Risks from Immediate Bilateral Reconstruction

Does immediate bilateral reconstruction poise additional risks for a smoker? 

Doctor Answers 5

Immediate Breast Reconstruction in a Smoker

I would recommend delaying your reconstruction until you can be off cigarettes for 2 weeks before surgery and 4 weeks after surgery.  Breast Reconstruction is elective surgery.   As your surgeon, I have the duty to provide you with the safest procedure with minimal risk and downtime.  Active smoking carries too high a risk to consider immediate reconstruction.  Consult with your primary care physician to determine the optimal smoking cessation aid for you.   I wish you all the best.

Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 85 reviews

Risks from immediate bilateral reconstruction

Yes smokers have a higher statistical risks of skin necrosis and infection. You should discuss in detail with the reconstructive surgeon so you are informed.


Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 174 reviews

Smoking GREATLY increases Complications of Immediate Breast Reconstruction

Smoking, either first or second degree, is associated with a decreased amount of blood flow through the skin. Immediate breast reconstruction in smokers has a significant rate of complications which could be otherwise decreased or avoided.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Breast reconstruction and smoker

Smoking increases the complication rate of surgery in some studies by more than 50% as compared to the non-smoking population.  I would stop smoking first.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Smooking and surgery

There is a risk of wound healing with or without immediate breast reconstruction.

The degree of risk varies with the method of reconstruction.

I would not do an immediate breast reconstruction on a smooker.

Skin flaps can die, Flaps can die. WHY TAKE THE RISK????????????????????????//

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 7 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.