One of the most common topics we get questions on from people considering a laser liposuction treatment is about recovery. How long does recovery take? Is recovery painful? When will I see results? Today we’ll discuss recovery in detail.
Laser assisted lipolysis (laser liposuction) is performed under local anaesthetic. A specially designed cannula containing a laser fibre is inserted into a very small incision (approx. 2mm) and the laser activated. The laser gently melts the fat and the now-malleable fat is suctioned out of the body. The laser liposuction cannula accesses the subcutaneous fat, which is the fat that sits directly below the skin but above muscle.
It really depends on the part of the body being treated. The neck and chin is the shortest procedure at about an hour. Back and hips, thighs, arms are approx. 2 to 3 hours each. And laser liposuction to the stomach takes the most time, at 3-4 hours.
One of the benefits of the advancements in liposuction techniques is that compared to the older method of mechanical or manual liposuction, laser liposuction involves a much gentler action. The melting of the fat with the laser fibre is so effective that the surgeon need only use gentle motions to melt the fat and simultaneously suction the fat out. What that means for recovery time is less bruising, less post-operative discomfort, and patients will have a reduced recovery period.
Patients can usually go back to work within 2-5 days (depending on the area of the body treated). Full recovery can take from 1-2 weeks for arm liposuction, to 3-6 weeks for stomach, hips or back liposuction.
The small entry holes used to pass the fine cannulae through are only 2-3mm wide. These holes are so small that stitches are unnecessary and are barely visible after several weeks.
With liposuction to the upper arms, results are evident almost immediately. With all other areas, swelling will begin to subside after 3-5 days and you’ll start to see the results. This will improve over time and over the coming 12 months, you’ll continue to see improvements.