Tummy Tuck After Gastric Bypass?

I had Gastric Bypass 11/18/08 and I have so far lost 95 lbs. I'm now 158 lbs, and hoping to lose another 15 lbs. Is it too early for a Tummy Tuck?

Doctor Answers 9

Tummy tuck after gastric bypass is very rewarding to patients

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I have a vast experience with body contouring in massive weight loss patients. You do not state how tall you are which would help figure out if you are close to your ideal body weight. Weight loss is faster with gastric bypass than lap band. Often patients plateau out for a while than have a second period of rapid weight loss. If only 15lbs stand between you and your ideal body weight, you can have a tummy tuck. It is possible that you would need a lower body lift as well. Your plastic surgeon should be able to determine that. It is best to see a board certified plastic surgeon who has experience with body contouring in massive weight loss patients. You do have a higher risk for complications( healing issues due to poor nutritional status, deep venous thrombosis, pulmonary embolus, revisionary surgery, etc.). Best of luck.

Tummy tuck after weight loss

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You should be proud of losing so much weight!  Ideally, you will get the best result by losing as much weight as possible prior to surgery. Having your weight stable is also a helpful.  Best wishes.

I would wait for your weight to stabilize for 6 months

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 Once your weight is stable, I think then is the best time to proceed with the tummy tuck. Remember however that your skin is different than folks who have not undergone gastric bypass surgery, and a second touch up procedure may be required in the future, as the skin loosens over time. 

Shahram Salemy, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 155 reviews

Which procedure is appropriate is dependent upon where you have lost your weight

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A panniculectomy or abdominoplasty may or may not be the procedure for you at your current weight of 158 lbs. Where the 95 lbs. has come off and where the remaining 158 lbs. are located can also determine whether your abdominal procedure should be the first procedure chosen.

For instance, loss of weight in the arms, breasts, buttocks, and thighs but with retained fullness in the lower and upper abdomen may make a patient a less optimal patient for abdominal contouring initially. In this case further weight loss could enhance the outcome, since the next 15 lbs. may come off of the abdomen, making it easier to tighten the abdomen more.

Conversely, a patient who has lost a significant amount of weight and volume from the abdomen may already have thinned the abdomen enough to benefit from an abdominal procedure now, rather than waiting for additional weight to come off in other parts of the body.

Consultation now with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon experienced in body contouring for massive weight loss patients will help you sort out this factors in deciding the timing and choice of a contouring procedure. It can also help you to determine whether other procedures can be done at the same time or whether you should first lose further weight to enable you to combine procedures and more efficiently achieve your body contouring goals.

David N. Hing, MD
Ann Arbor Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

You can do a tummy tuck in 3 months.

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A few pounds don't really matter.  I think you could schedule a tummy tuck anytime after another 3 months, depending on your schedule.

We use special techniques for massive weight loss patients.  See link below for options.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Post Weight Loss Surgery

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In general I like my patients to be at a stable weight for atleast 3 months prior to their surgery. This usually happens when they are about 1 year out from their weight loss surgery.

So, you are probably too early still and would wait, as you will have more skin and tighter abdomen if you were to wait until you have lost the weight you are going to lose.

Good luck.

Farbod Esmailian, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

Not too early for Tummy Tuck

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Congratulations on your weight loss. This is a really common question. While ideally you should reach "goal" and maintain it for several months before having a Tummy Tuck, it is not always realistic. As I tell my patients, your "goal" weight is a very arbitrary number set by your bariatric surgeon. It does not take into account the amount of excess skin. Given your weight loss, I am willing to bet that you have at least 20 pounds of skin that needs to be removed from various parts of your body, so it is no wonder that you are 15 pounds short of goal!

Many patients find that Tummy Tuck will "jump start" the weight loss process -- you will feel better, be more motivated to lose weight, and have an easier time exercising.

Gastric Bypass

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Probably.  We usually like to see your weight first stabilize.  Once it does, we prefer to have you maintain it for a year to know you are stable. 

Edmond A. Zingaro, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon


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First of all congratulations on the weight loss. The timing of body contouring after weight loss is an individual decision. Basic recommendations are to be at a stable weight for 3 months. This helps decrease the need for revisional procedures.
It is time to begin consulting with a plastic surgeon who has a significant experience in body contouring after weight loss to begin planning your surgeries. If you carry your remaining weight in localized areas that will be addressed by surgery than your surgeon will be able to offer you those procedures sooner rather than later. If not than a directed plan may provide you with the additional motivation you might need to get you to your goal. This is an exciting time for you and a skilled plastic surgeon can help you bring harmony between what the scale says and what the mirror says.
All the best.

Robert W. Kessler, MD, FACS
Corona Del Mar Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 130 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.