Tummy Tuck and Other Procedures with Beta Thalassemia Trait?

I have recently discovered though a blood test that my hemoglobin wasn't going up any higher than 10.9. The family dr found that I have Beta Thalassemia trait. Which means this is (normal) for me.

I want LIPOSCULPTURE/FAT GRAFTING & TUMMY TUCK...should I seperate them, get a blood transfusion & do all 3? How safe is a blood transfusion? I am 47, 153lbs, 5'6" Also should I lose weight before surgery? Thanks in advance doctors.

Doctor Answers 4

Plastic Surgery in a patient with Beta Thalassemia trait

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Hi there-

There should be no reason that your trait would necessarily increase your risks of problems or complications with the surgery you describe.

I personally would not do your fat grafting (assuming it will be to you buttocks?) at the time of your tummy tuck because of the need to position you appropriately, but your blood trait would not be a problem.

Tummy tuck and other procedures with Beta Thalassemia trait

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I recommend a full hematology clearance in writing to your plastic surgeon of choice. Only then would I consider you a safe candidate for any cosmetic surgery.

Regards from MIAMI Dr. B

Cosmetic Surgery in Patients with Beta Thalassemia trait

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People with Thalassemia minor do not produce sufficient quantities of Hemoglobin B chains (needed for the hemoglobin molecule which carries Oxygen to our tissues and CO2 to the lungs) resulting in small red blood cells and mild anemia which is resistant to iron. Some have proposed that this genetic anomaly offers various levels of protection against malaria.

Most Plastic surgeons are compulsive in minimizing blood losses. Furthermore, Tummy Tuck, liposuction and fat transfers are not bloody operations and should be able to be done safely in healthy individuals with mild anemia.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Liposuction, Tummy Tuck and Fat Grafting with Anemia

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I believe you could easily do a tummy tuck and limited liposculpture with a stable hemoglobin. I would allow your surgeon to use his/her judgment regarding stopping surgery if you experience more than anticipated blood loss. Fat grafting is not associated with blood loss but is related to the liposuction to obtain the graft. Having your blood typed and screened is a reasonable precaution preoperatively..

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 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.