Will Diabetes/high Blood Pressure and High Cholesterol Affect a Tummy Tuck Surgery?

I have diabetes (controlled) high blood pressure and high cholesterol, will these problems prevent me from getting an abdominoplasty?

Doctor Answers 14

Diabetes and Tummy Tuck

Thank you for your post. Diabetes is a disease that should demand a healthy respect from both surgeon and patient in plastic surgery. It is a disease that affects the immune system and can increase the risk of infection, a disease that affects the healing potential of a wound and can cause opening of a wound, and is a disease of the circulation that can lower the blood flow to the operated tissue and cause necrosis or tissue death. This needs to be managed as follows:

1. Tight blood glucose control with diet, exercise, and medication. You need to see your internal medicine doctor regularly and make sure your diabetes is well controlled.
2. If you are overweight, then losing weight decreases your risk in tummy tuck surgery or any other surgery for that matter.
3. If you have high blood pressure, this needs to be managed and well controlled by your internal medicine doctor as well.
5. Consider with your surgeon HyperBaric Oxygen therapy pre- and post-op.
6. Make sure you understand from your surgeon and anesthisiologist what medications you should take or not take prior to surgery.

It is very possible to have a great outcome as a diabetic following tummy tuck surgery, but minimizing the risk is the most rational way of accomplishing this.

Best Wishes,
Pablo Prichard, MD

Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

MM for a diabetic

Most Diabetics can have plastic surgery safely. To minimize risks, you, your diabetic doctor along with your plastic surgeon need to make sure that your diabetes is under good control before and after the procedure. Although some complications may be increased, such as infection, the odds are generally in your favor that you will do OK

Larry S. Nichter, MD, MS, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

Diabetes and tummy tuck

The medical conditions you describe place you at some increased risk but do not necessarily mean that you can't have a tummy tuck.

It is important to discuss all of your medical conditions with both your plastic surgeon and your medical doctor.

It will be important to have your diabetes, BP, and cholesteral under control and monitored.

Only proceed with elective surgery when have medical clearance from your health care providers and follow their instructions to a T.

Medical conditions pose risks. It all depends on how you manage those risks and how much risk you are willing to take.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 183 reviews

Medical Problems Affect A Tummy Tuck

Great question!  Though medical problems such as diabetes and high blood pressure increase the risks factors, it does not prevent you from having an abdominoplasty.   If you are being treated by your primary care physician and have a medical clearence you may be a candidate for a tummy tuck.  It is important to let both your plastic surgeon and your primary care physician know of all health issues.

M. Mark Mofid, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Contemplating tummy tuck with history of high blood pressure and diabetes

Diabetes and high blood pressure will absolutely increase your risk for problems but will not necessarily prevent you from having a tummy tuck. If both are well under control and you don't have other major risk factors, you could potentially have the surgery though medical clearance is mandatory.

This is elective surgery so you want to make sure that everything is in your favor. Other important issues to consider which you did not mention are age, weight - BMI/obesity, cardiac status and even history of smoking.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Medical Conditions do Increase Surgical Risks

Hello there!

It's nice to meet a fellow El Paso-an here on Realself! 

While there is no question that your particular medical conditions increase your risks with abdominoplasty, this does not necessarily mean you could not safely have the procedure... Just that careful and deliberate steps need to be taken in the planning of your surgery with close communication between your surgeon and your medical doctor.


Armando Soto, MD, FACS
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 159 reviews

Will Diabetes/high Blood Pressure and High Cholesterol Affect a Tummy Tuck Surgery?

YES! Read all the expert posters here. Your risks increase with any medical problems. Best to check with your doctors to obtain a FULL medical clearance. 

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

Effect of diabetes and hypertension on abdominoplasty

The question should best be directed to your internist and/or endocrinologist. Medical clearance is required for an abdominoplasty and this is a call that must be made by your treating physician based on whether your blood pressure and sugar are controlled. If your medical situation is well controlled, then your plastic surgeon will discuss the potential risks applicable to a diabetic, in terms of wound healing, or a hypertensive patient, including embolism.

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

Close monitoring required after abdominoplasty if you have diabetes

Having these types of medical issues should not present a problem unless they are not under control. Medical clearance from your primary care physician is required. Anesthesia will run a fasting glucose and take a look at your blood pressure the day of surgery-if all is well surgery will proceed. It is worth mentioning that if you have diabetes; the possability of having complications with wound healing is a concern. Close monitoring by you and your PS will minimize problems in the post op period. Best wishes, Dr. H

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 223 reviews

Diabetes affects tummy tuck planning

Any medical condition, including high blood pressure, or diabetes, will push up your tummy tuck risks, though with careful planning you can do well. An important step is a medical clearance by your family doctor to ensure that your health history has been considered, and any condition you might have should be under good control.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 43 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.