Along with the natural ageing process, pregnancy causes many changes to the female body. Breasts gain and lose volume as a result of milk production, and this can cause the breasts to stretch. Additionally, pregnancy causes the skin around the stomach to expand and the underlying muscles to separate.
Body contouring surgery, also known as mummy makeover, consists of a combination of procedures that addresses a number of common physical changes that result from pregnancy. It addresses loose skin and fat around the abdomen as well as deflated and stretched breast skin. Generally, women should wait at least six months after their last child before seeking post pregnancy plastic surgery
Body Contouring after pregnancy: What is included in a procedure?
Body contouring after pregnancy is designed to address multiple areas of the body at the same time.
Depending on your personal preferences and needs, your surgery can include the following procedures:
- Abdominoplasty – An abdominoplasty involves removing excess skin and fat from the abdomen to achieve a tighter and firmer abdomen. Dr Bish will also surgically tighten separated abdominal muscles. This will improve their function.
- Breast lift (mastopexy) – A breast lift can be ideal for women who are concerned about breasts that appear low or deflated. Dr Bish lifts the breasts and nipples, reshaping the breast tissue to restore elevation and firmness.
- Breast implants (augmentation) – For women who are seeking a breast enhancement, breast implants give volume, fullness, and shape to the breasts. Patients can choose the shape, size, and texture of their implants to achieve their desired look.
- Breast reduction – A reduction can be beneficial for women with excessively large breasts that are causing pain and discomfort. The procedure removes skin and tissue to reduce the size of the breasts, bringing them into proportion with the rest of the body.
Each of these procedures can be discussed in detail during a consultation, during which you will also explain your personal goals and concerns to your surgeon. Based on your needs, a personalised procedure plan will be created, detailing all of your individually-tailored steps.
Body contouring surgery Who is a good candidate?
Body contouring surgery should not be sought in place of a healthy lifestyle, diet, and exercise. Rather, the procedure is ideal for women who have stubborn excess skin and fat after pregnancy that cannot be addressed by natural means. If you are concerned about excess skin on the lower abdomen, or stretched breasts after breastfeeding, you may be a good candidate for the procedure. However, it is recommended that you complete your family and finish breastfeeding before seeking this procedure.
Your consultation with Dr Bish Soliman will determine if you are suitable. You will need to discuss your medical history, any current medications, and what you hope to achieve from surgery. This will allow Dr Soliman to develop a tailored surgical treatment plan that addresses your concerns.
Body Contouring Surgery Benefits
Depending on genetics, age, and overall health, pregnancy can cause significant changes to a woman’s body. Although these changes are a natural part of childrearing, some women seek surgery to address these changes. Combining abdominoplasty with a breast procedure is one of the most common approaches to post-pregnancy body contouring.
Keeping in mind each individual patient’s personal needs and preferences, the benefits of the procedure can include:
- Tightening abdominal skin and muscles
- Removes excess skin around the torso
- Lifted breast shape with enhanced volume
- A more refined body contour according to your preferences and unique features
The main benefit of body contouring surgery is that both breast and abdominal procedures are performed during one single operation. This allows you to address multiple areas of the body at once, with a shorter recovery time than if the surgeries were performed separately. However, patients should be aware that there are risks involved in surgery and the outcomes are not guaranteed.
Your patient-centered consultation
During an initial consultation, Specialist Plastic Surgeon Dr Bish Soliman will provide you with personalised advice, discussing a treatment plan that will be tailored to your needs. You will receive thorough information about your procedure so that you know what is involved and what to expect.
Included in your personalised treatment plan will be preparation instructions, recovery instructions, and the specific individually-tailored details of your chosen combination of procedures. You can discuss what you can expect in terms of aftercare and results, and any changes you may need to make before and after your procedure to best support your body’s healing process.
You will also receive a personalised quote outlining the costs of your procedure, since costs can vary per patient, depending on a variety of factors such as chosen surgeries, individual needs and personal preferences.
At our Sydney and North Shore clinics, we take a patient-centred approach, meaning that we will personalise the details of your procedures, your preparation and recovery instructions, and costs accordingly.
Body Contouring Surgery The procedure
Your body contouring procedure will be individually tailored, according to your personal needs. The procedure can include a combination of an abdominoplasty and a breast procedure, either a lift, an augmentation with implants, or a reduction. Sometimes, patients choose to undergo both an augmentation with implants and a lift to achieve the results they prefer. You will discuss your personalised procedure details during your consultation ahead of time.
To perform your procedure, your surgeon will employ a number of techniques to achieve the desired results. The exact surgical methods your surgeon uses will depend on your body and goals for surgery, as discussed during your consultation.
The procedures that can be included in a body contouring surgery will offer a variety of options, such as incision pattern and placement, implant size, texture, material, placement and shape, and areola re-positioning.
Your personalised procedure will take place in a fully accredited private hospital under general anaesthesia, administered by a qualified anaesthetist. You will be required to stay in hospital for three to five days so that you can be closely monitored. When you are able to return home, you will be given some personalised recovery instructions, so that you can support your body throughout the healing process, encourage the best results and prevent complications.
Body Contouring Surgery Recovery and aftercare
Following your surgery, your incisions will be taped and you will be required to wear a compression garment on your abdomen and a surgical bra. Dr Bish may use drainage tubes temporarily to drain any excess fluid that may collect. You will actively be encouraged to walk short distances and to perform deep breathing exercises post operatively to prevent complications.
Throughout your recovery, you should refrain from lifting heavy items and performing strenuous exercise for six weeks. You will be asked to refrain from driving for two weeks, and you will be instructed to take around four weeks off work.
You will be given personalised aftercare instructions to help you care for your healing body at home. This can include wound care, taking or avoiding certain types of medications, using a cold compress to reduce swelling or pain, following a healthy, balanced diet according to your needs and staying hydrated.
All of your recovery details and aftercare instructions will be discussed during your consultation, so that you can feel prepared well before undergoing your procedure. You can also plan ahead of time to organise what you need during your recovery, such as filling prescriptions, purchasing loose-fitted clothing, organising time away from work and arranging for someone to be available to help you if needed. It is a good idea to have someone drive you home from the hospital. You may also need someone to help you take care of daily tasks around the house and care for small children.
The time that patients typically take to recover from the procedure can vary, depending on the type of surgeries chosen, personal goals, needs and preferences, and how quickly the body heals. It is important to be patient when waiting to see your results, as initial swelling and bruising will need to fully subside before they are completely visible. Results from the procedure typically take about three months to show, but of course, this can vary from patient to patient.
Body Contouring Surgery Risks and complications
Although severe complications are uncommon, breast and abdominoplasty procedures do not come without risks. Before seeking out surgery, it is important to do your research and make sure you understand both the risks and benefits of your desired procedure.
You will be thoroughly informed of the risks of your chosen procedures, as well as the level of your personal risk, during your initial consultation. Since your consultation is obligation-free, you will be able to make an informed decision after discussing the potential risks and complications as to whether or not you feel comfortable undergoing the procedure.
General risks of surgical procedures can include infection, scarring, pain, loss of skin sensation, reactions to anaesthesia, and further surgery to address complications. Complications of breast augmentation procedures with implants can include implant rupture or rotation, and temporary or permanent loss of nipple sensation. After your chosen combination of procedures, you can feel sore, tender and tired, and experience bruising and swelling in the operated areas.
You will be monitored in hospital after your procedure to ensure that you are initially healing well, and will be sent home with a list of recovery instructions that are tailored to your needs. This will help to prevent complications.
Body Contouring Surgery Procedure costs in Sydney and North Shore
The costs of your procedure will depend on the details of your chosen procedures, according to your personal needs and preferences. Ultimately, your procedure costs are personalised and will need to be discussed during a consultation, as body contouring is not a one-size-fits-all procedure.
Your costs will include surgeon’s fees, anaesthesia fees, hospital fees and any costs associated with what is required during your recovery. Each of these factors can be discussed in detail before your procedure.
To discuss the details of your procedure costs, you will need to book a consultation at our Sydney or North Shore location.
Learn More About Dr Bish Soliman
Dr Bish Soliman is a Sydney based Specialist Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon specialising in complex microsurgical reconstruction including breast reconstruction, aesthetic surgery of the face, breast, and body as well as skin cancer surgery.