Is 3 Weeks Long Enough to Past a Nicotine Unine Test & Have a Safe Breast Agumentation & Lift

My dr requires 4 weeks smoke free before having a breast lift. I would have been exactly that had I not smoked about 10 cigarettes after recieving some devastating news. However, I will be 3 weeks & since I have quit, I've been walking/jogging 2 miles everyday. Will I have a safe surgery? Also, will I pass the nicotine test required the morning of surgery. If I don't pass, they keep 50% of the money.

Doctor Answers (9)

Smoking and surgery

+1
Here are the major points of smoking Tobacco or Marijuana before or after 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. 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.
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.
Best wishes,
Pablo Prichard, MD


Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Is 3 weeks long enough to pass a nicotine urine test & have a safe breast augmentation & lift?

+1
Hello! Thank you for your question! The issue with nicotine is that it also acts as a vasoconstrictor, clamping down of blood vessels. Blood supply is always of great concern during any surgical procedure, but especially in such a procedure as a breast procedure where the viability of the nipple-areolar complex is obviously important. Since the vascularity to the area is already tenuous since it will be raised by cutting around the area, maximizing blood flow to the tissue is critical.

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. 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!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Passing nicotine urine test for breast augmentation and lift

+1

As you can imagine, smoking is bad for breast augmentation, (and surgery in general). Most would say that you have a significantly higher rate of wound complications. When one takes a drag on a cigarette, the chemicals cause vasoconstriction. Wound healing is all about getting blood flow and oxygen to the tissue. I believe that you will find that each doctor may have a different opinion as to how long you need to be off cigarettes. Some will test for nicotine in the system. Best to talk with your board certified plastic surgeon. He obviously feels strongly about this issue. He has a good point, especially when doing a lift as there will be additional tension on the wound. Also best to quit smoking, (for a variety of other health reasons as well).

Jeffrey Roth, MD
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

You might also like...

2-3 Weeks Without Nicotine Should be Enough

+1

Very wise to check on this. As nicotine tends to constrict blood vessels, limiting the oxygen that is carried throughout the body and to surgical site, stopping this product before surgery is essential. Yes, 2-3 weeks without nicotine should be enough time to clear.

John W. Bass, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Smoking and surgery

+1

Smoking definitely can have detrimental outcomes on surgery.  Your surgeon obviously feels very strongly about this issue.  The agreement you had is unusual but you did agree to it.  Be honest with your surgeon and he can decide if he wants to proceed with your surgery or not.

David Nicholas Csikai, MD
Jacksonville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

No smoking 3 weeks before surgery

+1

 Hi LouLou,

Different surgeons have different criteria regarding smoking and not all breast lifts are perfomed similarly. For that reason, you're best off discussing this issue with your surgeon. If he thinks that you're at an unacceptably high risk of potentially devastating complication, he'll tell you. Perhaps his office would be willing to re-schedule the procedure at a later time; that way, everyone wins.

Hope this helps. All the best.

Sam Jejurikar, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Smoking and breast lift and augmentation

+1

Smoking can have a detrimental effect on healing after cosmetic surgery, notably in facelift and in tummy tuck procedures. Smoking risks are of minor significance for breast surgery and we do not use a urine smoking test or demand individuals stop, and we feel you should do well smoking or not. Of course not smoking is better but the urine test seems a bit punitive. The 50% failure fee is probably something you never should have agreed to.

Best of luck,

peterejohnsonmd

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Smoking and Breast lift

+1

The best thing to do is to be honest with your surgeon, and the sooner you tell him or her, the better in terms of your potential finacial situation.  Remember, what the surgeon is trying to help YOU avoid is a devastating complication such as the permanent loss of one or both nipples.

Robert M. Grenley, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 70 reviews

Smoking and cosmetic surgery

+1

I cannot tell you if you will pass the test. The determintal effects of smoking on your results is without question and my advice is to have an honest conversation with your surgeon. I'll bet this isn't the first time your surgeon has had this happen.

Jack Peterson, MD
Topeka Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 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.