Thigh Lift Recovery: What the Healing Process is Like

By Constance M. Barone, M.D. on October 18, 2016

A woman's lower bodyThe team at our San Antonio plastic surgery center believes that patients should know about all phases of surgery. By understanding the pre-op and post-op process as well as the surgery itself, patients can achieve peace of mind and have realistic expectations about the procedure.

With this in mind, we would like to take a moment to consider thigh lift surgery (thighplasty), an effective option for lower body contouring. Let's give a brief overview of the healing process so you know what to expect.

How Much Time Should I Take Off from Work?

In general, patients can expect to take two to three weeks off of work after they've undergone thigh lift surgery. During follow-up visits, you should be given a better idea of when you can return to your job.

Keep in mind that even if you return to work in two weeks, you may not be able to perform all of your normal job duties. This is especially true for people who have physically demanding jobs or occupations that require a lot of squatting or bending. We can provide a timeline of when you can return to those duties during the consultation and follow-up process.

What to Expect Immediately After Surgery

Immediately after a thigh lift surgery, it is not uncommon for patients to feel sore, groggy, and fatigued. These are all common responses to coming out from under the effects of general anesthesia. Patients should be driven home by a loved one, who should be available to help around the home and monitor recovery for the first few days.

How Should I Sleep After Thigh Lift Surgery?

When it comes to a proper resting position, it's important to avoid stretching the legs out all the way. This will prevent placing additional stress on the thighs and the sutures that are in place. Patients should lie back with their legs slightly bend. Placing pillows under the knees is often helpful for improving comfort.

What to Expect During the First Week of Recovery

During the first week of recovery, patients will experience soreness and discomfort. Bruising and swelling are common in that first week as well. To deal with the discomfort, recommended pain relievers can be taken as directed. Bruising and swelling can be managed by wearing surgical dressings and compression garments as directed, any by applying cold compresses.

Even though patients should avoid strenuous physical activity for a few weeks, patients are encouraged to walk lightly around the home a little bit. This will promote circulation during healing and prevent unhealthy blood clots from forming in the legs.

What to Expect by the End of the First Month

By the end of the first month, patients should be back at work. Pain and soreness should no longer be serious issues. Bruising should be on the wane, though some discoloration around the thighs is common, particularly around the incision sites. Major swelling should be mostly under control, though minor swelling can persist for several months after the thigh lift.

Will Surgical Scars Fade?

Yes, though this can take some time. In general, the scars will begin to fade after several months to a year, with continued fading as time goes on.

The surgical scars are made in such a way that they are well-hidden by most bottoms, undergarments, and bathing suits.

Recovery and Results in the Long Run

In the months ahead, patients should notice that their symptoms will have mostly if not entirely dissipated. By the end of two months, patients should be able to return to normal daily activities and most exercises. The final results of the thigh lift should be most apparent after a few months have passes and symptoms have faded.

Learn More About Thigh Lift Surgery

To learn more about thigh lift surgery and if it is the right option for you and your needs, be sure to contact our cosmetic plastic surgery center today. We will be more than happy to go over all of your treatment options and help you make the right choices about body contouring and sculpting.

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San Antonio Office

9502 Huebner Rd
Ste 202
San Antonio, TX 78240

Open Today 9:00am - 12:00pm

All Hours Directions (210) 614-0400