Is It Normal to Have New Bruises Appear 5 Days After Liposuction?

I had abdominal liposuction and reduction of gynecomastia earlier this week, and had some bruises which were apparent the day of the procedure (as expected). I had a small incision in my belly-button, but until today have had no bruising of that area. Tonight (5 days after surgery), I took a shower and noticed a bruise below my belly button, and two red dots around my belly button (all of which are new today). The skin on the bruise also feels a bit strange--sorta numb. Is this normal?

Doctor Answers 9

Delayed bruising is common after liposuction

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It is very common for bruising to appear several days after liposuction.  Since superficial fat just under the skin is not treated with liposuction to avoid skin indentations, there is a barrier of tissue between the surface of the skin and the area that was treated which is where blood initially settles. It takes several days for some of this blood to work its way out to the skin which is why the bruising is not seen for several days. Some of this blood will run downhill with gravity and is why, after several days bruising is found well below the area that was treated such as the groin with abdominal liposuction. 

Liposuction recovery

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Thank you for the question and picture.  What you are experiencing  with bruising and numbness is quite common after liposuction surgery.  Much of this bruising and swelling will subside by one month  postoperatively and it will take several months to see the final results of the surgery.

I hope this helps.

Liposuction - Bruising Appears 5 Days Post-Op - Normal?

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Hi violabro in New York, NY,

Yes, it's very common to have bruising appear at later times than immediately post-op.  In fact, it typically takes more than a few days for all the bruising to come out.  That's because bruising is actually blood in the skin, and if the blood starts out relatively deep (as is the case with lipo) it can take a few extra days for it to come to the surface.

Of note is that the skin is extra sensitive to the sun for at least several weeks to months AFTER the bruises have disappeared, so you need to be particularly careful during this time.

As with all cases you should, of course, discuss this with your own plastic surgeon.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

Delayed bruising

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This is not at all uncommon.  Bruises in the deeper tissue can slowly diffuse through the tissue layers, to be seen about 5-7 days post-op.  

If you are concerned about a potential complication, it's always wise to have your surgeon re-examine you.


Best wishes,


Bruising after liposuction

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After liposuction some people may develop bruising that will take several days to appear.   Deep bruises have to make their way to the surface before they become visible.  It is also not unusual to develop bruising in areas that were not liposuctioned at all, particularly if they are lower on the body than the site that was treated.  For example, the groin area may swell and appear bruised if you had liposuction of the abdomen, or the knees and lower legs may bruise if you you had your thighs done.


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Cases vary and some patients will get deep bruises that may take 3-5 days to surface and become visible. Watch the over the counter pain relievers early on as some of them make bruising worse.


Best Regards,


John Di Saia MD

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon

Liposuction bruises

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Occasionally new bruises may occur in a delayed manner several days following liposuction.  Typically this coincides with an increase in patient activity level.  Although it is possible to resume full activity shortly after liposuction, it's reasonable to take it easy for the first week to allow your body to heal.  Hopefully that will decrease the risk of late onset bruises and speed your overall recovery.  The bruises should not effect the final outcome.

David Stoker, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Delayed bruising

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Delayed bruising accompanied by some numbness is common after liposuction. Maximum swelling is usually within about three to five days after your surgery, and the majority of it along with bruising goes away in two to three weeks. You may feel some firmness, though, for a few months afterward. You can assess your results at three to four months after surgery.

Swelling and bruising after liposuction

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For men fat tends to be stored in the intra-abdominal compartment. This is visceral fat and can not be liposuctioned. This visceral fat can only be lost by diet and exercise.   The risks for men are the same as for women.  The most common area men request liposuction is the lower abdomen and love handle areas.   Bruising of the penis is not uncommon since there is a very loose soft tissue plane between the abdomen and genital area.    Continue to follow instructions from your plastic surgeon as far as wearing a compression garment.

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.