Plastic Surgery for Patient with an Enlarged Heart?

Would a patient with an enlarged heart be able to have cosmetic surgery? Liposuction and Brazilian Butt lift or a Tummy Tuck?

The formal diagnosis is Hypertrophic Cardiomyopathy. The diagnosis was 7 years ago with no major setbacks.

Doctor Answers 9

Get evaluated by a cardiologist first if you have an enlarged heart

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Allow me to add my voice the uniform opinion expressed so far.

No surgeon that I know would intentionally want to risk the life of his/her patient. I would recommend that you be evaluated by a cardiologist hand have a stress test BEFORE seriously considering having any cosmetic surgery. If your stress test is negative AND your cardiologist feels you could tolerate such procedures and "clears" you, most plastic surgeons and anesthesiologists would proceed.

Personally, neither I , nor most of my anesthesiology friends, would proceed without such a work up and official clearance.

Good Luck. I hope this was helpful.

Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Surgery for enlarged heart

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If you have cardiomyopathy, it has to be evaluated by your cardiologist.  Plastic surgery is elective, and unless you are very healthy I would not recommend it. You would have to get a clean bill of health from your cardiologist first.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Cosmetic Surgery for Patient With an Enlarged Heart

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All patients considering surgery, whether cosmetic surgery or otherwise, must be fully evaluated in terms of their health. There are numerous accounts of patients dying at out patients surgery centers or even hospitals because they failed to inform their plastic surgeon of previous or ongoing medical problems. In my practice if there are any medical issues that might cause concern I have the patient evaluated by the appropriate physician.

For a patient with an enlarged heart the patient should be fully evaluated and cleared by their cardiologist to undergo general anesthesia. It is not the surgery that is of concern but the anesthesia that could affect the patient. Remember that safety is first and surgery is second.

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Your question is impossible to answer without knowing more about your cardiac physiology.  Consultation with a cardiologist, who may recommend EKG, echocardiogram or other tests, is the only way to know the risks that your cardiomyopathy creates.  Good luck!

Definitely a team issue

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Dear Denise1971

It is great to hear that you are doing so well with your condition. It is not impossible for you to have surgery. However, provided you cardiologist, surgeon , and anesthesiologist are all on the same page, consider doing smaller procedures. For example it is possible to have liposuction and the fat transfer needed as part of the Brazilian butt lift all under local anesthesia.

Because you live in Los Angeles, you have access to excellent Cardiology. UCLA, Cedars, and USC have cardiology services with cardiologist who are focused on the care of individuals with Cardiomyopathy. UCLA for instance has a program where they actively monitor cardiac output in the process of optimizing drug treatment. So while you are focused on the simple question of "can I have surgery?" As Surgeons, we are first and foremost concerned about what is best for you and are you optimized medically for the state of your heart health. Answer this issue and it will be clear to your doctors where the risks of potential surgery are acceptable or too high.

Kenneth D. Steinsapir, MD
Beverly Hills Oculoplastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

You Need A Cardiologist to Clear You

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Your condition is one that can get worse, or better, depending on your blood pressure control in the time since your diagnosis. So an updated exam, chest x-ray, and EKG would be needed.

Also, your internist/cardiologist may recommend some different medications to control your blood pressure in the immediate postop period. Some consideration may also be given to doing your case in a facility equipped for good monitoring and an overnight stay.

John LoMonaco, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 276 reviews

You need to have clearance from the cardiologist.

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Your surgeon should speak to your cardiologist to make sure it will be safe. It will depend on the type of anesthesia as well, so the anesthetist should be involved as well. 

Toby Mayer, MD
Beverly Hills Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

Medical clearance for plastic surgery

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Plastic / Cosmetic surgery is elective. So, if you have any medical condition it is very important for you to seek the treatment and clearance of a medical doctor prior to any surgery. You will need to see your cardiologist and also medical doctor. Even after all of this, they may tell you that you are not fit for surgery. It really would be a shame if you had a medical complication during an elective case. So, please to not rush and do not pressure your surgeon to go forward without complete medical workup and clearance prior to surgery. Good luck.

Cosmetic Surgery and Heart Disease

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You should not do anything unless your plastic surgeon, cardiologist and anesthesiologist get together and review your proposed procedure, the risks involved, the extent of your cariomyopathy, types of anesthesia, medications, etc. Unless they all agree that the procedure is "relatively" safe, you should not proceed. Heart disease does not preclude cosmetic surgery although the risks may be increased. The question is what are the risks and how can they be minimized, if at all.

Theodore Katz, MD, FACS
Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon

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.