Don’t Let Your Tummy Tuck Recovery Go Up In Smoke

Smoking and Having Tummy Tuck Surgery | Dr. Shaun Parson, Scottsdale

Don’t Let Your Tummy Tuck Recovery Go Up In Smoke

We all are well aware of all the dangers involved in smoking. Well, let’s add another one to that list – tummy tuck recovery.

If you smoke, recovery from tummy tuck surgery, or any plastic surgery, will be a greater challenge. Healthy blood supply is vital in plastic surgery procedures and smoking seriously inhibits the circulation of blood to the skin and tissue, significantly impacting the healing process, causing possible complications and an extended healing time.

The Importance of Healthy Blood Supply in a Tummy Tuck

In plastic surgery, the procedures involve moving skin or tissue around in order to mold or shape. Many times the skin must be moved significant distances, and to accomplish this, the blood supply is altered. The blood supply is actually decreased to some degree, but not enough to interfere with the healing process.
When a tummy tuck is performed, some of the vessels are divided. This helps to achieve a flatter, better shape to the abdominal area. The surgeon will leave enough vessels so that healing will take place. It is now when blood supply becomes essential. If not enough oxygen from the blood is flowing, the tissue will die or not heal properly. Blood supply is crucial to healing.

Why Smoking Can Alter Proper Tummy Tuck Healing

When a surgeon is performing these very complex procedures, he is really relying on the extent to which the patient’s circulation system is working. Certain things affect the blood flow in the human body and the worst one of all is cigarette smoke. The nicotine is the biggest offender, but the carbon monoxide and the hydrogen cyanide are additional problems.

Pain Meds And Anesthesia After A Tummy Tuck

A recent study confirms what we have long suspected. When comparisons are made between smokers and nonsmokers, smokers needed 33% more anesthesia and 23% more pain relievers than their nonsmoking counterparts. And the study went a step further, stating that nonsmokers exposed to secondhand smoke required 20% more anesthesia and 18% more pain medication than those non-smokers not exposed to secondhand smoke.

Nicotine Inhibits Healing

Nicotine is an enemy to the human body. Nicotine causes the blood vessels to constrict in size causing reduced blood flow. It also can cause the blood to clot more readily. These effects caused by nicotine are extremely serious. When blood flow is restricted, wounds do not heal readily and cause disastrous complications.

Many times people are not concerned with this possibility, because they have never experienced problems with healing before, but plastic surgery, and the moving of tissue creates a whole different scenario for proper healing. Simply stated, a person who smokes is at a greater risk for complications.

Schedule a Tummy Tuck Consultation with Dr. Shaun Parson

Consulting with an experienced plastic surgeon is the first step to finding out if you are a candidate for the tummy tuck surgery you are contemplating. If you smoke, stop now. If you choose not to stop, it will most assuredly affect your surgery. Contact Dr. Shaun Parson today and we will assist you in answering your questions and concerns and help you generate the very best outcome possible.