????
  • Reply
Yochelle The Arnica tablets aren't doing squat. I go back to the dr. who did the procedure tomorrow. I'll let you know what he says. This totally sucks. I still look like a sausage!! Have you come across anyone else with our issues?
  • Reply
Is there anyone here who has had to have an area re-done and can give details? How long did YOUR doc wait until THEY thought that no more results would be seen from the original procedure? Perfection, what exactly was bad about your first procedure that took so long to resolve? Did the area that you had done look the same as before the procedure for months? Also, my doc said that they would redo the lipo if I didn't get results. Did anyone's doc give them trouble about this? Make them pay twice? Thanks.
  • Reply
I am 4 weeks out now from an abdomen and love handle smart lipo procedure, and I still look the same as before the procedure. However, I was VERY swollen right after the procedure..... My abdomen was DOUBLE the size of what it was before the procedure for the first three weeks, and I freaked out. It deflated rapidly in week 4. The doc told me to drink 'plenty' of water to flush the system out, so I set a timer to drink 4-6 oz of water every hour. I STOPPED doing this during week 4, AND I started thoroughly and aggressively massaging the area daily with a Thumper body massager. So was it stopping the water? Starting massage? I don't know. But I do hope the area I had worked on goes away eventually, or I'll make my doc do it again. Also, perfection says she takes Arnica 'like candy'. "Arnica should not be taken internally due to its toxicity" is what it says all over the net. But topically, it is supposed to dilate capillaries which will hopefully take melted fat gunk with it. Cheers.
  • Reply
Hi Yochelle Thank you so much for keeping me updated. Ugh, drain the fluid? I can think of nothing more unpleasant than having to go through the SmartLipo again!! I am seeing my primary care dr on Friday for his opinion. I'll let you know what he says, but it'll probably be that I have a lot of fluid. I have even taken OTC diuretics to no avail. 6 months? I could've been on a diet and looked better than I do now in 6 months.I am trying to be positive but its hard. I had a crying jag tonight-told my husband I am the only person who has lipo and ends up with a bigger belly than when I started!!
  • Reply
Hi Cupid, believe me - you are not the only one who is bigger afterwards. You and I seem to be in the same boat. I hate the thought of having to drain the fluid, so I have been rubbing the hell out of my swollen areas. It's only been a day and a half so far, but I'm willing to make myself sore if it means no more needles. I don't want to be stuck with needles and bound tightly with tape and gauze! And it would have to be done more than once! It isn't quite the same as lipo, I don't think, but I still don't want to go through it. I'm also wearing my post-op garment again to keep me in tight. Hopefully the massaging and the garment will help. I'll let you know.
  • Reply
Yochell, one more thing! Are you taking Arnica? It is a supplement for swelling and bruising. It has really helped with my recovery. You can't take too much...so I eat it like candy. I swear by this stuff. It's worth a try! I couldn't find it at my local drugstore...but you can get it off the web. The brand I use is Vitamedica. Arnica Montana 30X. That is what is on the bottle. It is cheap too.
  • Reply
Yochell, I just read your last post. Well, hang in there. All you can do is try to think positive and be patient. I know how hard that is, I went through that too. I am on day 12, and becoming VERY annoyed! I am so uncomfortable when I sit! Ouch. I just want to feel normal. I am not patient when it comes to being uncomfortable. I remember telling myself last time that I would never do lipo again! Over time, one forgets what a PAIN the recovery time is. On a brighter note, my bruises are fading, swelling is going away, and I am seeing results day after day. I should not complain at all. I feel lucky to not be having any complications, as so many people do with lipo. If this makes you feel better, and I may have told you this in a previous post, but I know several people that had complications like yours...but months later were better, and felt that in the end, it was still worth it.
  • Reply
I am so sorry you are going through this. It sounds like you may be holding water in those places...but so much time has passed, so that is very strange. I am now at day 11, and I am finally seeing a difference in the swelling. My legs barely touch now, where before they would rub together. I am still swollen...so I am looking forward to seeing how it looks in a few weeks. I am still very bruised and uncomfortable. It hurts to sit down, and my skin is VERY sensitive. I am very far from feeling normal. I do not have any lumps or any symptoms you are having. What is your doctor saying?
  • Reply
Hi Perfection, I'm glad your procedure is going so well. I'm envious! If my abs had gone better, I was going to consider having my inner thighs done, but now I'm not so sure. I replied to your post above, to Cupid's reply, regarding my doctor's appointment today. It's too long to retype, so please read to hear how my appt went. It wasn't bad news, just advice on how to help my situation and what to do if the advice doesn't work. Please keep me posted on your progress, and if you have any thoughts or suggestions, I'm all ears! Thanks.
  • Reply
What areas did you have done? I am 6 days out. I had inner and outer thighs, and the banana roll...(in between legs, and underneath butt. That area is all connected. ) I am swollen...I don't really look any smaller...however it has only been 6 days. I have talked to several people that remained swollen for 3-5 months, and had lumps and uneveness (divets) up to 8 months...and then it all went away. Most studies show it can take 6-12 months for best, final results. At 7 weeks, my knees still looked bad, and I was VERY discouraged. It took like 6 months for all the side effects to go away, and looked best at 8 months. Hopefully this will be the case for you...just a slow healer. I am suprised your doc had you stop wearing your comp. garment after 2 weeks. I am suppose to wear mine for 6. It does help with swelling...you may want to buy a pair of spanks...they are comfortable, and are a light compression. Not crazy tight. That is what I did. I can't wear that thing for 6 weeks! It is too tight, and from what I have read, if it is very tight, you should not wear it more than a week or 2. Good luck, and keep me updated, as I will too.
  • Reply
I miss spelled a bunch of words and accidently posted my comment twice! OOPS...I took a pain pill, and it makes me a little loopy. For some reason, today I am having more pain than usual...?
  • Reply
Perfection, I had my upper and lower abdomen done 7 weeks ago. I am still swollen around the middle. Wherever my waistband of my pants falls, I get an indent, which pushes the swelling either above or below the waistband. Then when I get undressed, the swelling rounds out again with 2 bulges - one on each side of my belly button. I go for my follow up Monday. I'll let you know how I make out, and if you have any suggestions, I'm all ears.
  • Reply
Yochell Please keep me posted since you and I seem to be in the same boat. I don't go back for 2 more weeks and have no changes.
  • Reply
Hi Cupid, I went to see my doctor today. He thinks the swelling is either fluid or an inflamation. I have to massage the lumpy area fairly hard with a lotion at least 2 times a day to try to break up anything there. He told me not to worry about hurting anything. (I was afraid to massage too hard in case something burst.) Nothing will burst. It might get sore, but it should help the swelling and lumpiness. He wants to see me again in 2 weeks if the swelling hasn't gone down because if the massaging doesn't work, it is probably fluid. Then he will have to drain it. The problem with that, though, is that draining doesn't make the fluid go away in only one treatment. It will come back and need to be drained 2 or 3 times, or more, before it is finally gone. And I will have to be taped tight and wear a garment again. On the plus side - yes, there is one!! - my doctor told me not to give up. Everything WILL eventually go down, even if it takes 6 months or more. I really don't want to wait that long, but at least he says there is nothing to be upset about. Just give it time. He also said to try not to sit all day, and if you do have to sit, sit up straight. Sitting squeezes whatever swelling is there pushing it out which somehow makes it take longer to go away. I'll keep you posted, and you please do the same.
  • Reply
What areas did you have done? I am 6 days out. I had inner and outer thighs, and the banana roll...(in between legs, and underneath butt. That area is all connected. ) I am swollen...I don't really look any smaller...however it has only been 6 days. I have talked to several people that remained swollen for 3-5 months, and had lumps and uneveness (divets) up to 8 months...and then it all went away. Most studies show it can take 6-12 months for best, final results. At 7 weeks, my knees still looked bad, and I was VERY discouraged. It took like 6 months for all the side effects to go away, and looked best at 8 months. Hopefully this will be the case for you...just a slow healer. I am suprised your doc had you stop wearing your comp. garment after 2 weeks. I am suppose to wear mine for 6. It does help with swelling...you may want to buy a pair of spanks...they are comfortable, and are a light compression. Not crazy tight. That is what I did. I can't wear that thing for 6 weeks! It is too tight, and from what I have read, if it is very tight, you should not wear it more than a week or 2. Good luck, and keep me updated, as I will too.
  • Reply
Cupid...how long has it been since you had your procedure? What areas? I may have some advice.
  • Reply
Perfection, I'd like to hear your advice, too, since I am still swollen like Cupid. Any advice is welcome! I've been 7 weeks and am very discouraged. Thanks in advance.
  • Reply
Perfection-it has been 7 weeks and I still have a big belly. Any advice you have would be appreciated. I am thinking it really didn't work??Is that possible?
  • Reply
Cupid, I'm sorry to hear about your disappointment. I'm disappointed for you, too - and I'm worried for myself since I seem to be in the same boat as you. My appointment is Monday. I'll keep you posted.
  • Reply
Hi Yochelle My appt didn't go so well. The dr. cannot figure out why I don't look any different and actually look worse! I have another appt in a month. I am discouraged and can't believe I spent so much money and had so much pain to look the same. So unfortunately no answers
  • Reply
I have read all your comments and want you to know that swelling is a normal side effect to lipo. EVEN for many weeks. Be patient. It can take 3 months or longer. I had my knees done and was freaked out the first 2 months. It didn't look good for about 5 months...best after 8 months. I am 3 days out from my inner thighs and banana roll. So far, I am healing amazingly. Be patient, this procedure takes many months to look its best.
  • Reply