Mommy Makeover: Frequently Asked Questions

Mommy Makeover FAQBeing a mother of 3, I know the joys that motherhood brings, but deflated breasts, a protruding abdomen and unsightly fat deposits are not among them. If you are considering a mommy makeover to restore your pre-pregnancy body, let me answer some of my patients’ most frequently asked questions to help you make your decision.

What is a Mommy Makeover?

Typically a mommy makeover is body contouring surgery where both the breasts and abdominal areas are addressed in a single operative procedure. It is designed to restore your body (or enhance, depending on your goals) to its pre-pregnancy state.

Your breasts may be deflated and droopy as a result of breastfeeding. They can be corrected with either a breast lift, a breast augmentation or a combination of the two procedures. The abdominal muscles separated to make room for your growing child but may not have recovered fully, therefore leaving you with a gap and laxity of the abdominal wall. This deformity is called diastasis recti and can be corrected with a version of a tummy tuck. You may also simply have pockets of fat in areas that you have not previously had and no amount of crunches or carb–free living has eliminated it. Liposuction can be done in these areas to restore your feminine silhouette.

Am I a candidate for a Mommy Makeover?

Ideal candidates for mommy makeover surgery are women whose breast and abdomen are changed as a result of pregnancy and childbirth, and desire restorative surgery to bring their body back to its pre-pregnancy state.

Can I have a Mommy Makeover if I have not had children?

You can still be a candidate for the combination approach to the breasts and abdomen even if you have not had a child. When a healthy diet and exercise have achieved all that it can and what you see in the mirror is not what you want anymore, a mommy makeover can help you realize your goals.

How long does the procedure take?

Depending on the operative plan created for you, the procedure can take between 3 to 6 hours to complete. Immediately after surgery, you will feel groggy and not want to do too much. The following day, you will already be feeling better and can transition to home with a helpful family caregiver. It is advised that someone stay with you for the first 48 hours after surgery particularly if your children will be at home with you.

How long do I need help taking care of my family after a Mommy Makeover?

Depending on which procedures you are a candidate for, recovery can take anywhere between 2 to 6 weeks. Most patients are able to return to work within 2 to 3 weeks, but returning to exercise and all normal activities may take up to 6 weeks. If you are at home with your children, having an extra set of hands will be helpful for at least the first week. You will be able to pick up your child, although we recommend doing so from a seated position. You will be encouraged to take daily walks, and pushing a stroller is fine.

Should I wait until my family is complete before proceeding with a mommy makeover?

Although it is possible to carry a pregnancy after abdominal contouring surgery, we recommend that you choose to do this when you are done having children. Your results will last longer if they are not stressed by pregnancy and breast engorgement.

If you are considering a restorative procedure after pregnancy, childbirth and breast feeding, let the board certified cosmetic surgeons of the Emory Aesthetic Center help you define your goals and customize a plan to achieve them.

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About Dr. Anderson

Erica Anderson, MDErica Anderson, MD, is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and currently holds an appointment as Assistant Professor in the Division of Plastic Surgery at Emory University. Dr. Anderson completed her general surgery residency and plastic surgery residency at the University of Colorado Health Sciences Center and associated hospitals in Denver, CO. She completed a year of advanced training in Aesthetic Surgery at Grotting Plastic Surgery in Birmingham, Alabama.

Dr. Anderson returns to Emory University after being in private practice in Arlington, Virginia. While there, she maintained a busy aesthetic and reconstructive practice and also served as Medical Director for the Wound Healing and Hyperbaric Center at Virginia Hospital Center.

Dr. Anderson’s academic and research interests are largely focused on clinical outcomes with regards to cosmetic surgery. Her areas of clinical interest are diverse including cosmetic surgery of the breast and body as well chest wall reconstruction and wound care.

Dr. Anderson is married with 3 children, Trent, Connor and Fiona, and 2 vizslas, Max and Mimi.

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