CAN I GET PREGNANT AFTER TUMMY TUCK SURGERY?
Many women are unsure if they have to wait until they are done having children before opting for a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty). They read everywhere that having a pregnancy after a tummy tuck will cause harm to the mother and the unborn child.
But as we all know, not all pregnancies are planned and it is possible that people simply change their minds about wanting more kids. Therefore it is important to know that pregnancy after tummy tuck is definitely safe for both mother and baby.
WILL THE PREGNANCY HAVE COMPLICATIONS?
First of all, all pregnancies have the potential for some degree of complications. Your gynecologist is the best person to advise you on any concerns you may have regarding pregnancy complications.
With regards to complications due to a prior tummy tuck surgery, do not be worried as most cases are safe and are not a cause for concern; most mothers carry their baby healthily to full term.
Even after a tummy tuck, your abdominal wall and tissue will still stretch as per normal to accommodate the new baby. Some mothers notice that their bellies do not stretch out as much, or they do not look as pregnant as their previous pregnancy. This is completely safe and is harmless to the growing child.
WHAT WILL HAPPEN TO MY TUMMY TUCK?
Most of my patients who became pregnant after their tummy tuck continue to love the results of their surgery even after their baby’s birth. In fact, most of them notice that they look better post-pregnancy with their tummy tuck then during their first post-pregnancy prior to their tummy tuck.
As a general guideline, women may not need a tummy tuck revision if their tummies do not stretch out too much, while others may need a revision if their skin and abdominal muscles stretch out a lot during pregnancy (such as in the case of twin pregnancy). Some women may find it helpful to control their weight gain during pregnancy, but ultimately, the baby’s and mother’s health should be the top priority.
As each body responds differently to pregnancy, it is important to consult your plastic surgeon and your gynecologist as soon as you find out you are expecting.
WHAT IF I NEED A C-SECTION AFTER MY TUMMY TUCK?
The main concern involving having a cesarean section after a tummy tuck is about the scar tissue. However, be rest assured that having a c-section after a tummy tuck isn’t much different from having a repeat c-section. Your gynecologist will still be working with a scar from the previous procedure, be it from a previous c-section or from a tummy tuck surgery. But in any case, you should still inform your gynecologist that you have already had a tummy tuck surgery as sometimes the scar isn’t too obvious.
One downside is that sometimes, your gynecologist might not be able to close your new c-section incision with the skill of a plastic surgeon and that might affect the appearance of the scar.
Sometimes, I get requests from patients to have a revision tummy tuck in conjunction with their C-section, and the answer is actually NO—it simply isn’t the right time. If you are interested in this topic, I’ve written a blog post about this issue. Read more here: www.bit.ly/dsdf7dbfo
HOW LONG SHOULD I WAIT TO GET PREGNANT AFTER A TUMMY TUCK?
Even though being pregnant after a tummy tuck is completely safe, I would still encourage you to wait until you are not planning any more pregnancies before considering a tummy tuck. It makes more sense this way due to the possible expense and need for a revision surgery following the pregnancy.
That said, there are some exceptions when there is a large gap between pregnancies, such as having their first child in the late teens and not planning any more until the late twenties or thirties. It is important that my patients feel confident and happy with their bodies, so it is understandable that they may wish to consider a tummy tuck even with more planned pregnancies in the future.
However, different plastic surgeons have different opinions about this matter; some believe that a pregnancy can be planned about 5/6 months following a tummy tuck surgery, while others feel that it is not worth running a risk for short-term results and should wait at least 5/6 years. In any case, the final decision should be made taking into account your individual life story.
In most scenarios, you should still find comfort in knowing that no matter how long the duration is between your tummy tuck and your pregnancy, you should still expect to make a full recovery without complications. If you have any concerns, speak to both your plastic surgeon and your gynecologist to ensure that your best interests are kept in mind.
Disclaimer: The information contained in this post is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, it is provided for educational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your plastic surgeon or other qualified healthcare provider before starting any new treatment or discontinuing an existing treatment. Always speak to your healthcare provider about any questions you may have regarding a procedure.