Ask a doctor

If I Am a Diabetic is It Safe for Me to Get a Tummy Tuck?

Doctor Answers 10

Diabetes and Tummy Tuck

Thank you for your post. Diabetes is a disease that should demand a healthy respect from both surgeon and patient in plastic surgery. It is a disease that affects the immune system and can increase the risk of infection, a disease that affects the healing potential of a wound and can cause opening of a wound, and is a disease of the circulation that can lower the blood flow to the operated tissue and cause necrosis or tissue death. This needs to be managed as follows:

1. Tight blood glucose control with diet, exercise, and medication. You need to see your internal medicine doctor regularly and make sure your diabetes is well controlled.
2. If you are overweight, then losing weight decreases your risk in tummy tuck surgery or any other surgery for that matter.
3. If you have high blood pressure, this needs to be managed and well controlled by your internal medicine doctor as well.
5. Consider with your surgeon HyperBaric Oxygen therapy pre- and post-op.
6. Make sure you understand from your surgeon and anesthisiologist what medications you should take or not take prior to surgery.

It is very possible to have a great outcome as a diabetic following tummy tuck surgery, but minimizing the risk is the most rational way of accomplishing this.

Best Wishes,
Pablo Prichard, MD

Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Have a question? Ask a doctor

Tummy Tuck

If your sugars are extremely well controlled and you understand your risk of wound healing problems no matter what is high than yes you could still have a tummy tuck

Tummy Tuck

This is a question for the doctor who manages your diabetes.  They should talk with your surgeon and develop a plan for you and your disease.

Vivek Bansal, MD
Danville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Tummy Tuck Probably Safe For Diabetic

If you are otherwise healthy and your diabetes is well-controlled (as indicated by your hemoglobin A1C), it is probably relatively safe for you to have a tummy tuck.  There are always risks involved with all surgeries even with extremely healthy patients.  If your diabetes is not well-controlled, it would be advisable to postpone your surgery until you are better controlled.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Tummy tuck in Diabetics

Having diabetes doesn't prohibit you from the surgery.  Rather, your risk on infectious complications is slightly higher.  Help avoid this by carefully regulating your blood sugar three months prior to surgery.  Check your hemoglobin A1C.  If this is in the normal range then I would assume it to be safe for surgery.


Make sure you discuss your diabetes with your surgeon and anesthesia to help avoid complications.

Michael L. Spann, MD
Little Rock Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Diabetes safety with surgery

Well controlled diabetes is not a contraindications for surgery but make sure to get medical clearance from your endocrinologist first.  Best of luck...RAS

Ryan Stanton, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Diabetes and Tummy Tuck

It is safe to undergo a tummy tuck with well controlled diabetes. Understand that wound healing can be affected by diabetes, and that your risk for wound healing complications is slightly higher than average, but it certainly shouldn't preclude you from having the surgery. Make sure to discuss your plans with your endocrinologist or primary care physician as some insulin dosing adjustments will be necessary postoperatively. Best of luck.

Derek Lou, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Could a diabetic pt undergo a tummy-tuck?

Diabetics can undergo a tummy-tuck. But first you need to make certain that your diabtes is well controlled. You need to see your internist and inform him (her) of your planned surgery. He will obvioulsy check you out and take blood tests. Once you get the clearance, your plastic surgeon needs to be in contact with the anesthesilogist to make sure that your care coordinated. You need to be in your best shape possible. I would also only do youy procedure in the hospital. But given the above I think you should be able to undergo the operation. But diabtes can cause a delay in healing and you need to be aware of this..

George Lefkovits, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Diabetes and surgery

Diabetes has some implications for tummy tuck and other surgery.

As long as the diabetes is well controlled and your surgeon and anesthesiologist take adequate precautions, there is no reason not to have surgery because you are a diabetic.

Anindya Lahiri, FRCS (Plast)
Birmingham Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Safe Tummy Tucks for Diabetics

It is safe for your to get a tummy tuck, but you may need more monitoring, more cooperation from your endocrinologist, and more time, to get the best result possible.


As you probably know, diabetes slows down healing in general.  A tummy tuck generates a large surgical area, so your healing may be slower and require more care and wound maintenance to get the best result. 


Anesthesia, lack of a consistent dient, and  surgery will cause your blood sugar levels to fluctuate, so you may need more frequent monitoring to control this.

Since you need to not eat or drink before your big day in the operating room, you may need to coordinate with your diabetes doctor, your surgeon, and your anesthesiologist, the best plan for your diabetes sugar control.  Depending on how much surgery needs to be done, you may also need to stay in a hospital setting overnight or have extra help at home. 


A tummy tuck is possible if you have diabetes, and you should plan for it well in advance.  Best of luck to you!

Roy Kim, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

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.