As one of Melbourne’s leading liposuction clinics, we pride ourselves on providing an honest and caring service, so you feel completely comfortable before going ahead with any procedure. As part of that service, we want to ensure you know exactly what to expect from a procedure, including your recovery. The following article will help explain how your body recovers from liposuction, for more information, please arrange a consultation with one of our friendly doctors.
Following the liposuction procedure, your body will begin to recover immediately. This may only take a few days or up to several months in the rare situation that complications occur. The length of recovery is dictated by the type of liposuction being performed, size of the area being treated and your bodies reaction to the surgery.
While every patient is different, there are similarities in all paths to recovery. The day after the procedure, most patients will experience some level of pain, which can be alleviated with medication. It’s also normal to experience discomfort while moving, this should clear up within a few days, and most patients should find walking relatively easy, allowing you to return to desk work with little discomfort.
Swelling and Drainage
Swelling is an unavoidable side effect of liposuction and will likely take a few months to subside. The severity of swelling is dictated by the size of the treatment area and will often take longer if the procedure treated a larger area. The process will be slow, but it’s worth the wait – beneath your swollen skin, amazing changes have taken place. To reduce the risk of excessive swelling, seromas, and hematomas your doctor will insert drainage tubes into the area.
Following the procedure, you will also notice fluid draining from the incisions. This is made up of the anesthetic solution used during the surgery and is completely normal. In fact, it’s actually helping your body heal. However, you’ll need to care for the wound and the tubes, as well as record the amount of fluid drained. This way your doctor will know when the tubes can be removed safely.
Due to the reduced fat in the area, the skin might seem a little lose, this is entirely normal, and it should tighten over time. The length of time is dictated by a number of factors including skin elasticity, genetics, health, and age. In general, most patients’ skin will return to normal after six months.
Like all surgical procedures, liposuction comes with a risk of infection. During recovery, you’ll have to pay close attention to your incisions and look for any signs of infection.
Keep an eye out for things like redness, swelling, and an unpleasant discharge. If you see any of these signs, don’t hesitate to contact us, your doctor will be able to arrange a follow-up consultation to ensure everything is ok.
Exercise is an essential part of your recovery and the long-term success of any fat reduction. However, it is essential you wait until your body can handle the increased activity. Before starting exercising again, consult your surgeon to see what’s right for you.
Common recommendations begin with lite walking for the first few days followed by a gradual increase in intensity over the next two weeks, but any serious exercise should be avoided for the first five months.
To help speed up your recovery and prevent any complications, try the following tips:
Drink plenty of water.
It is easy to become dehydrated following the procedure, and staying hydrated helps aid recovery from swelling
Avoid drinks that cause dehydration
Your body has already lost a significant amount of fluid and is vulnerable to dehydration. Don’t increase the risk by consuming caffeinated drinks or alcohol, both of which can lead to dehydration and in alcohol’s case; reduce your bodies ability to heal and fight infections too.
Eat healthy while you’re healing
While liposuction may help you reduce fat, it’s no substitute for a healthy diet. In fact, eating healthy and nutritious food after your procedure is essential to your recovery. Your doctor will likely restrict you to a liquid diet for a few days, but you should gradually be able to work your way back to a normal diet over time.
Some delicious, nutrition-rich foods to try include: green tea, salmon and blueberries for a big boost of vitamins, and healthy fats; while apples and pineapples can help reduce bruising thanks to high levels of bromelain and quercetin which have an anti-inflammatory effect.
Try a lymphatic drainage massage.
While this is a commonly recommended procedure following liposuction, do not attempt unless your doctor has specifically instructed you. The massage can help your body eliminate a build-up of extra fluid which in turn reduces swelling, scarring, and recovery time. The procedure can also have a positive effect on your immune system boosting its ability to fight infections.
Remember to wear your compression garment.
They may not look very flattering or feel comfortable, but compression garments will help reduce swelling and pain, boost fluid drainage and most importantly help your body heal into your desired shape..
During the first one or two weeks following your liposuction procedure, you should be wearing the compression garment 24 hours a day. After this point, you will only have to wear it for 12 hours a day. Some patients may opt to wear it longer, as they find it provides more support.
When it comes to activity moderation is key.
Exercise can be great for recovery, but rest is critical. Remember to take things easy immediately after your liposuction procedure, and gradually work up to some light exercise like walking. If you don’t keep active at all, you may run the risk of developing a blood clot in your lungs or legs. However, too much activity may lead to increased swelling or tear your incision so avoid intense cardio and weight lifting for at least four to six weeks.