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Tummy tuck complications: Study looks at key risk factors

January 11, 2016

Research suggests that “tummy tucks” have a higher risk of complications than other cosmetic surgery procedures.

According to a study conducted by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), the risk of complications amongst abdominoplasty patients is considerably high, particularly when a tummy tuck is carried out alongside other procedures.

The study followed nearly 25,000 abdominoplasties performed between 2008 and 2013. 97% of abdominoplasty patients were women and the average age was 42 years. 65% of patients underwent an abdominoplasty procedure alongside other treatments.

Major complications occurred in 4% of patients, significantly higher than the 1.4% rate after other cosmetic surgery procedures.

Hematomas were the most common complication, followed by infections, blood clots and lung-related problems.

Patients were found to be more at risk of complications if they were male, aged 55 years or over, and obese.

Surprisingly, diabetes and smoking were not associated with abdominoplasty complications, even though they’re usually considered to pose significant risks amongst patients undergoing other types of procedure.

Before undergoing a cosmetic surgery procedure it’s important to remember that cosmetic surgery is exactly that, surgery. Not only do procedures carry the risk of cosmetic complications, the anaesthetic itself poses significant, long-lasting and potentially life-threatening risks too.

We strongly recommend doing lots of research before booking an appointment and talking the procedure through with your prospective consultant or surgeon in detail.


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