AM I Too Heavy for Tummy Tuck

I am 5"7 AND WEIGH 194LBS, do you think i am too overweight for a tummy tuck?

Doctor Answers 12

If you have an apron of extra tissue hanging, you probably can.

it depends on your frame and the distribution of your fat both in your body and whether it is subcutaneous (between the skin and muscle) or intraabdominal.  I would not be able to know for sure without seeing at least a photo.  But I have plenty of patients with your height and weight who are candidates if they have a signficant apron of extra tissue, and a large frame. 

My criterion is that I need to be able to repair the muscles in the midline.  If a patient has too much intraabdominal fat, this may not be possible and in this situation it is best for them to lose weight first.

If you can grab a bunch of fat and shake it up and down, you can probably have a tummy tuck.  If you have a "beer belly," maybe not.

It is okay in an ideal world to insist that everyone lose weight before surgery but we don't live in an ideal world.  If it were easy to lose weight you would have already done so.  Many people find they are more motivated after their tummy tuck. 

Kansas City Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Body weight for a tummy tuck

You should be at a stable weight before surgery, the actual number is not that important; nor is the BMI. You could be 194 and if you are muscular, your frame will look much different that someone who is 194 with a lot of fatty tissue. Generally speaking, obese patients have more complications (infections, wound healing, blood clots, etc.)  with a tummy tuck compared to patients at lower weights. A board certified plastic surgeon can examine you and determine if you are a good candidate for surgery or if you need to lose some weight prior to surgery.

Best wishes,


William Bruno, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 376 reviews

Candidate for tummy tuck

It is difficult to determine whether you are a good candidate for tummy tuck surgery without current photos. I recommend my patients reach their ideal weight prior to surgery to prevent complications during surgery and avoid additional surgery as well. It is important to be in good health to ensure a vast recovery. Consult with a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss the best and safest option for you.
On this site, I do my best to give advice without a physical examination but I want you to know that a physical examination by a board certified physician is always the best way to get the most accurate information.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,498 reviews

Too heavy for tummy tuck?

Ideally, we like patients to have BMI's below 30 for surgery.  Yours is 30.4.  That said, everyone carries weight differently, and everyone's weight loss goals are different.  The higher your BMI, the higher your risk of complications.  Furthermore, if you have not reached your target weight, you may not maximize the quality of a result you get from your tummy tuck.  I would advise you to consider these issues, and, when you think you are ready, consult a plastic surgeon.  You are certainly not well out of the range of candidates for the procedure.  Good luck!

B. Aviva Preminger, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Weight and tummy tuck

I like my tummy tuck patients to have a BMI of 30 or less- this reduces your risk for  complications substantially.  You also get a much better result if you are within a normal weight range.  If you are going to go through the cost, recovery, risk, etc. then you should probably assure that you are at your healthiest weight and assure yourself optimal results.  Tummy tucks are not for weight loss, they are merely for contouring.  If you do lose more weight you may find that the skin is even more lax.  Good luck to you!

Tiffany McCormack, MD
Reno Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Not too heavy for a tummy tuck

I usually recommend my patients for a tummy tuck to be under 200 pounds.  At 5'7", and 194 pounds, you would be a good candidate for a tummy tuck.  However, if you can, and desire to do so, I would recommend that you lose as much weight as you can before your tummy tuck.  Losing another 20-30 pounds would make you an even better candidate for the surgery.  Be sure not to smoke.  So stop smoking at least three weeks before your surgery if you are a smoker.

James Tang, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
3.4 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Weight and Tummy Tuck

Surgeons will have different preferences for body contouring based on their experience and expertise. Generally, surgeons prefer to have patients within 20 pounds of their ideal weight for optimal results, but that is not always possible. Consult with 3 board certified plastic surgeons to understand your options.

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

At 5'7" & 194# are you a candidate for tummy tuck.

It would certainly help to see photos, but as long as your weight is stable and realistic, most likely you would be a candidate for a tummy tuck.

Kenneth L. Stein, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Am I too heavy for a tummy tuck?

A tummy tuck is an operation designed to removed loose, sagging, and overhanging skin of the tummy.  It is not a defatting or debulking procedure.  Patients who have lost their excess weight, or a good deal of it, and are left with loose skin, are the best candidates for a tummy tuck.  Patients who have a full, thick, fatty tummy will still have that shape.  They may have somewhat less overhang of skin, should that be the issue preoperatively, but their basic shape will remain the same.  Therefore the best results would be achieved with further weight loss prior to your tummy tuck.

Robert M. Grenley, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 87 reviews

The Ideal Weight Before Your Tummy Tuck

In general I think that patients who are close to their goal weight prior to having a tummy tuck tend to do better (less risk of postop issues and usually a better recovery and overall cosmetic result).  I encourage patients to get as close as they can prior to surgery-- there is no absolute number or cutoff and it really depends on your goals, expectations, and the comfort level of your surgeon.

Shahram Salemy, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 149 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.