I had Liposuction to the abdomen, flank and inner thighs (3 weeks post). What do you advise to ensure a smooth result?

Currently, I wear a compression garmet as we well as foam. In addition, I massage bio oil onto the treated areas in the morning and before I go to bed. Furthermore, in regards to water consumption, I try my best to get proper hydration, however, I am a huge lover of coffee. I have yet to start any exercise regime given the extent of my surgery, but I have recently incorporated walks into my daily routine for the past few days. Would love to get tips..

Doctor Answers 8

Lipo postop

congrats on what sounds like a successful surgery. I would wear that garment, not too tight, for the first 6 weeks, massage as you are doing, check with your doctor re exercise, though I would encourage it now personally. Good luck.

Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Liposuction/ Liposculpture/ Fat Transfer/ Vaser/ Hi Definition Procedures/Liposuction Revision/Tummy Tuck/Body Contouring

I appreciate your question.

I would recommend that you discuss this question with your surgeon as every surgeon has their own respective post op protocol for his/her patients.  Your surgeon is your best resource as he/she is most familiar with your medical history and how you are healing at this time.

The best way to assess and give true advice would be an in-person exam.

Please see a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in aesthetic and restorative plastic surgery.

Best of luck!

Dr. Schwartz

Board Certified Plastic Surgeon


Jaime S. Schwartz, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 91 reviews

I had Liposuction to the abdomen, flank and inner thighs (3 weeks post). What do you advise to ensure a smooth result?


  I think it's helpful to wear the compression and you may want to look into lymphatic massage to assist with the swelling. The smooth result is a function of the liposuction performed. If you end up with contour defects it is generally a result of the liposuction performed and nothing that you do in the post operative period. Good Luck!

Jordan P. Farkas, MD
Paramus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Tips to better results.

Congratulations on your recent surgery.  As you have probably found out by now, recovery is often the more  difficult phase of your surgical treatment due to restrictions, discomfort, etc.  However, motivated patients like you, tend to sail through these early phases of recovery when armed with the ideal postoperative instructions.

The Compression garment worn properly, is likely the most important aspect of your recovery.  However, if not worn properly, problems can ensue.  Many garments are crotchless allowing use of the bathroom without having to remove the garment completely.  You must make sure that the garment is pulled up as high as possible into the groin crease.  If the seam of the cutout portion descends below the groin crease, the seam can cause a depression in the inner thighs, that if not detected early enough, can lead to a permanent crease or depression in the lipo treated area.  Likewise, garments that are above the knees, can cause a similar crease at the bottom seam in the innner thighs.

Swelling is a normal part of healing, but can be frustrating when your goal is to achieve desired benefits sooner than later.  Diligent use of compression garments, avoidance of overhydration (excess fluids will be deposited in the areas of surgery causing more and prolonged swelling), slow progression in exercise related activities to avoid traumatizing healing surgical sites are all helpful hints to keep in mind.

Good luck with your remaining recovery!

Daniel M. Calloway, MD
Jacksonville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Post-lipo routine

Hi.  It sounds like you are doing the right things - using compression and massage.  You can resume gentle exercise when you are comfortable.  In our practice, we use a Synergie machine to help with post-liposuction swelling, but manual massage also works.  You can even take a clean and new rolling pin or paint roller, and use that as a massage aid.  Mostly, it's just a matter of time - about 6 months to see the final results.

Thomas Fiala, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 79 reviews

You're on the Right Track

Sounds like you are doing the appropriate things post-op that will allow for a speedy and normal recovery. The compression garment is most important in the first 6 weeks to compress the skin and allow the skin to shrink back down to the body wall. Avoid salty foods and heavy fatty meals (you just had all that fat removed!) Adding massage or lymphatic rolling of skin after 6 weeks helps even irregularities and smooths contours. You want to avoid heavy exercise for at least 6 weeks, walking is probably fine, but realize you will probably swell and feel some thickness in the skin and deep tissues. Most results begin to shape up at 3 months, but may easily be 6 months before final results set in.

Best of luck,

Sanjay K. Sharma, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Liposuction After care includes RF treatments (Venus Legacy, Exilis Ultra) Cellutone/zwave

I recommend adding hyperbaric oxygen and lymphatic massage along with your compression in order to reduce swelling. I also recommend adding coolsculpting/vanquish for further fat removal, exilis/venus legacy for skin tightening, cellutone/z wave to make the skin smooth, remove scar tissue, and improve the appearance of cellulite. Best, Dr. Emer

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 190 reviews

Getting a good liposuction result

Thank you for asking about your liposuction.

  • You are doing everything right.
  • You can ask your surgeon about adding a little massage - at times, an at--home hand held massager is all you need. 
  • And give things time = it will take six months to see your final result. 

Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes. Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 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.