With having more than one procedure done is there ONE or TWO surgeries required AND is a catheter required?

I will be having breast augmentation and lift, upper arm lift and extended tummy tuck at the end of this month (September). I'm under the impression that I will be having it all done in one surgery but am wondering (after watching a program called Beauty and the Beach) that most woman have that surgery done in two operations.

Doctor Answers 11

Find the right surgeon to get the best MM for you

Far more important than the technique is the skill and experience of your plastic surgeon. Choose your surgeon rather than the technique and let them explain why one technique may be better than another. 
See the below link on some suggestions on finding the most qualified Plastic Surgeon for a consult.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 159 reviews

Combined Procedures

Additional procedures with the tummy tuck that may enhance the result are Liposuction, Breast Procedures, or Thigh Lift. Mommy makeovers usually include multiple operations. Brazilian “butt enhancement” can be done at the same time to provide best body contours. Arm reduction or brachiaplasty is also common. 

Tummy Tuck (abdominoplasty) is a plastic surgery procedure designed to flatten the abdomen by removing excess skin and fat, and to tighten the abdominal wall. In some cases the procedures will need to be staged. In the first stage the excess fatty tissue is removed and the skin is allowed to retract. In a second stage performed months later whatever remaining excess skin is removed. This approach may limit the amount of extra scars that need to be made. You should be able to confirm with your surgeon as to whether a single combined procedure will be possible or if stages will be needed.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 110 reviews

Multiple procedures - how many surgery? Is there a catheter?

Thank you for asking about your breast augmentation, arm lift and extended tummy tuck.
  • This sounds like a lot of surgery at one time, unless you are very thin.
  • Your surgery should be no longer than 6 hours.
  • You need to ask your surgeon if s/he will do the procedure alone or if there will be another surgeon -
  • If there are two surgeons, the surgery can be done at one sitting.
  • I am sure a catheter will be placed during your surgery -
  • Usually it is removed before you wake up.
Always see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon. Best wishes  - Elizabeth Morgan MD PHD FACS

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Massive surgery... pros and cons

Thanks for sharing your question. I can appreciate your concern. This is a lot of surgery. a catheter is granted. There is a lot of literature talking about the increased level of complications when prolong procedures are done at once. dividing the procedures is a good alternative.  Finally, make sure that you have a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon. Wishing you the best in your journey

With having more than one procedure done is there ONE or TWO surgeries required AND is a catheter required?

Thank you for your question.  Those are a lot of procedures all at once.  Generally, it's safest if you can limit the time of surgery to under 6 hours.  Close monitoring afterwards should also be a priority.  For long procedures, a urine catheter is placed to monitor urine output and fluid status.  Be sure that your surgeon is an experienced board certified plastic surgeon.

Zachary Farris, MD, FACS
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Multiple procedures

Congratulations on your upcoming surgery and thank you for taking the time to post a question.Every surgeon has a different policy for how much can be completed at one setting. Most limit the operative time to 6-8 hours. If your surgeon has an assistant, then the above can definitely be completed in that time frame. Talk with your surgeon about the plan. Ask whether it will all be done at once. How long is the surgery anticipated to take? Do you go home after the surgery or spend the night in a monitored facility? If you are not comfortable with the answers or the plan, then seek out a second opinion. It is often beneficial to talk to another surgeon and hear how they would improve what bothers you.Good luck!

Jennifer Boll, MD
Tempe Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

With having more than one procedure done is there ONE or TWO surgeries required AND is a catheter required

That is a lot of procedures to have done at once...make sure you are with a board certified plastic surgeon who will be performing the surgery in an accredited facility or hospital where you can stay overnight for appropriate monitoring. A catheter is necessary to monitor your urine output/fluid status. If you are worried or have questions, best to schedule another consult with your operating surgeon so you can fully understand the procedures you will be undergoing, along with the expected recovery and possible risks. Good luck!

Farah Naz Khan, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 100 reviews

Multiple procedures

With what you are describing, I typically would do that in 2 operations as this would be a lengthy operation and the risks tend to be higher for really long operations as well as the recovery. I would suggest doing the extended abdominoplasty in one operation and then the breast augmentation and lift with arm lift in a second one. This however is my preference and for safety. It is quite possible that your surgeon is using more than one person to do these procedure and could get this all done in a timely fashion making it less risky, but the recovery would still be tough with that many areas involved. A catheter is usually used when the procedure goes over three hours, but I routinely have it removed before the patient wakes up from anesthesia. If you are concerned about this though, talk to your surgeon and explain your concerns.

W. John Bull, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

With having more than one procedure done is there ONE or TWO surgeries required AND is a catheter required?

Yes, multiple procedures can be performed during the same surgery.  The decision to do the surgeries in two settings is usually decided by the surgeon based on time needed, health of the patient, and comfort level of the surgeon.  A catheter is used for lengthy surgeries for the patient's comfort, and if the patient is staying overnight.

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Multiple procedures at one surgery?

Yes, multiple procedures can be performed during the same surgery.  However, typically, most surgeons will not perform surgery for more than 6-8 hours for elective procedures -- this is why many times, multiple procedures may be done at two different settings.  The reason for not doing surgery for more than this length of time is for your safety -- complications such as blood clots can occur with excessively long surgeries.  Also, when procedures will take longer than 3 hours, a urinary catheter is placed to drain your bladder.  This allows the anesthesiologist to monitor your urine output for long surgeries and also prevents your bladder from getting to full.  Typically, the catheter is removed after the surgery.  I would definitely discuss your questions and concerns with your surgeon!  Good luck!

Anureet K. Bajaj, MD
Oklahoma City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 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.