Tummy Tuck in Kidney Transplant Patient

Q: Dr. Eppley, I am 52 years old and am interested in a tummy tuck. However I am a kidney transplant patient which was done four years ago. I am taking Prograft, Cellcept and Prednisone. My general doctor and nephrologist have cleared me for the surgery. 

A: Being a kidney transplant patient does not exclude you from undergoing a tummy tuck if it is acceptable to your nephrologist. I would need to see some pictures of your abdomen for my assessment and recommendations as to what type of tummy tuck you need. Given that the typical subcutaneous location for the kidney transplant is in the abdomen, certain aspects of a tummy tuck like muscle tightening can not usually be done. Only excessive skin and some fat can be removed from the abdominal area. There would also be a more limited amount of a lower abdominal skin flap that can be removed to avoid the transplant site. 

The important principle in any aesthetic surgeries is safety first. Thus a more extensive and longer operative time for a traditional full tummy tuck may not be prudent in an organ transplant patient. That does not mean, however, that some substantial improvement can not be obtained. 

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana