Liposuction is often a choice for those who pursue to achieve some ideal body proportion by reshaping and contouring their body. Liposuction, as a minimally invasive procedure, targets localized fat deposits, offering a path to a more refined silhouette.
Deciding on liposuction often hinges on understanding the recovery process and its duration. Most people want to know what to expect after a liposuction procedure is accomplished, and how long it takes to see the anticipated results.
Before we delve into the recovery process and weekly progress, it’s crucial to ensure you understand what liposuction entails.
What is liposuction?
Liposuction is a surgical procedure whereby excess fat cells from specific body areas are extracted by suction to improve body shape and contour. Liposuction is not a weight loss method, but body contouring and a way to get rid of stubborn fat from the body areas that do not respond to diet and exercise.
At Park Plaza Plastic Surgery Center, our plastic surgeon offers a range of liposuction options to suit individual needs and preferences. Focusing on natural-looking results, Dr. Lefkovits can help you gain a smoother appearance by removing stubborn fat deposits from the neck, arms, abdomen, waist, thighs, and calves.
Liposuction is generally conducted in a surgical setting, such as a hospital or an accredited surgical facility. It involves using a thin tube called a cannula to suction out the unwanted fat through small incisions in the skin. This surgery involved using general anesthesia during the liposuction procedure. The recovery process and the results you observe following liposuction are influenced by the techniques employed and the specific area of your body that underwent treatment.
Week 1: The Initial Days Post-Liposuction
Immediately after liposuction surgery, when you wake up, you will feel insensible from the anesthesia, without feeling the effects of the procedure. As days pass and the effects of anesthesia start to wear off, you will experience different sensations such as pain and discomfort.
After the surgery, the patient is taken to the Recovery Room with a compression garment where a nurse provides post-op care. Most patients can leave the facility after about 2 hours, depending on the scope of the surgery.
Patients are encouraged to drink lots of liquid, especially Gatorade. They are also instructed to get out of bed as soon as possible and to sit and ambulate as much as possible.
As days pass and the effects of anesthesia start to wear off, you will experience different sensations such as pain and discomfort.
First days Post-Op Experience
When you return home from liposuction surgery, you will experience various sensations and changes in the body. Pain, swelling, fluid retention, and discomfort are normal, as the body starts to heal and adapt to the changes made during the procedure. The level of discomfort can vary from person to person, but it’s typically managed with prescribed pain medication. You will still wear compression garments to help relieve post-operative swelling, and you can remove them by taking a shower after two days post-op. You’ll need to wear this garment almost all the time for a few weeks, although the exact duration may vary.
You will have the first scheduled follow-up appointment to check on the surgical sites to make sure there is no evidence of bleeding or infection. You should be able to return to work after several days following the liposuction, the exact length depending on the number of sites and amount of fat removed.
At Park Plaza, we offer a post-op course of massage and lymphatic drainage treatments which help with the healing process and expedite the resolution of swelling.
Liposuction results Week 2: Progress and Adjustments
The first sign of the progress you will see is at the end of the first week of liposuction recovery. Swelling and bruising will start to subside gradually as the body’s natural healing process starts, and you will begin to see visible post-operative effects. For the best results, start to introduce light activities and mobility into their routine. Gentle movements like short walks can help improve circulation, reduce swelling and stiffness, and promote a faster recovery. Remember to follow the specific guidelines provided by your surgeon. Employ recommended methods for pain relief such as pain medication prescribed, and maintain a healthy diet. If it is still necessary wear a compression garment as directed by your surgeon.
Liposuction results week 3: Visible body shape changes
As you step into the third week of the liposuction recovery period you will see significant improvements in your body’s contours. The targeted areas are likely to show a more refined and sculpted appearance. It’s important to be aware that you might notice changes in sensations in the treated area. This could include feelings of numbness or tingling.
You can also easily come back to your exercise routine, with light exercises to improve circulation and flexibility and aid in a smoother recovery.
6 weeks after liposuction: Results are visible
Entering the sixth week you’ve likely witnessed remarkable changes in your body’s contours and overall appearance. The initial discomfort and swelling have subsided, and you’re now experiencing the true culmination of your efforts. Keep forward with the positive habits you’ve established such as regular exercise, a balanced diet, and proper hydration.
If you’re worried about loose skin after liposuction, you need to wait several months to fully appreciate any laxity. If there is looseness of the skin, then one can consider skin tightening such as possible laser treatments or skin excision.
3 Months After Liposuction
Your desired and final results are here, the most visible after the procedure. The initial stages of recovery are behind you, and you’re now reaping the rewards of your commitment to self-improvement. At this point, you might still see some scars, but they’re likely small and not very noticeable.
Different liposuction techniques may take longer times for the scars to heal. You don’t need to continue with compression garments.
Recommendation for Optimal Liposuction Results
Liposuction can be a transformative step towards achieving your desired body contour. To ensure the best possible outcome, it’s crucial to follow a set of essential recovery tips during your recovery period.
Follow Post-Op Instructions
Your plastic surgeon will provide detailed guidelines about post-operative care that you need to follow for the best results. It typically includes wearing compression garments, taking prescribed medications, and attending follow-up appointments.
Focus on a healthy diet
A proper diet supports the body’s healing process, including food with good nutritional value, well-balanced meals, and drinking a lot of water during the recovery period to stimulate detoxification.
Gradually return to exercise regiment
Easy and low-impact exercises are recommended during liposuction recovery to stimulate circulation and blood flow.
Follow up and listen to your body
Be conscious about unusual sensations and feelings and communicate them to your doctor. Also, if you feel that your body needs rest, take a break from your activities.
What to avoid during the recovery period
Just as there are recommended steps to follow after liposuction, there are also certain things you should refrain from in the weeks following the procedure.
Avoid Strenuous Activity
Do not practice vigorous exercise or heavy lifting during the initial recovery period. It may stop the healing process and cause some complications.
Neglect Self-care and Compression Garments
It is crucial to wear compression garments because they help reduce swelling and promote proper healing. Take care of yourself during post-op liposuction, get enough rest, manage stress, and adopt a positive mindset throughout your recovery.
Skip follow-up appointments and rush the recovery process
Regular check-ins with your doctor are crucial for monitoring progress and addressing potential problems and complications.
The recovery process for different liposuction body areas
The recovery process after liposuction can vary depending on the specific body area treated.
Typically liposuction targeted areas are the abdomen, thighs, hips, and arms. The recovery timeline may vary if other procedures are performed simultaneously such as the Brazilian Butt Lift and/or a Tummy Tuck.
For example, after stomach liposuction, you can see results after one month. All you need is to track stomach liposuction results week by week, to ensure that the transformative process goes smoothly as the doctor describes it. After a Brazilian butt lift, you can return to work after a week or two, but you may need to take it easy for a few more weeks.
With tummy tuck, you can return to work in one to two weeks following the procedure.
Why Have Dr. Lefkovits Perform Liposuction?
Dr. Lefkovits has been performing liposuction for 35 years and is very experienced in the procedure, having performed thousands of these cases.
He completed his Plastic Surgery training at Lenox Hill Hospital where he also served as Chief Resident. Lenox Hill Hospital is recognized as a leading institution for training in Aesthetic Surgery and has an illustrious, world-renowned faculty. He has served as an Assistant Professor of Plastic Surgery at New York Medical College and continues to be involved in the teaching program at Lenox Hill Hospital and Manhattan Eye Ear and Throat Hospital.
He is one of the few plastic surgeons who are Double Board Certified Plastic Surgeons by both the American Board of Otolaryngology as well as the American Board of Plastic Surgery.
Dr. Lefkovits has a very strong aesthetic sense and strives for natural-looking results. He will refrain from performing surgery on patients whom he feels are not good candidates for surgery.
Schedule a FREE Liposuction Consultation in NYC
If you would like to learn more about liposuction surgery and get to know your options please call (212) 750-9494 to schedule your initial consultation at Park Plaza Plastic Surgery located in a beautiful townhouse off Fifth Avenue in Manhattan.
Dr. George Lefkovits, the owner of Park Plaza Plastic Surgery, is a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and the American Board of Otolaryngology. He has extensive training and over 30 years of experience in performing all kinds of plastic surgery procedures. Dr. Lefkovits attended Georgetown University School of Medicine and State University of New York Downstate Medical College for his degrees.