Dr Ron, a plastic surgeon in Bondi Junction, explains abdominoplasty as an operation that flattens the abdomen by removing extra skin and fat, and by tightening the muscles of the abdomen. It is done for cosmetic reasons after pregnancy, or for people who are have lost weight and now have large amounts of loose skin. It is often advised that women should delay abdominoplasty until after the birth of their last child. In this article, we’ll discuss how safe it is to have pregnancy after abdominoplasty.
Abdominoplasty is a major surgery that might take between one and five hours to complete. During the surgery, an incision is made from hip to hip above the pubic hairline and the surgeon will trim away excess abdominal skin and fat. They would then stitch the underlying muscles closer together, and stretch the remaining skin down to close the incision. The desired outcome is a flatter, more toned appearance of the abdomen. The recovery period may span months.
As long as it happens well after the recovery period for abdominoplasty (most surgeons recommend six months or more) pregnancy after abdominoplasty is safe. Many people are concerned that the tighter skin over the abdomen may interfere with the baby’s growth, but fortunately, skin is elastic, and the growth of the baby is slow, giving the skin time to stretch and accommodate the baby’s size. However, women who become pregnant after abdominoplasty may anticipate some complications: because the tightened skin has to stretch so much, they are at an increased risk for stretch marks compared to other women. As the tighter skin causes increased pressure inside the woman’s body, she may experience more heartburn, frequent urination and constipation than other women. Finally, after giving birth, she may find that the effects of the abdominoplasty have been reversed by the skin stretching occurring during pregnancy. This is why pregnancy is not recommended after abdominoplasty.
Apart from a few increased side effects and the potential to reverse the cosmetic effect of the surgery, pregnancy after abdominoplasty is considered perfectly safe, and should not have any effect on the health or growth of the baby, or the well-being of the mother.