How Much Downtime is there after Liposuction?
Liposuction is the second most popular cosmetic surgery in the U.S. for a reason – it can truly transform your body in a single procedure with minimal pain and downtime. Every year surgeons perform more than a quarter million liposuction procedures in the United States every year.
For, many people the only thing holding them back from getting liposuction is concerns about recovery: from worries about downtime and missing work to apprehensions about post-operative pain.
Board-certified Birmingham, MI plastic surgeon Dr. Ali has performed more than 1000 liposuction procedures. In this article the lipo experts at AMAE Plastic Surgery in Birmingham, MI explain what to expect during the recovery process – so you can decide if liposuction is right for you.
Liposuction Recovery in General
To begin with, remember that ANY surgical recovery varies from one individual to the next. Your age, overall health, skin condition, medical history all play a role in determining your recover speed and comfort.
Additionally, the location and amount of fat that is removed will play a role in your recovery. It’s common sense that more extensive fat removal will require a longer recovery.
And, perhaps most importantly, how well you follow post-operative care instructions can be the biggest factor in ensuring a shorter and more comfortable recovery. For example, smoking and alcohol use during recovery can lead to delays and complications.
Liposuction Recovery: “Downtime”
Liposuction is an outpatient procedure, so patients almost always go home the same day. You will be very drowsy and will need someone to drive you home and stay with you for at least 24 hours. Most patients sleep or dose most of their first day home.
For about 24 hours there will also be some drainage from the surgical sight. This is very normal. Occasionally Dr. Ali may also use small drains to prevent fluid from building up around the incisions. (We will tell you exactly how to care for them.)
Patients are typically quite sore and likely still feeling residual effects of the anesthesia or pain medication for the next 2 days – so it’s not safe to drive, operate machinery, or go out alone for 48 hours. But walking for 10 minutes every 2 hours can help with the soreness a bit and is also important to prevent the development of blood clots (DVTs).
It’s important to enlist help around the house for the first few days, especially if you have young children to care for!
By the third day most patients are up to gentle daily activities like fixing meals or straightening up the house.
Liposuction Recovery: Time Off Work
Some patients with a “desk job” that does not require strenuous activity, lifting, carrying or prolonged standing may even be able to go back to work on the third day. However, it is very important to get up and move or walk for 10 minutes every couple of hours to prevent blood clots.
This means lipo on a Friday and returning to work on Monday is possible for some (but not all) patients with sedentary jobs. You will still be quite sore on day 3 – so gauge your time off from work accordingly. Dr. Ali can help you with this during your first consultation.
Most people can return to work after a week. But patients with a particularly physical or demanding job, may want to schedule 2 weeks off in order to recover more fully. Discuss the type of work that you do with Dr. Ali during your consultation at our Birmingham, MI office. He will be able to help you assess the amount of time you should schedule off work – based on the extent of your liposuction surgery and the type of work that you perform.
CLICK HERE to Read about Pain Management After Liposuction
Liposuction | Birmingham, MI
If you are considering liposuction and have more questions about recovery, downtime, returning to work, or anything else, schedule a consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Ali. He will answer your questions, address your concerns and help you decide if liposuction is right for you.
Dr. Ali has helped more than 1000 men and women in the Birmingham, MI area get the body they’ve always wanted with liposuction, so call us today.