Why am I gaining more weight since after the surgery?

I had smartlipo one week ago. I feel like I ballooned up 9 lbs which is what I now weigh from my original weight of 127lbs at 5'5". I am now at 135/6. I am still pretty swollen and uncomfortable but is this from me recuperating and not doing anything? I haven't been eating incorrectly. I have been able to go back to work after 1 week's of full recuperation at home because the nerves were being so weird and tingling and I felt way too bloated to even move. Why am I gaining more weight now?

Doctor Answers 12

Post-surgical expectations

Hi, there! Thank you for your question. After any procedure there can be swelling from both the tumescent fluid as well as normal inflammatory response. Following a healthy, balanced diet, engaging in light activity (such as walking) and drinking plenty of fluids will help this to resolve. However, you should contact your provider regarding any post-procedure concerns for more specific instructions.

 Best wishes, Dr. David Amron

Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Weight gain post op.

It takes time for your body to heal post opertively. It's important to communicate any concerns with your doctor. It is also important to maintain a healthly lifesyle, eat a healthy diet and drink plenty of fluids. Wearing a compression garment will help keep swelling down. After a day of work it is normal to experience and increase in swelling. Try to elevate as able. I recommend that my patients wait three weeks before exercising or returning to the gym. Be patient. Best of luck to you!

Scott C. Lindsay, DO
Reading Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Weight gain after SmartLipo

After SmartLipo, or any surgery, your body perceives it has been injured, which it has.  Many changes take place in response to injury.  One of those is fluid retention.  This will self-correct over time.  Continue to follow a healthy diet and get back to exercising as soon as you feel comfortable.  The healing process takes time.

Robert Stroup, Jr., MD, FACS
Cleveland Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Gaining weight after Smartlipo is temporary

it is not unusual at all to gain water weight after Smartlipo. it will go away within the first 2-3 weeks. 

of course, you need to mindful of what you eat and drink - if you are stick to your normal routine then don't worry it will go away.

david berman md

David E. Berman, MD
Sterling Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 111 reviews

Why am I gaining more weight since after the surgery?

It is normal to have some temporary weight gain and bloating following surgery.  Drink lots of fluid and avoid salt in the first few weeks to expedite the healing.

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

SmartLipo results

Thanks for your question. Weight gain and swelling is very normal in the first week and will decrease within the coming weeks. Swelling can last several months as optimal results are reached between 6-9 months. Massage, stay hydrated and avoid high sodium foods. Best, Dr. Katz

Bruce E. Katz, MD
New York Dermatologic Surgeon
3.8 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Bodily Swelling

Hello! Thanks for your question.

What you are experiencing is tell-tale symptoms of post-surgical swelling. When an invasive procedure such as liposuction is performed on the body, the body responds by swelling. This swelling typically reduces within two weeks, but can last up to two-three months. With a procedure like liposuction, the results continually improve after the procedure.

In good health,

Dr. Berger

Andre Berger, MD
Beverly Hills Physician
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews


You have swelling from surgery. Please continue to wear your compression garment and walk. The swelling will slowly resolve over the next several months. Some do gain 5 to 10 pounds from swelling after liposuction.

Connie Hiers, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews


Thank you for posting your question. The increase in your weight is due to swelling and edema, which are normal and expected after any procedure. After smarlipo, it takes time for your body to readjust itself and settle into its final shape. It typically takes several months before swelling is completely gone. Be patient and give your body the time and rest it needs to recover from the procedure. Best of luck.

Jan Zemplenyi, MD
Bellevue Facial Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Swelling after SmartLipo--Add aftercare with Venus Legacy, Exilis Ultra, Cellutone/Zwave

This can be typical after your procedure due to swelling, which can last 3-6 months. I recommend adding RF treatments externally like venus legacy, exilis ultra, Vanquish, shock/vibration therapy like Cellutone/z wave, hyperbaric oxygen and compression in order to decrease swelling and improve results. Best, Dr. Emer

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 196 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.