Is It Absolutely Necessary to Wear a Compression Garment for 3 Months After Liposuction?

I just had liposuction on my upper and lower abdomen and my doctor told me I have to wear the compression girdle for 3 MONTHS. I've read on-line that typically compression garments should be worn for up to a month. Why does my doctor insist on 3 months? My procedure wasn't intense as I was fairly thin before (couldn't get rid of my pouch) and I seem to be recovering well. After a month, would it be okay if I were to wear the garment at night only?

Doctor Answers 5

How long to wear the garment after Liposuction

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My recommendation for most patients is a minimum of two weeks. Compression can reduce swelling, aid in supporting the skin and evening out the shape of the body. For patients with significant swelling the garment can be worn for a longer time - usually at the patient's discretion based upon comfort.The garment should be 'comfortably' snug. Excessively tight compression is, in my opinion, not helpful and may actually be counter productive to healing. Best of Luck  Dr Harrell

Follow your surgeon's instructions

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I generally advise patients wear their garment 24 hours a day for three weeks, removing it only when bathing or washing it. From 3 to 6 weeks, wear your garment in the day only. However, it sounds like your surgeon has different advice. It's best to follow their advice or express your concerns directly to them so that they may respond.

Surgical garments help in many ways, although each surgeon has different postop regiments

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I ask my patients to wear the garment to help minimize swelling, resolve postop op swelling faster, and to help shape the liposuctioned area.  I also ask them to take it off several times a day for a few minutes at a time and massage the liposuction areas to help smooth the skin contours.  The length of time for which patients wear garments depends from patient to patient in my practice.  I tell all my patients to plan on garments for 3 moths but then as they heal we adjust the plan.  Not infrequently I stop the garments after 2-4 weeks.
In your situation it sounds the liposuction was not extensive and you should be able to go without the garment after a few weeks. 
However, ultimately, you should speak to your plastic surgeon who knows what he/she did and why they want you to wear it for that time period to get you the best possible results.
Martin Jugenburg, MD, FRCSC
Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon

Martin Jugenburg, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 518 reviews

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Compression After Liposuction

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In general, after four to six weeks, wearing a garment really is of no consequence.  Wearing it longer than that is neither necessary nor indicated.

Rod J. Rohrich, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon

Wearing a Liposuction Garment for 3 Months

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It's best to always follow the directions of your surgeon.  There are many different philosophies and practices by surgeons and many are based on experience and the individual patient's needs.  In my practice the length of time varies considerably depending on the patient's skin tone, amount of fat removed, technique used and how the patient is healing, which is assessed at each postoperative appointment.  If the patient's skin was loose or had stretch marks prior to surgery, I may recommend the compression garnet be worn for a greater amount of time.  I would ask your surgeon why he/she feels that you need to wear the garment this length of time before you discontinue wearing it.  

Suzanne M. Quardt, MD
Palm Springs Plastic Surgeon

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.