Possible complications:
Abnormal body contour
Anesthesia reaction
Depression (mild depression is normally following elective surgery)
DVT (Blood Clot)
Fat Embolus (less than 0.1%)
Heart Failure
Keloid (heavy scar)
Nerve damage
Perforation of bowel or abdominal wall
Permanent numbness (risk is less than 1%)
Reactions to medications
Seroma (fluid collection under skin)
Skin irregularities
Skin death (necrosis)
Slow healing
Visible scar


Fatal complications are extremely rare. Deaths related to liposuction surgery can happen for a number of reasons: blood clot, perforation of the abdominal wall or bowels, shock and hemodilution (blood dilution), and possibly excess amounts of lidocaine.


Blood Clots
Blood clots (or deep venuous thrombosis, a DVT) can forms in the deep veins of the pelvis or legs after any surgery. A blood clot forms after prolonged immobility (people on international flights, women on bedrest during pregnancy and patients recovering from surgery are the most susceptible to blood clots). It is important to stand often (at least once an hour), flex the feet more often and generally keep the blood flowing in your legs. If the blood pools for too long in one area, you could be at risk for a blood clot.


Perforation of the abdominal wall or bowels is preventable during surgery. Surgeons are limited in what they can see during surgery and must take extra caution. Choosing an highly experienced surgeon can reduce your risk of such complications.


Shock and hemodilution
Shock and blood dilution can occur after a patient has had excessive amounts of fluid injected and then excessive amounts of fat and body fluid removed (over 5,000 cc's, about 11 pounds). Large volume liposuction should be considered carefully. It is generally not recommended.


Lidocaine use poses particular hazards, especially since experts do not agree on safe injectable levels. At least one study links possible lidocaine toxicity to liposuction deaths. People with less than normal liver function or those who have been drinking alcohol may not be able to metabolize lidocaine well.


Discuss your particular medical history and the possible risks with a board certified plastic surgeon.