Does Liposuction Leave Scars?

if so, how long would they take to heal for a patient under 25? is it true that special garments must be worn(for inner thigh lipo) and for how long must they be worn? if it is not alot of fat that is being removed?

Doctor Answers 20

Liposuction Incisions and Compression Garment

Yes, incisions are necessary to perform the liposuction procedure and these will leave scars. However, they are generally short and are placed in discreet locations. 

I generally advise patients wear their garment 24 hours a day for three weeks, removing it only when bathing or washing it. From 3 to 6 weeks, wear your garment in the day only. It helps with easing swelling and reducing the risk of seroma. The garment should fit snugly but not to the point that you can't breathe or are feeling sore. It's best to follow your PS's advice or express your concerns directly to them so that they may respond.

The final result of liposuction can usually be assessed at 3-4 months.

Scars Following Liposuction

Yes, you will have scars, but they are very small and hidden. Your surgeon will need to make incisions to insert the liposuction cannulas.

Liposuction scars

Thanks for your question. There will be a scar where the cannula is inserted. However, these scars are small and usually difficult to see.  

Francis X. Fleming, MD
Kennewick Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Small Scars

When patients undergo a liposuction procedure, small incisions are made to insert the liposuction cannulas.Although these incisions are initially red, they fade and are almost imperceptible by the time patients are one year post-op.

Liposuction Scars

Yes.  Your plastic surgeon will make tiny incisions allowing access for the liposuction cannula.  These incisions generally heal quite well and are placed in areas such as natural folds and creases to make them less visible and easily hidden with bathing suits and clothing.  Your plastic surgeon will demonstrate location for each incision based on the areas where you will be having liposuction,  Compression garments and/or Spanx will be worn after surgery.  Most patients need some type of supportive garment for a few weeks following surgery but this will vary from patient to patient.  

Richard A. D’Amico, MD, FACS
Englewood Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Liposuction scars

Liposuction scars are generally very small, and for many patients, hardly noticeable after healing.  I try to place the incisions in areas that are normally covered by clothing or "hidden" by natural creases in the body.  Compression is beneficial to liposuction surgery.  It is typically worn for 4-6 weeks, though time and type of compression vary patient to patient.  Good luck.

Mennen T. Gallas, MD
Katy Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Liposuction Scars and Need for Compression Garments

Scars for liposuction are tiny and usually placed where they are hidden whenever possible. For example they are often placed in the belly button, pubic hair line, in the groin crease, at the edge of a tattoo, in an existing scar, etc.

Regarding your question about compression garments after liposuction: A Compression Garment Necessary for Best Results following Liposuction The length of time is highly dependent on the amount of fat removed, the elasticity of your skin, presence of stretch marks, your age and race and other factors. Bottom line is follow your plastic surgeon's advice for the best outcome.

Here are the reasons why:
Following Liposuction compression garments are required for three main reasons:
It restricts the amount of edema that forms and hastens its resolution by mechanical pressure
It decreases the amount of bruising
It assists the loose skin in retracting or shrinking
It is common for weight gain due to edema and serum that collects in the area as well as the tumescent fluid that was injected. This will resolve over time. The more you wear the garment initially the quicker this fluid resolves.
The length of time that the garment is worn varies dependent on the amount of fat removed, the elastic nature of your skin, how much loose skin remains and other factors. Your surgeon would give you the best advise. However in general this is the routine for my patients.
The first garment should be fitted for you in the office prior to surgery and applied in the operating room. Often it will become loose as the edema is mobilized and then it will need to be replaced. Spanx is a reasonable compression  garment if it gives enough support and is the right size. I have my patents bring them in and confirm that it fits well.
Most important advise is to listen to your surgeon's advice as he best knows how much fat was removed, the elasticity that remains in your skin and amount of skin redundancy.
For most patients, I recommend my patients wear their garments for a minimum of 3 weeks full time then for 12 hrs (day or night). if not a lot of redundant skin following liposuction to a maximum of 6-12 weeksTo be effective the garment needs to fit snug but not too tight as to cause pressure problems (inspect your skin if discomfort and when skin is exposed), or prevent you from sleeping. As the edema resolves it is common for patients to switch to a smaller garment that fits - A Spanx type garment would work rather than ordering one or paying more at your doctor;'s office.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 99 reviews

Plastic surgery and scars

Although we are specially trained in minimizing scarring techniques-all incisions leave scars. Genetics, age, incision placement, suturing techniques, and time are only a few factors that influence scar formation. Usually, scars from liposuction surgery heal quite nicely because of their size and placement.

A compression garment will be needed to minimize swelling and skin laxity. You're in luck!

Small areas and youth usually equals less time required in a garment!

Kind regards,

Dr. H 

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 193 reviews

Scars and Garments After Liposuction

Every liposuction procedure requires access for the instrumentation using very small incisions. While most heal very well, it is possible to have a very slight scar at these entrance points. They will be red for a few months before they fade. All liposuctiion procedures employ compression garments after surgery. The time of wearing them will vary by the body location and by the doctor and his/her personal preference. While garments are helpful after surgery to control swelling and improve comfort, they have no magical properties. In and of themselves, they do not reshape the treated area.

Liposuction healing

Liposuction leaves small scars. They are usually hidden in natural creases.

They may be unnoticeable as early as 6 weeks.

For the inner thigh - 

  • If only a little fat is removed from the inner thigh, I will usually tape the area for 5 days.
  • Then my patients wear snug Spandex pull-on shorts or Spanx, rather than a compression garment for 4-6 weeks.
  • I never use drains for liposuction.
  • a small inner thigh liposuction heals quickly. I have seen nice final results as early as 3 months, although it can take much longer at times. 



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.