What Are The Side Effects Of Liposuction?

Updated on September 3, 2020

Liposuction stands out as a very effective and safe way to remove stubborn fat pockets. It is meant to help you when you cannot get the results you want through exercising and dieting. 

The truth is that you can get great results when you opt for liposuction. However, it is important to also start considering the risks of liposuctions before you blindly opt for this procedure. There are some minor side effects that can be experienced, especially while the body is during the healing phase after the surgery is over. 

Whenever you opt for liposuction, make sure that you first arrange a conversation with the doctor. You will be told about these risks and you will be given some recovery guidelines. They have to be followed to the letter. 

Liposuction’s Possible Side Effects

First off, it is very important that you only take into account the services of a highly-experienced plastic surgeon. Considering the risks of liposuction, he/she will be able to help you avoid the excessive side effects. Minor side effects will most likely occur but you want to avoid the excessive ones that are not really needed. 

During the initial cosmetic surgery consultation, the surgeon will explain what you can expect before, during, and after the surgery. This will surely include conversations about the following possible side effects. Keep in mind that every single patient will heal differently. It is practically impossible to know exactly what you will experience after liposuction. Due to this, just take the following as a rough guideline. 


When the liposuction procedure is done with you under general anesthesia, it is very common to feel dizzy or drowsy. This happens as general anesthesia effects start to wear off. 


This is a completely natural reaction of the body to trauma or disturbance of body tissue. It is possible that swelling will increase following the very first day after the cosmetic procedure. However, as your body starts to absorb fluids, swelling subsides and you recover. 

Most liposuction patients experience a considerable swelling reduction at around the 3 weeks point after the procedure. However, some swelling can even persist for up to 3 months. 


When liposuction is performed, the small blood vessels in the treatment area are broken. Due to this, you can expect the appearance of bruising. When the blood vessels start to heal, bruising starts to disappear. Usually, this happens around the very first 7 days of healing, based on information provided by the National Institutes of Health. Bruising diminishes considerably when up to 4 weeks following the surgery. 


This can easily vary from one person to another and is directly linked to the size of the area that was treated with liposuction. Many patients notice that the discomfort they feel peaks at around day 2 following the procedure. Then, it gradually subsides. The plastic surgeon almost always anticipates discomfort. This is the reason why pain medication is prescribed. 

Reducing Side Effect Severity

The best news about liposuction is that side effects, including those presented above, can be mitigated. This is usually done through wearing a special compression garment. Following the liposuction procedure, the doctor will most likely use this. You will also be offered some specific instructions about how the garment needs to be worn. What is particularly important is to make sure that you do not wear it too tightly, or it could cause problems. 

There are other recovery tips that will be given to you. The very common ones are to avoid alcohol and tobacco products since these affect the body’s natural ability to heal. Then, you will be told about the diet and about the over-the-counter pills that can be used, together with those that should be avoided.

The Editorial Team at Healthcare Business Today is made up of skilled healthcare writers and experts, led by our managing editor, Daniel Casciato, who has over 25 years of experience in healthcare writing. Since 1998, we have produced compelling and informative content for numerous publications, establishing ourselves as a trusted resource for health and wellness information. We offer readers access to fresh health, medicine, science, and technology developments and the latest in patient news, emphasizing how these developments affect our lives.