Ep. 06 - Mommy Makeover 101

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The Beauty Balance Podcast - Episode 06 Transcript:

“You’re listening to The Beauty Balance podcast hosted by Dr. Usha Rajagopal, a San Francisco board-certified plastic surgeon with over 20 years of experience. We cover a range of highly requested aesthetics and skincare topics, and chat with industry experts and influential, talented women who truly encompass grace, beauty, and brains –  plus, you get the inside scoop on what it’s really like to be a plastic surgeon.” 


Today we will be covering some questions from the readers of Haute Living regarding mommy makeover.


What procedures are most popular in a mommy makeover?

A mommy makeover consists of procedures that a mother would need after having babies or just a combination of procedures that a woman is interested in. The most common areas of the mommy makeover are the breasts, abdominal area, and vaginal rejuvenation. For the breast, it could be a breast augmentation, breast lift, or a combination procedure with lift and augmentation. With the abdominal area, a woman can have liposuction or, if they have loose skin, they can have liposuction along with a tummy tuck. The mommy makeover also includes some sort of vaginal rejuvenation procedure. Non-surgical procedures include the Femilift or Emsella. A surgical option would be vaginal tightening or a labiaplasty

When should women seek out this makeover?

Generally I would recommend for women to finish having their family. That means the patient is pretty much done with having kids, done with nursing, and not anticipating any other large changes in weight. I also recommend that women get closer to their pre-pregnancy weight. I understand that it may not be quite possible but the women should be at a stable weight prior to having a mommy makeover done. 

What benefits can be expected?

In the breast area you’re going to have beautiful breasts and that will give you great options for clothing. This is a nice enhancement for a woman who has lost a lot of volume and shape in her breasts from having done her duties to nurse and bring to life beautiful babies. 

In the abdominal area, it will give you back that shape of having a nicer abdomen. A lot of times when women get pregnant, their six pack or rectus muscles do separate, and when that happens it gives you a little bit of a pooch. This really decreases your overall core strength which means you may be more prone to having back issues. Also with the pelvic floor area or “vaginal area”, the baby’s head is pressed down in the pelvic floor and the weight of the baby causes the muscles of the area to overstretch and weaken. So having a type of procedure to strengthen that muscle and rejuvenate that area, like the Emsella and the Femilift, can improve overall strength of the vaginal area and help with urinary stress incontinence, or even improve your sexual satisfaction.

What does recovery look like?

If it’s non surgical, there is usually no downtime and you can resume back to regular activities. If it is a surgical procedure, then there is a minimum of 2 ½ weeks off of work so you’re resting at home. Full return to gym activities would be at 6 weeks.

How do you know if a surgeon is qualified to take on this package procedure?

The most important thing a surgeon should be evaluating is if the patient is a good candidate for the surgery and take into consideration of her health, making sure there’s no major medical issues, and the patient should be at a good weight. Generally when you do a combination procedure, I want to keep the procedures time limit of 5 hours or less. I don’t want to do extended procedures because a lot of these are out-patient surgeries. I want to make sure these procedures don’t take a long time and we’re not anticipating any blood loss issues. You really want to make sure that you’re going to a board certified plastic surgeon who is well versed and experienced doing all these procedures. The more your surgeon has done of these procedures the better your outcome will be. Look for a board certified plastic surgeon and make sure that they’re using a certified surgical facility. 

*Bonus Questions*

What is a day like at the office of Dr. Rajagopal?

It depends on whether it’s a surgical day or non-surgical day. On a surgical day, I’m usually in the operating room from morning to end of day doing procedures. Today I had two surgeries. One was a breast augmentation where we used slightly different sized implants on this young woman because her breast size were pre-operatively different in volume. The second was an abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) procedure on a patient who had a really great figure but lost some of that tightness of the abdomen from having had children. After the two surgeries, I will do finish up some paperwork in the office. 

If it is a day where I’m mostly in the office doing non-surgical procedures, I will see patients every 15 minutes or so. We are doing lots of fillers, botox, and laser procedures.

Do you have any plans for the end of summer?

I usually like to take at least a week off in the summer. The summertime is usually the busiest time for us so it’s hard to take time off, but I can’t see myself not having a vacation. This year, I have a trip planned with my youngest daughter Nina to go to Portugal. I’ve never been there so we are going to visit Lisbon and then go down to the south of Portugal to a region called the Algarve. I heard it’s quite beautiful so I’m looking forward to that.