Downtime After Lipoma Removal

When can I go back to work and exercise after a large size lipoma on right side of body?

Doctor Answers 4

Returning to working out after excision of large lipoma

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I remove even large lipomas (even larger than a grapefruit) through an incison about 2cm.  The lipoma can be safely removed piecemeal and there is rarely any bleeding at all.  There is no reason to wait any more than 2-3 days to return to working out.

Chicago Plastic Surgeon

Downtime after minor surgery, like lipoma removal.

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Downtime is variable, depending on numerous factors.  We consider the size of the lipoma, how the surgery went, was there excessive bleeding, does the patient have medical factors that slow healing like smoking, steroid use, the location of the lipoma (over a mobile area or not) and so on and so on.  That's why this forum is not appropriate for the post op patient.  Ask your operating surgeon.  He has all that data, he (or she) was there and can answer with all the information considered.  

Ritu Chopra, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Lipomas often can be removed with minimal incision

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The size and location of the lipoma will ultimately determine how quickly you can return to exercise.  In general, though, my patients rarely have any down time, even with lipomas the size of my fist.  

While lipoma fat is indistinguishable by look, or even under the microscope, from normal fat--- the lipoma tends to readily separate from the surrounding tissue with minimal dissection.  Because of this, the actual surgical scar is often only a fraction of the size of the lipoma.  Of the hundreds of lipomas I have removed, the surgical incision is rarely more than 1-inch.   Further, virtually all lipomas can be removed as an in office procedure with only local anesthesia.

I tell my patients to take it easy for the next 24 hours, then let their bodies be their guide.  If exercise becomes painful, your pushing to hard.  Ultimately, though, even if you push to hard, the primary risk is suture breakage and a larger scar.

Most patients can return to limited exercise in 24 hours, and full exercise in a few days-- of course, depending on the size and location of the lesion removed.

Jeffrey C. Poole, MD
Metairie Dermatologic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Lipoma Removal Recovery and Downtime

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Hi Geelicious08,

Lipomas are benign collections of fat, which can present as a lump or bump under the skin. Lipomas can occur pretty much anywhere in the body. Treatment is surgery for removal. Surgery for lipoma removal can be performed via local anesthesia, IV sedation, or general anesthesia. The decision regarding type of anesthesia is dependent on the size and location of the lipoma, in addition to mutual agreement between surgeon and patient.

Recovery after lipoma removal will vary, but largely based on size and location of the lipoma. Other medical conditions will also affect recovery, such as smoking. Most plastic surgeons will advise to avoid heavy activity and exercise for at least 2 weeks. Stitches or sutures will be removed around 7-10 days after surgery. Most importantly is to discuss recovery with your lipoma surgeon. Only he/she can advise you on lipoma recovery. Best of luck.

Dr. Chaboki

Houtan Chaboki, MD
Washington DC Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 89 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.