Combining breast and abdominal surgery can be done at any time. This combination of surgeries completed after having children has been called a 'mummy makeover' by the public. It has been used in reference to this combination of surgeries that address changes that occur naturally in women with the process of pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Pregnancy and having children are both parts of an exciting and wonderful experience that significantly changes the mother’s body.
The abdomen grows; therefore, the abdominal muscles loosen or separate (diastasis recti), the tummy skin stretches and the breasts enlarge, filled with milk. These natural changes are all part of supporting the baby’s life and development.
Please note that individual results will vary depending on the individual, their genetics and lifestyle factors, and all surgeries have associated risks. Before proceeding with any surgery, it is advisable to seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified medical practitioner such as a Plastic Surgeon. Dr. Gary Avery (MED0001633092) a registered medical practitioner, with specialist registration in Surgery – Plastic Surgery. Dr Avery is also a member of the two leading professional associations for plastic surgeons in Australia, Australasian Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgeons (ASAPS) and Australian Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). Their websites provide additional information regarding plastic surgery in Australia that you might find useful, please visit ASAPS and ASPS.
We use the terminology ‘mummy makeover’ in our website because it is the expression people search when considering surgery after childbirth. The term 'mummy makeover' was coined in the United States of America ('mommy makeover'), and increasingly adopted in Australia with many people hearing the term and searching for more information about it. At Avery, we support individuals being able to make their own choices about surgery and at the same time believe this descriptor is not helpful or compassionate to the beautiful process of having children.
The combination of surgeries that may be performed together include abdominoplasty (known by the public as a ‘tummy tuck’), reduction mammaplasty (breast reduction) or breast augmentation, mastopexy (breast lift), and breast augmentation with a lift. The combination of surgeries performed will vary between individuals and it is best performed once the individual has finished having children, and at least 12 months after the last child.
While the term 'mummy makeover' may sound light-hearted or trivial, Avery does not intend to make light of any changes that women may experience to their bodies during what is a completely natural process. It is very important to understand that any of the components that comprise a 'mummy makeover' involve real surgical procedures that need to be carefully considered.
You can find more information about the different surgeries that can be combined in the 'procedure' section below.
Patients considering any form of body or breast surgery will need to come in for a consultation with Dr Avery to discuss your expectations, along with the surgical options for how these can be achieved. During your consultation with the Avery team, we will ensure that the surgery you are considering is the appropriate choice for you.
At Avery, we welcome the opportunity to have an open conversation with you to understand the changes you are looking for with surgery. Our patients’ stories matter a great deal to us.
Wherever you are on your personal journey, we would like to assist you. Your reasons for having surgery and your expectations from surgery are important conversations to have before undergoing surgery. Dr Avery will also assess your health and medical history to ensure any surgical procedure you are considering is a safe and appropriate choice for you.
Combined Breast and Abdominal Surgery
Your GP or another specialist that knows you well must make a referral to Dr Avery. The decision to have a consultation may be made after talking with family or friends or following your own research into plastic surgery and Dr Avery.
The purpose of your initial consultation with Dr Avery is to discuss your motivations for surgery and expectations from surgery. It is an opportunity to openly communicate what you want to change, alleviate or remove. We will discuss any concerns you may have about your potential surgery and its outcome. We will also collect information that is specific and tailored to you, to add to the knowledge you acquired through your research outside of the consultation process.
When you arrive at Avery, you will check in with our Care Team and complete a medical history form, if not already completed. We encourage you to bring a supportive family member or friend who can remain with you throughout the consultation if you like, and be a sounding board during your decision-making process following the consultation.
The consultation with Dr Avery will include an examination of the area of your body that you are concerned with and considering changing. Our aim will be to determine if plastic surgery can achieve what you hope it will, and if so, what specific plastic surgery procedures will address your concerns and meet your expectations in a realistic way.
Plastic surgery procedures can impact physical appearance and there may be a psychological response to the changes in your body after surgery. Besides the reasons for having plastic surgery, it is important to be fully aware of any potential limitations of the operation and how they apply to your unique situation. This includes the risks of having surgery and all of the possible complications that can occur after surgery, and what can be done if these occur.
We will discuss what the surgery involves, how it relates to you specifically given your uniqueness and current state of health, what the possible risks of the surgery are, and then decide if having the surgery is a safe and appropriate choice for you as an individual.
Your consultation will also include a discussion of the estimated financial implications of having this surgery or surgeries that were discussed with Dr Avery.
After your consultation, our Care Team will be there to talk through any further questions you have, including the cost of the surgery.
At Avery, our goal is to ensure you are equipped with the knowledge needed for you to feel empowered throughout the decision-making process, surgery and post-surgery.
Depending on your individual goals and body type, the following surgeries are some of the procedures you might undergo during a ‘mummy makeover’:
Abdominoplasty surgery, also referred to as tummy tuck, consists of the removal and tightening of the abdomen skin, removal of excess fat where appropriate, and repositioning or tightening of the rectus abdominis muscles. The extent of these three components is tailored to individual requirements.
Find out more about how abdominoplasty surgery can restore the abdomen skin and muscles here.
Breast reduction surgery involves a combination of skin and breast tissue removal and reshaping. The surgery aims to reduce the size and weight of large breasts by lifting the breasts off the lower chest and upper abdomen. The objective is to leave the breasts smaller and lighter, sitting higher on the chest and closer to the body.
Discover here what is involved in breast reduction surgery and how this surgical procedure can help to address physical limitations and discomfort.
Augmentation mammoplasty, commonly referred to as breast augmentation, is a surgical procedure that aims to increase the size, shape, or fullness of the breast using implants. Individuals might consider this surgery when they want to increase their breast volume, achieve a more rounded breast shape, or address their breast asymmetry.
Visit the breast augmentation surgery section to learn more about what to expect from this surgery.
A breast lift or mastopexy aims to raise the breasts on the chest and reshape them. Get a deeper understanding of what is involved during breast lift surgery here.
Breast lift surgery with breast implants combines mastopexy surgery with breast augmentation surgery. The aim is to increase volume, while also raising the position and altering the shape of the breast.
As with all surgical procedures, combined breast and body surgery does have risks, despite the highest standards of practice. It is not usual for any surgeon to outline every possible side effect or rare complication of a surgical procedure. However, it is important that you have enough information about the most common risks to fully weigh up the benefits, risks, and limitations of surgery.
The following possible complications are listed to inform and not to alarm you. There may be other complications that are not listed. Smoking, obesity, and other significant medical problems will cause greater risk of complications.
Some general risks and possible complications of surgery include, but are not limited to the following:
- Heavy bleeding from an operated site. This may require a blood transfusion.
- Infection that may require treatment with antibiotics or further surgery in some cases.
- Allergic reaction to sutures, dressings or antiseptic solutions.
- The formation of a large blood clot (haematoma) beneath an incision site may require further surgery.
- Complications such as heart attack, pulmonary embolism or stroke may be caused by a blood clot, which can be life threatening.
- Pain, bruising and swelling around the operated site(s).
- Slow healing, often related to smoking or diabetes.
- Short-term nausea following general anaesthesia and other risks related to anaesthesia.
- Tissue cannot heal without scarring and that how one scars is dependent on individual genetic characteristics. Dr Avery will do his best to minimise scarring but cannot control its ultimate appearance.
- Smoking or using nicotine products during the 3–4-week pre-operative and post-operative periods is prohibited as these could dramatically increase the chances of complications.
- All medications I am currently taking, including prescriptions, over the counter remedies, herbal therapies and supplements, aspirin, and any other recreational drug or alcohol use can affect the safety of my surgery.
- There can be no guarantees about the results of any surgery.
Specific risks for combined breast and body surgery would depend on the specific surgery that Dr Avery performs. These specific risks can be found under abdominoplasty, breast reduction, breast augmentation, breast lift and breast lift with implants.
The duration of surgery, length of hospital stay and recovery required will all vary depending on the nature of surgery and what surgical procedures are combined to be performed during the same surgery. Following any combination of surgical procedures, several nights in hospital are generally required post-surgery to aid with your recovery. Depending on the complexity of the surgery and any additional procedures, up to 2-4weeks off work may also be recommended.
There will be some bruising and swelling, which generally subsides over 2-6 weeks after the operation. You will be required to wear a compression garment or bandages for approximately 6 weeks, to provide support and reduce post-operative pain or swelling.
A customised pain relief program will be created for you and issued before you leave the hospital. If circumstances change at any stage during the recovery period, then the pain medication can be adjusted accordingly.
Scars from the surgery will vary depending on the area being operated on and how well your skin copes with scarring. There are different incisions needed depending on the location and nature of surgery being performed. These incisions once healed, become scars.
The financial aspects of your surgery are as important as the medical elements when planning for surgery. At Avery, the surgeries we offer fall into three different financial categories: Self-funded – aesthetic surgery; self-funded – plastic and reconstructive surgery; and health insured – plastic and reconstructive surgery.
To make sense of these three financial categories, we have created a detailed price guide to help you understand what may or may not be covered by your health insurer/Medicare and your out of pocket expenses.
For more information or to book a consultation, please contact our team on 02 4002 4150.
After your body has recovered from childbirth and you have returned to your pre-pregnancy weight or have lost as much as you weight can with diet and exercise. We also recommend waiting until you have finished having children.
As we mentioned in our introduction, we do not love the terminology ‘mummy makeover’ and this is a good reason why. Any person who has lost a considerable amount of weight might be suitable for the same surgery procedures included in a mummy makeover (abdominoplasty, breast lift, body lift, breast reduction and breast augmentation). In short, the answer is yes, it is possible.
It will depend on how many different surgical procedures you had during the mummy makeover. It can take between 2 to 6 weeks. Most patients are able to go back to work after 2-3 weeks, however it might take a few more weeks for you to be able to exercise.
Simply walking is advised and is recommended during the first 2 weeks after surgery. An increase in activity is encouraged between 2-6 weeks, limiting this increase based on how your body feels and responds. From 6 weeks you can be mostly unrestricted with exercise but it may not be until 12 weeks following surgery that you feel you are back to pre-surgery fitness, or even improved from your pre-surgery fitness if physical symptoms and restrictions have been addressed with surgery.
Pain following surgery will vary depending on the extent of surgery. Pain immediately after surgery may be reduced by the use of local anaesthetic at the surgical site given during the surgery. The pain will also be managed with tablets or injections as required. Physical measures such as the dressings and supportive garments as well as limited movement and possibly ice packs will all help minimise any pain. Pain is usually well tolerated within a few days after surgery with all these measures. If your pain is increasing following surgery this is usually a sign that you may need a review to ensure your recovery is proceeding as expected.
Dressings and supportive garments will offer support to the wounds and the areas of your body that are still recovering. You will be also be advised to restrict excessive movement of the surgical area in the first two weeks after surgery. A good general rule throughout your recovery is if an increase in movement or activity does not increase any discomfort or swelling, then it is probably safe and this gradual progression back to ‘normal’ will be encouraged.
Please allow an hour for your time with Avery. This will include meeting with Dr Avery and the Avery care team.
Body contouring surgery is performed under a general anaesthetic given by a specialist anaesthetist in an accredited private hospital.
Dr Avery operates at the accredited Lingard Private Hospital. This is to ensure your operation takes place in an environment governed by the guiding principle of safety to ensure your surgical experience is the best it can be.
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Your initial consultation
During your initial consultation we welcome the opportunity to have an open conversation with you to understand the changes you are looking for with your surgery and talk through any concerns or specific goals you may have.
Your initial consultation will include an examination of the area of concern and we'll work with you to determine if plastic surgery can achieve what you hope it will, and which specific plastic surgery procedures will address your concerns and meet your expectations in a realistic way.