What is "Considered Healthy Enough" to Have Cosmetic Surgery?

I want to have a tt, bbl, and bl. I am 5'8" and currently weight 210 lbs. Down from 235. I am still in the process of losing weight. Currently my iron level is 16.64, my glucose is 5.8 and Ive had an echo and an EKG and bother were normal. If I were to have the surgery today, am I healthy enough?

Doctor Answers 9

Healthy Enough for Cosmetic Surgery?

In our practice in Manhattan, if there is any question about a patient's surgical readiness we ask that they be cleared by their internist (and other specialists, as required) before we schedule a cosmetic procedure.  Do you have health challenges other than being overweight?  Obviously you have had some medical tests--were these part of a routine physical or because of some other trouble you're experiencing?

If your lead doctors clear you for surgery, we would welcome a consultation with you.  During our meeting, however, there are two other factors we would advise you to consider.  One is the simple concept of comfort after surgery.  The three procedures you're considering would cause post-op discomfort for both your front and back sides, therefore you might find it difficult to rest easily during the first few days after surgery.  In our view, that's a reason to consider cosmetic surgery in two stages.  The second factor is that you're still losing weight.  Given your height, you may be hoping to lose another 30, 40 or even 50 pounds?  That's a significant amount of weight, and there's a good argument to be made for holding off until you get closer to your target.

But there's no reason not to schedule consultations now.  Meetings with expert plastic surgeons can help you understand what's ahead and even motivate you to keep going on your weight loss campaign.  And you may click with a doctor and decide to move ahead with one of the procedures (less affected by weight loss) sooner rather than later.  This could be both an incentive and a reward for a job well done.

You're on track to better health and satisfaction with your physique--best of luck!

Elliot Jacobs, M.D.

New York Plastic Surgeon

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

What is "Considered Healthy Enough" to Have Cosmetic Surgery?

        Tummy tuck, Brazilian buttlift, and a breast lift can be performed at the same time, and an expert surgeon can create a dramatic result in 6 hrs or less.  However, this would be a best case scenario in which the patient is in very good health without comorbid factors.  Age would be relevant here as well, and medical clearance may be necessary.  Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of breast lifts, Brazilian buttlifts and tummy tucks each year.  Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.

Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 reviews

What is "Considered Healthy Enough" to Have Cosmetic Surgery?

This is not an easy question to answer without knowing you and the extent of surgeries to be performed. The decision of "healthy enough" should be made with you, your plastic surgeon, your primary care physician and cardiologist if you have one. The lower your weight and BMI will result in fewer possible complications and more predictable post operative results. Good luck.

Brian J. Lee, MD
Fort Wayne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

What is "Considered Healthy Enough" to Have Cosmetic Surgery?

You would probably be cleared for surgery just based on above but your surgeon will let you know if you are healthy enough. You need to lose some more weight as the surgery will be much safer.

Kurtis Martin, MD
Cincinnati Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 74 reviews

Preoperative health for surgery

With the limited information at hand, the safest method would be to obtain a letter of medical clearance for surgery from your primary care doctor or your cardiologist. Your weight may be an issue, and your glucose number you provided does not give the units so we cannot make any conclusions based on this information. It is best to be evaluated by a surgeon in person, who would then likely obtain medical information from your other doctors to clear you for surgery. Ideally, we prefer patients with a BMI below 30. 

Deborah Pan, MD
New Haven Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

What is "Considered Healthy Enough" to Have Cosmetic Surgery?

There is not enough info about your general health here. If you've had an echo you have presumably had some symptom or finding leading to that study, so an assessment by your primary MD or cardiologist would be a good idea.

As to weight, many surgeons use 30 as a threshold for BMI, and you are a bit higher than that. Another 10-15 pounds should bring you to that level. Above 30, various risks are considered to be higher than is commonly acceptable for an elective procedure. In addition, the overall outcome will be better if you are close to your goal weight. were you to have these procedures now and continue to lose a significant amount of weight, you may find that you once again have excess abdominal skin, and that the gains made by fat grafting are diminished. 

A better response to your questions will come during an in person consultation. When you are ready for an in person consultation,RealSelf has listings of surgeons in your area. You should consider cross referencing the listings from the The American Society of Plastic Surgeons (plasticsurgery dot org). A listing in the ASPS website assures you that your surgeon is not only board certified,  but also is a member in good standing of the major plastic surgery organization in the U. S. Thank you for your question, best wishes.

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Tummy Tuck, Breast Lift, Health

That's a tough question to answer based on the information you provide because it's much more complicated than just looking at a few numbers on paper. The procedures you describe are lengthy procedures that are usually done under general anesthesia. Certainly getting your weight down as low as you can and maintaining it there will reduce your risks. But there are so many other issues to look at before deciding whether to procede with an elective procedure like this. Talk to more than one board certified plastic surgeon in your area with an expertise in body contouring to go over your complete medical health. You can also go to your primary care physician to discuss your plans and se if they will "medically approve or clear" you for the proposed surgery. Best of luck and stay motivated with the weight loss!


M. Dean Vistnes, MD
Bay Area Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Medical clearance for combined cosmetic surgical procedures

More than likely you would be cleared for surgery.  All three may be a little much for one session.  To decrease your risk you should continue with your weight loss program.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Health for cosmetic surgery

I use a very simple standard: will your internist/primary care physician clear you for surgery?  That physician has no financial stake in the outcome, knows you well and is likely to have the most in-depth knowledge of your medical conditions, compliance with treatment regimens, etc.  You should not have surgery until you have reached and maintained your ideal weight.  However, this is a good time to start researching.

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 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.