Is Abdominoplasty Anesthesia Dangerous?

What type of anesthesia, general or local, do doctors use when performing an abdominoplasty? What are the risks of this anesthesia method?

Doctor Answers 20

Anesthgesia for tummy tuck.

Most use general anesthesia for tummy tucks.  The anesthesia, if provided by a board certified anesthesiologist should be very safe in most cases.  Bad reactions or complication from anesthesia are very rare.  You will most likely be able to discuss this with your anesthesiologist prior to your procedure.

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What type of anesthesia is needed for Abdominoplasty?

Abdominoplasty is normally done under general anesthesia however I have done many under epidural. The epidural catheter could be left in place for post operative pain control. A mini abdominoplasty can be done under local anesthesia with sedation.

Tummy Tuck

Tummy tuck surgery should be performed under general anesthesia or MAC anesthesia administered by a board-certified anesthesiologist. 

Michael Law, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Anesthesia for tummy tucks

I prefer a general anesthetic for all my tummy tucks. It should be administered by a board certified anesthesiologist. It is by far the safest and most comfortable option. I would strongly discourage any patient to have this procedure under sedation or "twighlight" anesthesia, the risks are much higher without general anesthesia

Johan E. Brahme, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Anesthesia for abdominoplasty

i always use general anesthesia for a full abdominoplasty.  i think the risk of dvt, pe after the surgery is higher than the risk of general anesthesia, there is risk driving to the store. you have to decide it is worth the risk

Jonathan Saunders, MD
Newark Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Abdominoplasty anesthesia

I prefer general anesthesia for abdominoplasty.  With the proper MD anesthesiologist general anesthesia is extremely safe.   Donaldr R. Nunn MD Atlanta Plastic Surgeon.

Donald Nunn, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Anesthesia for Tummy Tuck

I do all my Tummy Tucks under general anesthesia.  It is only way to do a proper Tummy Tuck operation.  It is safe if given by properly qualified anesthesiologist and operation is done in properly accredited surgical facility.

It is extremely important that you choose a properly trained Plastic Surgeon. A good surgeon will make sure that you have competent anesthesioligist and accredited facility.  Trust your doctor and don't try to microthink details. Leave those to the professionals. Good Luck

Vasdev Rai, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Tummy tuck anesthesia

Conventional tummy tucks as well as extended abdominoplasties and belt lift operations are usually done either under general or spinal anesthesia . If supervised or done by a board certified anesthesiologists in a certified/controlled facility is considered to be a safe procedure. The risk of serious complications are less than one in ten thousands. If there is and history of malignant hyperthermia in the family general anesthesia should be avoided.

Fereydoon S. Mahjouri, MD
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Tummy Tuck Anesthesia Varies

Smaller tummy tucks which entail lower skin resection and upper liposuction may be performed under local tumescent anesthesia.  Possibly a stitch or two may be placed into the muscle to do minor tightening.
Local anesthesia with sedation may be used for a bigger tummy tuck and some muscle work.  Local anesthesia is used in the muscle where the stitches are needed for tightening.
Larger tummy tucks are performed under general anesthesia with some local anesthesia used to keep the amount of general used "lighter".
Your concern about safety is real, however the major risk of tummy-tuck relates to blood clots in the leg and pulmonary emboli.  You will need support stockings, leg massaging machines, and possibly some blood thinners to reduce the chance of blood clots.  Tummy tucks entail a "corset" which increases pressure in the legs and creates more likelihood of clots in the legs unless precautions are used.  Liposuction in the thighs and the use of lower extremity  pressure garments afterwords may possibly increase the risk of lower leg blood clots when combined with a tummy tuck.
Smoking creates its own dangers if mixed with a tummy-tuck and you will need a good physical exam before surgery to be evaluated for any additional medical risks.


Keith Denkler, MD
Marin Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

What anesthesia for TT?

all surgeons have reasons for doing one thing or another, however in the literature there is good evidence that many different anesthetics can be employed safely and effectively. I recommend you do your due diligence in choosing the doctor and allow him/her to tailor the anesthetic for your procedure.

Rafael C. Cabrera, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.