The following question from our forum is from a woman who has fears of dying from a tummy tuck as a result of blood clots. She is wondering what she can do to minimize the risk of getting a blood clot after her tummy tuck surgery.

Date: 09/17/2010 Submitted by: Dominique

I want a tummy tuck so bad! In fact my surgery date is scheduled for next month. Listening to my classmates, I was told that some of them knew people who died after a tummy tuck due to blood clots. So now I’m really paranoid about having this surgery. I was thinking that if I did have the surgery maybe if I was more active afterwards then I wouldn’t be prone to blood clots. What do you suggest I should do? Dominique


Date: 09/17/2010 Submitted by: Tanner


As a result of your question, I just finished doing quite a bit of research on blood clots associated with tummy tucks and I have created a webpage for that subject. I am still working on it but it can be found at tummy tuck blood clots.

It turns out getting a blood clot as a result of having a tummy tuck is quite rare.

I could only find one instance of a person (In England) who died from a tummy tuck blood clot. If I were you I would question your classmates some more and try to pin them down on what and who they are talking about. Most likely they just heard about the same story that I did.

There are a lot of things you can do to minimize the risk of getting a blood clot after tummy tuck surgery.

First, identify if you are an individual who is more prone to blood clots than others. From my research I have identified about 20 factors that would increase the risk of an individual developing a blood clot following surgery. Some of the factors that place you into a higher risk category include:
– if you use birth control pills
– if you are undergoing hormone replacement therapy or cancer treatments
– if you have heart problems
– if you were recently pregnant
– if you are a smoker

You can find the complete list at tummy tuck blood clots.

I would also talk to your surgeon and tell him of your concern for blood clots. He can analyze your history and physical condition and tell you if you are more susceptible to blood clots and can take the necessary preventative steps to stop (or minimize) their development.

After surgery there are a number of things you can do to “ward off” blood clots. These include:
– walking around immediately following surgery (as soon a possible)
– wear compression stockings for 3-4 days following surgery.
– give yourself or have other give you pre and post-operative leg massages.
– drink plenty of fluids (keep hydrated).
– avoid prolonged sitting or standing.
– while in bed following surgery move your legs around and flex your feet
for exercise.

Bottom line is keep your legs moving and that blood pumping as much as possible. That seems to be the best way to prevent blood clots. Personally, I would also exercise more before the surgery to get into the best possible shape. That will help in providing a speedy recovery.

Let me know if you have any other questions or concerns.

Good luck.