What Can I Do to Maximize Skin Retraction and Smoothness After Lipo?

I know, i know, the outome of lipo is based on the doctor's skill and my own genetics/skin condition. But is there any advice as to pre or post-op pratices I could perform to help? Frequent massage, constant wearing of garment for extended time? Any treatments that help skins elasticity, like lanolin or moisturizer?

Doctor Answers 8

The best liposuction results

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Here are some tips for the best post-lipo treatments. I have not had a dip, a divot, a sag since I started my patients on this regimen:

1. Use slimlipo (laser lipo) for any saggy or cellulitic areas. Vaser is pretty good too, and Cellulaze seems promising. The point is: HEAT SHRINKS SKIN.

2. The garment post-op must fit PERFECTLY. On the abdomen, don't bend/hunch in bed and let a line form on your upper abdomen. Don't let a binder cause a groove or divot on your (ex) muffin top. No marks. Ever.

3. Post-op endermologie - basically any smoothing treatment works - makes sure that no areas of edema are collecting. 2 sessions.

4. Post-op Accent- this skin tightening laser is great after abdominal lipo and takes up slack beautifully. 2 sessions for mild laxity, 4 for moderate.

5. What to wear - do NOT wear anything that cuts across the lipo area. I have a patient with a permanent Levi's button imprinted on her abdomen. Watch your posture, your garment, and your clothes. You can not be too careful for the first 3 weeks!



Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Post op routines following liposuction

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Best results following liposuction occur in people at or close to their ideal body weight with localized collections of excess fat and good skin elasticity. Although your genetics and your age will determine your skin elasticity, the skill of the surgeon is also important. Following surgery I have my patients wear elasticized garments for four weeks. This does help to externally influence skin contraction. In addition, procedures such as the EndyMed Pro 3Deep can help improve the smoothness of the skin and reduce any dimples, depressions, or contour irregularities that can sometimes occur following liposuction


Robert H. Gotkin, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Maximizing Liposuction

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Absolutely the best thing you can do is rest for the first day, then gently walk in the days after, as gravity will help with the fluid removal. Make sure you wear your compression garments at all times, and wear them nice and tight (don't make them more comfortable by loosening them). Gentle massage can help. Don't take anything that thins the blood like NSAIDs or alcohol. As for creams, there is no topical product that can do anything to help the liposuction healing process. 

Cameron Rokhsar, MD, FAAD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon

Maximizing Smoothness after Liposuction

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      Wearing the compression garment correctly and snugly 24/7 for the first several weeks after surgery along with early recognition and drainage of fluid collections can help prevent irregularities of liposuction.

Skin retraction after lipo depends on skin's elasticity

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The most important thing to keep in mind is that none of the treatment after surgery will produce good, smooth skin shrinkage if the elastic tone of the skin is poor. This is especially true for the abdominal area after pregnancy, and after substantial weight loss. Your surgeon will be able to advise you about how long to wear the compression garment. Lanolin is an ingredient in moisturizers, which do not enhance skin elasticity except as a temporary effect on dehydrated skin.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 59 reviews


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The amount of skin retraction is most dependant on your preexisting skin tone. I ask the patients to wear the compression garments 24/7 for the first 3 weeks

Norman Bakshandeh, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon

Post op lipo instruction

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i do use vaser lipo in my practice and i have severe post op instruction.

1 lymphatic massage starting even 2 days after surgery to remove swelling .

2 lpg endermologie or vela smooth , 2 a week for 6 to 8 weeks, 

3 garment on for 6 to 8 weeks , depending on how easy the edema will settle,

in specific case, when a long lasting edemas still present, and risk to become a chronic problem, i do recommend to extend the post op manual massage for longer time. 

last , but not least, in abdomen i do use epifoam silastic foam to avoid bulges 

Alberto Di Giuseppe, MBBS
London Plastic Surgeon

Skin retraction after liposuction

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Personally, I do not think that the skin contracts any more significantly using VASER or LASER LIPOLYSIS machines than traditional or power assised liposcuction. That being said, I do not think any one technqius will really accomplish that.  It is mostly age related, skin related, and fat content related.

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