2 Liters Removed During Vibration Assisted Lipo (VAL) But No Results - Why?

i'm 5'4, weigh 127 lbs. had val on belly, thighs, hips. 2 liters removed. Dr said he removed 2 liters from abdomen, outer thighs,hips and arms. I am 5 days out, very little swelling and only today did I wake up to monstrous black bruises. That is all I can see. No sculpting anywhere. Have worn the extremely tight compression garment non stop. Is this normal in the recovery process and should I not be able to notice even a slight change?

Doctor Answers 9

2L removed from abdomen, hips, thighs--you should see some results

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GIVE IT TIME.  It takes months for swelling to subside after liposuction.  Give it time, cut out salt in your diet, have some lymphatic massages when your surgeon okays it, and give it time (I know I already said that).  Best wishes!

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Liposuction - No Results at 5 Days; Should I Be Worried?

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Hi akimber,

It can take a long time to see the final results of liposuction.  I tell my patients that they can typically expect to see 85% of the result at 4-6 weeks, 95% at 3 months and that it can take up to six months - or even longer in some cases - to see the final results.  So 5 days is much too early to be even the slightest bit concerned about your result.  You should, of course, talk to your plastic surgeon about this and any other post-surgical issues.

In terms of fat removal, though, there are many different ways of "counting" the amount of fat that was removed.  In general, a certain amount of fluid (containing lidocaine and epinephrine) is injected just prior to the surgery.  This helps to constrict blood vessels (to diminish bleeding and bruising) and numbs the tissue (so that less sedation, if any, is necessary).  When you are trying to assess how much "fat" has been removed you typically have to take into account how much fluid was injected, how much total aspirate there was, and how much of that aspirate was fat (which usually float to the top of the container) and blood or excess injectate.  And you probably need to let it settle for 20-30 minutes before you can start to get an accurate accounting.  If a "melting" technique - such as laser or ultrasonic lipo - was used, then it may be that much more difficult to know exactly how much "fat" was removed.

So - 2 liters?  That can mean a lot of different things, and unless you know all of these factors you may not be able to draw a completely accurate conclusion.  But, for sure, you don't need to be concerned if, at 5 days post-op, you're not seeing any results...you just have to wait it out.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Two liters of fat removed and no difference observed

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IT is nearly impossible to remove 2 liters of fat without seeing a difference, Therefore you still must have some swelling present. Give it at least 3 months to judge the results.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Five days is too early for liposuction rtesults

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You get virtually zero result for first 3 weeks & about 50-60 percent result at six months.It is too early to think of result.I will advise you to follow the post operative instructions of your surgeon.

Anup Dhir, MD
India Plastic Surgeon

Results after liposuction

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Bruising and swelling are normal sequelae of surgery, including liposuction, and should resolve within a couple of weeks, although some swelling may remain for several months. Final results will not be apparent for 6 months or so, although you should begin to notice improvement well before that.

Olivia Hutchinson, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon

Liposuction recovery

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The good news is that you are very early in your recovery following liposuction and that swelling and some bruising is normal. The swelling and bruising should improve over the next week. It generally takes 2-3 weeks to see your weight start to drop. The amount of weight you loose should be approximately equal to the amount of fat removed during the procedure (the amount of the  2 Liters of aspirate that was pure fat). At 6 weeks post-op you should see a nice improvement in your shape. Post-op photos are generally taken between 4 to 6 months after the procedure as it takes this long to see the "final" result.

I would recommend that you discuss your concerns with your Plastic Surgeon

Best regards, Andrew Lyos MD, FACS

Andrew T. Lyos, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Liposuction and cannot see a difference in a few days.

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The swelling will obscure the results for several weeks and it will take 6 months to see the final result.

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

When to see results after Liposuction

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5 days after liposuction is too early to see results.  You are expected to have swelling that hides the effect of the liposuction.  I usually tell my patients to wait up to 4 weeks for the swelling to go away, and it takes up to 3 months to see the final results.
If you're 5'4" 127lb and your surgeon really did remove 2 litres, they you should definitely start seeing some improvements shortly.
Martin Jugenburg, MD

Martin Jugenburg, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 521 reviews

Five days is not enough time to judge liposuction

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Bruising is common several days after liposuction. The aesthetic result is often not seen for several weeks to a few months after liposuction with improvement over six months or more.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 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.