When reviewing information about specific plastic surgery procedures, it is
important to understand that the circumstances and experience of every
individual are unique. If you are considering plastic surgery, please ask
your plastic surgeon for further information about the particular procedure
and what you can expect
What is the Recovery from Plastic Surgery Like? Will I be able to tolerate the pain post-operatively?
Each patient will tolerate pain post-operatively in a different way, and we consider this.
While some patients may describe the pain as an ache, others experience greater
discomfort. Appropriate pain medications are prescribed for the post-operative patients,
and these help minimize discomfort. Most facial cosmetic operations have minimal
discomfort post- operatively. Liposuction is slightly more uncomfortable, and operations
that require elevation or tightening of the muscles-such as an abdominoplasty or breast
augmentation have discomfort frequently described as equal to that of a C-section.
How long is the recuperative period and when can I return to work?
The length of time it takes to recuperate after plastic surgery varies depending on the
procedure performed and the person operated on. Most patients will require assistance
for the first two days. Then most patients are able to care for themselves, but may still
need assistance if they have small children to care for. The specific lengths of disability
are outlined below by procedure. These are approximations, and do not include return
Eyelid Surgery - Usually can get around independently by the second day. With the use
of sunglasses, may feel comfortable going to the store by day 3-4, and with makeup
return to work by 5-7 days.
Facelift Surgery - Usually can get around independently by the second day. Usually do
not feel comfortable going out in public for 5-7 days. Requires 10-14 days before
returning to work if in the public eye.
Breast Surgery - Usually can get around independently by the second day. May return
to work at 5-7 days if not required to lift more than 15 pounds.
Liposuction - Usually can get around independently by the second day, earlier if smaller
number of areas treated. One can return to work and normal activities in 5-7 days.
Abdominoplasty - Patients may take between 2-4 days before getting around
independently. The recovery is almost identical to C-section. One can return to a desk
job at 5-7 days, other jobs 10-14 days.
When can I resume regular exercise?
The time a patient resumes regular exercises varies based on the operation performed.
All patients are encouraged to start a slow walking routine on the second postoperative
day. Further recommendations are based on the type of surgery performed. There will
be some restrictions, and these are designed to help minimize the risk of complications.
Some complications that can occur from over activity may include: bleeding, swelling,
improper healing or scarring, seroma (fluid collections), and excessive pain.