Hard Lumps Normal After Tumescent Liposuction?

I had a Tumescent liposuction 21 days ago for my stomach and love handles. On day 16, I developed some hard lumps right where my pants rest. I have noticed a lot of swelling and it looks like I never had the procedure. Is this normal?

Doctor Answers 13

Problems after liposuction - normal healing

Firmness and lumpiness are very common after liposuction of any type. If you are having skin irregularities it is possible that these were pre-existing.  It is the soft tissues normal response to trauma.  More than likely the swelling is better in the morning when you first wake up and gets worse throughout the day as you go about your normal activities.  Light massage is beneficial but in general it just takes time for this to resolve.  Look for it to remain about the same for the next three weeks and then begin to get better between the 6 th week and the end of the 3rd month.  Continue to wear your compression garment as instructed.

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Lumps After Liposuction

It is not unusual to note firm areas after liposuction. Swelling is rarely uniform and therefore some areas may appear firmer and fuller than others. Occasionally a 'lump' of firm fat can appear due to excess swelling of this small amount of fat. This is slightly more common at sites where there is additional pressure from garments, clothing, etc... The good news is that not only is this a normal part of the healing process, it almost always resolves spontaneously.

Louis DeLuca, MD
Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

Hard Lumps Normal After Tumescent Liposuction

Thank you for you for your question. You are very early in your recovery from your liposuction surgery. Waviness and irregular areas are normal in the first few weeks after surgery. Hards areas will improve over time. Massage, extrernal ultrasound and using your garment will help with the swelling and lumps.  Final results take 6-12 months. Discuss your concerns with your Plastic Surgeon

Jeff Angobaldo, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 104 reviews

Uneven results after liposuction

Liposuction is a very powerful and effective technique to recontour the body. After the procedure, patients should expect to see some swelling and minimal drainage from their small liposuction incisions. This drainage is some of the fluid that was added before your surgery that help the surgeon removed the fat safely and effectively. For the first several weeks after liposuction, your body may still have some of this fluid on board and will also have initiated the swelling process. The best thing to do is to try to elevate the area the body that received the lack suction as much as possible, where a compressive garment at all times, and try to limit your salt intake in your diet.

Pat Pazmino, MD, FACS
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 101 reviews

Lumps three weeks after Tumescent Lipo

On areas like the abdomen, one should expect lumps or knots three weeks after liposuction. You can take ibuprofen, aleve or even aspirin if they are tender. Otherwise, don't worry. They should go away after a few weeks.

T. Wayne Day, MD
Nashville Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Lumps & Bumps Following Liposuction

It’s not unusual for patients to experience lumps and bumps following tumescent liposuction for a variety of reasons.  During this procedure the liposuction cannula is passed through the subcutaneous tissue creating a series of tunnels.  Following surgery patients wear compression garments to collapse these tunnels and remodel the soft tissue.  Unfortunately, blood may accumulate along these tracts.  When this occurs and these clots solidify, they form lumps, bumps and areas of uneven of unevenness in the subcutaneous tissue.

                  Gentle massage of these areas usually results in resolution of the problem.  If you have concerns about hard lumps following tumescent liposuction make sure you discuss them with your plastic surgeon.  Your surgeon should be able to formulate a treatment plan for this problem.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Lumps and slight irregularity normal immediately after lipo

Tenderness, swelling, and skin hardening/slight irregularities can be normal in the 2-4 weeks following the procedure.  At approximately 1-3 months, all of these improve and skin tightening begins to occur.  Hang in there, final results are sometimes not achieved for 6 months after the procedure.

Melanie D. Palm, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Liposuction lumps

Firm areas after Liposuction is common. This is most likely due to swelling.  It usually gets better with time. Sometimes deep massage can help with lymphatic drainage and flattening these areas out.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Lumps and Swelling after Liposuction

Thank you so much for your question!  Having lumps after liposuction can be a normal part of healing.  These areas are scar tissue that form and with some massaging will soften with time.  Swelling in some patients persist for up to 3-6 months, and studies have actually shown that after one month, only 2/3 of the swelling is going.  Allow time for your body to heal and for the swelling to decrease.  Eating a low sodium diet and minimizing strenuous activity/exercise for a few weeks after liposuction can also help with swelling.  Hope this helps...best of luck!

Joyce C. Chen, MD, MPH, FACS

Sounds normal

Most of the swelling will be gone in 2-3 weeks, but some firmness can last for a couple of months. You can assess your results at about the three or four month mark. You can try massaging the area with your surgeon's advice.

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 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.