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Is an overnight stay recommended for a tummy tuck procedure?

Q:

I see that some doctors have patients spend the night after surgery and others send them home several hours after. Which should I be asking for? If the surgery is uneventful should I look for an overnight stay or discharge home?

A:

I just believe that keeping a patient overnight after a tummy tuck is a bit safer.  Sure it costs more, but you can keep the pneumatic sequential stockings on for the night after, control your pain with injections, and help you up to ambulate.  I remember sending patients home, and their loved ones felt like they were over their heads with aftercare that they did not feel qualified to help with for the first night.  I just think it is safer, because everyone wants to keep costs down to make it more affordable for the patient.  So to spend more, the physician must really feel it is in the patients best interest.

A:

It is a really much about communication and information of patients and health personal it's fully feasible and even beneficiary for the patients to be home after a tummy tuck operation, some of the advantage is that patient would be in her surrounding and environment, also one even more important factor is the mobilization of the patients with would be naturally in this case which diminish the risk for lung embolus  and deep venous thromboses dramatically. We discharge our tummy tuck patients, who get deep sedation with TIVA and local Anestesia, about 2 hours after the procedure after the approval of anesthesia personals. We keep our operation time to maximum 3 hours. This of course should be applied only to healthy patients without any complicating diseases and an adult should be close to the patients during minimum 24 hours following the procedure. Patients can take pain killer with them, also drains and should come to first check one day after the operation, they should be in an aria not more than one hour drive from the clinic and have a Mobil contact Nr always available to contact if needed.  Last thing is also this will be more rewarding economically for patients and even doctors.

Any way take a serious discussion about this with your board certified plastic surgeon to agree about the post operative stay.

Good luck.

Dr Amin Kalaaji, MD, PhD

Oslo, Norway 

A:

There is no standard advice on this, and most of my patients go home after a tummy tuck.  One thing that has really helped is the use of the long-acting numbing agent Exparel, which greatly reduces the discomfort so patients are up and walking which is important to minimize the risk of blood clots. Choose a plastic surgeon you are comfortable with and go with their advice.

Richard A. Baxter, M.D. - View Other Answers by this Doctor
Mountlake Terrace, WA

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