What kind of IV sedation do doctors use for a lipo / full tummy tuck procedure?

I'm having a lipoabdominoplastic august 17 2015 and my plastic surgeon told me he uses IV sedation it is safe??? and what kind of Simptoms should I expect.?

Doctor Answers 8

What kind of IV sedation do doctors use for a lipo / full tummy tuck procedure?

Thank you for your question. You will find that there are a variety of different types of anesthesia that can be utilized during tummy tuck surgery. I  personally perform tummy tuck surgery in an out patient surgery center, and under general anesthesia administered by Board Certified Anesthesiologists.  I believe that this type of anesthesia provides for a comfortable/safe/immobile environment to  perform the relatively "extensive" procedure. Personally, I feel most comfortable having the anesthesiologist have full control of the patient's airway, thereby avoiding many of the potentially serious complications that may arise around the time of surgery. I hope this, and the attacked link, helps.

IV sedation for TT

The anesthesiologist used by your surgeon would be the best person to ask but the medications given for general anesthesia are safe and commonly used.

Sheila S. Nazarian, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

General anesthesia is the gold standard for a safe, comfortable tummy tuck

Most board certified plastic surgeons in the United States perform tummy tucks (abdominoplasties) under general anesthesia to be able to obtain the best results for their patients in the most comfortable, safest manner.  Surgeons must have an accredited surgery center that ensures a very safe environment to be qualified to perform general anesthesia.  Be careful to ensure that your surgery is being performed in an accredited center by a board certified plastic surgeon.  The recommendation of sedation may be given because you only need a "little tuck" with a little medication, but it could also be that the person making the recommendation does not have the qualifications to offer general anesthesia.

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What kind of anesthesia do doctors use for a tummy tuck procedure?

It's a good question. It really depends on your surgeon and what they are comfortable with. It's really best to discuss this question with your surgeon.

In my practice, abdominoplasty patients are done under general anesthesia. I inject local anesthetic and place a pain pump at the end of the procedure to minimize pain for the first few days after surgery. The pain pump is disposable and patients take it home with them.


I would suggest asking your surgeon these questions, because each surgeon may use a little different procedure. However, IV sedation is usually less risky then general anesthesia since fewer drugs are used and you are always breathing on your own.

Connie Hiers, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

What Kind of IV Sedation Do Doctors Use?

Thank you for your question.

The type of sedation and/or anesthesia that each surgeon uses is a matter of personal preference.  There are multiple types of anesthesia that are safe depending on the conditions.  Some minor procedure such as liposuction can be done using sedation.  Other more involved procedures such as a tummy tuck usually require general anesthesia.

You should discuss the procedure in detail with your surgeon and inquire as to why he or she uses IV sedation only and if this is safe. If the reason is because they have no way to provide general anesthesia for your comfort, this would be a red flag.

Best of luck to you!

What kind of IV sedation do doctors use for a lipo / full tummy tuck procedure?

Thank you for your question.  The best anesthesia for your case should be discussed between your surgeon and your anesthesia to ensure you are comfortable and can have the best results possible. Though some physicians do use IV sedation, and it is safe, most still use general anesthesia for a tummy tuck and liposuction.  

Nelson Castillo, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 38 reviews

This is a question for your surgeon

We do not know what your surgeon uses.  These types of questions are best answered by the person who will be giving the IV sedation.  Please contact your office

Martin Jugenburg, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 414 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.