Complication Warning Signs: What to Look for after Plastic Surgery

Plastic surgery is a safe an effective way to enhance your appearance and your sense of self. That said, complications can occur despite major safety advances in surgical techniques and technology. When a patient senses something is wrong, Dr. Mark A. Deuber will be here to help.

The team at our Dallas, TX plastic surgery center would like to consider some of the most common signs that something is wrong after a surgical procedure. By knowing what to look for, you’ll be able to get the help you need and face the recovery process feeling secure and empowered.

Worsening of Pain and Discomfort

Some discomfort is common after plastic surgery, but it will usually fade after a day or so. When pain sharpens or gets worse despite ample rest and the use of pain relievers, this is typically the sign of a serious health problem.

Increased Swelling

Swelling is natural after surgery and usually goes down after about two weeks. If you notice excessive swelling of any kind, this requires professional attention. Do not attempt to lance or drain the accumulated fluid on your own.

Spread of Bruising

Bruising is another reality of surgery, and usually lasts for about two to three weeks. If you notice the spread of discoloration or the darkening of the existing bruise, this is usually the sign that something is wrong.

Excessive Bleeding

Very minor bleeding is common after surgery, and typically only in the early days after the surgical procedure is performed. Excessive bleeding is usually a sign of sutures failing or a wound being reopened, requiring immediate professional attention.

Odd Discharges from Incision Sites

Some fluid can seep out from incisions or be removed from the body with drainage tubes. Usually this fluid is pinkish, generally clear, and watery. Fluid of a different color/consistency or an accumulation of pus is often a sign of an infection or another complication.

Bad Smells Around Treatment Area

The nose knows what’s wrong and right. When the surgical site smells odd, this is generally a bad sign. You wouldn’t notice a strange smell around that part of your body if the healing process is going fine.

Heat Around the Surgical Site

Redness and a sensation of heat around incision sites or the surgical area is never a good sign. By comparison, some mild warmth that subsides is normal. This excessive heat is often an early symptom of an infection.

Running a Fever

While healing, temperature changes need to be monitored. Developing a fever during the healing process is most often a sure sign that an infection has occurred. Immediate treatment is essential.

Constant Fatigue or Exhaustion

If you’re a bit sluggish after plastic surgery for a day or so, that’s a normal part of recovery. However, if your fatigue continues and is accompanied by the symptoms above, that’s generally a sign that something is wrong.

What to Do If You Notice These Warning Signs

If you notice any of the above warning signs or have pressing concerns as you’re recovering from surgery, it’s important that you contact your plastic surgeon as soon as possible. Getting any issues immediately addressed will help bring matters under control.

Never hesitate to reach out to our team. We can prevent current problems from threatening your health, and ensure they do not impact the final cosmetic results of your surgery.

Contact an Experienced Plastic Surgeon

To learn more about staying healthy after undergoing a cosmetic surgery procedure, be sure to contact an experienced plastic surgeon. We look forward to your visit and discussing these matters with you in much greater detail.


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