Learn How To Reduce Liposuction Complications
Liposuction surgery can bring many benefits, such as greater self-esteem and more attractive contours. But just as with all surgeries, there are risks associated with liposuction. While such risks are unavoidable parts of surgery, Dr. Stephen T. Greenberg will ensure that you understand these risks, and that you are prepared for any liposuction complications. Contact Dr. Greenberg’s Long Island, NY, practice to schedule your personal consultation today.
Understanding the difference between expected side effects and potential complications is important. The earlier you are able to recognize warning signs, the quicker you can reach out for help. Some normal side effects that can occur after liposuction include:
- Bruising: Tender, discolored patches of skin are especially common after any surgery. While uncomfortable, most bruises heal completely within a month of the procedure.
- Swelling: This accumulation of fluid is the body’s reaction to a loss of tissue. Often, patients notice swelling in their ankles and feet, in addition to swelling at the treatment site.
- Uneven skin texture: As your skin adjusts to the sudden loss of fat deposits, you may notice an uneven or lumpy texture over the treatment site. In general, this bumpy texture can fade within six months.
- Discomfort: You may feel sore or tender in the treatment areas. Over-the-counter pain medication is typically recommended, but Dr. Greenberg can prescribe stronger medications if necessary.
As an expert in his field, Dr. Greenberg is very familiar with the risks associated with surgery. He strives to make sure that all patients have a thorough understanding of the surgery and possible complications.
Different surgical techniques, such as smaller incisions, can reduce these side effects. Very few patients can avoid side effects completely. Make sure that you discuss any side effects with Dr. Greenberg at your follow-up appointments. If you notice any increased swelling, slow healing, or other abnormal side effects, this can indicate potential complications.
While rare, complications can and do happen, and it is important to prepare yourself. Possible complications can include:
- Infection: Bacterial or viral infections are one of the most common complications following surgery, ranging from minor to life-threatening. While the possibility can be minimized with an antibiotic regimen and attentive wound care, there is no guaranteed method of preventing infection.
- Allergic reaction to medication: Dr. Greenberg will review your medical history with you prior to the procedure, such as medication allergies. In the event of an unexpected reaction to anesthesia or medication during surgery, Dr. Greenberg works with an experienced anesthesiologist during the procedure who can treat the complication immediately.
- Blood clots: Any surgical procedure can disrupt blood flow and create clots, during or after surgery. If such clots reach your heart or lungs, they can be fatal. Therefore, it is important to avoid extended periods of sitting or lying down in the weeks after your procedure. If you experience shortness of breath, contact emergency medical care immediately.
- Extended healing time: While most patients completely heal from the effects of a liposuction within one month, complications can increase healing time. It is important not to push yourself too hard, too soon in order to avoid further complications.
- Scarring: Scarring cannot be avoided completely, but scar tissue can be reduced through particular surgical techniques and the application of recommended creams or ointments.
Other complications can also occur, including burns, fluid imbalance, puncture wounds to the organs, overly-sensitive or desensitized skin, or skin necrosis. If you notice any unusual developments, contact emergency care immediately.
How to Minimize Your Risk
While complications cannot be avoided entirely, you can take a number of steps to reduce your risk. During your initial consultation, you should thoroughly discuss your medical history with Dr. Greenberg, including any medical conditions, prescriptions, or over-the-counter medications.
The more information he has, the better he can determine how to best prepare you, or, if necessary, recommend alternative treatments. It is also recommended that you follow Dr. Greenberg’s instructions for pre- and post-operative care as closely as possible. This may include starting an antibiotic regimen prior to surgery, stopping certain medications, or quitting smoking prior to and after the procedure.