Now that you’re through your thigh lift surgery, it’s time to focus on your wellness during the recovery phase. To download a copy of these recovery notes, click here.


  • Sleep with your knees bent for the first week after surgery. A reclining chair works well.
  • Avoid the upright sitting position as much as possible for the first 1-2 weeks after surgery.
  • Do not lift more than 10lbs (no more than a gallon of milk) or perform any strenuous activities for 3-4 weeks after surgery.
  • Do not swim or use a hot tub until your wounds have healed. This will be about 4-6 weeks.


  • You may shower 48-72 hours after surgery. No baths. Remove girdle and all dressings except any suture strips over the incision. Some areas may bleed, but this is normal and should subside quickly when dry. 

Reasons to Call

  • Significant swelling, or swelling on only one area or side.
  • Fever greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit (38 degrees Celsius).
  • Skin redness and warmth(hot) around your wound.
  • A change in drainage color (green/yellow/thick), foul-smelling odor, or sudden increase in drain volume.
  • Pain not relieved by pain medication.


  • Some postoperative pain is to be expected, your pain medication may take the edge off, but you may not achieve pain free. Call the office if you have severe pain that is not relieved by pain medication.
  • You may take non-aspirin pain relievers such as acetaminophen or Tylenol for lesser pain, but do not take this in addition to your prescribed pain medication (the prescription medication likely has Tylenol in it already).
  • Do not use aspirin or aspirin-containing drugs (Anacin, Bufferin, Bayer, Excedrin, etc), Nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (Advil, Motrin, Ibuprofen) as these medications interfere with blood clotting and may increase bleeding risks.

Wound Care/Dressings

  • Wear your garment day and night for 4 weeks, except for showers and laundering.
  • Apply a small amount of gauze over the incisions if they are weeping fluid.
  • The surgical area may have numbness for a time after surgery. Avoid using a heating pad near the surgical area to avoid burning the skin.
  • Most of the stitches are dissolvable and do not need to be removed. We will assess the need to remove any stitches at your 2-3 week appointment.


Drain Care

  • You may have a drain to remove fluids that collect under the skin.
  • Keep the bulb or container on suction at all times (meaning that the bulb is squeezed down flat). 
  • Empty the drains every 12 hours or more frequently if needed. 
  • Record the amount of liquid in the bulb, and bring the list with you to your post-op visits until the drains are removed.
  • If there is more than 100mL (a full bulb) in a bulb over 2 hours, please call the office.
  • Watch our drain care video with nurse Jayme by clicking here.


If you have any concerns or questions, call us at 336-765-8620. We have a doctor on call 24 hours a day.