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Tummy Tuck or Mommy Makeover: Which Surgery Do I Need?

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Tummy Tuck or Mommy Makeover: Which Surgery Do I Need?

It is a monumental decision, choosing to undergo major surgery to improve your body contours. Even more consequential is deciding which body contouring surgery you need. If you are debating whether to get just a tummy tuck or to get a full Mommy Makeover, the following information may help you make the best decision for your body contouring needs.

Tummy Tuck vs. Mommy Makeover: The Procedure

A tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that improves the contour of the abdomen. The surgeon will perform liposuction to eliminate stubborn belly fat, remove excess skin, tighten the skin, and mend the abdominal muscle wall. A less invasive technique called a mini tummy tuck may be performed if only minimal correction is needed, or if the abdominal area needing correction is isolated below the navel.

A Mommy Makeover is a combination surgery that improves multiple areas of the body. As such, it is customizable and most often includes a tummy tuck, breast surgery, and liposuction. In addition to the tummy tuck approach described above, this procedure can also remove stubborn fat from anywhere on the body, lift sagging breasts, and improve breast fullness and shape.

Tummy Tuck vs. Mommy Makeover: Results

Tummy tuck surgery improves waistline contour. By removing stubborn fat and tightening the skin and abdominal muscles, the tummy tuck results in a firmer, flatter, and smoother abdomen. A tummy tuck is better for individuals who seek improvement for their abdominal contour, but who are generally satisfied with the rest of their body contours.

Mommy Makeover surgery improves waistline contour as well as breast shape, breast size and fullness, and other body contours. If liposuction is included in the Mommy Makeover, the procedure results in slimmer and leaner body contours in the areas where liposuction was administered. A Mommy Makeover also enhances breast appearance and feel and, depending on the breast enhancement techniques included, will usually produce firmer, fuller, and shapelier breasts. A Mommy Makeover is better for individuals who seek improvement for the abdomen, breasts, and other areas of the body, especially after pregnancy and/or weight loss.

Tummy Tuck vs. Mommy Makeover: Candidates

Similarities: Both tummy tuck surgery and Mommy Makeover surgery require candidates to be non-smoking, in good overall health, and at a stable body weight. Candidates for either procedure should not be pregnant or breastfeeding. Likewise, candidates should be done having children, as any future pregnancy could destroy the results of either procedure.

Differences: What makes a person a better candidate for a tummy tuck or for a Mommy Makeover depends both on how much correction is desired and what areas of the body need correcting. Individuals who desire only abdominal contour improvements, especially if those corrections will be minimal, are better candidates for a tummy tuck or mini tummy tuck. Individuals who desire the same along with breast enhancement and/or fat removal from other areas of the body are better candidates for a Mommy Makeover.

Tummy Tuck vs. Mommy Makeover: Recovery

Similarities: Both tummy tuck surgery and Mommy Makeover surgery have a lengthy recovery. Most people will need to take two full weeks off work. Patients can expect some discomfort, soreness, tenderness, and swelling to occur during the early weeks of recovery. To prevent complications during the healing process, individuals will need to avoid strenuous exercise or heavy lifting for a minimum of six to eight weeks, and no abdominal exercises are allowed for at least 12 weeks.

Differences: A Mommy Makeover may have a more intense recovery because it affects more areas of the body. Depending on the individual, this may mean a longer rest period. Conversely, if you undergo a mini tummy tuck, your recovery will likely be shorter than it would have been after a full tummy tuck or Mommy Makeover. Regardless, these are major surgeries, and the recovery period cannot be rushed.

Tummy Tuck vs. Mommy Makeover: Scars

Tummy tuck scars are usually horizontal and low in the abdomen, placed between the hips near the pubic line. If a mini tummy tuck is performed, the scar will usually be in the same place but will be shorter in length.

Mommy Makeover scars will appear in each treatment area. The tummy tuck scar will be as described above. Breast scars may be around the nipple-areolar complexes (blended in with the dark edges), hidden underneath the breasts along the breast crease, or in both places as well as with a vertical scar on the underside of the breast that extends downward to the crease. Liposuction scars will be much smaller, almost unnoticeable, and strategically hidden in inconspicuous areas.

Tummy Tuck vs. Mommy Makeover: Cost

Of the two procedures, a tummy tuck is usually more affordable because the procedure is shorter, and fewer overall enhancements are made. If the abdomen is the priority treatment area, a tummy tuck may be the better choice for you, especially if finances are a concern or you want to see your improvements as soon as possible.

However, if at any point in the future you plan to undergo liposuction, breast surgery, or another procedure that could have been combined with a tummy tuck into a Mommy Makeover, it may be more economical to get a Mommy Makeover. Because the Mommy Makeover combines multiple procedures into one surgery session, there is only one charge for anesthesia, operating room fees, and other related fees. The overall expense of getting a Mommy Makeover is significantly more affordable than getting each individual procedure on separate occasions, especially considering the fact that each would have its own recovery timeline. If you plan to get multiple procedures anyway, and you can make it work financially now or are willing to wait until you’ve saved up more money, a Mommy Makeover may make more sense for you.

Other Factors to Consider

At first glance, the choice between tummy tuck surgery and Mommy Makeover surgery is fairly straightforward: if you just want abdominal improvement, you should get a tummy tuck, whereas if you want to enhance other areas of the body as well, you should get a Mommy Makeover. However, as you debate, consider also the following.

If you choose to get a tummy tuck instead of a Mommy Makeover, only your abdomen will be operated on. However, improving your abdominal contour may have additional unanticipated benefits. It may be that having a slimmer abdomen helps make your breasts look fuller and rounder by comparison, giving the impression that you’ve also received breast surgery when you did not. Furthermore, trimming down your waistline may motivate you to maintain a healthy diet, start a new exercise routine, lose excess weight, or even go shopping for new, flattering clothes. There is the potential for a positive ripple effect after any body contouring surgery, inspired by your newfound confidence and improved figure.

Ultimately, the decision between Mommy Makeover and tummy tuck surgery is yours to make. For guidance in making the best decision for your needs, meet with our board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Richard Mouchantat. Dr. Mouchantat has performed countless Mommy Makeovers and tummy tuck surgeries, and he will be able to advise you on which procedure may be best for you.  To schedule your appointment with Dr. Mouchantat, call (303) 232-8585 or contact us online today.

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Dr. Mouchantat has been performing plastic surgery procedures in the Denver area since 1996. Some of these procedures include abdominoplasty, breast augmentation, breast reconstruction, breast reduction, liposuction, face lifts and eyelid surgery. Dr. Mouchantat is experienced in fat grafting techniques as well. Some procedures can be done comfortably in the office under local anesthesia, while others are done in an accredited outpatient surgical facility or hospital setting.

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