This is a frequent question – whether or not a patient can have a tummy tuck under local anesthesia. The answer depends on your full understanding of what a tummy tuck is and what is local anesthesia. Local anesthesia is the injection of a numbing agent to facilitate the painless performance of a surgical procedure. It is commonly used in dental practice, local minor scar revisions, and lesion removals throughout the face and body.
A tummy tuck or abdominoplasty is a significant body contouring operation requiring knowledge, experience, skill, and training. The level of complexity depends on the size of the tummy tuck. In our practice, we see medium to large tummy tucks on people who have either had several children or lost weight.
A subset category is a much more challenging constellation of procedures performed on the massive weight loss patient. These are individuals who have lost 100, 200, or more pounds. These patients require a more skilled surgeon to perform the complexities of body contouring including abdominoplasty on this population of patients.
In our practice, safety and outcomes are essential. I prefer to perform these operations following clearances under general anesthesia at an accredited hospital outpatient facility. So, therefore, in our practice, we do not perform tummy tucks on local anesthesia. In my opinion, it is not possible to get the best result for a tummy tuck on local anesthesia. Not only does the procedure require skin and fat removal but also muscle tightening.
Be aware of discounted clinics, unaccredited doctors, and facilities that do not qualify for privileges at certified surgical centers who therefore may offer tummy tuck under the local. The risks under this scenario are not worth the savings that they may advertise. Body contouring of this nature requires skill and safety for the patient. Local anesthesia for a tummy tuck in my opinion, is not worth the risk.
Top-quality body contouring requires a systematic approach and maximization of safety for the patient. It may cost more, but it’s worth it to get the safest and best result. These are the goals of our practice. Safety and best possible outcome.