Messed and Smoked 5 Cigarettes Post Op of Breastlift Do U Think Necrosis Will Happen?

Doctor Answers 5

Smoking after breast lift

Get the cigarettes out of the house so you will be less tempted.  Using tobacco products brings a significant risk of cancer, stroke, heat attack, etc. From a Plastic Surgery standpoint it is a vasoconstrictor. Wound healing is all about getting oxygen and needed entities to the wound. It is well known that patients who smoke have a tremendous increase in their rate of serious complications, (infections, wounds falling apart, etc.). Nicotine is the main vasoconstrictor, so getting a patch or lozenge of nicotine won't help the vasoconstriction. Best to be off the tobacco/nicotine entirely before surgery. A breast lift by definition places the wound on tension. Tension is also a risk factor for wounds. Please be honest with your Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Together you can make a plan. The amount of time to be nicotine free, (before and after the surgery), will depend on the procedure and the individual surgeon.


Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Messed and smoked 5 cigarettes postop of breastlift - do you think necrosis will happen?

Hello! Thank you for your question! The issue with nicotine is that it also acts as a vasoconstrictor, clamping down of blood vessels. Blood supply is always of great concern during any surgical procedure, but especially in such a procedure as a mastopexy where the viability of the nipple-areolar complex is obviously important. Since the vascularity to the area is already tenuous since it will be raised by cutting around the area, maximizing blood flow to the tissue is critical.

Typically, we recommend at least 6 weeks of smoking cessation prior to and at least 6 weeks after any surgical procedure. The longer, the better. Nicotine always increases the risk for infection, nipple necrosis, and wound complications, as well as other health consequences. I would discuss this with your surgeon prior to your procedure. Hope that this helps! Best wishes!mess

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Messed and Smoked 5 Cigarettes Post Op of Breastlift Do U Think Necrosis Will Happen?

   No one can predict the effect of this.  Your plastic surgeon will have a better idea, because he or she will know exactly what was done with regard to tension on closure, degree of undermining, and breast tissue manipulation and/or creation of pedicle, and preservation of subdermal plexus or lack thereof.  Follow closely with your surgeon.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Smoking after surgery

Smoking can definitely cause post operative healing problems.  Do your best to refrain from smoking in the future.  Give yourself the best odds to heal well and have a good result. 

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Smoked 5 Cigarettes Post Op of Breastlift

Can't predict for an individual, but I have seen this happen. See your surgeon for counsel. All the best. 

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