When a woman becomes pregnant, there is usually significant stretching of the skin of the tummy and breasts. Depending upon skin elasticity, the skin either shrinks back into shape or sags after pregnancy. There are also changes going on beneath the skin surface – the breast tissue may shrink or enlarge, and the abdominal region may suffer from a stretching apart of the muscle that produces a perpetual pooch and/or fatty accumulations may occur.
All of these issues can be addressed with surgery and which one(s) a woman chooses to address will determine what procedures are needed to restore her to her pre-pregnancy condition. This surgery is termed a “Mommy Makeover” and may include liposuction of the hips / pubic region / sides of chest, tummy tucks of the limited and traditional variety, breast augmentation with or without uplifts, breast uplifts alone, and even breast reduction. Depending upon which procedures are chosen, a woman can choose to look just like she did before children or to improve on what she started with. Most “Mommy Makeovers” will involve both breast and tummy surgeries since both of these areas are affected by pregnancy.
When is the right time to consider “Mommy Makeover” surgery? Once the woman has stopped losing the weight she gained with pregnancy and her breasts and tummy have stopped changing, surgery may be considered. That may occur in as little as 2 or 3 months after childbirth. It’s also a good idea to plan for no more children for the foreseeable future. That’s a good time to visit with a knowledgeable plastic surgeon and discuss goals for surgery and make plans for any additional weight loss before going through with the surgery.
Depending on which surgeries are selected, the recovery process usually requires about 2 weeks for recovery at which point that the woman can drive a car and care for her children. Although heavy lifting should be avoided for 6 weeks following a tummy tuck if it involves muscle tightening, women can carry and hold children by 2 weeks after surgery in most cases.
For further information please contact my office.
George Sanders, M.D.