Aesthetic Surgery of Virginia: Enrique Silberblatt, MD
3505 Brambleton Avenue
Roanoke, VA 24018
Phone: (540) 776-1600
Monday–Friday: 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.

What Are the Risks & Side Effects of Liposuction?

Profile of woman's midsection, holding the waistband of her blue jeans away from her slim body.

Liposuction is an extremely popular procedure for women and men who have trouble eliminating diet- and exercise-resistant pockets of fat in various regions of the body. It is one of the top 5 cosmetic plastic surgeries in the nation, and liposuction is a favorite of my Roanoke, VA, patients, too.

When performed by a skilled and experienced board-certified plastic surgeon, this body contouring treatment generally has very few risks and negative side effects. However, as with any surgical procedure, there is still the potential for particular complications to occur, making it important to understand all facets of liposuction before undergoing treatment.

Does liposuction have side effects?

The most common side effects patients may experience in the targeted area should subside over time. They typically include:

  • Temporary bruising
  • Swelling
  • Soreness
  • Numbness

Some individuals may also encounter irritation or “itchiness” as their incision sites heal, but these symptoms should resolve relatively quickly as well. You can learn more about the general issues you might expect after liposuction in our related blog post.

Less common side effects can include uneven skin overtop the treated region, changes in skin color, and prolonged numbness.

While there are risks to any surgery, most patients enjoy problem-free recoveries and excellent liposuction results. Read More Testimonials

Take a look at our liposuction patients’ before-and-after photos to see how they look after they’ve healed from the procedure.

Who is not a good candidate for liposuction?

To reduce the risk of complications, liposuction should never be performed for men and women who are in poor health or who have any unmanaged medical conditions, such as heart problems, uncontrolled diabetes, or blood-clotting disorders.

How safe is liposuction?

All surgeries carry some risk, but complications from liposuction performed by an experienced plastic surgeon are uncommon and usually minor. Although they are extremely rare, severe and potentially life-threatening issues can occur, especially if the procedure is conducted by an untrained, unqualified, or inexperienced provider. This can also be the case if liposuction is performed in a facility that is not AAAASF-certified or suited to handle any problems that may arise.

Ultimately, none of this is to say liposuction is a dangerous procedure that poses many serious risks to one’s well-being. As previously mentioned, when treatment is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon who has the proper training and experience, the potential risks and side effects of liposuction are few and far between.

Is it safe to combine liposuction with other surgeries?

Liposuction is also commonly performed in conjunction with other procedures such as tummy tuck surgery or breast augmentation to create more dramatic body shaping.

Liposuction has the potential to transform your shape and restore your confidence. Still, it’s important to go into the procedure with a clear understanding of the potential risks and side effects. We’re always happy to discuss whether liposuction is right for you. If you’re ready to explore your body contouring options, call our plastic surgery practice in Roanoke, VA, at (540) 776-1600 or use our online contact form to request a consultation.

Updated March 2021. Originally published August 2016.

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