Is swelling visible after liposuction?

This question is similar to the other question I asked a few moments ago on real self? What I want to know if swelling can take six months or longer to fully disappear from liposuction can the swelling still be visible on my body, if I was looking at myself in the mirror at home? If I touch the swollen areas can it hurt months later, or would I be able to feel the swollen areas months later?

Doctor Answers 6

Subtle swelling after liposuction

The majority of the swelling will resolve within about 2 weeks as long as you are following your post op garment/compression instructions.  At that point you should note a significant difference in the area treated.  There will be some subtle swelling that is usually only something that your surgeon and possibly you would be able to feel but not necessarily see. 

Liposuction areas shouldn't "hurt" months later but there can be numbness and tingling sensations that last several weeks to months after. 

Best of luck

Liposuction swelling is usually never larger than you were prior to liposuction.

You do swell for 3-4 days after liposuction but you are never larger than you were prior to the procedure. At 1 week we start exercising and massaging to bring the swelling down so that at 1 month you see a significant improvement in your shape and size. It is true that the end results does take 6 months but you look good at 1 month already.

David Hansen, MD
Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Is swelling visible after liposuction?

Hello dear, thanks for your question and provided information as well.. This is the surgical procedure that revolutionized cosmetic surgery becoming one of the most performed cosmetic procedures. Subcutaneous tissue or fat is removed in order to contour the body in a way that is harmonious and pleasing to the senses. It can be performed in almost all regions of the body such as the neck, chin, abdomen, back, buttocks, thighs, arms and ankles. Usually done through a small incision in the skin through which a cannula connected to a vacuum is applied, it can be performed alone or in combination with other procedures. After liposuction your body is going to be really swollen for at least 2 to 4 months after your surgery. It is important for you to wear your compression garment for at least 6 months, the first 3 months 24/7 and then the last 3 months at least 12 hours per day for your body get use to not having the faja for so many time. When you remove it, your body can get swollen and also you can have pain. Remember to also compress your body to prevent a seroma which is an accumulation of liquid that has to be drained, it is hard to touch and also really painful. Bruises are completely normal for almost 3 months from surgery, that’s why is better for you to use a bruising cream and apply it all over your body 3 times a day. To prevent bad circulation and swollen legs, use compression socks. Brazilian butt lift can be performed with the same procedure and for a month it will be swollen and it will drop a little bit without losing it’s shape if you use your garment.. If you’re going to perform liposuction on your inner, outer, anterior, lateral, postetior thighs, be careful and consult with your surgeon what’s best for you, sometimes we have more extra skin than fat, that can cause severe sagginess on our legs, which can be only be reversed performing a thigh lift. Hugs!

Tania Medina de Garcia, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 331 reviews


Most of the swelling is minimal after two to three weeks post-op.  I always tell my patients that after that initial period, it is more a matter of looking better and better rather than looking visibly swollen.  The results are significant at that point, but the swelling continues to gradually resolve for months, and you just keep getting better!  There is no pain associated with this minimal residual swelling, and it is very difficult to feel or appreciate it with touch.

Liposuction and Results - VASER HI DEF LIPO

Hi definition procedures take 6-12 months to see the final outcome and traditional approaches around 3-6 months.  You will see improvement gradually but a significant change immediatly with a hi definition approach.  starting at the gym as soon as possible and following post operative protocols decrease the swelling more and the risk of seromas.  Best, Dr. Emer.

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 159 reviews


Thank you for your question.  It is quite possible that you will be noticing swelling months after your procedure.  However, this will depend on how aggressive the liposuction is.  To minimize the swelling, be sure that you follow the instructions of your operating surgeon closely, such as wearing the compression garment as instructed.

Best of luck!

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.