‘Mummy Make Over’
This is a term given to surgery of breast and abdomen following pregnancy. It is a commonly performed procedure for mothers seeking to regain much of their pre-pregnancy physique or to improve their self-image. The physical tell tales of pregnancy can be addressed with surgery with great success. The breasts may be lifted or augmented with an implant, or indeed both lifted and augmented. The abdominal tissues can be brought back into shape with an abdominoplasty procedure (tummy tuck), with or without liposculpture, or a simpler mini-abdominoplasty.
Breast tissues respond to normal cyclical hormonal changes as well as those related to the sustained hormonal changes of pregnancy and breastfeeding. Glandular breast hypertrophy (increase in volume) resulting from these changes in turn increases the breast size. Subsequent involution (reduction in size), once normal hormonal levels have been restored, leaves the breasts feeling empty and deflated.
Equally, the abdominal tissues respond with extraordinary resilience to pregnancy. This volume expansion over what is a relatively short time period may result not only in weight changes, but also subsequent accumulation of subcutaneous fat deposits. Furthermore, redundant skin of the abdominal wall after childbirth may not, despite the inherent elasticity of the skin, return to its previous taut state. ‘Stretch marks’ are caused by microscopic rupture of a layer of collagen bundles under the skin, revealing the underlying vessels.
Your consultation will begin with a thorough medical history, including smoking habits, previous abdominal surgery, regular medications, such as blood thinners, previous history of deep venous thrombosis, diabetes, stability of weight over time and any other relevant details. During your consultation Dr Farhadieh will discuss the areas that concern you. Examination includes assessing the quality and amount of redundancy of your tissues and skin envelope elasticity. Dr Farhadieh will go through the surgical options and what might be best suited to your case. Photographs will be taken as part of your confidential medical records prior to surgery.
On the day of surgery you will be admitted to hospital, and Dr Farhadieh will see you along with our anaesthetist. Surgical markings will be made just prior to surgery. It is a good idea to wear your preferred underwear so that the best incision sites can be chosen. Any remaining questions will be addressed prior to surgery.
After surgery, you will be taken to the recovery area, where you will be monitored before returning to the ward. You will be placed in a compression garment, which will help to reduce swelling and make you feel more comfortable. Your drains will be removed sequentially and you will be encouraged to walk as soon as possible. A follow-up appointment will be arranged for 10–14 days after surgery. You will be able to resume most activities within a couple of weeks, except for strenuous activities that would place pressure on your abdominal wall. You will be able to resume all activities within 6–8 weeks.
As with all surgery there are inherent risks of complications. Luckily these do not happen often, but it is important for the surgeon to anticipate them and for the patient to be aware of them so that any early signs can be recognized. Dr Farhadieh will discuss all the details of the procedure and its possible complications with you. Postoperative bleeding, although not common, may happen from time to time; it will require a return to theatre. This is one of the reasons why admission to a hospital facility is Dr Farhadieh’s choice. It offers the safest and best-controlled environment for such surgery. All our implants are of highest quality and come with a lifetime guarantee.
‘Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.’
Frequently Asked Questions
How many days will I need to be in hospital for?
Usually you will stay in hospital for 2–3 days. You will be often discharged with at least one remaining drain, which will come out by day 5–7 postoperatively.
Is the surgery painful?
There is some discomfort associated with surgery. Most patients report a ‘tightness’, rather than pain, due to the excellent pain control regime we use, which includes local anaesthetic for the immediate postoperative period as well as powerful analgesics.
Will I have liposculpture and liposuction as part of the procedure as well?
To achieve the optimal aesthetic outcome the abdominal wall will require varying degrees of treatment and this includes liposculpture and liposuction of areas not included in the tummy tuck. The breast lift rarely requires liposuction of the axilla (armpit).
When will I be able to resume normal activity?
Within 2–3 weeks you will be back at work and able to resume most normal activities. Exercises that put a strain on your core abdominal muscles should not be resumed for at least 8 and preferably for 12 weeks postoperatively.
Where will the scars be placed?
As part of the preoperative assessment Dr Farhadieh will select the incision sites in consultation with you depending on your preferred underwear, swimwear or previous surgery. The scars are not only camouflaged, but also fade considerably within the first 12 months from surgery.
What will my follow up include?
Dr Farhadieh believes that the relationship between doctor and patient is sacred and privileged. Our practice is based on compassion, honesty, transparency and, above all, patient welfare. We pride ourselves on making sure that you feel supported at all times. We will be available during all stages of your journey and will schedule short-, medium- and long-term follow-up appointments as part of our overall practice.