Have you considered having a thigh lift or have you already planned one?
If so, you likely have questions about the recovery period and the timing of your return to walking, driving, and work.
We’ve covered it these questions in detail for you here. Your own recovery period may vary, but these timeframes typically hold true for most patients.
What is a Thigh Lift?
A thigh lift is a cosmetic surgery procedure that tightens drooping skin and trims extra fat from the upper legs.
Patients have the option of getting both an inner and outer thigh lift. The effects of a thigh lift are long-lasting, and the procedure may significantly enhance the appearance of the thighs, as well as reduce the discomfort that too much skin and tissue can cause, such as chaffing, rashes, and more.
That being said, prospective thigh lift patients should have a clear understanding of the potential recovery process. Based on a variety of factors including a patient’s anatomy, pain tolerance, age, heredity factors, and the exact surgical technique used, thigh lift recovery can vary widely from person to person.
Typical Thigh Lift Recovery Timeline
Day of Surgery
When you first wake after your thigh lift, you could feel worn out, queasy, and uncomfortable. It’s common for this sensation to linger for up to three hours after surgery, due to the anesthesia used, and the physical trauma your body has experienced. (Plastic surgery is real surgery, after all.)
During this time, you can be given a specific compression garment in addition to having your thighs bandaged. As you recuperate, small drainage tubes will be inserted under your skin to remove fluids from your thighs.
Due to your stiffness and painkillers, you will need to avoid driving, so arrange for a family member or friend to pick you up and accompany you home for the remainder of the day.
You’ll also have thigh pain, particularly while walking.
Patients are required to avoid driving and walking right after surgery. Walking and other light exercise will be a part of your early recovery period, but walking isn’t easy immediately after surgery, nor is it recommended for several hours. You can, of course, get into and out of a vehicle (as the passenger), and walk to your home or recovery suite. You will find walking much easier with the help and physical support of a friend.
2-3 Days Following Surgery
The first two to three days after your procedure will see the biggest swelling and bruising. Wear your compression garment as directed by your doctor and, if necessary, switch out your bandages.
It is crucial to keep moving as little as possible during this time to preserve your wounds while they heal. Since practically every action of the body involves the thighs, you should limit your activities during the first several days.
7-14 Days Following Surgery
You will eventually go back to your doctor’s office for a follow-up appointment after the first week. Your sutures, drains, and bandages will all be taken out or replaced at this time.
Although you’re a week out from your surgery date, it’s still recommended that you limit your mobility for up to two weeks. Be careful while bending, sitting, standing, walking, and extending your thighs.
Within this period, you will start to observe the better shape of your thighs, despite the fact that swelling and bruising will still be there.
2-3 Weeks Following Surgery
After two weeks, it’s time to try to strike a better balance between movement avoidance and straightforward, slow walking. Your lower legs won’t develop blood clots if you move gently. The finest calf workouts are basic ones like pointing and flexing your foot to stretch the rear of your lower legs. Cautious, gentle walking is also recommended at that point.
1-2 Months Following Surgery
Any wounds on the skin should have completely healed by six weeks, and your thighs’ swelling should be very minimal at this point. Your scars, which may be anywhere from light red to dark purple in hue, will still be evident.
Most activities may be resumed without risk such as walking, going to work and driving. Keep to the gentle walks and stay away from intense activity if you are still experiencing significant edema.
6 Months After Surgery
The edema should have fully disappeared after six months. Although you may continue to observe progress for up to a year, your ultimate results should already be apparent.
As long as your overall health and fitness, particularly your body weight, remain stable, the results of a thigh lift are permanent.
Important Things to Remember About Your Thigh Lift Recovery
The timeline above is just a basic guideline of what some patients can experience. Recovery usually takes 4-6 weeks, however depending on the treatment, some individuals can need longer. After this period, most routine activities may be resumed. Depending on your career, most patients may return to work in two to three weeks.
As long as you follow your surgeon and support staff’s recommendations and guidelines, you should be able to have a smooth recovery and easily transition back into your regular routine after thigh lift surgery.