As with any cosmetic surgery, liposuction carries potential side effects. Scars, bruises, and swelling may be apparent following surgery. It may take a few months for the lumpiness to completely disappear after the liposuction procedure. It will also take some time for your body to get used to the new shape, but most patients are pleased with the results despite the adjustment time.
Some post- liposuction swelling is inevitable. During follow-up visits with your doctor, it is important that you inform him or her of any changes in the amount of post- liposuction swelling or other side effects that you are experiencing. After liposuction, the swelling should be on a gradual recovery. If the swelling is not recovering or getting worse, inform your doctor immediately.
Swelling in the ankles and treated areas is common. This may be accompanied by a lumpy appearance in the area from which fat was removed, which will settle and appear more natural within six months after surgery. If the upper thigh has been treated with liposuction, patients may experience thrombophlebitis, or inflammation of the veins, in this area. Within a few weeks, this should go away. Discuss your expectations with your cosmetic surgeon before the procedure, and be aware of the possible complications that may arise as a result of the surgery.
One of the more minor complications of liposuction is bruises. These tender areas may cause some pain, but bruises are frequently short-lived and usually disappear after approximately one month. Bruising can be expected during any type of invasive medical procedure, but can be minimized depending on the technique that the cosmetic surgeon uses. Newer techniques like Vaser are associated with less post-operative bruising due to the fat-selective effect of the treatment. Be sure to discuss with your doctor before the surgery to address all your concerns about post-liposuction bruising. Post- liposuction side effects, including bruises and scars, may be minimized with proper care.
Sutures and Scars
There will be small scars at the regions where the liposuction cannulae are inserted. These scars are typically small and heal well. Sometimes, the doctor will leave the incisions open in order to allow fluid to drain out. Since the incisions are small, and the amount of fluid that must drain out is large, some surgeons opt to leave the incisions open, the better to clear the patient’s body of excess fluid. They find that the unimpeded departure of that fluid allows the incisions to heal more quickly. Others suture them only partially, leaving space for the fluid to drain out. Others delay suturing until most of the fluid has drained out, about 1 or 2 days. In any case, while the fluid is draining, dressings need to be changed often. After one to three days, small self-adhesive bandages are sufficient.