Aftercare is key to achieving a good aesthetic result

Patients are often unaware of the importance of post-operative aftercare for their Vaser liposuction procedure.  This article complements the information on our main page for Vaser lipo, explains why it is so important for achieving good aesthetic results, and describes its main components.

The objectives of post-operative care after a liposuction procedure are:

  • Ensuring smooth retraction of skin
  • Accelerating the speed of recovery, as well as the reduction of swelling and bruising
  • Removal of fluids and seromas
  • Monitoring of infection

Ensuring smooth retraction of skin

Compression garment used to ensure smooth skin retraction after a Vaser lipo procedure

After removing subcutaneous fat, the skin will retract.  To achieve the best aesthetic result, it is essential that the skin retraction process be monitored and controlled.  If care is not taken, the skin can retract unevenly, producing wrinkles, dimples, or folds.  Gravity pulls the skin downward, sleeping positions can deform the skin’s surface, and clothing can unevenly compress the skin’s surface.  To combat these effects, all the patients at our clinic are provided with a compression garment specifically designed to optimise the outcome of their procedures.Compression garments are typically worn day and nigtht the first week after a Vaser lipo procedure.  The garment can then be removed during the day, and worn only during sleep the second week.  The effects of the garment are inspected at each of the post-operative care visits, and adjustments are made if necessary.

Reducing swelling and bruising

Any surgical procedure will traumatise the skin layer, and this will result in swelling and bruising.  This is part of the natural healing process of the body, but can be unsightly and uncomfortable.  The time needed for swelling and bruising to subside varies per patient (for more info, see our study on Vaser liposuction swelling, bruising, and numbness), however, the healing process can be accelerated by good post-operative care.

For each of your post-operative visits to our clinic, we provide a variety of treatments to help accelerate the reduction of swelling and bruising.  These include manual lymphatic drainage massage, which helps fluids migrate from swollen tissues into the lymph system.  Also, a variety of skin treatments are used, such as ultrasonic cavitation, electrophoresis, and vacuum massage.

Draining of fluids

A Vaser liposuction procedure includes the irrigation of the sub-dermal layer with a saline solution that helps remove the fat cells.  Some of this fluid will remain in the body after the procedure, and although this will eventually be elminated by the lymphatic system, in some cases, the doctor will install drains to allow the flluids to evacuate more quickly.  The drains are typically removed on the first or second post-operative care visit.

Sometimes Vaser lipo procedures give rise to a build up of fluid pockets.  These are called seromas, and your post-operative care will examine you and remove them if they occur.

Monitoring for infection

In contrast with liposuction procedures performed in high-volume hospitals accepting patients with a wide variety of illnesses, we perform all liposuction procedures in our own operating theatre.  As we only perform cosmetic procedures, this significantly reduces infection rates in comparison to hospitals.  However, as patients return home after surgery, the chance of a post-operative infection, although low, is not zero.  The ones that do occur are normally superficial skin infections.  Thus, each of your post-operative visits to our clnic will include an inspection for infection, and anti-biotic care as needed.