How Soon Can I Start Taking the Birth Control Pill After TT?

I am having my TT in the second week of July. I stopped the pill on May 24th. I use the pill to regulate my monthly cycle. Can I start taking the pill right after my TT? If not, how long should I wait until starting it again? Thanks.

Doctor Answers 11

Birth control

This is an important question. Birth control pills can increase your risk for clotting especially in the first several months. I would discuss this issue at length with your gynecologist and plastic surgeon for specific recommendations tailored to you and the procedures performed.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

How Soon Can I Start Taking the Birth Control Pill After TT?

This topic is somewhat controversial;  there is no “standard” or official recommendations that  can be made here. Although it is thought that the use of estrogens (or the natural higher concentration of estrogen seen during later pregnancy)  may lead to a greater incidence of thromboembolic events (clot formation and lower extremities and/or lungs),  there is no  "standard of practice”.   Some of the studies I have looked at demonstrate a 9 time greater risk of admission to a hospital for treatment of  thromboembolic  events (1:2000) for women who use oral contraceptives, compared to women who  do not use oral contraceptives (1:20,000).  These studies do not involve surgical patients.   Some studies Involving surgical patients report that for those women taking an  estrogen containing oral contraceptive and undergoing elective  major surgery there is a doubling of the risk  of deep venous thrombosis, relative to the general population. 

The risk seems to be somewhat dependent on the type of oral contraceptive, and the quantity of estrogen involved. Other risk factors include obesity,  inherited blood clotting disorders,  a previous history of deep venous thrombosis,  cancer patients,  certain auto immune diseases,  inflammatory bowel disease, hypothyroidism, renal disease,  long-distance air travel…

The stopping of oral contraceptives prior to surgery may be of concern to patients/physicians at the risk of pregnancy is high,  due to improper technique or low success rate.  There are papers published recommending the continued use of oral contraceptives for this reason.  These authors recommend careful attention to the use of  venus thromboembolic prophylaxis during the time around surgery.  The alternative strategy  is to switch women to progestin only pills,  as this does not have a high association with thromboembolic events.

On the other hand, there are many authors, based on their studies, who recommend stopping the use of oral contraceptives prior to surgery.  The  recommendations for the length of time, prior to surgery, that these medications should be stopped vary; the optimal time for cessation is not known.  The most common recommendations I have seen is to stop the use of estrogen related containing oral contraceptives 4 weeks prior to surgery.

Ultimately, you will need to check with your own plastic surgeon ( and possibly OB/GYN physician) for their recommendations. As I mentioned above, these recommendations will vary from one practice to another.  In my practice,  given that we know the risk of venous thromboembolic events are cumulative ( and we want to do everything we can to decrease risk),  I recommend stopping oral contraceptive pills four weeks prior (and 2 weeks after) to  major elective surgery  and the use of an alternative method of birth control.  Of course, the use of other measures such as early ambulation and the use of  pneumatic compression stockings are routine.

I hope this helps.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,499 reviews

Resuming birth control pill after TT

I don't require my patients to stop BCP prior to surgery but your PS knows your health history and had his/her reasons for requiring you to stop (perhaps high risk of blood clots).  Regardless, safe bet is 2 weeks after your surgery, but I would ask your PS when you can resume.  ac

Angela Champion, MD
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

How Soon Can I Start Taking the Birth Control Pill After TT?


I am unaware of any contraindication to taking birth control pills after a Tummy Tuck.  You should ask your surgeon to ensure that they are happy for you to continue taking your birth conttrol pills.


Stephen Salerno

Be Sure of DVT Prophylaxis

I do not routinely stop the pills but if you do you may resume the pills once you are fully ambulatory. The pills can make you slightly more prone to developing clots in your legs (DVT). Be sure of DVT prophylaxis and ask your surgeon to take adequate precautions.

Dr. Ajaya Kashyap, MD FACS

Ajaya Kashyap, MD
India Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 166 reviews

How Soon Can I Start Taking the Birth Control Pill After TT?

I would assume your surgeon is managing risks of blood clots after surgery. Provided you are up and about, most of the risks are passed by about a week. Were you given Lovenox as  a blood thinner after the TT it would be for a week. But do run this by your own surgeon who knows more about your medical history, and who  may have a different protocol than me. 

Thanks, best wishes for your upcoming surgery. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Taking Birth Control After An Abdominoplasty?

Continue all regularly taken medications except any blood thinning medications. If you have any questions about which ones to discontinue, contact your surgeon for a list. 

James E. Murphy, MD, FACS
Reno Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

No specific recommendations regarding birth control after abdominoplasty.

I'm unaware of any specific recommendations for resuming birth control pills after abdominoplasty. I think you could resume him safely immediately afterwards but there may not be a reason to do that.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

How Soon Can I Start Taking the Birth Control Pill After TT?

      I usually recommend stopping about one month before surgery and restarting one month after surgery, but ask your surgeon of your choice.  Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of tummy tucks each year.  Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 reviews

Birth Control Pills After Tummy Tuck

Some surgeons stop BCPs  and some do not.   If you have stopped we would tell you you can resume them in 2 weeks or about 14 to 15 days post operation.  My Best,  Dr C

George Commons, MD
Palo Alto Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 36 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.