A tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, is one of the most common procedures for women to get after pregnancy. Tummy tucks are customized for each patient and can resolve many of the lingering belly issues that plague women after having children, such as excess skin, exercise-resistant fatty tissue and separated abdominal halves.
For women interested in the benefits of tummy tuck surgery but uncertain about some of their more personal concerns, it helps to understand the limitations and potential of the procedure.
1. Can’t Exercise Give Me a Flat Belly Again after Pregnancy?
Some women undergo the changes of pregnancy and are able to regain a fit and youthful midsection from exercise alone. More commonly, however, separated muscles and excess skin remain after pregnancy and fatty tissue can be stubborn to your best dieting efforts. Not all women can achieve a flat belly again after pregnancy, making tummy tuck surgery an excellent option.
2. Does a Tummy Tuck Remove Stretch Marks?
Contrary to popular belief, stretch marks cannot be resolved by tightening the skin. This is because stretch marks are actually small scars on the skin’s surface, and while tightening the skin with a tummy tuck may make them less apparent, they’ll still be present. However, because the skin of the lower belly is commonly removed during a tummy tuck, any stretch marks you have in this area may be excised. Similarly speaking tattoos, scars (appendix, c-section, laparascopy, hernia), piercings or other lesions located in the lower abdominal skin beneath the umbilicus are commonly removed with a full tummy tuck.
3. Can You Get Pregnant after a Tummy Tuck?
Women may want to complete their families before getting a tummy tuck because some of the results can be reversed by a future pregnancy. However, a tummy tuck should not affect your ability to have a healthy pregnancy and tummy tuck patients can always choose to have more children after their surgery.
Otto J. Placik, M.D. received his medical degree from Northwestern University where he also completed residencies in general and plastic and reconstructive surgery. He completed a fellowship in the aesthetic reconstruction of complex nasal and facial deformities at St. Joseph Hospital in Chicago and an additional fellowship in microvascular and hand surgery at Davies Medical Center, an affiliate of the University of California, San Francisco.
Dr. Placik is certified as a diplomate by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and is an active member of The American Society of Plastic Surgeons. He is an active member of several local and national professional organizations. Dr. Placik is a member of the Northwestern University Division of Plastic Surgery Teaching Staff. He holds an academic appointment as a Clinical Assistant Professor of Surgery (Plastic) at Northwestern University Medical School.