What Are Some Things That One Can Do at Home to Help Speed Up The Healing Process Following Lipo?

How much of diet and rest is a factor in recovery from liposuction? Is keeping the area hydrated with lotion also equally helpful? At what point, a week or so, would it be beneficial to have a light massage to improve circulation?

Doctor Answers 6

Liposuction recovery tips

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It is most important to see what your surgeon recommends, but here are some tips I like to share:

I think compression is important for the first month or so.  I like foam padding to help compress and smooth treated areas. I recommend motrin and arnica tablets early to minimize inflammation, swelling and discomfort, with lots of hydration to clean out your system. Walking is encouraged to stimulate circulation and assist in postop recovery. Further out from surgery I recommend massaging the treated areas, no sooner than 2 weeks or so.

These are some things I like to recommend. Surgeons differ sometimes in their recommendations because there is no "black and white" when it comes to recovery tips.

Liposuction healing

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Direct questions about post-op care specifically for your procedure should be discussed with your surgeon.  In general, swelling  will persist for several months especially with alot of acitivity.  I usually have my patients take it easy for a few days and limit exertion.  Eat regularly, avoid aspirina and NSAID's and take a single multivitamin each day. 

Affecting the healing process following liposuction

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Whether you have had liposuction or not, you need to follow the advice/recommendations given to you by your surgeon (hopefully a plastic surgeon) as he/she is involved in your care. Generally, a well balanced diet with protein and lots of Vit C is recommended - and no dieting! You can engage in casual activities - not highly aerobic, intense ones. For my patients, they can engage in more vigorous activities at around 2 and a half weeks.

Massaging of the treated areas a few times a day also seems to be helpful in facilitating you obtaining the best possible outcome.

Some Things I Can Do at Home to Help Speed Up the Healing Process Following Lipo?

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Let's consider for a moment what liposuction really is. Putting marketing spin and "noninvasive" hype aside, liposuction is the removal of fat and scultping the remaining fat under the skin by passing various sizes of steel tubes through the fat on high suction. It is an extensive surgical injury conducted in a clean, sterile enviroment (hopefully) by an experienced Plastic surgeon.

What are the best ways to heal from an injury? The right answer goes back several thousands years to Hippocrates who died 377BC. He recommended rest and immobilization in cases of injury. Doing so reduces inflammation and swelling. In the case of liposuction, we want the tunnels created by the fat removal to collapse and NOT fill with inflammatory fluid. Using the pressure garment, eating properly (to nourish the healing process revved up by the surgery), walking (to reduce blood clot formation), deep breathing (to fully fill the lungs and reduce the risk of pneumonia while delivering oxygen to the tissues) are all important. If you wish, occasional lymphatic massage may hasten the reduction of swelling.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Liposuction Aftercare?

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Thank you for the question.

Generally, it's best to check with your plastic surgeon for specific aftercare instructions.

I ask my patients to adhere to a healthy diet, ambulation, and massage of the treated areas.  The massage can be started when the area is not tender.

Again, please check with your own  surgeon for his/her recommendations. 

Best wishes. 

Helping the healing after liposuction

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a healthy diet with multivitamins after liposuction is good, along with good hydration. We have our patients receive a massage on the areas where the liposuction was performed, twice a week for three weeks, starting at the 7 day mark. That helps distribute the fluid so it can absorb faster.

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.