Liposuction Discharge


INCISION: You will have small incision marks where the liposuction cannula was introduced.This will leak fluid for the first day or two after your procedure.You can put a towel or pad under you to help absorb the fluid.This is normal.

SHOWER: When you are up to it. Be careful, you may feel faint so please have someone close. Some drainage is normal. You will have small holes where the liposuction cannula was inserted, these can drain A LOT initially. Replace the gauze if it becomes saturated. The draining should taper off over the first few days. You can wash your compression garment after washing in cold water with minimal heat dry. Massaging lotion like Lubriderm or Eucerin after your showers can help with swelling and incision healing.

LAY LOW: An adult must stay with you for the first 24 hours after surgery.The effects of anesthesia can persist for that long and you are at an increased risk of falling and making bad decisions. Stay safe. Heal well!

ACTIVITY: REST for the first 72 hours after surgery.Walk around, move frequently, but nothing strenuous for the first 3 days.

BLOOD CLOTS: The best way to prevent a blood clot is to move frequently, even while laying down. Signs of a blood clot include pain, heat, asymmetric swelling, and redness, usually in one of your legs/calves. Notify us ASAP if you experience these symptoms, or go to the emergency room for life threatening symptoms.

DRAIN: If your procedure includes a lot of liposuction in areas with stretchy skin you will go home with a drain to help manage post-op fluid and swelling.The drain tubing needs to stay free of clotted material and occasionally ‘stripped’. Nurses at the surgery center will show you how this is done. Increased activity causes increased swelling/fluid so the drain is very helpful in this period.These drains typically stay in for 5-10 days, but may come out earlier in some cases.

SWELLING: You should expect swelling and bruising of areas where you had the liposuction.This is normal.The compression garments can help with this.

COMPRESSION:You are wrapped up tight at the end of your surgery. If you are feeling nauseated or like you can’t take a deep breath or you can’t seem to get comfortable, try loosening the compression.We want it to be snug, but it doesn’t have to be so tight you are miserable.

-Once you have been in for your first post-op visit it is time to start experimentingwith compression. Most people like to have some kind of compression for a month or two after surgery.

ICE: Please DO NOT use ice.Your skin is healing and therefore compromised. Using heat or ice on the area can cause tissue damage which can prolong the healing process. Please protect that sensitive skin.

SLEEP: Sleep however you are comfortable. Bed, recliner, lots of pillows, no pillows… Your body is excellent at knowing what is best during recovery from the injury of your surgery. Listen to it!

DIET: You may not be hungry, this is normal. Eat small portions when you feel like eating. Remember in the first three days after surgery (at least) your body will retain fluid. Limit high salt foods, keep your rings off, and do not obsess about what the scale says. DRINK fluids. Staying hydrated helps with healing and it will help your bowels. If you’re concerned about constipation try a little milk of magnesia, fiber powder with plenty of fluid, fresh grapes or maybe a suppository.

MEDICATIONS: Take it easy on the narcotic pain medications for the first 12 hours after surgery.Try rotating Ibuprofen or Tylenol with the pain medication. Use ice for pain as well. Adjust to lower doses of the narcotics over the first 3 days to maximize your progress.A little pain is normal and to be expected after surgery.

NAUSEA: Nausea is often a sign of low blood pressure, which is a normal response to both pain medication and the initial recovery phase after surgery. Laying down, elevating your legs on a couple of pillows and a cold compress can help ease the nausea.This sensation may come on suddenly, which is why we recommend LAYING LOW for the first 3 days.

DO NOT DRIVE: No driving for the first week after surgery is probably best. No driving for as long as you are taking pain medication.

NO SMOKING: This should go without saying.Any nicotine you were exposed to for a month before your surgery will hurt how well you heal. Smoking directly interferes with you result.

INFECTION: This is rare!! Any high and sustained fever with rapidly increasing redness and discharge from your wound requires attention. 

Call us at 801-278-9062 or email [email protected] with any questions. Dr. Keen’s after hours number is listed on the discharge paperwork that was emailed to you. Please refer to that for after-hours questions.