The joy of motherhood eclipses the superficial concern women might have with their breasts following pregnancy. Loose skin and deflation can trample anyone’s self-confidence, motivating women to keep their chests hidden.
What women need to hear is pregnancy isn’t the end for their bodies! Women in their 30’s and 40’s are far too young to give up on their breasts; there are options. Dr. Patricia McGuire, a board certified plastic surgeon in St. Louis, commits a large portion of her practice to rejuvenating patients following pregnancy and massive weight-loss, utilizing two separate surgeries to return a woman’s breasts back to where they once were.
Advantages to two-stage mastopexy
We’d all like a magical solution and to be able to limit the number of surgical procedures as much as possible. For the best results, however, many board certified plastic surgeons suggest having a breast lift and breast augmentation performed separately. “A lot of patients are resistant to two procedures,” says Dr. McGuire. “But when I show them the beautiful results, they understand — I just want them to look good; and look good for a long time!”
McGuire says some of the advantages to a two-stage mastopexy include:
- Scars may be less noticeable when a two stage mastopexy is performed
- The surgeon may have better control of where the nipple will appear on the breast when procedures are done separately
- Women have time to evaluate the lift and then return to the operating table if they don’t get the desired result (sometimes they find out a lift is enough)
Who are the best candidates for breast lifts and breast augmentations?
“Childbirth keeps me in business,” says Dr. McGuire. “Pregnancy stretches the skin; sometimes we can simply give it a lift, but other times women benefit from an implant as well.” Weight loss patients are also ideal candidates and can benefit from a two stage mastopexy.
You should also be at or near your ideal weight, eating a balanced, healthy diet, and have a relatively active lifestyle to reduce risks from the procedure. Non-smokers have fewer complications after breast augmentation, and if you are a smoker you will be expected to quit smoking for several weeks before and after the procedure to reduce risks of complications.
How much pain should I expect and how long is the recovery?
Another positive aspect of having two procedures is that a breast lift is far less uncomfortable than a “The lift isn’t that difficult,” says Dr. McGuire. “When we perform a lift, without an implant, our patients can have the procedure done on Thursday and be back to work on Monday.”