Inconsistencies in Swelling Normal After Liposuction?

I had Liposuction 3 weeks ago today on my abdomen, hips, thighs and buttocks, I still have very swollen back, which feels almost like a very thin pillow has been inserted into my lower back, it so much painful, it just feels like I am carrying unnecessary weight on my lower back, the swelling is very visible. One thing that is concerning is when I run my hand along my lower back it feels REALLY soft in some parts of the swelling and then hard only millimetres away? Its hard to know whats normal?

Doctor Answers 6

Swelling after liposuction

Swelling is the norm after liposuction and variations in the swelling among parts of the back is also common. This is the nature of bruising. If you do not see an improvement within the next few weeks, this is something that you may wish to discuss with your plastic surgeon. Hematoma is unlikely after liposuction but cannot be ruled out without a physical examination.

Swelling after liposcution

It may take several months for the swelling and firmness to settle after surgery. If you are concerned, you should  speak to your surgeon.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Inconsistencies in Swelling After Liposuction

RE: "when I run my hand along my lower back it feels REALLY soft in some parts of the swelling and then hard only millimetres away". Liposuction, like ALL operations, is an injury performed in a sterile enviroment. The body reacts similarly to ALL injuries; it swells up, it becomes tender and movement and flexibility are hampered. While it is to be expected to have areas of stiffness (inflammation), feeling fluid under the skin may need to be removed by your surgeon to allow contact between the tissues and healing.  I would see him and have him advise you on the best course of action.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 103 reviews

Swelling after Liposuction

Some swelling and areas of firmness are normal after liposuction. However, you should let your surgeon know about this since in rare cases, some fluid may form under the skin and can be removed.

Karol A. Gutowski, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 67 reviews


Swelling can vary and it is not uncommon at only 3 weeks after liposuction. The only way to know it is not something else more serious is to be seen by your plastic surgeon.

Inconsistencies in Swelling Normal After Liposuction?

Three weeks it is very normal to have this. I tell my patients 6 weeks for swelling and 6 months for shaping!!! So massage as best you can and expect the areas to get smoother and softer with time!!!!

John J. Corey, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 36 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.