Liposuction Recovery: How Long Does It Take?

Unwanted fat can be a persistent issue, often resisting diet and exercise. Liposuction is a procedure designed to directly address this concern, removing excess fat to sculpt a more streamlined physique. At BodyPoint Medspa in Lehi, UT, we merge physical and cosmetic health, delivering personalized treatments under the guidance of highly trained physicians with a focus on emergency medicine, family practice, and plastic surgery.

While the liposuction procedure itself is something many patients are interested in, understanding the recovery process is equally important. Liposuction recovery varies from person to person, and being informed can make a substantial difference in your post-procedure experience. With over 25 years of experience, we uphold the highest standards in patient care and medical practices, ensuring you’re in capable hands throughout your liposuction and recovery.

What Is Liposuction?

Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure aimed at removing localized fat deposits from various parts of the body. It’s performed under anesthesia and only requires a couple of very small incisions that are big enough for the cannula to be inserted. This cannula helps to suction out the fat once it has been loosened. While liposuction is not a substitute for weight loss through diet and exercise, liposuction can effectively reshape areas of your body that hold onto stubborn fat.

What Are the Types of Liposuction?

Liposuction isn’t a one-size-fits-all treatment; there are different types that target various areas of the body. Stomach liposuction focuses on the abdominal area, helping to flatten and contour the midsection. Arm liposuction aims to reduce excess fat in the upper arms, contributing to a more toned appearance. Neck liposuction removes fat from the neck area, resulting in a more defined jawline and neck. Chin liposuction targets fat under the chin, commonly referred to as a “double chin,” to create a more sculpted facial profile.

What Is Tumescent Liposuction?

Among various liposuction techniques, tumescent liposuction is widely used because of its safety and efficacy. This method involves injecting a solution containing anesthetic and vasoconstrictors into the targeted fat tissue. The solution makes the fat easier to remove and minimizes bleeding during the procedure. Tumescent liposuction can result in less bruising and quicker recovery times compared to other methods.

What to Expect From Your Liposuction Recovery

Being prepared for what lies ahead can contribute to a smoother, more comfortable post-operative experience. Here’s what you can generally expect during various stages of your liposuction recovery:

Right After Your Treatment

Immediately after your liposuction procedure, you’ll likely feel some discomfort and experience swelling in the treated areas. It’s normal to have bandages or compression garments applied to help with the healing process and reduce swelling. You may also be prescribed medication to manage pain. Usually, we’ll advise you to rest and limit your activities for the initial 24 to 48 hours.

The First Week After Your Treatment

During the first week post-liposuction, you may continue to experience swelling and mild pain. Light walking is encouraged to promote blood circulation, but strenuous activity should be avoided. You’ll likely have a follow-up appointment with us to check on your progress and possibly remove stitches if they were used.

Mid-Phase Liposuction Recovery

After the first week, you’ll transition into the mid-phase of your recovery, which generally lasts until the end of the first month. The swelling will gradually subside, and you’ll begin to see some of the procedure’s effects. Most people can return to work and light exercise during this period, but it’s important to continue wearing any prescribed compression garments and to follow all medical advice.

Long-Term Liposuction Recovery

Long-term recovery focuses on the stabilization of your new body contours. This usually occurs over the course of two to three months but can vary among individuals. The final results will become increasingly visible as the residual swelling continues to decrease.

Liposuction Results and Maintenance

Once you’ve navigated through the various stages of liposuction recovery, maintaining your results becomes the next focus. Regular exercise and a balanced diet are crucial for sustaining your newly sculpted physique. Keep in mind that while liposuction removes fat cells, it doesn’t prevent new ones from forming. A disciplined lifestyle is key to enjoying your results for years to come.

What Factors Can Influence Recovery Time? 

  • The Patient’s Age: Older patients may find that their skin elasticity and ability to heal is different from younger individuals. Age can impact how quickly you can recover from a liposuction procedure.
  • Overall Health: Patients who are generally healthy and have strong immune systems typically experience smoother recoveries. Existing medical conditions can extend the recovery timeline.
  • The Extent of the Procedure: The larger the area treated, the longer the recovery period is likely to be. Tumescent liposuction on multiple areas, for example, may require a longer recuperation time compared to smaller, localized procedures.
  • Adherence to Post-Procedure Instructions: Following the post-procedure guidelines we provide can significantly impact your recovery speed. Skipping steps or ignoring advice could prolong your healing process.
  • Lifestyle Habits: Smoking and excessive alcohol consumption can impede your healing process and negatively affect liposuction recovery. Abstaining from these habits before and after your procedure can promote a smoother recovery.

Can Liposuction Be Combined With Other Treatments?

While liposuction excels at removing unwanted fat, it doesn’t address skin laxity. For those looking to achieve both fat removal and skin tightening, combining liposuction with other treatments like Morpheus8 or BodyTite can be an excellent choice. This multi-treatment approach helps you to achieve comprehensive results that address multiple concerns at once.


BodyTite is a minimally invasive treatment that uses radiofrequency technology to tighten skin. When added to your liposuction procedure, BodyTite can improve not just the fat reduction but also the quality and tightness of the overlying skin. It essentially complements the results of liposuction by addressing skin laxity issues that liposuction alone can’t resolve.


Morpheus8 is a microneedling treatment that also uses radiofrequency energy to promote collagen production and tighten skin. When combined with liposuction, Morpheus8 can enhance the skin’s texture and firmness, offering a more complete and polished result. It can be a good addition for those seeking not just fat reduction, but also a more youthful, rejuvenated appearance.

Will I Have Liposuction Scars?

Scarring is a common concern when considering any surgical procedure, including liposuction. Liposuction scars are generally small and strategically placed in less visible areas to minimize their appearance. Over time, these scars tend to fade and become less noticeable. However, the extent and visibility of scarring can vary from person to person, depending on factors like skin type and the healing process.

Schedule Your Liposuction Consultation Today

Understanding the ins and outs of liposuction recovery can make a difference when you are hoping for a smooth post-procedure experience. At BodyPoint Medspa in Lehi, UT, we’re committed to offering comprehensive care, from the initial consultation to the recovery phase. If you have more questions or are ready to take the next step, reach out to us at (801) 441-4171 or fill out our online form to schedule a personalized consultation.

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