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Does Liposuction Leave Scars

While liposuction can effectively reduce the appearance of excess fat and improve the body’s contours, it is not a scar-free procedure. Any form of surgery that requires breaking the skin, no matter how minor it is, will leave some sort of scarring. But today’s modern liposuction techniques are far less invasive, leaving less noticeable marks, hidden in natural skin creases or folds. 

In this article, we will take a closer look at scarring after liposuction, and what you can expect during the healing process.

Understanding Scarring Risks

Your resulting scars after liposuction will depend on the surgical technique used, the size of the incision, age, genetics, and the patient’s healing response.

  • Tumescent Liposuction – This procedure involves making several small incisions to inject a solution that numbs and shrinks fat cells before they are suctioned away with a cannula (a thin metal tube). The incisions are usually much smaller than those of traditional liposuction, and the resulting scars, like the liposuction stomach scar, tend to be thinner and less noticeable.
  • Ultrasound-assisted Liposuction – This technique uses sound waves to liquefy fat cells before they are suctioned away. It leaves very minimal to no scarring.
  • Traditional Liposuction – This procedure involves making larger incisions and using a cannula to suction away fat cells. The resulting scars are usually bigger, more visible, and take longer to heal.
  • Laser-assisted Liposuction – This technique uses laser energy to disrupt fat cells, making it a less traumatic procedure. The incisions are typically small, and the resulting scars tend to be minimal. Read our article if fat can return after liposuction.

A higher incidence of scarring may happen with the following:

  • Poor lipo incisions placement leads to visible scars
  • Over-lipo-suctioning of an area can lead to depressed scars
  • Hyper-pigmented scars due to multiple passes of the cannula

Some patients may opt for other cosmetic procedures that combine transferring fat from the lipo-suctioned area to other parts of the body, such as the breasts or buttocks. This type of procedure carries a slightly higher risk of scarring due to the complexity of the procedure.

Scarring After Liposuction: Types & Severity

The scar-related risks associated with liposuction are not frequent when compared to other surgical procedures like tummy tucks. Considering the excitement and possibilities that liposuction offers, it’s important to be aware of the types and severity of scarring left on the skin.

Below are the different types of scars that may be caused by liposuction:

  • Incisional scarring – minor incisions made during the procedure that can be hidden within the body’s natural contours.
  • Surgical scarring – irregular or rippled skin caused by trauma to the tissue and underlying skin from suctioning process.
  • Hypertrophic Scars – slightly raised scars that decrease over time.
  • Atrophic Scars – sunken or depressed scars caused by a loss of tissue due to fat removal.
  • Keloid Scars – raised, pink or purple-colored scars that can be treated with laser therapy.

Minimizing Scarring: Post-operative Care and Instructions

Liposuction before and after scars are a normal part of the healing process after surgery, but there are steps you can take to help minimize their visibility. Following your plastic surgeon’s post-operative instructions is key to reducing scarring and achieving the best possible results. Here are some tips for proper wound care:

  • Avoiding direct sunlight on the area for six months after surgery.
  • Wear compression garments as your doctor prescribes to help the skin conform to its new shape.
  • Applying topical creams or ointments that contain ingredients like collagen or elastin.
  • Using a topical Vitamin C serum can help speed up the healing process and reduce scarring.
  • Laser treatments can help reduce the appearance of existing scars and can also help promote healing.
  • Dermabrasion or chemical peels can help reduce the appearance of more severe scars.
  • Silicone gels are practical and easy-to-use scar treatments that can help reduce the appearance of scars.
  • Cryotherapy is a treatment in which cold temperatures are used to reduce inflammation and can help improve the appearance of scarring.

Importance of Choosing the Right Plastic Surgeon

It’s important to remember that there is no way to completely guarantee that a patient won’t experience some degree of visible scarring after the procedure. But by trusting an experienced plastic surgeon, you can expect incisions and scars that are as inconspicuous as possible.

Surgeons experienced in liposuction procedures understand the risks involved in scarring and know how to minimize the appearance of scars. They also know how to handle complications that may arise during or after the procedure.


  • Look for a plastic surgeon with proper training, experience, and qualifications in liposuction.
  • Check the “before and after” photos of previous patients.
  • Choose a doctor who’s open to communication and comfortably answers all your questions. Read how to choose a plastic surgeon.

The Bottom Line

To answer the question, “does liposuction leave scars?”: Yes, liposuction scars happen, yet they can often be minimal and barely noticeable. Modern liposuction technology has advanced so far that the resulting scars are minimal and typically fade within a few months.

Visit Dr. Demetris Stavrou, a qualified plastic surgeon in Cyprus, Greece, and Malta, with extensive experience performing liposuction procedures, tummy tucks, and body contouring surgeries. With his knowledge and expertise in the field, you can rest assured that you will be in expert hands.

To discuss your needs and goals further, book a consultation with Dr. Stavrou today. Worried if liposuction is dangerous? Read our article today.


Dr Stavrou is a board-certified and highly experienced plastic surgeon in Cyprus, Greece and Malta, with a keen interest in informing patients about the latest updates on reconstructive and cosmetic plastic surgery.

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