Hi! I had gynecomastia surgery/liposuction on my chest area a week ago. I was told by my doctor that i should not drink alcohol or smoke atleast two weeks post-surgery. I followed his instructions carefully but yesterday i was at my friends party, and unfortunatley i smoked one cigarette. I am very scared that this will affect my recovery and give me bad result of the surgery. i can not stop thinking about it.Is smoking one cigarette going ruin my recovery completly? i am very scared!
Is it Okay if I Smoked 1 Week After Gynecomastia Surgery?
Doctor Answers (7)
Smoking and surgery
1. There is nicotine in tobacco, but not in marijuana. However, most joints are rolled with marijuana and tobacco combination. Nicotine is a vasoconstrictor that decreases blood flow to the tissues. This is the major problems that can cause a very bad outcome in some surgeries. In a breast augmentation, there is not a lot of risk as there are not a lot of incisions which decrease blood flow to the tissues. In a breast lift or tummy tuck, on the other hand, there is much longer and more involved incisions. The decrease in blood flow to the tissues in combination with the decrease in blood flow from the nicotine can cause tissue to die. This can cause part of the breast or nipple, or in the case of a tummy tuck, part of the belly tissue to die, resulting in a very bad outcome. This is especially bad in breast reductions or face lifts. In a rhinoplasty the tip of the nose and the columella, the area between the tip and the lip, is at risk. Your skin and tissue can turn black and fall off if this happens. Marijuana without tobacco does not cause this problem, or marijuana in an edible fashion. Vaporizers do not decrease the amount of nicotine in tobacco, only decrease the smoke. Hookah also does not decrease nicotine.
2. There is carbon monoxide in both tobacco smoke and marijuana smoke. Carbon monoxide decreases the oxygen carrying capacity of hemoglobin in the blood. This is different from the vasoconstrictor effect, but has the same result of having the risk of tissue death in conjunction with surgeries that decrease the blood flow to tissues such as breast lifts and tummy tucks, as opposed to an augmentation alone that does not decrease blood flow to as great of an extent. Again, edible forms of marijuana do not have smoke, and thus carbon monoxide poisoning.
3. Coughing. Both tobacco and marijuana smoke disrupt the lining of the lungs and bronchi and can lead to coughing episodes. Coughing episodes can lead to internal bleeding after surgery that can lead to hematomas and complications, and again a bad outcome. Again, edible forms of marijuana does not have this effect.
4. Anesthesia effects. Marijuana can have drug interactions with certain anesthetic drugs. Thus it is important to tell your anesthesiologist about your marijuana use.
In conclusion, Smoking, whether it be tobacco or marijuana, is detrimental to your surgery outcome. Edible marijuana is much less so, but be honest about your use with your surgeon and anesthesiologist so that you can have the best outcome. In general, you should quite smoking many weeks, ideally 6 weeks before surgery, and not smoke for at least 2 weeks after surgery.
Pablo Prichard, MD
Is it okay if I smoked 1 week after gynecomastia surgery?
Typically, we recommend at least 6 weeks of smoking cessation prior to and at least 6 weeks after any surgical procedure. The longer, the better. Nicotine always increases the risk for infection, nipple necrosis, poor scarring, and wound complications, as well as other health consequences including blood clots. The anesthesia risk is greater with general anesthesia as well as pulmonary issues/lung infections postoperatively. I would discuss this with your surgeon prior to your procedure. Hope that this helps! Best wishes!
Generally one cigarette will not affect your recovery. Societal pressure can overcome good sense in many situations. However, let your surgeon know and he can advise you accordingly.
You might also like...
Smoking after surgery
It is very unlikely that 1 cigarette will ruin your results. However, please follow your plastic surgeon's instructions and stay away from tobacco/cigarettes and second hand smoke.
Best of luck!
Smoking after Gynecomastia Surgery?
Thank you for the question.
Unless you were experiencing compromised blood flow in the surgical area postoperatively, it is very unlikely that one cigarette will cause a “bad result". For real reassurance follow-up with your plastic surgeon for examination.
Smoking after Gynecomastia Surgery
Thank you for your question.
While I do strongly advise my patients to avoid alcohol and smoking
for at least two weeks following a procedure, I would not worry too
much over the one cigarette. As long as you will not smoke again
during the healing process. I applaud you for recognizing it and I
wish you a speedy recovery!
Dr. Sam Speron