Swelling After Liposuction -3 Days Post-Op?

From reading this forum i am awsre of the healing process & the time required post lipo. However i am worried that i now have a new crease above my belly button. Ihad large lipo 3 days ago on my hips, uppet & lower abdomen & chest. The result on my chest was immediately visible however my lower ab was & is badly swollen to the point where it looks bigger than pre-op. The Dr said he removed 4.8 litres & i know this is a lot, i am concerned that he has removed more from the upper ab than lower.

Doctor Answers 7

Swelling after Liposuction 3 Days Post Operative?

It is way to early to start being concerned about your final results. You are still very swollen and the swelling may be asymmetrical. These are all normal findings. You must wait at least 2-3 months before you start to see your results.

Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Big Belly with Crease after Lipo- Why and What do Do? Ask Dr Ellen

Hello Craig1980,

First off, take a deep breath and remind yourself that your surgery was only 3 days ago- a lot of healing is yet to come, as you know.


1.  plan on about 2 weeks until you see a significant improvement in your swelling... 4.8 liters out of your body will create a lot of reaction in your body

2.  all swelling travels "south."  By that I mean that gravity will push all of that extra fluid downward from your chest, upper abdomen to your lower abdomen and also into your groin and scrotum.  So, it is not unusual to see your lower abdomen looking fuller than your upper abdomen.

3.  a compression garment and massaging will help moderate the swelling and can help you to feel more comfortable.  Some men will elevate the scrotum to help with swelling as well.

4.  the belly button is like an anchor separating your upper abdomen from your lower abdomen.  Once the belly fat is reduced, there can be some skin laxity noted as a crease above the belly button or at the level of the belly button or in both places.  Massaging will encourage the skin to 'tighten' up as much as it can and also will help with remodeling the residual fat to maximize your shape, reduce creases and improve your contour.

For all of these reasons, it is probably too early to determine what your final outcome will be.  Expect about 9 months to pass until you see the the end point.

Thanks for asking!  Dr Ellen

Ellen A. Mahony, MD
Westport Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Swelling Maximum 2--3 Days After Liposuction

Swelling is  Maximum 2--3 Days After #Liposuction. Bruising and swelling are normal in the suctioned areas and usually increase slightly after the removal of any tape or foam. The bruising will decrease over 3-4 weeks, but may last as long as 6 weeks. The majority of the swelling will be gone within the first 3-4 weeks. However it may take 6-9 months to disappear completely. The compression garment helps reduce the swelling, and the longer it is worn, the more quickly the process will proceed.

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 154 reviews

Swelling after lipo 3 days post op

Pain, assymetry and swelling is not uncommon only 3 days out. The question is to what degree each is occuring. Time is the answer and expect to swell more before it gets better.

Raj S. Ambay, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Too Soon To Worry


You recently underwent a large volume of abdominal liposuction only 3 days ago. The combination of routine post operative swelling and gravity is most likely the reason for this. I recommend that you wear your compression garment as advised, maintain good posture and follow up with your plastic surgeon next week. Because of gravity, the lowest point of the area that was   liposuctioned will resolve last. In you case it is your lower abdomen. 

Richard Wellington Swift, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Uneven Liposuction

     The swelling is maximal at this point and realize that the swelling at the bottom of the abdomen is always worse that at the top due to gravity.  Also, be on the lookout for fluid collections that can develop and make you lumpy.  Your plastic surgeon will be able to determine if you have fluid collections and these can be drained.

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 492 reviews

Swelling after abdominal liposuction

At three days after abdominal liposuction,. you are probably very swollen. This will take several months to go away completely.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 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.