A few serious issues post-op Full Tummy Tuck, Lipo Low hemoglobin in red blood count and infection, caused by smoking? (photos)

..surgery was sept 13th. I am unhappy with the way my procedure like so I know it's only been three weeks but looks like gator bite I have Low hemoglobin in red blood count and now an infection I do you smoke cigarettes the doctor told me that I have this infection due to smoking is this true I know that smoking can inhanse issues and slow healing but I didn't think it could directly cause an infection they also said that my low hemoglobin was due to the infection thought that low hemoglobin would be from loss of blood

Doctor Answers 6

A few serious issues post-op Full Tummy Tuck, Lipo Low hemoglobin in red blood count and infection, caused by smoking?

Most weight loss patients are anemic to begin with. Where yu? Second smoking can decrease the immune response and increase bleeding. Why was this NT explained to yu preoperatively. Or even maybe you should have not had surgery til if your were anemic you had corrected that and stopped smoking fir at least 6 months?????

Poor result, in a smoker

Thank you for asking about your tummy tuck.

  • Smoking reduces blood supply, allowing bacteria to grow. 
  • If you smoked before and after your surgery, your smoking is the chief cause of your problems.
  • Your low blood count probably was from blood loss during surgery but only your surgeon knows for sure.
  • Please take responsibility for your health and stop smoking now -
  • Your surgeon cannot get a good result for you if you do not do your part in your healing.
  • And that means following instructions and NO SMOKING

Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS


Thank you for your question and the photos. If you know all the serious negative effects of smoking right before smoking and after wards , i would go the safe route and just not smoke after the surgery. Best of luck 

Derby Sang Caputo, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Sounds like you've answered your own question

Seems like you're aware of the correlation between smoking and risk of infection soooooo....I'd stop smoking. Both nicotine and carbon monoxide in cigarette smoke impair blood supply to your healing wound so patches and gum are better but, going cold turkey is the best. You just spent a few thousand dollars on yourself - don't ruin it by smoking. Good luck

Robert Frank, MD
Munster Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Smoking and surgery don't mix

Smoking can cause all kinds of wound healing issues, including infection.  It is important for your health and recovery to cease smoking for the weeks leading up to the surgery and also during the recovery period.  Continue to follow the advice of your surgeon for optimal healing and stay away from all nicotine including gum and the patch.  

Camille Cash, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Complications from smoking

It is very possible that the wound healing issues you are experiencing can be related to you smoking. In my practice, I have my patients stop smoking 6 weeks prior to a procedure like yours. If you did not stop smoking prior, you should definitely stop now. Your surgeon should give you instructions on how to take care of your wounds, in addition, you should be monitored closely during this time to avoid more serious complications related to open wounds.

Clayton L. Moliver, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 27 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.