Many patients come to Martin Plastic Surgery wanting to know how to correct changes to their bodies that were caused by pregnancy. The most common issues that these patients have are related to the abdomen and breasts. During pregnancy, the skin of the abdomen and the tissues of the abdominal wall are stretched. After delivery, the skin and abdominal wall tissues contract back down, but usually not to the level of tightness that existed before pregnancy. One of the most common changes that is seen after pregnancy is loose abdominal skin, often with stretch marks. Another very common change involves rectus diastasis, or separation of the rectus abdominis muscles, also known as the “six pack” muscles. These are a pair of long muscles that span from the top to the bottom of the central abdomen. Separation of these muscles leads to a protuberant or outpouching abdomen, even if there is only minimal excess skin. Many patients that present with these problems having tried diet and exercise to restore their pre-pregnancy bodies, but with only limited success. In most cases, the only way to correct these changes is with surgery. Fortunately, this is an excellent solution. An abdominoplasty, also known as tummy tuck, removes this loose skin as well as many of the stretch marks, and corrects separation of the rectus muscles, in order to restore a more flat and trim abdominal contour, similar to how it appeared before pregnancy. The scar from surgery is designed so that it runs across the lower abdomen, hidden under clothing, underwear, or a swimsuit. Tummy tuck is also commonly performed with liposuction of the flanks or hips, to remove stubborn pockets of fat that have not gone away with diet and exercise.
Another common concern for women after pregnancy involves changes to their breasts. Some women experience breast deflation, having lost much of the breast fullness that they had before pregnancy. Others develop droopy or sagging breasts, also known as ptosis, as a result of stretching of the skin of the breasts without contraction back to their pre-pregnancy shape. There are several options for these patients depending on how much loose skin and/or size loss that they have. In some patients, only a breast augmentation, with placement of a saline or silicone breast implant, is all that is needed. If there is loose skin and sagging, a mastopexy, or breast lift, is a good option. Breast lift can be done alone without an implant, but many patients will choose to have a breast implant placed along with the lift to give their breasts more volume. In other patients, a breast reduction, which is very similar to a lift, is an option.
So, back to the original question. What is a Mommy Makeover? This refers to doing an abdominoplasty, with or without liposuction, along with one of the above breast enhancement procedures, during the same surgery. In a healthy patient, this is a great way to erase changes to your breasts and abdomen that were caused by pregnancy, with only one operation and one recovery period.
If you are interested in learning more about Mommy Makeovers, please contact us at Martin Plastic Surgery in Dothan, Alabama so that you can meet with Dr. Martin and make a plan that is right for you.