What is the Purpose of Placing a Patient in a Chair While Performing a Tummy Tuck Surgery?

Hi, my stomach is completely covered in a lot of stretch marks. I had a consultation for a tummy tuck and the doctor mentioned something about possibly making the incision higher on my sides to remove some more of the stretch marks on my hips. Also, the doctor mentioned something about possibly having me placed in a chair during the surgery. I'm confused about what the purpose of placing me in a chair during the surgery is. Can you please explain what the purpose is of using a chair? Thank you.

Doctor Answers 9

Positioning for an abdominoplasty

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An abdominoplasty is performed in the supine position, laying on your back.  To tailor the skin and fat flap at the end of the procedure the head of the bed is generally flexed 15 to 20 degrees and the excess skin is excised.  I have never heard of placing a patient in a chair.  It is possible that you misunderstood your surgeon's description of the procedure.  It would be best to ask him for an explanation. 

Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Purpose of Placing a Patient in a Chair While Performing a Tummy Tuck Surgery?

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Thank you for your question. We use surgery tables which can be folded up into a chair, and this is just to bend the patient a little to reduce the tension on the incision when closing the incision. I hope this helps.

Vivek Bansal, MD
Danville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Doing a tummy tuck most surgeons flexed the table to maximize the results.

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Flexing the table at the time of abdominoplasty is a way of removing some tension and allowing slightly more skin and fat to be removed.

Using a Chair during Tummy Tuck Surgery

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Your Surgeon was referring to the way we determine how much skin to remove.  The Operating table flexes at the hip level.  It is electrically powered so that when it comes time to excise skin, the table is flexed.  This allows more skin to be excised and closed without tension during surgery.  The abdominal skin will always relax over time.  That is why patients want as much skin and fat removed safely at the time of the tummy tuck.  The downside is that you will have to walk in a bent over position for a few days.  I have never had a patient say "Oh you made my tummy too tight"

Randy Proffitt, MD
Mobile Plastic Surgeon

No chairs used in tummy tucks

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and your surgeon was most likely referring to the position you are placed in to estimate what skin can be removed.  You can always ask your chosen surgeon what was meant by that remark and now that you know what most of us think, you can almost predict his answer.

Curtis Wong, MD
Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Tummy Tuck Surgery

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Most likely your surgeon was mentioned placing you in a seating position during the surgery.  When the surgery starts, you will be lying flat on the table.  However, after the skin is elevated, the operative table is transformed in a "beach chair" configuration" so you bend at the waist.  This allows the surgeon to pull your skin tighter and make your stomach even flatter.


Good Luck.

Positioninig During Tummy Tuck Surgery

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Hi, and thank you for your question!

What your surgeon was most likely referring to is placing you in a "beach chair" position (as we call it) during the surgery. You will still be on the operating table at all times! But the table can bend and flex, and we do this to take tension off the closure after we get rid of a lot of the excess skin. Essentially, the table is flexed at the waist, as if you were sitting in  a beach chair.

Hope that helps you. Best of luck!

Chair for tummy tuck surgery

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The patient remains on the OR table during the entire operation. I have never heard of moving a patient into a chair. However, what your surgeon might be referring to is elevating the head of the OR table during the operation to put you into a flexed position to insure that there is sufficient tissue for the closure. Tummy tuck incisions can be tailored to specific needs so if you have excess skin in the flanks, then the incision could be higher than usual. Please note that while tummy tuck surgery can remove some of your stretch marks, it may not address them all.

Positioning during Tummy Tuck Surgery?

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I am as confused as you are; therefore best to ask the plastic surgeon what exactly he was referring to.

 My best guess would be: during the closure  portion of the tummy tuck  procedure, plastic surgeons will place the patient in the flexed ( beach chair) position  to allow for avoidance of tension upon closure.

 I hope this, and the attached link, helps.

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.