Q: I’ve had two children and I can’t seem to get my stomach back in shape. I watch my diet, and exercise daily and I can’t get rid of the bulge!
A: There is a reason you cannot flatten your stomach with exercise and diet. During pregnancy, just as the overlying skin stretches out, the abdominal wall stretches also. This causes the muscles in the front of your abdomen to actually separate. After delivery, this causes the bulge you have described. No amount of exercise can change this, a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty surgery) is the only way to tighten these muscles and flatten your abdomen.
Q. What happens to all the skin that will remain?
A: During an abdominoplasty, excess abdominal skin and soft tissue is removed. Liposuction of the sides (flanks) and pubic region is performed at the same time for additional contouring and sculpting, to smooth out these areas to match your newly flattened abdomen. If needed, liposuction of the inner and outer thighs may be performed to improve contour in these areas as well.
Q: Is there any other post-pregnancy surgery I should ask about?
A: We’ve touched on tummy tuck and liposuction to correct the effects your pregnancies had on your abdomen and thighs. Performing these two procedures, along with breast surgery, is what we refer to as a “mommy makeover”. Combining a tummy tuck, breast lift, breast augmentation with implants and liposuction remains the essence of a mommy makeover and will result in dramatic changes to the breast and abdominal areas, and restore your body to its pre-pregnancy shape.
Q: What about my breasts? After breastfeeding, they are so much smaller than before, and they are “droopy”. What would you recommend?
A: To repair post pregnancy volume loss of the breasts, breast augmentation with implants is a commonly performed component of a mommy makeover. If the breast tissue is deflated or the skin is loose and stretched out, a breast lift (mastopexy) may be performed. Breast lift surgery tightens up the outer skin envelope, rounds out the contour of the breast and lifts the nipple back to its pre-pregnancy location.
Q: What kind of implants to you usually use?
A: Silicone gel breast implants have become the most popular option, given their well-documented safety profile and more natural appearance, however saline breast implants are still used if the patient desires. Recently, anatomic, teardrop shaped silicone gel breast implants have been released, adding another available implant option for our patients.
Q: Is a mommy makeover safe?
A: Although all surgeries have risks, a mommy makeover is ideally suited to revitalize the abdomen and breast area during the same sitting, within a safe surgical time frame. The procedure is performed under general anesthesia and generally requires one overnight in the hospital.
Q: How long is the recovery period?
A: Recovery time varies, but it is usually three to six weeks until you are back to your normal daily routine. Performing multiple procedures at the same time allows you to meet many of your surgical goals with just one recovery period.
For more information about mommy makeover surgery contact the Morristown office of Board Certified Plastic Surgeon Brian S. Glatt, MD, FACS at 973-889-9300.