How Long to Wait to Exercise After Smartlipo?

I am scheduled for two Smartlipo procedures. One is my arms and the other is my thighs and buttocks. How long will I have to wait to do cardio on the elliptical? Thanks!!

Doctor Answers 3

Exercise Guidelines after Smart Lipo

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Information about Liposuction Recovery
Here is the information I give my patients regarding the recovery process after liposuction including Smart Lipo and other lipo techniques.
As with all operations, pain and discomfort varies greatly from patient to patient. Generally, one should expect that pain medication will be required for the first few days. Continuing discomfort can last varying amounts of time.  Much of the swelling and bruising will be improved within two weeks; however, some will persist for six to eight weeks.  It is often difficult to see permanent changes in the body shape before this time.
Most patients are instructed to wear an elastic garment from four to six weeks to help with skin shrinkage. Your plastic surgeon will tell you how long you should wear your elastic garment. For patients with poor skin elasticity Endermologie treatments may be recommended.
Normal activity may be resumed at 2 weeks post operation to tolerance and that would include elliptical and light cardio.  In general, patients may return to office work 3-5 days after the operation, and 14 days for more active employment.  After the operation, exercises are recommended, such as walking immediately and progressive activities beginning on the 14th day, in order to minimize the adhesions between the skin and the deeper tissues. Walking, swimming, or a stationary bicycle can usually begin in a few days after surgery. Specific time periods for resumption of daily activities, work, and exercise with be further discussed by your surgeon post operation.
Early results are seen 10-14 days after surgery, but improvement continues for 4-6 months.  Persistent swelling and irregularities may be present for several months.  If antibiotics are prescribed, they should be taken as directed.

Smartlipo recovery is more rapid than traditional liposuction.

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My SmartLipo patients recover more rapidly than traditional liposuction patients.  They also spend less time in compression garments and have far less bruising.  I usually let my SmartLipo patients resume activity faster as well, but it needs to be on an individual basis.

If I perform extensive SmartLipo with someone that has more loose skin etc I may not let them exercise as early because I want more time for the skin to shrink.

Talk with your surgeon to see what he/she recommends for your situation.

Exercise after smart liposuction

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Many surgeons recommend at least two weeks after liposuction to resume exercise but sometimes earlier and rarely more. The swelling may increase and many patients prefer to wear the compression garment even when working out, but make sure it fits well so that a seam or crease is not digging in to one area.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 38 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.