COUNTER THE EFFECTS OF PREGNANCY AND MORE IN ST. LOUIS, MISSOURI
Having a baby can radically alter a woman's life—with many of the changes starting before the child is even born! Altered hormone levels, fat storage changes, milk production, and a growing fetus all combine to create new contours. Unfortunately, stretched-out tissues do not always go back to the way they looked before, and pockets of large fat cells can appear to have settled in for good. The "Mommy Makeover" at St. Louis-based West County Plastic Surgeons can help moms regain the lines and proportions associated with their pre-pregnancy shape. Along with those contours can come a renewed self- confidence.
It should be noted that a Mommy Makeover is not actually a single surgical procedure. Instead, it is a blanket term that can include any combination of procedures and treatments intended to address the physical changes frequently facing (and frustrating) women who have undergone one or more pregnancies. While most Mommy Makeovers tend to share common elements, they are truly shaped by the individual patient and her unique needs and goals.
Ready to learn more? To schedule your consultation for a Mommy Makeover, contact our St. Louis office by phoning 314-996-8800 or requesting your consultation online.
At West County Plastic Surgeons, board-certified plastic surgeons Marissa Tenenbaum, MD, and Terry Myckatyn, MD, have the training and experience to help women regain the look of their pre-pregnancy shape through the use of the select group of procedures that can make up a Mommy Makeover.
The surgical procedures commonly included in a Mommy Makeover to help women achieve their unique goals are:
Breasts that swell with new glands for milk production—as well as the milk itself, eventually—are typically noticeably larger throughout a woman's pregnancy and the child’s early life. Once the milk supply dwindles, however, breast tissue can go with it. Breast augmentation involves the insertion of implants to restore volume and make the breasts larger for a look desired by many women—not just mothers. Breast enlargement can also be used to balance the chest, since volume changes do not always impact both sides equally. One breast may benefit from an implant to make it as large as the other.
When breasts grow in size, the skin and other tissues stretch and grow to accommodate the increase in volume. Young, healthy, pliant skin is more likely to settle back into its original state once that volume goes away, but a return to the way things were is far from guaranteed. Many women find that their post-baby breasts sag and point downward. A breast lift addresses this by removing the excess tissue and repositioning the nipple as necessary for a perkier look.
What goes up does not always come down. Some women find that breasts stay "super-sized," even after the milk dries up. Breast reduction can bring them back down to a desired volume, helping clothes to fit better and providing relief from what can become two weights always hanging from the chest. This surgery can also be used to restore symmetry. The larger of two breasts can be reduced so that the pair is properly proportioned.
Liposuction is the surgical removal of unwanted fat cells, and it can focus virtually anywhere on the body they congregate. Contrary to some popular beliefs, weight gain does not add fat cells to the body. It does, however, cause existing fat cells to grow larger. If these cells refuse to shrink, they can be separated and loosened, then suctioned out through a small incision. CoolSculpting® is a nonsurgical treatment that offers more subtle, gradual results for women who would prefer that option.
Hormones and physical trauma can both alter the size and shape of the labia, which are the lips at the opening of the vaginal canal. Some women find that they are no longer happy with the look of their labia, which can also protrude to the point that they cause chafing—and may even be visible if tight clothing is worn. A labiaplasty can surgically reduce the size and alter the shape of these tissues. Nonsurgical vaginal rejuvenation is also available, using carefully directed energy to stimulate collagen production to tighten tissues for a visual change.
The belly is a primary area where signs of pregnancy can be seen. The classic “baby bump” soon grows into a baby bulge, with many women complaining when that bulge fails to leave in the months or years after a delivery. Even in cases where the bulk goes away, loose skin can be left to sag and droop. A tummy tuck addresses this flabby look by removing the sagging skin so the entire abdomen has a firmer, sleeker, more toned appearance. This procedure also often involves the surgical repair of separated abdominal muscles. After being pushed apart by a growing baby, this abdominal wall may no longer be able to hold everything in place, causing a "pooch" to appear. Finally, abdominoplasty surgery may include fat removal to get rid of stubborn cells in the midsection.
Other nonsurgical treatments are available to complement and enhance the look of these procedures. Talk to the West County Plastic Surgeons team to create customized plan of transformation from head to toe (or focus only on the parts that need a little attention). Minimally invasive skin treatments can generate a beautiful radiance that may be the perfect accompaniment to new body contours. They can also smooth out wrinkles and tighten loose skin on the face, décolletage, arms, and elsewhere.
Why Choose Us for a Mommy Makeover?
During pregnancy, skin and muscles of the abdomen expand with weight gain, and breasts enlarge in preparation for breastfeeding. After childbirth and nursing, some mothers feel self-conscious about their sagging abdomen, excess fatty deposits, or breasts that lack volume and contour. Many discover that diet and exercise do not adequately address these post-pregnancy concerns.
Although the typical Mommy Makeover procedures are intended to address the needs of women who have had one or more pregnancy, women without children may benefit as well, particularly if they have lost a significant amount of weight. It is important to remember that a Mommy Makeover differs from bariatric surgery or other weight-loss procedures. Instead of helping women lose weight, it can improve their overall shape and contour.
St. Louis cosmetic surgeons Dr. Tenenbaum and Dr. Myckatyn are trained in all areas of cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. They offer patients the expertise of Washington University Physicians and access to the latest technological advances, while providing a comfortable, personalized experience in a relaxing, spa-like setting.
Before & After
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Mommy Makeover Resources for Saint Louis Patients
Learn more about these procedures with the following resources:
The Ladue News: "The Mommy Makeover" Cover Story - May 2009, Ladue News
Breast Augmentation - May/June 2006, Missouri Medicine
Silicon Gel Breast Implants Clinical Review - November-December 2008, Aesthetic Surgery Journal
Combining Breast Surgery and Abdominoplasty - March-April 2009, Aesthetic Surgery Journal
The West County Plastic Surgeons of Washington University team enjoys helping women look and feel their best. We are here to guide each woman on her personal journey to reclaiming the look and lines of her post-pregnancy body. Customized financing options are also available.