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A “Mommy Makeover” is one of the most commonly requested procedures at Morea Plastic Surgery Center of North Raleigh. Simply stated, the mommy makeover is a combination of cosmetic breast and cosmetic abdominal surgery. Pregnancy and breast feeding can take a tremendous toll on a mother’s body. Breast feeding can result in changes to the breasts such as loss of breast volume and breast asymmetry. The breasts may begin to sag or droop. Pregnancy affects the abdominal wall in many ways. The abdominal wall skin can become lax and stretch marks may appear. The abdominal wall muscles can become weak and the supporting structures can stretch. Dr. Christopher Morea brings his expertise and over eighteen years of experience as a board certified plastic surgeon to women in Raleigh, Durham, Wake Forest and surrounding areas who wish to regain their pre pregnancy body contour.
Mommy makeover procedures in our Raleigh, N.C. plastic surgery practice are customized to deliver the desired results to each individual patient. The breast procedures may consist of a breast augmentation, breast lift or a breast lift and enhancement with the use of breast implants. The breast procedure of choice will depend upon the changes that have occurred following pregnancy and the look or breast size that a woman desires. Breast augmentation will involve the placement of a breast implant, which can be either saline filled or silicone filled, to enhance the size of the breasts. A breast lift procedure would be required to correct sagging or drooping of the breasts, also referred to a ptosis. If a woman desires her breasts to be lifted as well as enhanced in size, the use of a breast implant would be required.
The abdominal component of the mommy makeover will depend upon the degree of excess or loose skin, the strength or weakness of the muscle wall and the amount of excess fatty tissue. These factors will determine whether the patient needs abdominal liposuction, a minor tummy tuck or a full tummy tuck. Abdominal liposuction involves the use of a cannula to remove excess or unwanted fatty tissue. Liposuction will have no effect on the abdominal muscle wall and does not involve removal of excess skin. A tummy tuck procedure will remove fatty tissue, excess loose skin and the appearance of stretch marks will be improved. The muscle/fascia layer will be tightened with the placement of sutures which will flatten the abdomen and help restore the pre pregnancy appearance. A mini tummy tuck may be the procedure of choice if the excess skin is limited to the lower portion of the abdomen below the umbilicus.
A mommy makeover surgery can take between two to six hours to perform depending upon the procedures required. Mommy makeover at Morea Plastic Surgery is an outpatient procedure performed under general anesthesia in our fully accredited AAAASF certified operating suite. Dr. Morea’s talented staff of experienced Registered Nurses will care for you in our recovery room until you are ready for discharge. Recovery after a mommy makeover will vary from patient to patient, however, most patients can return to work both inside and outside of the home in approximately seven to ten days. The cost of mommy makeover in Raleigh, N.C. can vary depending upon the experience of the plastic surgeon and the procedures that are performed.
During your first consultation for mommy makeover, you will meet personally with Dr. Morea to discuss your individual plastic surgery goals. He will advise you regarding the abdominal and breast procedures which are best suited for you. You will have the opportunity to view our library containing thousands of before and after mommy makeover photos of actual patients from our practice. Dr. Morea will give you a personal tour of his North Raleigh plastic surgery center and you will be given a quote for the exact cost of the mommy makeover procedure designed for you.
Dr. Morea: Many women are unsure of what size they wish to be. As a plastic surgeon, I believe that a breast augmentation result looks best if the implant fits your chest dimensionally well. A physical exam which includes taking measurements of the chest and breasts allows me to advise a patient as to which implant size to choose. If the implant fits your chest well, it tends to look nice.
Both implants are excellent choices. One is no better than the other. The silicone breast implant is the softer, more natural feeling implant if every other factor remains the same. I believe my job as a plastic surgeon is to review the differences between the two implants. If I feel that one implant is better for a particular patient, I will tell them and explain the reasons why I feel that way. Both saline and silicone implants work well and are FDA approved.
I tell all of my patients that it will be 4-5 months before all of the swelling is gone and the implants have fully settled into place. Most patients can begin a light work out within one week and have no restrictions after one month. Most patients can return to work both in and out of the home in 4-5 days.
There are pros and cons to each position placement. As a general rule, I believe most patients who are an A cup initially, are better off long term with submuscular placement or under the muscle. I believe saline implants should always be placed under the muscle. Any implant placed subglandularly, or on top of the muscle, has a greater risk of palpability and rippling. Any implant under the muscle has the risk of implant distortion with use of the chest muscles.
Breast implants come in a variety of shapes, sizes, widths and projections. I believe it is important to choose an implant that fits your chest dimensionally well. Breast implants can rotate when they are in the body. If a round implant rotates, there will be no change in the shape of the breast. However, rotation of a non round implant may distort the shape of the breasts. However, some patient’s are better candidates for the non round implant due to their particular anatomy. For this reason, it is important to individualize the surgery for each patient as much as possible.
A standard tummy tuck usually involves an incision from hip to hip. Liposuction is done through much smaller incisions frequently at the same time. Most women can still wear a two piece swimsuit following a tummy tuck procedure.
Most patients should plan on being off of work both inside and outside of the home for 10-14 days following a tummy tuck. It will take 3-4 months for all of the swelling to resolve and you will have lifting restrictions for 6-8 weeks following a tummy tuck. I strongly advise mothers with small children to arrange help with child care for 7-10 days following their surgery.
A mini tummy tuck is an operation that is designed for women who are unhappy with the appearance of their lower abdomen. Specifically, the area below the umbilicus or belly button. It is the procedure of choice for women with a small amount of excess skin or bulging that is limited to the lower abdomen. It will not address the stretch marks, excess skin or bulging above the umbilicus. It has been my experience that about 1 in 20 women who come to me for tummy tuck consultation are considered to be a good candidate for a mini tummy tuck. During your consultation, I will examine your abdomen to determine which procedure is most likely to give you the results you desire. Factors that will be considered are the amount of excess skin, amount of excess fatty tissue and condition of the underlying muscle wall.
When I see a patient for cosmetic abdominal surgery, I evaluate the three components of the abdomen which I can change. The skin, excess fatty tissue and the strength/weakness of the muscle/fascial layer. The procedures of choice will range from liposuction to full extended abdominoplasty. Depending on what is bothering the patient, their exam and physical findings will determine what procedure is best for them.
Dr. Morea: I would recommend waiting four to six months before considering a breast augmentation revision. The reason for this is because it can take four to six months for breast implants to fully settle and for all swelling to be resolved.