4 stages of wound healing after cosmetic surgery

After cosmetic surgery (or any type of surgery such as rhinoplasty in Arcadia, CA) one of the most common questions our patients have is if the wound is healing properly. So, if you are resting at home or you have returned to your daily activities, but you are wondering if your wound is ok, this blog is for you. Today I will tell you the 4 stages of wound healing and how a post surgery treatment can help you to improve your recovery process.

Stages of wound healing

1.Hemostasis (stop bleeding)

This is one of the fastest stages in wound healing because your body needs to work fast in order to avoid losing too much blood. This is what happens:

  •  Blood vessels in the affected area start producing clots to stop bleeding. 
  • White blood cells move into the wound to prevent infection.
  • Then, this clot will turn into scabs to close the area.

2. Inflammation. 

In this phase you will notice:

  • Swelling
  • Redness
  • Pain
  • Warm
  • Clear fluid 

This is completely normal, it means Macrophages (white blood cells) have arrived to clean, repair and protect the area and also that the normal blood flow has returned.

 It can take till 6 days to go, but if you can’t notice improvements or you have pus or bad smell, visit your GP.


After the area is closing, clean and protected, your body will start to rebuild this site (new tissue- a scar).

How is it done?

  • your body creates its own building materials.
  • red blood cells full of oxygen come to the wound in order to create new tissue.
  •  the surrounding cells create new elastic tissues (collagen).
  • the wound turns into a scar.

At this stage you might feel different kinds of pains (sharp or shooting) in your wound. This is a sign that your nerves are getting their sensations back. Over the time, pain will become less intense till  it disappears. 

4.Maturation or strengthening

At this stage you will notice a raised, fresh, red scar. However, its color and size will change till it looks similar to the surrounding tissues. It is possible that you feel itching or tightness in the area, this is how your body tells you the area is still in preparation and strengthening.

What can affect wound healing?

Appropriate blood flow is one of the most important factors in wound healing, for that reason, poor blood supply delays this process. Some conditions may lead to poor blood supply, some of them are:

  • Obesity
  • Hypertension
  • Vascular diseases (venous insufficiency)
  • Diabetes
  • Hereditary healing disorders (keloids, fibrosis)

other risk factors are:

  • Poor oxygen supply
  • Infection
  • Stress
  • Foreign body (it can cause infection)
  • Age
  • Hormone disorders
  • Medications: glucocorticoid steroids, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, chemotherapy
  • High alcohol intake
  • Smoking
  • Immunocompromised conditions: cancer, radiation therapy, AIDS
  • Nutrition

Signs of infection

If you notice one or more of this symptoms visit your GP

  • Fever
  • Delay in your healing
  • Pus, redness, and pain getting worse
  • Tenderness, warmth, and swelling near your wound

Why is post surgery treatment so important?

As you read before, there are different factors that influence poorly healing wounds. However the proper treatment performed by a professional post-surgery therapist will:

  • Promote proper tissue repair 
  • Improve impaired wound healing
  • Speed up wound healing and the entire recovery process
  • Avoid infection
  • Prevent fibrosis and seromas
  • Reduce stress and anxiety cause by the surgery and the expectations it produces
  • Relieve pain

The key to a well done post-surgery treatment is a certified and experienced post-surgery therapist that has access to EMR Medical Software. She/he will create a tailormade treatment according to your needs and state of healing, knowing when to use lymphatic drainage and also when to introduce equipment to improve and speed up your healing process.

We hope this information is useful for you. If you need advice or have any questions about our treatments, please contact us. You can find usin Mill Hill Broadway and Islington. We are always happy to help. If you like this blog, please share!





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