How Soon After Broken Leg/ankle Can I Have Tummy Tuck?

Mid May I broke my leg and ankle (sports injury) and underwent Orif surgery next day. I was splinted for two weeks and now I am in a walking boot. I am scheduled for a tummy tuck mid July and my ortho and Pcp feel i will be ok for surgery by then. I am not on any pain pills and will be gradually working on walking full weight bearing prior to surgery. If I am still walking with limp or assistance with a cane would that or any other factors stop me from having surgery?

Doctor Answers 7

Tummy Tuck After Broken Leg?

I would suggest that you go with the advice of the doctors that know you best. My concern would be the potential for deep venous thrombosis and your ability to ambulate after the tummy tuck operation. It may be in your best interests to rule out this concern prior to surgery.

Considering that you are about to undergo a major operation the following words of advice may be helpful to you:

1. Make sure you are doing the procedure for the right reasons (for yourself)  and that you have realistic expectations.  Be aware that an improvement in the “problem area” may not translate to an overall improvement in your life   situation.  You are bound to be disappointed with results of the procedure if your motivation for doing the surgery is not internally driven.

2. Time your surgery carefully; generally, it is not a good idea to have surgery done during or immediately after a stressful period in life (for example divorce or death of a loved one). The additional stress of surgery will undoubtedly be  more challenging to deal with if a patient's emotional reserves our already exhausted. Remember, that an improvement in your physical appearance will not translate to an improvement in your life situation.

3. If possible speak to patients who have undergone similar procedures and query them about the toughest times of their recovery period. Any practical hints previous patients can provide may be very helpful.

4. Make sure you are aware of potential complications that may arise how to reach your surgeon if necessary.
5. Make sure you have a strong and patient support system (several people if possible) in place who have time/patience to take care of you. Arrange for professional nursing if any doubt exists regarding the availability and/or stamina  of your caretakers.

6. Be patient with the healing process, understanding that it will take several weeks to months to feel “normal” again. It may also take many months/year to see the end results of your surgery.

7. Be prepared to distract your mind with things of interest such as books, magazines, and movies.

8. Expect less of yourself; do not go back to work, school or chores too early and let others take care of you (for a change).

9. Pick your surgeon carefully (a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon) and trust in his/her advice. Keep in close communication with your surgeon and do not hesitate to communicate questions/concerns and the   emotional swings that you may experience.

10. Resume all medications that you were using preoperatively when cleared by your plastic surgeon and stop the use of narcotics and sedatives as soon as feasible after surgery.

11. Keep in mind the end results as you go through the tougher emotional times after your surgery.

Best wishes with your upcoming surgery.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,484 reviews

How Soon Can I Undergo a Tummy Tuck After a Broken Leg?

Dear Supreme 6,


Safety should always be a first priority for elective procedures such as a tummy tuck. I would seek medical opinions from your physicians regarding this issue. Please be sure that you have kept your plastic surgeon informed about your recent injuries, treatment, and recovery. If you are concerned about your recovery and readiness to undergo a second procedure, I would discuss with your plastic about the possibility of rescheduling and postponing your procedure. As others have indicated, blood clots are always a concern.


Warmest wishes,

Larry Fan, MD

Larry Fan, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Listen to your orthopaedic surgeon, PCP, and Plastic Surgeon.

Thank you for your question.  I recommend that you listen to your orthopedic surgeon, PCP, and Plastic Surgeon.


Tummy tuck is an elective procedure.  If you do not feel that you have sufficiently regained your strength as the day of surgery nears, discuss with your plastic surgeon the possibility of postponing and rescheduling.


I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 181 reviews

Tummy tuck after ankle fracture

Hi, it is better to be fully ambulatory at the time of a tummy tuck to decrease the risk of blood clot complications. if 8 weeks after an ankle orif you are still not fully ambulatory without assistance, i would postpone the tummy tuck until you are back to normal. it is best to consult with a qualified plastic surgeon to assess your overall risk and possibly other risk factors for deep vein thrombosis and decide accordingly.

Antoine A. Hallak, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Tummy Tuck During Broken Leg Recovery?

Dear Supreme6,


Tummy Tuck has a considerable impact on the blood circulation in general.

Therefore, not being able to move around and walk close to "normal" will decrease your deep venous return hence will increase your risk of developing deep vein thrombosis (blood clot in a deep vein).


Your surgeon could recommend venous imaging studies and/or prescribe you blood thinners in case you could not develop the ability to walk almost normally.


Thank you for your inquiry and the best of luck to you.

Dr. Sajjadian

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 195 reviews

Vein clots would be biggest worry.

Hello, One of the biggest concerns of big body contouring procedures such as a tummy tuck is DVT (deep vein thrombosis). This increases when mobility (walking) is decreased and your leg fracture slighlty increases this. You will want to male sure that you are able to move your legs and walk around about as close to normal as possible. Deep vein studies may be wise and anticoagulant medications in the perioperative period may be indicated.

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 162 reviews

Tummy tuck after broken leg?

OK for tummy tuck before complete recovery from leg injury, but would consider venous doppler studies pre-surgery to be sure there's no lurking deep venous thrombosis.  Tummy tuck transiently increases deep venous pressure, and perhaps stasis.

Steve Laverson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 46 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.