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Does having a baby after laser lipo cause problems with loose skin that I wouldn't be able to tighten back up?

Q:

I an 40 years old and a size 0 to 2.  I have fat around my waist that I can't get rid of with exercise.  If I were to have laser lipo, then another child, what would this do to my skin afterwards?  If I exercise enough to lose most of my "gut," I am so skinny everywhere else that I look sick.  Even then, I still have a small gut.  Would I end up with loose excess skin?

A:

While you can have LASER liposuction and benefit from it with removal of the unwanted fat and some skin tightening, depending on your timing, you may wish to wait until after your next pregnancy

If you are considering having another child in the next year or two, it may be better to wait until after that pregnancy to have liposuction on your abdomen

With pregnancy you will undoubtedly stretch out your skin, gain weight, and put on some "baby fat" on your abdomen, potentially bringing you back to the situation you had before liposuction.  So, in a sense, you may have achieved only a short-term benefit for the pre-pregnancy liposuction.

See the liposuction sections in www.drvalauri.com and www.MommyMakeoverSite.com for more information.

 

Fredrick A. Valauri, M.D. F.A.C.S.M.D., F.A.C.S.
New York, NY

A:

There is a good chance that you will end up with a larger "gut" after having a baby.  While it is not totally predictable, having children is one of the top reasons women seek cosmetic surgery of the tummy to remove extra skin and tighten tummy muscles.  The "small gut" you have may very well mean you already have some muscle weakness underneath your skin.  Have a board certified plastic surgeon in your area examine you and discuss your questions with him/her.

Good Luck.

Aldo Guerra, M.D.
Scottsdale, AZ

A:

Liposuction removes fat - do not think of it as a skin-tightening procedure.  Even the laser liposuction does not provide a consistent skin tightening effect.  Patients will have a variable degree of skin tightening, subtle, related more to inherent skin elasticity versus technique used.  Each pregnancy with associated weight gain stretches the skin, and decreases elasticity.  Elasticity also decreases with increasing age.  So there is always a chance of skin looseness as your body changes with time.  Some patients get lucky and the skin looseness is not apparent most of the time, perhaps becoming more visible in the sitting or bending over position.  Usually results of liposuction hold up fairly well if your body snaps back to your pre-pregnancy weight, and you are in good shape, which it sounds like you are.  So if you are a good candidate for the procedure now, I would go ahead with it.  You never know what the future may bring, and worse case scenario, if you end up with skin excess after your next pregnancy, a skin-tightening procedure, such as a mini or full abdominoplasty, can always be performed.

A:

If you are planning to have another child in the near future, I would recommend waiting until afterwards to consider any surgical corrections of any sort.

Laser lipo, by the way, only does a very tiny amount of skin tightening.  It's better to think of it as just another form of liposuction - which just removes fat, but doesn't tighten skin or muscles.

Often, patients who have had several children may do better with some form of tummy tuck ...a consultation in person with a plastic surgeon would help you sort this out.

All the best,

Thomas G. S. Fiala, M.D.M.D., F.R.C.S., F.A.C.S. - View Other Answers by this Doctor
Altamonte Springs, FL

A:

If you think you are going to become pregnant in the near future I would hold off on the investment of liposuction. If you are not planning on becoming pregnant soon, go ahead and enjoy the results of your liposuction. In general, the better shape a woman is in before pregnancy, the better they will look after childbirth.

A:

You are not alone.  I have had several patients who have said that their face looks too hollow if they lose enough weight to have a firm tummy.  Other patients have said that their breasts become too small if they lose weight to get their tummy or thighs in shape. 

So, liposuction in the tummy is probably a very good choice for you.  Your skin will likely be in better shape if in between babies it has had a chance to "recover" and get back into as firm a location as possible.  In other words, you are probably off to a better head-start with the next baby if your skin has retracted by doing lipo in the involved area.

 

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