For most women, childbirth is a wonderful, life-changing event. It represents the culmination of a dramatic body transformation, which occurred over the proceeding nine months. In some situations, return to pre-motherhood figure occurs over the 3 to 6 months following delivery. However, many women express frustration and dissatisfaction when they’re unable to recover their prepregnancy shape, despite appropriate diet and exercise. This is especially common for women who’ve delivered their second or subsequent child. Invariably, these permanent, unwanted changes prominently involve the breast and/or abdominal/torso areas. Typical post-pregnancy breast changes include loss of volume (or a ‘deflated’ breast appearance) along with possible descent or drop in position, known as ‘ptosis.’ Similarly, the abdominal distention associated with later pregnancy stages may leave a lingering crepey skin laxity, multiple stretch marks, belly button hernia, muscle weakness or residual pockets of fatty tissue fullness. It’s precisely this combination of body changes that ‘Mommy makeovers’ are designed to correct.
Performed either separately or in combination, ‘Mommy makeovers’ include a variety of procedures designed to optimally enhance breast and abdominal/torso contours and proportions following childbirth. Typically, these procedures include a breast lift (or mastopexy), breast augmentation, abdominoplasty (or tummy tuck), liposuction, belly button hernia repair, and stem cell enriched autologous fat transfer. Of course, the most appropriate combination of these multiple procedures for any given woman varies between individuals and is best determined during a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon.
Performed under intravenous sedation or general anesthesia in a State License, Nationally Accredited Ambulatory Surgery Center (see ‘about Keystone Surgery Center’), ‘Mommy makeovers’ are variable in length and depend on the extent and number of areas being treated. Patients are able to return home immediately afterwards and are able to resume work and comfortably engage in social situations in about 5-12 days.
When considering ‘Mommy makeovers’, or indeed any cosmetic procedure, be sure to select a qualified, experienced plastic surgeon, certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery (ABPS). As a board certified plastic surgeon with over 15 years of clinical practice experience and member of the American Society Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), Dr. Robert Kimmel welcomes the opportunity to help you achieve your goals for cosmetic enhancement and enjoy a happier, more confident lifestyle.
Pregnancy, childbirth, and breastfeeding are incredibly hard on a woman’s body. The localized weight gain can stretch your abdominal skin and muscles to such a degree that they cannot return to their former degree of tautness. In many cases, the center stomach muscles actually separate. The increase in breast size, coupled with the stress of breastfeeding can leave your breasts flattened, sagging, and seemingly with less volume. To top it off, although you’ve lost your baby weight, pockets of fat have stuck on the thighs and flanks and are virtually impossible to target with diet and exercise.
If these issues sound like your post-baby body, a mommy makeover at Keystone Cosmetic Surgery could be a great way to get your body back.
A mommy makeover with Dr. Kimmel usually involves these procedures:
The tummy tuck portion of a mommy makeover may remove some of your stretch marks, if they occur in the skin that is trimmed away. The same is true with your breast lift. However, if the stretch marks occur where the skin is not trimmed, they will remain.
During your consultation with Dr. Kimmel, he will stress the importance of one thing — that you are sure you’re finished having children. This isn’t an arbitrary restriction. If you go through the involved recovery from these surgeries, the last thing you want to do is lose your results through another pregnancy and delivery. If in the back of your mind you even think there is a possibility you may want to have another child, then this isn’t the time for a mommy makeover.
When a mom sees the changes that have occurred with her figure, she can be ready to jump in and have these procedures to reverse the changes. But Dr. Kimmel stresses patience for his potential mommy makeover patients. Mommy makeover patients need to be finished breastfeeding for no less than three months. This allows the breasts to return to their normal cup size. It’s also very important for the potential patient to have lost the majority, if not all, of her excess weight from pregnancy. This is because tummy tucks and liposuction are not weight-loss procedures; they are body-contouring procedures. If you lose more weight after your tummy tuck, you can create new sagging skin. Dr. Kimmel stresses that his mommy makeover patients need to be within 10-15 pounds of their ideal weight to have these surgeries.
The tummy tuck portion of a mommy makeover involves the most difficult recovery. This is because it involves repositioning muscles and a lengthy incision. This limits your ability to lift much of anything for a few weeks, with any heavy lifting or strenuous exercise needing to wait at least six weeks. Climbing stairs will be off limits for a couple weeks. The breast lift portion of your recovery will be dictated by your incisions. You’ll need to avoid any stress on your incisions, so you’ll wear a surgical bra and then a full support bra 24 hours a day for the first month. You’ll wear compression garments for around one month to minimize swelling and to help your body adapt to its new slimmer contour. Full recovery from a mommy makeover can take up to six months. Most mommy makeover patients can return to a light level of activity in one to two weeks. From there, Dr. Kimmel will give you the OK to add certain types of exercise as he feels your recovery progress allows.
A tummy tuck creates a long incision stretching from hipbone to hipbone, and sometimes around the flanks. Dr. Kimmel descends these incisions so that they can be hidden beneath underwear or a bikini bottom. Breast lifts, particularly if the anchor method was necessary, also create lengthy incisions, but they fade relatively quickly, especially if you are very diligent about wearing your support bra for the first month of your recovery.
For more details on this procedure or to schedule a consultation, please call Robert M. Kimmel, MD, FACS, PC by calling 570.622.2900, 570.455.4252 or contact us via email.