Hardness and Tenderness After Liposuction?

I am six weeks post op from Liposuction on my waist, flanks and hips. My sides get hard, swollen and huge for long periods and then they go soft. I feel pregnant with 6 kids. The hardness actually feel like baby heads. I am miserably uncomfortable. When will this resolve and can I do anything to speed it along?

Doctor Answers 5

Discuss firm areas of liposuction with your surgeon

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At 6 weeks, you are at the end of the proliferative phase of wound healing and scars generally pass into the maturation phase during which the firm areas soften and become more supple.

However, there are varying degrees of firmness and your description sounds unusual.

It would be best for you to discuss and be evaluated by your surgeon to review your findings as well as to make possible recommendations for improvement.

Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Swelling is common after liposuction

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Swelling is common after liposuction. However, after 6 weeks you should be seeing improvements. If there is any concern, you should be evaluated by your surgeon. Since you say it gets hard and then soft, it is likely still resolving and eventually will soften. You may want to look into lymphatic or medical massage to help speed up the process. Good luck with your recovery.

Liposuction discomfort

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Firmness and swelling from liposcution is normal. Usually this gets better with time.  If it persists, you may want to see your doctor to make sure it is not something more serious like a seroma.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

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You might have a seroma.

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If you have localized swelling and hardness in one area, we might do a sonogram to see if you have a liquid collection (seroma).

If the swelling moves around, you will benefit by professional massage (lymphatic drainage massage). In New York, we do this frequently in liposuction patients.

Most patients look and feel better than you describe at 6 weeks, but hopefully you are just healing a little slowly. You will see the final result at 4 months.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

3 months of hardness

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It is common and I prepare all of my liposuction patients for at least three months of induration or hardness under the skin post liposuction. Some areas manifest this more than others and those happen to be the waist, flanks and abdomen. Don't worry, what is there today will be gone tomorrow.

Leslie H. Stevens, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon

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.