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Postpregnancy treatment

Information in spanish

Once the process of pregnancy has finished, many women find obvious changes in their bodies. Being mother is one of the most wonderful experiences a woman can have. However, pregnancy leaves marks on woman´s body difficult to change with exercise or alternative therapies.

Evident changes after pregnancy


Skin changes: stretch marks

During pregnancy, the elastic walls of the uterus expand to hold the developing baby. As the uterus grows, the abdominal tissues enlarge and stretch marks may appear. Stretch marks result when the skin expands beyond its limits, which causes the connective tissue to break down. Stretch marks reveal and become evident in the epidermis. A woman may observe that initially stretch marks appear as lines that have a pink color, and then they turn white. The most common area affected is the abdomen, but they may also appear in hips, buttocks, thighs, arms, back and breasts.

Physical changes: weight and skin laxity

Besides the stretch marks, women frequently present skin laxity after pregnancy, especially in the abdomen area. Many changes occur during pregnancy, however excess skin, laxity and weight gain are major cause of concern for women.

For many women, hormonal changes associated with pregnancy may cause significant weight gain. The ideal amount of weight gain by the end of pregnancy should be about 10-11 kg., but the average is 10, 5-15 kg for most women. Women who had gained less than 9 kg weight during pregnancy, have an increased risk for delivering babies with low birth weight. For this reason, women should not restrict diet during pregnancy. For those women who gained more than 15 kg, weight loss after pregnancy can be slow and may need treatment. Different factors, such as pre-pregnancy weight (which woman has when gets pregnant); water retention, and diet, (besides the baby´s weight) may affect the woman´s weight after pregnancy.

During pregnancy, some women develop fat deposits in different parts of the body such as hips, buttocks, abdomen and waist. Abdominal muscle separation and abdominal skin laxity are very frequent conditions in women who have had more than one baby. These symptoms, -stretch marks, excess weight gain, and fat deposits-, may become a very problematic situation for many women.

In the same manner, throughout pregnancy breasts have prepared for lactation. After delivery, the frequent suction from baby stimulates mother´s breasts to produce milk. Some women feel more attractive during this stage, especially those women with small breasts, as they feel their breasts become firmer and fuller. However, some women feel uncomfortable with the volume of their breasts during lactation. Because of all the changes in maternity and after breastfeeding, the breasts lose volume, shape and firmness, resulting in persisting laxity. Then the stretch marks developed during pregnancy become more evident. According to recent studies, changes in woman´s breasts after pregnancy are associated to sudden changes in weight, age and number of pregnancies, and not to breastfeeding.

All women should gain weight during pregnancy, even those who were overweight before pregnancy. Usually, medical care for the mother during pregnancy involves a balanced diet and weight control. Even so, a significant weight gain is expected, which can be treated after pregnancy.

After pregnancy, many women experience frustration before the mirror, but they should know that breastfeeding may help them lose the extra weight they gained as well as get into shape. This is why milk production consumes calories from fat deposits in body. Therefore, it would be wrong to accelerate a treatment, before giving body enough time to adjust to normal conditions again.

The mother should consider a reasonable time before beginning any treatment. It is possible the hormonal conditions persist for some time, and the uterus suffers a process called involution to return to its normal position. It is advisable to wait the organism to get back to normality.

Which surgical treatments are the most commonly performed after pregnancy?

The most commonly procedures performed after pregnancy are aimed to improve the appearance and position of breasts and abdomen. Usually, the woman who seeks a surgical treatment presents skin laxity in breasts and abdomen and some degree of overweight.

What is breast lift or mastopexy?

Breast lift, also called mastopexy, is a surgical procedure which is used to lift sagging breasts (ptosis) that have lost their firmness. The word “mastopexy” means fixation of a pendulous breast, but in mastopexy tissues are only repositioned. Breast lift can be performed in healthy women of any age. This procedure is not advisable for women who are pregnant, girls that have not yet completed their growth or women who are in the post-partum period. It is important to understand that a fertile woman who has had a mastopexy and after some time gets pregnant, she might require a new surgery to reshape breasts. If you have considered losing weight, it is better to do it before having the breast lift.



What is the tummy tuck?

Abdominoplasty or tummy tuck is a major surgical procedure aimed to change the shape of the lower and middle abdomen, trunk and waist, and to tense the muscles and fascia of the abdominal wall. Abdominoplasty is usually recommended to patients with sagging abdominal skin.

Your consultation for post-pregnancy treatment

During this consultation, please feel free to express what you want to change in your new condition. Dr. Nieto, as woman and as mother may understand your concerns and your feelings. Please speak candidly about your goals and expectations about the surgery. Dr. Nieto will evaluate your physical condition and may take measurements and photos. After a careful physical examination, she may diagnose and determine the appropriate treatment. A serious physician will recommend waiting until your complete recovery from pregnancy and after breastfeeding, in such a way that you can be as healthy as possible before undergoing a surgical treatment.

Which surgical treatments are the most commonly performed after pregnancy?

The most commonly procedures performed after pregnancy are aimed to improve the appearance and position of breasts and abdomen. Usually, the woman who seeks a surgical treatment presents skin laxity in breasts and abdomen and some degree of overweight. The surgeon will determine the appropriate treatment. The most popular treatments are:

1. Mastopexy – Breast Lift
What is breast lift or mastopexy?

Breast lift, also called mastopexy, is a surgical procedure which is used to lift sagging breasts (ptosis) that have lost their firmness. The word “mastopexy” means fixation of a pendulous breast, but in mastopexy tissues are only repositioned. Breast lift can be performed in healthy women of any age. This procedure is not advisable for women who are pregnant, girls that have not yet completed their growth or women who are in the post-partum period. It is important to understand that a fertile woman who has had a mastopexy and after some time gets pregnant, she might require a new surgery to reshape breasts. If you have considered losing weight, it is better to do it before having the breast lift.

2. TUMMY TUCK
A firm and flat abdomen is a characteristic of beauty. However, this part of the body between the thorax and the pelvis is frequently affected by different factors such as hormonal imbalance, pregnancy, unhealthy diet, or weight gain. Muscle elasticity and tone may decrease due to frequent fluctuations in weight. Restore these characteristics of the abdomen can become a frustrated feeling. For these patients who have tried in vain to improve their abdominal muscles, the tummy tuck may be the answer.

What is the tummy tuck?
Abdominoplasty or tummy tuck is a major surgical procedure aimed to change the shape of the lower and middle abdomen, trunk and waist, and to tense the muscles and fascia of the abdominal wall. Abdominoplasty is usually recommended to patients with sagging abdominal skin.

Post-Pregnancy Treatment


Some recommendations before the post-pregnancy treatment

  • In this moment, you should care only for yourself and the new baby.

  • Do not rush to lose weight after pregnancy. Remember that your body has the ability to return to normality in a gradual and healthy manner

  • Maintain a healthy and balanced diet to face breastfeeding and this challenging stage of your life.

  • Maintain a healthy and well-balanced diet so you can meet breastfeeding and this challenging experience of being mother.

  • Breastfeeding will help you to lose weight. You can breastfeed and lose weight at the same time.

  • During pregnancy your body goes through huge changes, therefore it is natural to feel a bit of anxiety. But remember you have just brought a wonderful new person into your life. This moment is part of your healing process and all women are able to recover and return to their normal activities.

  • Care for yourself. You must be in good health if you want to undergo a post-pregnancy treatment.

  • Avoid taking any weight-loss medications. Such products may risk your health or interfere with a subsequent treatment.

  • Some products that are promoted as “healthy” or “natural” may produce loss of appetite. They are really anorexiants, medications of restricted use because they may produce alterations in the nervous system. These alterations along with the anxiety of the new mother may accentuate this condition which may lead to anxiety. Take into account that everything you consume, including medications, pass into the mother´s milk. If you are breastfeeding, this would be risky for the baby.

  • If your concern about overweight after pregnancy causes you anxiety, please inform you physician. He/she may recommend a nutritional or surgical treatment for your particular case in the appropriate moment




Your consultation for post-pregnancy treatment

During this consultation, please feel free to express what you want to change in your new condition. Dr. Nieto, as woman and as mother may understand your concerns and your feelings. Please speak candidly about your goals and expectations about the surgery. Dr. Nieto will evaluate your physical condition and may take measurements and photos. After a careful physical examination, she may diagnose and determine the appropriate treatment. A serious physician will recommend waiting until your complete recovery from pregnancy and after breastfeeding, in such a way that you can be as healthy as possible before undergoing a surgical treatment.


Post-Pregnancy Treatment