Anesthesia, scared about blood clots

I have booked my surgery with a great board cert plastic surgeon. He has worked on all my friends and has amazing results he also has 36 years experience. I'm afraid of Anestesia. He says he uses light general anesthesia with intubation that's not all the way down my throat. I was wondering is that good? I'm worried about blood clots. I have no issues as far as o know nor do I smoke or have ever taken birth control. I am an athlete but I'm still scared. Help before I cancel! ;(

Doctor Answers 17

You should be safe

Nothing will eliminate your risk. The way to treat patients is to stratify their risk and institute measures that are appropriate based on your risk profile. For low risk patients early ambulation is instituted. For moderate risk patients, early ambulation plus intraoperative sequential compression stockings. For higher risk patients, early ambulation, sequential compression stockings and graduated compression stockings (TED hose) before and after surgery. For the next higher risk category all of the above mentioned treatments plus subcutaneous low molecular weight heparin. Short operations with appropriate consideration of your risk will reduce the chance of DVT. Despite the low risk profile of most of our patients, we treat all of them with at least early ambulation and sequential compression stockings. If you want to add TED hose, ask your doctor. This will further reduce your risk.

San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 136 reviews


I would recommend early ambulation after surgery, cessation of oral contraception.  

Best wishes!
Dr. Desai
Harvard Educated, Beverly Hills & Miami Beach Trained, Double-Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

Urmen Desai, MD, MPH, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 233 reviews

Risk of anesthesia and blood clots with a breast augmentation

The anesthesia your surgeon is referring to is general anesthesia given via an LMA (laryngeal mask anesthesia), a device that sits in the back of the mouth, not through the vocal cords. Almost all of my breast augmentations are done with by this method. It is safe, easy, and the patient rarely wakes up with a sore throat. In a young and healthy patient as yourself with no risk factors except the length of the procedure, a blood clot would be very rare. I place sequential compression devices (boots that wral around the calves that inflate and deflate continually to keep the circulation moving in the legs) on all my patients and they are up an around the same day.

Gustavo E. Galante, MD
Schererville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 54 reviews


I have a full discussion with my patients regarding the risks and benefits of general anesthesia. I use only board certified anesthesiologists and general anesthesia for my breast augmentation surgery. I do this because it is the safest most effective way to proceed. We take all precautions to prevent blood clots in the legs as well. 

Frank J. Ferraro, MD
Paramus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Scared of Anesthesia

Hi fitgurl35...  For a healthy person, anesthesia is very safe.  It should be performed by a board-certified anesthesiologist in an accredited facility.  If your surgeon is a board-certified plastic surgeon with experience in the procedure you want, then he will likely be working with a good anesthesiologist.  If it makes you feel better, you should speak with the anesthesiologist and air your concerns.  The anesthesiologist can clarify the actual risks so that you can put everything in perspective.  Good luck!
Dr. Parham Ganchi - Wayne, NJ Plastic Surgeon

Parham Ganchi, PhD, MD
Wayne Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 160 reviews

Anesthesia and clots

Anesthesia does not causes clots.  Multiple factors can lead to clots and that is a long discussion.  It is very uncommon.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Anaesthetic Concerns


Breast Augmentation is a relatively quick surgery and when all your other risk factors are low- which they are- your Plastic Surgeon will not likely be worried about blood clots for you and you shouldn't worry either. In general, only elderly patients or those with significant medical problems (like heart, lung, or liver disease) are at increased risk with anaesthesia. Younger, healthy patients virtually never have issues with anaesthesia, so much so that I often do not discuss anaesthesia in-depth during the consultation.  I recommend that my patients walk around regularily for the first few days post op just as a precaution but blood clots post BA, even in patients with risk factors, are rare. You should certainly discuss these concerns with your Plastic Surgeon and let them put your mind at ease.

All the best

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 179 reviews

Risk of DVT or PE

Risks of blood clots are real and board certified plastic surgeons will try to keep your risks to the minimum. Using a light anesthesia without depolarizing agents reduce risk of clots, No birth control pills, factor V lydin deficiency and length of procedure are a few of the risk factors. I try to keep the procedures shorter then 4 hours and use compression boots and or compression stockings.

Larry Weinstein, MD
Morristown Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Anesthesia and blood clots

Thanks for your question.

You are correct to research online potential complications with anesthesia and surgery in general.  Blood clots are rare and the incidence of having them increase with general anesthesia, length of surgery, family history, smoking, obesity, birth control pills, medications and many more.  You seem to be young and healthy.  Your surgeon has many years of experience and problalby uses leg compression devices to reduce the risk of blood clots even further.

You should speak with your surgeon one more time to put these concerns to rest.

Good luck with your procedure.

Dr T.

Douglas Taranow, DO, FACOS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 57 reviews

Anesthesia during surgery

Blood clot risks go up with increased duration of the procedure. Surgeons know this and strive to keep the length of surgery down. Also, we take precautions in the OR by placing compression boots and sometimes administering pharmacologic prophylaxis against blood clots. If you have concerns, discuss it with your surgeon. Good luck!

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.