Is It Safe to Get a Tummy Tuck for an Asthmatic?

Is It Safe to Get a Tummy Tuck for an Asthmatic?

Doctor Answers 7

Asthma and Surgery

If your asthma is optimally controlled the risk is very small and you can undergo major surgery without significant asthma complications. Most anesthesiologists I have worked with will recommend that you take your asthma medicine the prior to surgery with a sip of water and bring your inhalers to the surgery center. In addition, steroids are given just prior to anesthesia in most patients any way which helps prevent asthmatic complications.
On the other hand, if your asthma is poorly controlled, or you are steroid-dependent, you are at increased risk and therefore it is recommended that your asthma specialist provide any needed specific medical preparation prior to surgery including a written plan to give to your surgeon and anesthesiologist regarding asthma medication recommendations pre- and post-surgery. This will include a complete pre-surgical evaluation including pulmonary function test results, physical examination, and review of your medications and past medical problems. If your pulmonary function tests are not optimal your asthma doctor and/or anesthesiologist may choose to postpone surgery until your asthma is under optimal control prior to giving surgical clearance. In addition, it is advisable that you contact that anesthesiologist beforehand to discuss any issues that might arise and their management. . This is because surgery may cause an asthma flare or related bronchospasm during or immediately after surgery. Make sure you tell the anesthesiologist and your surgeon the amount and type of steroids you take so additional steroids can be given to prevent adrenal insufficiency which can result in a sudden blood pressure drop.


Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 154 reviews

Asthma and Tummy Tuck.

Every case is different, but a well-controlled medical condition may not preclude a tummy tuck. You must be open in your communication with your surgeon, pulmonologists and anesthesiologist for the most optimal outcome. 

Brian J. Lee, MD
Fort Wayne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Asthma and Tummy Tuck Surgery

Dear Veronica,


The important issue is if you could have the medical clearance to undergo full anesthesia.


I encourage you to consult with the physician managing your condition. If you are cleared for it, then undergoing surgery will not be an issue.


Seeking consolations with board certified plastic surgeons of ample experience in that field will help you make an informed decision.


Best of luck to you and please do disclose all your medical conditions with your surgeon as surprises during surgery would increase your risks.


Thank you for your inquiry.
Dr. Sajjadian

Ali Sajjadian, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 195 reviews

Tummy Tuck for an Asthmatic

Asthma does increase risks with general anesthesia. Consult with your primary care physician or pulmonologist to determine if the severity of your astma would be appropriate or inappropriate for general anesthesia. If you primary care physician deeems you to be a candidate, consult with 3 - 4 experienced and expert board certified plastic surgeons to understand your options. 

Kris M. Reddy, MD, FACS
West Palm Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Asthma? It is not so much that tummy tuck is the risk, as is the risk of undergoing anesthesia

It is not so much that tummy tuck is the risk, as is the risk of undergoing anesthesia.  It depends on how severe you asthma is and the complexity of surgery. You should talk to your PCP and your plastic surgeon to see if you are a good candidate for general anesthesia and go from there.  I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 182 reviews

Asthmatic getting a Tummy Tuck

It really depends on how bad of an asthmatic you are.  You need to discuss having this type of elective surgery with your Pulmonologist or General Practitioner (whoever manages your asthma).  If they feel your condition is stable and well controlled then they will give you a medical clearance.  You also want to make sure you have good after care post-operatively, in addition to having all of your asthma medications available for use.

Milind K. Ambe, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Asthma and tummy tuck

Asthmatics are at higher risk of complications or exascerbation of the underlying condition. No one knows your situation better than your pulmonologist and he should be the first line of inquiry. You will need medical clearanc from him and it is important to have your inhalers and medication available on the day of surgery.

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 40 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.