Pain, Fluid Pockets Normal Months After Liposuction?

I'm two months post-op liposuction on upper/lower abs, flanks, saddle bags, banana roll....when I exercise and do any kind of jumping motion, it feels like I have water balloons in my lower back that bounce up and down. It's really uncomfortable.

Is this normal?? My stomach is also still feels like a long time to still be having these issues.

Doctor Answers 5

Persistent discomfort weeks after Liposuction is possible

Dear Tradawg,

Much depends on the size of the liposuction you had and to some extent, how it was done.

Gererally, it takes many months for the body to heal following a liposuction. However, comfort should increase rapidly after the first 10 days. Be aware that there are two standards of care for liposuction: Tumescent liposuction under local anesthesia with microcannulas and liposuction under general anesthesia. Tumescent liposuction under local anesthesia is the type of liposuction practiced by dermatologist and cosmetic surgeons trained by dermatologist.

Because the patient is awake during the entire procedure, the surgeon proceeds at a pace that is comfortable for the patients. There is generally much less trauma associated with this type of liposuction as a result. It is not unusual for patients to be working out two days after liposuction and to be out of compression garments 3 to 5 days after the procedure.

Liposuction under general anesthesia is what is commonly practiced by general plastic surgeons. With a patient fully asleep, there is no awareness of the procedure and the surgeon can more rapidly perform the surgery. Consequently, there is more trauma associated with this style of liposuction. It can be 10 weeks before a patient undergoing this type of liposuction is comfortable enough to resume a work out. Also, it is often necessary to be in compression garments for 6 weeks after such a procedure. Persistent discomfort following this style of liposuction is therefore to be expected.

Again, it is best to contact your plastic surgeon and be seen. Let them assess you and follow their advice. A responsible office will want to follow you closely and address your concerns under these circumstances.

Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Water collections after liposuction

It is very rare to develop a seroma after traditional liposuction, but on the other hand it is probably more common with Vaser or laser lipolysis.  Check with your doctor.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Seroma after liposuction rare complication.


It is quite normal to have a little soreness for 4 months after liposuction.  But if you really have "water collections", that can lead to permanent deformity and needs immediate treatment.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Fluid retention from Liposuction relatively rare

While some residual swelling and pain can persist for several months after liposuction, fluid pockets are relatively rare. I personally have had fluid collections in the form of a seroma occasionally form after liposuction, but with appropriate treatment they have resolved.

Raj K. Gupta, MD
Pontiac Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Pain after Liposuction can last for few months

First, determine that you do not indeed have fluid pockets or seromas. If not, then the pain can be simply a matter of persistent post-traumatic inflammation of the multitude of nerves particularly in and around your back muscles and bones. This should subside over time. You might ask your surgeon about taking a short course of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications like Ibuprofen.

Robin T.W. Yuan, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 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.