Bromelain Before Tummy Tuck - Is It a Blood Thinner?

I am curious if it is safe to take Bromelain (500mg) a few days before abdominoplasty and then after. Some people have posted it is a blood thinner and some say it isn't. Obviously, I don't want to cause trouble during surgery on Friday. Thank you in advance for your advice!

Doctor Answers 5

Bromelain before abdominoplasty

Bromelain is commonly used as an ingredient in meat tenderizers. However, bromelain has no scientifically accepted therapeutic use as a pill and may affect heart rate in people with heart problems.

Make sure both your surgeon and anesthesiologist are aware of your plans to use this product. But since there is no proof that it offers anything of value for your surgery, consider not using it.

Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 68 reviews

Herbal medications or drugs: A little story about willow bark

We don't have the answer to how many herbal supplements or over the counter drugs or homeopathic medications effect surgery or wound healing because they haven't been studied enough.  If I told you willow bark was good for your wound, would you eat it? And would it effect surgery? You would probably say you don't know. Well the answer is yes, it would and it could have disastrous effects and it could save your life. Why> Because that is where Aspirin is derived from. It is a blood thinner and taken before eye surgery, it could make you blind. Howver taken before vacular bypass or heart surgery or cardiac stents, it could prevent an blood threatening clot.

Aspirin has been studied for thousands of years. All the other newcomers have not been fully evaluated. Just like Aspirin, we could find out one day that they are beneficial or harmful. However, at this point in time most of these claims are unproven.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Supplements and tummy tuck

Bromelain is thought to help with swelling, but I really do not think there is any reports in the literature to sugget it works.  I would avoid supplements prior to surgery.

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

Would not take supplements

I would advise patients to discuss all prescriptipn medications and supplements with their doctor weeks ahead of surgery.  In my office we provide a list of meds and supplements we feel are not safe around he time of surgery.  You should be communicating with your doctor about your bromelain. 

Vishnu Rumalla, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 197 reviews

Herbals prior to surgery

I have all of my patients stop all herbal supplements two to four weeks prior to a surgery because stopping them usually doesn't cause the problems that all patients dread.  They can however cause the problems that plastic surgeons fear, we've all seen that happen.

Ricardo A. Meade, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 119 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.