Most people who are interested in tummy tuck surgery (also called abdominoplasty) can safely undergo this procedure. However, there are certain circumstances in which it may not be recommended. Here we’ll go over who should not get a tummy tuck.
Weight Loss Surgery Candidates
First and foremost, it’s important to recognize that a tummy tuck is not a substitute for weight loss, nor is it a treatment for obesity. It is not recommended for patients who have been advised by their doctors to undergo a weight loss surgery such as gastric sleeve or bariatric surgery. If you are a candidate for one those procedures, we recommend that you address your weight concerns first and work to lose the excess body weight needed for your health. Once you have lost the excess weight and are able to keep it off, you may then find yourself to be a good candidate for tummy tuck surgery.
Patients Who Are Actively Trying to Lose Weight
A tummy tuck is not a weight loss surgery, nor is it an alternative to a healthy lifestyle. Therefore, it is not recommended for patients who are actively trying to lose weight. While the surgery can get rid of some abdominal fat, it mostly focuses on removing excess skin and tightening the stomach muscles. This procedure is best performed on patients who are already at or near their goal weight and who are maintaining a stable body weight. If you are overweight, it’s best to address your weight through diet and exercise before getting a tummy tuck.
Patients Who Want to Become Pregnant in the Future
If you are planning to become pregnant soon or in the future, it’s usually best to wait on getting a tummy tuck. Getting a tummy tuck now would not prevent you from having a healthy pregnancy, but pregnancy would likely undo the results of your tummy tuck. This is why mothers are usually advised to wait until they are finished having children before getting this procedure. Read more about tummy tuck after pregnancy here.
Breastfeeding mothers need to keep their bodies in optimal condition so that they have the strength and energy to nurse their babies. The best way to do this is to exercise regularly and eat a healthy diet filled with nutritious meals and snacks. It is not recommended to undergo a major elective surgery while you are in this stage of life, as the recovery could make you unable to breastfeed. Not only is it a traumatic experience that your body will need to be able to heal from, but the interruption to your breastfeeding routine could cause your milk supply to dry up, abruptly stopping you from being able to continue nursing your child.
Patients With Certain Medical Conditions
If you have a medical condition that affects your ability to heal (such as diabetes or an autoimmune disorder), you may not be a good candidate for a tummy tuck. This is a major surgery, and healing is an essential part of the recovery process. If your body is unable to heal properly, you may have an increased risk of complications. It’s best to discuss this with your doctor before you make a decision.
Who SHOULD Get a Tummy Tuck?
Generally speaking, most other adults will be good candidates for tummy tuck surgery! You may be a candidate for this surgery if you identify with the following:
- Excess skin in the abdominal area (especially due to pregnancy, aging, and/or weight loss)
- Separated abdominal muscles (especially due to pregnancy and/or weight loss)
- Persistent abdominal fat that is resistant to diet and exercise
- Overall good health
- Stable body weight
- At or near goal body weight
- Not planning to become pregnant in the future
- Realistic expectations
A tummy tuck is a great surgery for many people, but it’s not recommended for everyone. You should consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon to determine whether you’re a good candidate for this procedure. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t hesitate to reach out to our team for more information.
Dr. Richard Mouchantat is a Denver-area board-certified plastic surgeon with extensive experience performing a wide range of plastic surgery procedures, including tummy tuck surgery. To schedule a consultation with Dr. Mouchantat today, call (303) 232-8585 or contact us online today.