This is an informed consent document that has been
prepared to help your surgeon inform you of abdominoplasty surgery, its
risks, as well as alternative treatments.
It is important that you read this information
carefully and completely. Please
initial each page, indicating that you have read the page and sign the
consent for surgery as proposed by your plastic surgeon.
Abdominoplasty is a surgical procedure to remove excess
skin and fatty tissue from the middle and lower abdomen and to tighten the
muscles of the abdominal wall.
Abdominoplasty is not a surgical treatment for being overweight. Obese individuals who intend to lose weight
should postpone all forms of body contouring surgery until they have been
able to maintain their weight loss.
There are a variety of different techniques used by
plastic surgeons for abdominoplasty.
Abdominoplasty can be combined with other forms of body contouring
surgery including suction assisted lipectomy or
performed at the same time with other elective surgeries.
Alternative forms of management consist of not treating
the areas of loose skin and fatty deposits.
Suction assisted lipectomy surgery may be a
surgical alternative to abdominoplasty if there is good skin tone and
localized abdominal fatty deposits in an individual of normal weight. Diet and exercise programs may be of
benefit in the overall reduction of excess body fat.
Risks and potential complications are associated
with alternative forms of treatment that involve surgery.
RISKS OF ABDOMINOPLASTY SURGERY
Every surgical procedure involves a certain amount of risk
and it is important that you understand the risks involved with
abdominoplasty. An individual’s
choice to undergo a surgical procedure is based on the comparison of the risk
to potential benefit. Although the
majority of patients do not experience the following complications, you
should discuss each of them with your plastic surgeon to make sure you understand
all possible consequences of abdominoplasty.
It is possible, though unusual, to experience a
bleeding episode during or after surgery.
Should post-operative bleeding occur, it may require emergency
treatment to drain accumulated blood or blood transfusion. Do not take any aspirin, anti-inflammatory
medication or herbal remedies for ten days before surgery, as this may
increase the risk of bleeding. If you
are currently taking an anticoagulant medication such as Coumadin –
please advise your doctor immediately.
Infection is unusual after this type of surgery. Should an infection occur, treatment
including antibiotics or additional surgery may be necessary.
IN SKIN SENSATION
Diminished (or loss of) skin sensation in the lower
abdominal area may not totally resolve after abdominoplasty.
Contour irregularities and depressions may occur
after abdominoplasty. Visible and
palpable wrinkling of skin can occur.
Excessive scarring is uncommon. In rare cases, abnormal scars may
result. Scars may be unattractive and
of a different color than surrounding skin.
Additional treatments including surgery may be necessary to treat
Symmetrical body appearance may not result from abdominoplasty. Factors such as skin tone, fatty deposits,
bony prominence, and muscle tone may contribute to normal asymmetry in body
Wound disruption or delayed wound healing is
possible. Some areas of the abdomen
may not heal normally and may take a long time to heal. Some areas of skin may die. This may require frequent dressing changes
or further surgery to remove the non-healed tissue.
Smokers have a greater risk of skin
loss and wound healing complications.
In rare cases, local allergies to tape, suture material,
or topical preparations have been reported.
Systemic reactions which are more serious may occur to drugs used
during surgery and prescription medication.
Allergic reactions may require additional treatment.
Pulmonary complications may occur secondarily to both blood clots (pulmonary emboli) or partial collapse of
the lungs after general anesthesia.
Should either of these complications occur, you may require
hospitalization and additional treatment.
Pulmonary emboli can be life threatening or fatal in some
Fluid accumulations infrequently
occur in between the skin and the abdominal wall. Should this problem occur, it may require
additional procedures for drainage of fluid.
Malposition, scarring, unacceptable appearance or
loss of the umbilicus (naval) may occur.
Subsequent alterations in body contour may occur as the
result of aging, weight loss, or gain, pregnancy, or other circumstances not
related to abdominoplasty.
Chronic pain may occur very infrequently from nerves becoming trapped in scar
tissue after abdominoplasty.
You may be disappointed with the results of surgery. Infrequently, it is necessary to perform
additional surgery to improve your results.
Both local and general anesthesia
involve risk. There is the possibility
of complications, injury, and even death from all forms of surgical
anesthesia or sedation.
Should complications occur, additional surgery or other
treatments may be necessary. Even though risks and complications occur
infrequently, the risks cited are particularly associated with
abdominoplasty. Other complications
and risks can occur but are even more uncommon. The practice of medicine and surgery is not
an exact science. Although good
results are to be expected, there is no guarantee or warrantee expressed or
implied, on the results that may be obtained.
Most health insurance companies exclude coverage for
cosmetic surgical operations such as abdominoplasty or any complications that
might occur from surgery. Carefully review
your health insurance subscriber information pamphlet.
of surgery involves several charges for the services provided. The total includes fees charged by your doctor,
the cost of surgical supplies, anesthesia, laboratory tests, and possible
outpatient hospital charges depending upon where the surgery is
Depending on whether the
cost of surgery is covered by an insurance plan, you will be responsible for
necessary co-payments, deductibles, and charges not covered. Additional costs may occur should
complications develop from the surgery.
Secondary surgery or hospital surgery charges involved with
revisionary surgery would also be your responsibility.
Informed consent documents are used to communicate
information about the proposed surgical treatment of a disease or condition
along with disclosure of risks and alternative forms of treatment(s). The informed consent process attempts to
define principles of risk disclosure that should generally meet the needs of
most patients in most circumstances.
Informed consent documents are not intended to
define or serve as the standard of medical care. Standards of medical care are determined on
the basis of all of the facts involved in an individual case and are subject
to change as scientific knowledge and technology advance and as practice