Although our children are without question our greatest gifts, the price of pregnancy on a mother’s body can be high, especially for mothers of two and more children. Makeovers for Moms® is a mommy makeover that combines multiple surgical procedures in one operation to reduce the ravages to breasts and abdomen that multiple pregnancies can cause.
The Effects of Pregnancy on the Female Body
As the fetus grows inside the uterus, it stretches the uterus and eventually the abdominal wall. The uterus presses on the inside of the muscle wall of the abdomen. The resulting pressure on the two vertical “Rectus” muscles (the “six-pack” muscles) pulls them apart, and can actually cause separation as the fascia elongates. Once separation happens, only surgery can bring the muscles back together. Since there is no muscle in the midline for you to exercise, exercise will not restore muscles to their pre-pregnancy condition.
Pregnancy can also cause extra collections of fat to form and persist in the abdominal area.
The growth of the baby also stretches the skin, particularly in the center of the abdomen, near the belly button. As the body grows, you may also develop stretch marks in various other areas. Then, after labor, the skin collapses, leaving you with loose, hanging skin. Combine this with stretched underlying abdominal muscles, and you get a bulge in the lower abdomen, visible especially when you stand up.
Responding to hormonal changes during pregnancy, the breasts begin growing and peak in growth just before labor. After delivery, breast-feeding causes the breasts to stretch repeatedly. Once breast-feeding is complete, the breasts typically decrease in size, often to a size smaller than their pre-pregnancy size. Again, you may experience stretch marks and loose skin, and the breast tissue loses its resiliency and start to droop.
The Makeover for Moms® Procedures
With a tummy tuck or abdominoplasty, Dr. Mark Schusterman tightens the abdominal muscle from the ribcage down to the pubic bone. This permits tightening of the skin covering both the upper and lower abdomen. A mini tummy tuck or mini-abdominoplasty is similar, but only tightens the muscle and skin of the lower abdomen from the belly button down. Although both procedures will result in a scar running along the lower abdomen, the scar can be easily hidden under a swimsuit.
If there is excess fat of the abdomen, we may be able to address that as well with liposuction.
For improving the breasts, the procedure choice depends on the degree of tissue loss, the amount of drooping, and the patient’s desire to replace lost volume and fullness.
- Breast implants without a breast lift can provide improvement in cases of mild droopiness. If the nipple is not too low, the skin and breast tissue is not too soft, and the patient is willing to accept some increase in breast size, this can be a good choice of procedure.
- Breast lifts without implants bring the nipples back up, generally along with tightening of the skin under the breasts. However, breast lifts alone will not fix the loss of fullness of the breasts, especially the upper breast area, which occurs following pregnancy.
- Breast lifts with breast implants will not only bring the nipples back up but provide additional fullness and improved shape, particularly in the upper breast even when relatively small implants are used.
Liposuction reduces the localized fat deposits that can develop during a pregnancy by permanently removing fat. Liposuction can be done during surgery to hips, thighs, and knees.
We can add other procedures during surgery such as thigh or arm lifts.
Combining Multiple Surgical Procedures in One Operation can be Accomplished because of Several Medical Developments
- Anesthesia has improved significantly in the past several years, improving both safety and comfort.
- State-of-the-art monitoring devices and better medications have combined to make longer procedures safer.
- Surgeries are performed at the accredited and well-equipped Museum District Aesthetic Surgery Center.
- Overnight stays are in a luxurious Park View Suite at the Park Plaza Hospital with a highly qualified nursing staff.
If you are an active, healthy woman, these lengthy procedures are reasonable and will allow you to achieve all or most of your goals with a single operation and recovery period.