Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) Risks and Safety

Abdominoplasty, commonly known as tummy tuck, is a major body contouring cosmetic surgery procedure. As long as the procedure is performed by a qualified and experienced surgeon, patients can expect safe and predictable outcomes. However, it is still important for a patient to be aware of the potential risks and safety aspects of tummy tuck surgery in order to make a well-considered decision.

During the pre-op consultation, the surgeon will apprise the patient about all aspects of tummy tuck, and discuss the risks and side effects that may be involved. The patient should also be committed to following the surgeon’s pre- and post-op care instructions in order to minimize risk. Board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Jacob Bloom provides tummy tuck surgery to patients in Chicago, IL, and all surrounding neighborhoods of the ‘Second City’.


Potential Risks

Adverse Anesthesia Reaction

A major surgery such as tummy tuck will typically be performed with the patient under general anesthesia. The patient’s health records and their current medical condition will be assessed before they are cleared for the anesthesia procedure.

But in rare circumstances, despite all precautions, the patient may have a poor reaction to anesthesia. An anesthesiologist or nurse anesthetist will be present to monitor the patient’s response in the operating room, and will be able to quickly anticipate and address any potential situation.


Blood Clotting

If the patient has a history of clot formation, and even otherwise, there is a rare possibility of a blood clot forming inside a blood vessel during the surgery. The clot can hinder the flow of blood, and in a few cases, it may travel to the brain, heart or lungs, posing a more serious threat to the patient’s health.



A dedicated surgeon will ensure that tummy tuck plastic surgery is performed at a Joint Commision (JCAHO) certified operating venue that maintains the highest standards of hygiene and cleanliness. This will minimize the risk of infection during surgery. On their part, the patient should diligently adhere to the surgeon’s post-op care instructions for the incision areas in order to minimize the infection risk during recovery.


Delayed Healing

Following tummy tuck surgery, the bruising, swelling and pain will typically resolve over a few weeks. But in a few cases, the healing may take more time, especially where the underlying abdominal muscles have been tightened. Patients with a history of smoking are a higher risk of slow healing. They will be advised to quit smoking for a certain period before and after the procedure to mitigate the risk.


Unfavorable Scarring

A major body contouring surgery such as tummy tuck will involve some amount of scarring. But a skilled surgeon will be able to minimize the scars by placing the incisions in inconspicuous locations. However, the scars may still become more apparent in a few patients due to a variety of reasons. Judicious and committed cosmetic surgeon Dr. Bloom receives patients from Chicago, IL, and nearby areas for tummy tuck surgery.

To put the safety profile of tummy tuck in perspective, the patients should know that the procedure has a complication rate of less than five percent, according the ASPS figures.