Hunger after liposuction

Leptin is produced by fat cells. A reduction in leptin could/would leave us feeling hungry. Liposuction removes fat cells... So could lipo cause more hunger due to a decrease in leptin as a result of a decrease in fat cells?

Doctor Answers 6

Hunger is normal after surgery

Our calorie needs increase significantly after surgery. The body needs more energy for the healing process.  

I do not think leptin release is altered significantly from liposuction. I say this for two reasons.

Even in high volume, multi-area liposuction, we still only remove a small fraction of the total body fat.

Secondly, the rate of leptin release is related to the amount of fat in each fat cell. If someone is at their genetically-set correct weight, the leptin release goes down and only increases when the fat cells grow. Removing some fat cells will not cause the remaining cells to behave differently.  

I have not seen patients develop different hunger patterns after liposuction other than during the healing process.

I have included a link if you want to read a little more about leptin. I like the way it's written, though it does not discuss leptin after liposuction.

Best of luck,

Mats Hagstrom, M.D.


San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Liposuction | Liposhaping Procedures

Thank you for your question about liposuction, liposhaping.

I think your rationale is theoretical and not clinically significant.

To be sure what might be right for you, see two or more experienced, board-certified Plastic Surgeons for a complete evaluation to make sure you are a good candidate and that it is safe for you to have surgery.

I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 150 reviews

Can Liposuction Cause Hunger?

I find that many of my patients loose extra weight after liposuction due to changes in their metabolism and the happiness they achieve from the surgery influences their exercise and lifestyle.  Best, Dr. Emer.

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 168 reviews

Hunger after liposuction

That's a great question. Luckily, the increased hunger you mention does not happen. There are a multitude of factors that make one hungry, and Leptin is part of that, but the number of fat cells removed of your total fat is miniscule so there is no shortage of Leptin.

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Leptin, hunger and liposuction

Thank you for asking about your liposuction.

Your question is thoughtful -
  • Liposuction does not increase hunger - at least from what research and my patients tell me.
  • The reason is probably the flexibility of the body regulatory systems.
  • There are billions of fat cells - liposuction removes a very small percentage.
  • The body probably maintains it normal leptin level  by increasing leptin production from remaining fat cells.


Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon
Hope you found this answer helpful. Best wishes.

Hunger after Lipo

This is a very interesting question.  In my experience, I have not noticed an increase in appetite for my patients that undergo liposuction.  I will have to look up peer reviewed articles to see if there is any scientific evidence behind this.

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.