Leading Up To Surgery
MEDICATION & SUPPLEMENTS
Stop taking aspirin, products that contain aspirin, and all other supplements two weeks before surgery. This includes:
- BC or Goodies powders
- Fish oil
- Weight loss medication
- Vitamin E
- Herbal supplements
- Meal replacements or protein shakes
Please make sure to get your prescriptions filled prior to your surgery date. You will be expected to bring your prescriptions with you the day of surgery.
The pain medication that is prescribed can cause constipation. You can start prevention as early as two days before your surgery by taking Colace, or Activia yogurt. After your surgery, you can have things like MiraLAX or Milk of Magnesia, but these should not be taken before.
If you become ill or have to postpone your surgery for any reason, please notify us as soon as possible.
Day Before Surgery
You will receive a call and email the day before your surgery with instructions regarding where and when to arrive.
This will include instructions regarding medications.
Day Of Surgery Instructions
FOOD AND DRINK
Do not eat anything after midnight the night before your surgery.
- You can brush your teeth, but do not swallow any toothpaste or liquid
- Do not consume candy or gum
- You may drink water or Gatorade (any flavor except red) up to two hours before your surgery
Do not wear jewelry or make-up to your surgery appointment. Wear loose, comfortable, and warm clothing. A top that zips or buttons up is preferred. Please wear glasses instead of contacts if applicable
A responsible adult must take you home. You will need someone to stay with you for the first night after surgery.
Note: If you are a minor, a parent or legal guardian must accompany you.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Once you arrive in our surgery suite, the clinical staff will discuss the details of your procedure and ask you to sign an informed consent. If applicable, you will take a pregnancy test prior to surgery.
You will speak with your anesthesia provider prior to your surgery. They will go over your history with you one last time before we get started and tell you what to expect when you are in the operating room.
From there, your surgeon will come in, discuss the procedure, and create his markings before we get started.
After Your Surgery
What to Expect Physically
You can expect a little pain and discomfort, as well as some swelling and bruising to the surgical sites. The bruising may travel down to other areas due to gravity. The bruising usually lasts two to three weeks. You will have areas of numbness. This will gradually improve over several months.
Note: You will gain weight at first. It is usually 15 to 20 pounds. This is normal and due to the healing process.
What to Expect Visually
The first thing you will see is the garment. You will either be wearing a panty girdle or a compression garment that extends from your upper waist to your knees.
You will have red or pink drainage for the first one to two days post-operatively. It looks like blood, but it is just blood-tinged. This comes from the fluid used prior to suctioning.
Directly beneath your garment you will see foam padding and chux pads. These are placed there to help with swelling and drainage.
You will have half-inch incision sites. If these have non-absorbable stitches, they will be removed at your first post-operative appointment.
Note: If you had liposuction to your abdomen, you will have a drain that will need to be removed during your first shower.
You will have compression stockings on after surgery. Please leave these in place until you take a shower to help with circulation while you are not moving around as much as you normally would be.
Swelling and skin shrinkage can take up to six months before you see the end result.
You are going to have to take it easy after this surgery, especially the first week or so. Please make sure to make a conscious effort to move around throughout the day. We want you to get up at least every couple of hours while you are awake to help in blood circulation.
Please drink plenty of fluids after surgery. Liposuction can be very dehydrating.
Wear your garment except while in the shower. If you do need to wash it, you can do so. Please wash this in cold water and dry on a low setting.
We will provide you a different garment called a “Yummie Tummy” at your first post-operative appointment. You need to wear some type of compression for the first six weeks after surgery.
You are allowed to take a shower 48 hours after your surgery. The chux and padding should be removed and do not need to be reapplied. Only the garment needs to be reapplied.
Note: If you have a drain, you can remove this while you are in the shower.
You can start to work out again two to three weeks after surgery.
Note: Thigh liposuction can cause more downtime.
Do not use heating pads to help with pain. This could cause a burn.
Resume your normal activities as you feel comfortable. If it hurts, don’t do it. If it doesn’t, it is ok to do.
You may take up to 1000mg of Tylenol (two tablets of Extra-strength Acetaminophen or Tylenol over-the-counter) and 600mg (three tablets of 200mg over-the-counter) Ibuprofen in between your pain medication doses to help make it easier to move around.
Stop taking aspirin, products that contain aspirin, and all other supplements two weeks before surgery.
Do not use alcoholic beverages while taking pain medication.
You will be prescribed three different medications.
- Pain medication: Norco or Hydrocodone and Tylenol
- Take one to two tablets every six hours, as needed for pain
- This medication contains Tylenol. Do not take additional Tylenol.
- Do not take more than 11 in one day
- Anti-nausea medication to be taken prior to surgery: Zofran or Ondansetron
- Take four tablets one hour prior to your surgery
- After surgery take one tablet every six hours, as needed for nausea
- Anti-nausea medication for extreme nausea: Phenergan or Promethazine
- Take one tablet every four to six hours, as needed for extreme nausea
- Note: This may cause drowsiness
When To Call The Office
Call the office if you have a fever over 101 degrees, experience any sudden increase in swelling (especially on one side), or notice redness around your incision sites (especially if it’s warm to the touch).
Frequently Asked Questions
How long do I have to take off work?
Five to seven days
How long does the procedure last?
It depends on how many areas we are treating.
How long will I have to be in recovery?
At least 45 minutes
When can I drive again?
You can drive when you are no longer taking pain medication and feel comfortable driving again. Always consider that you would need to be able to react in case of an emergency.
When can I start exercising again?
You can start exercising two to three weeks after surgery.
Can I sleep on my stomach after surgery?
You can sleep on your stomach as long as it doesn’t cause you discomfort.
When can I get in a pool/beach/lake?
You can get in a pool, beach, or lake six weeks after surgery.
Can I go to a tanning bed or get spray tanned after surgery?
You can get a spray tan two weeks after surgery, but make sure your incision line is protected or covered. We do not advise patients to go to the tanning bed until six weeks after surgery.
What can I do for scar care after surgery?
We would recommend a product that contains silicone, like Scaraway. This is the only thing with evidence that supports scar improvement.
How long does the swelling last?
You will have the most significant swelling within the first six weeks of your surgery. It will gradually improve after this, but please not that it can be up to six months before you see your end result.
Will I have drains?
If you have abdominal liposuction, you will have one drain. You will need to record measurements of drainage. This should be removed during your first shower.