A Mommy Makeover is an overall rejuvenation to help women reclaim their bodies after having children.  It can include a breast augmentation, a breast lift, liposuction, a tummy tuck or any combination thereof.  After 13 years in private plastic surgery practice, here are a few morsels of advice from my patients to you.

1) All About Cup Size?  Not Exactly.

Despite the fact that breast augmentation is the most common plastic surgery procedure, most women are surprised to learn that implants come in a variety of sizes and profiles

Patients know that cup measurements are imprecise and are pretty familiar with volume measurements like 300cc, 400cc, etc.  But the real key to getting perfect looking breasts for your body is to choose the appropriate profile.

Implant profiles are categorized into low, medium and high profile and refer to both the height and the width of the implant.  I will measure your chest and your body to help you pick the correct volume and profile.  If the profile is too low for you, your breasts may appear too far apart and won’t provide the proper cleavage.  Conversely, choosing a profile that is too high for you will result in a condition called ??? (please insert, can’t find that word, but I know I’ve read it on your blog somewhere) where your breasts are actually touching and creating an unnatural look.

So it’s all about size and profile.  Now you know.

2) Pain Control is Possible Without (or With Less) Drugs

Too many women simply reach for the pill bottle after surgery.  And who can blame them?  This is the only option that many doctors give their patients for pain control after surgery.  But, psssst.  My patients have a secret for you.

Not used by all plastic surgeons (although I have no idea why not), most of my patients are sent home with a pain pump.  This is a wonderful little ball that is filled with numbing medication.  Two small tubes run from the ball to the areas of your incisions and newly formed “breast pockets” to deliver a continuous stream of medicine.  The pain pump greatly reduces and sometimes even eliminates the need for oral narcotics, which have side effects as mild as constipation and as severe as addiction.  Plus, because the medicine is delivered only to the area of pain and not throughout your entire body, you’ll feel better faster.  You’re welcome.

3) Keep It Movin’. But Not Too Much.

Moms are so used to taking care of everyone and everything that one of the hardest parts of recovery is to simply – recover.  Resist the urge to move around too much while trying to catch up on laundry, cooking, cleaning, nose wiping, toy gathering, etc.  Your recovery should be the #1 priority in the few weeks following your surgery.  Enlist some help, and even though it might not get done in the way you would do it, it will get done…eventually.

Meanwhile, even though it smarts a little bit, be sure to keep moving your arms around and making an effort to get out of bed to walk around for a few minutes each day.  This will help you recover, too.  Just don’t let the kids see you out of bed.  You know how quickly that can turn into a free for all!

4)  OMG. I’m Pamela Anderson.

Relax.  It’s just the swelling. Your breasts will continue to drop into a more natural position with time, and the swelling will continue to decrease for many months.  But, yeah, that first look after taking off the compression bandages?  Whoa.

5)  Crazy Train

Recovering after surgery can be an emotional experience. Fatigue combined with narcotic pain pills have many women feeling like they jumped aboard the Bi-Polar Express.  Elation.  Tears.  Laughter.  Anger.  And that’s just in 5 minutes!  If you’re on Vicodin or Codeine, you may feel loopy, flaky, sleepy, out of it and constipated.  Sounds fun, right?  If your pain pump can control your pain, or at least most of your pain, you’ll feel more awake, more normal, and still not be in that much pain.

6) Go Big or Go Home.  Well, At Least Go a Little Bigger.

The number one complaint that I hear from women after surgery and what most of your girlfriends will tell you if you ask them is that they wish they had chosen slightly larger implants.  First, implants will actually appear a little smaller inside of your body, because they are placed under the muscle.  Compression from the muscle causes perhaps 3-5% shrinkage.

Second, and this is very psychological, most women wish they had a bigger volume size after their breast augmentation.  Once they get used to the idea of larger breasts, which often happens only after surgery, they wish they had gone slightly larger.  To prevent this from happening, I recommend you choose a size that’s a little too big, but that you can live with, typically about 25-30 cc larger than what you’re trying on in the office.

So there.  From many women to you, those are the secrets to know before a Mommy Makeover.  If you would like to schedule a consultation, contact my Patient Care Coodinator, Caroline, at or 415-362-1846.


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