Choosing A Surgeon For MOM?

I'm in search of a surgeon for a mommy makeover. I find websites, view credentials as well as galleries. Its when I view the galleries that I find myself questioning some surgeons. I have reserved feelings towards those who perform tummy tucks on over weight patients whom are no where near a healthy weight. I some how think that these surgeons will not be realistic with me and my results. An input would be greatly appreciated. Thank you in advance. Info: 30 yrs old, 5"2, 109lbs, 2 children

Doctor Answers 17

How to choose a money makeover surgeon

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Thank you for your question.

I could give you the common answers such as speak to patients, look at pictures, do your research, but that is really just the beginning of the story.  I think ultimately you really have to like and respect the person you entrust to take care for you. 

I find in my own practice that sometimes something just clicks for both the patient and the plastic surgeon.  It's not just a one way relationship.  Usually, when the patients goals make sense to me I can guide them and give them a list of expectations about the goals that they are seeking.

I sometimes operate on patients who are indeed above their ideal weight, but I always try to give them honest expectations about what to expect.  I have told many patients over the years and I cannot make them rail thin, but I can often make them more streamlined.  The this is always tempered with judgment to be sure that surgery can be safely performed.

In this day of the Internet patients are more informed than ever before and I think this helps in decision-making.  If things don't make sense or sound out of the ordinary or you just don't get a good feeling move on. It's often good to seek more than one opinion.  I think it gives patients a comfort level and they hear the same thinking from different doctors.

So yes, do you diligence, look at pictures and talk to patients, but be sure you like this person as well.  Operating on a heavy or slender person is less important making sure that the plan that you and your surgeon layout makes sense.


Best wishes.


Washington DC Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 115 reviews

Choosing Plastic Surgeon for Mommy Makeover?

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It will be up to you to do your due diligence in the process of plastic surgeon selection. I would suggest starting with the American Society of Plastic Surgery and/or the Aesthetic Society of Plastic Surgery to obtain a list of well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons.

Then, I would suggest you visit a few surgeons whose practices  concentrate on aesthetic surgery. Ask  to see lots of examples of their work and preferably speak/see patients who have had similar procedures done.

Since you are contemplating major surgery ( associated with a significant recovery from the physical and emotional standpoints), a few words of advice may be helpful:

1. Make sure you are doing the procedure for the right reasons (for yourself)  and that you have realistic expectations.  Be aware that an improvement in the “problem area” may not translate to an overall improvement in your life   situation.  You are bound to be disappointed with results of the procedure if your motivation for doing the surgery is not internally driven.

2. Time your surgery carefully; generally, it is not a good idea to have surgery done during or immediately after a stressful period in life (for example divorce or death of a loved one). The additional stress of surgery will undoubtedly be  more challenging to deal with if a patient's emotional reserves our already exhausted. Remember, that an improvement in your physical appearance will not translate to an improvement in your life situation.

3. If possible speak to patients who have undergone similar procedures and query them about the toughest times of their recovery period. Any practical hints previous patients can provide may be very helpful.

4. Make sure you are aware of potential complications that may arise how to reach your surgeon if necessary.

5. Make sure you have a strong and patient support system (several people if possible) in place who have time/patience to take care of you. Arrange for professional nursing if any doubt exists regarding the availability and/or stamina  of your caretakers.

6. Be patient with the healing process, understanding that it will take several weeks to months to feel “normal” again. It may also take many months/year to see the end results of your surgery.

7. Be prepared to distract your mind with things of interest such as books, magazines, and movies.

8. Expect less of yourself; do not go back to work, school or chores too early and let others take care of you (for a change).

9. Pick your surgeon carefully (a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon) and trust in his/her advice. Keep in close communication with your surgeon and do not hesitate to communicate questions/concerns and the   emotional swings that you may experience.

10. Resume all medications that you were using preoperatively when cleared by your plastic surgeon and stop the use of narcotics and sedatives as soon as feasible after surgery.

11. Keep in mind the end results as you go through the tougher emotional times after your surgery.
I hope this helps.

Mommy Makeover patient should be at desired body weight

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You certainly sound like a good candidate for surgery.  In my practice, I do not operate on overweight people. It is too dangerous.  When a patient comes in to discuss surgery, and they are overweight, I tell them to lose some weight,then come back to see me.  With programs such as Weight Watchers, there is no reason why a patient who wants plastic surgery cannot lose weight first.  Also, a plastic surgeon should be board certified by the Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS). It's better to be safe than sorry. 

Robert E. Zaworski, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

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Select a Board Certified Surgeon for your Mommy Makeover

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The Mommy Makeover is a combination of procedures to bring a woman’s body back to the way she looked prior to pregnancy. Most commonly some variation of a #TummyTuck and #BreastSurgery are performed.  #MummyTummy is a term given to modified tummy tucks which can use liposuction and skin tightening with radiofrequency such Vanquish, Vela3, thermage, thermiRF and others.  The actual fat contouring can be done non-surgically as well with #UltraShape or Cool-Sculpting. Additional procedures can include liposuction, umbilical hernia repair.  The most common #breastprocedures include #mastopexy or #breastlift, #breastaugmentation, or #breastreduction.

Also, such #combined operations are often performed with our Gynecology colleagues. Tubal ligation is a common post pregnancy procedure which is done at the time of many of the surgeries included with Mommy Makeovers. Therefore, if you require a gynecologic operation or study (laparoscopy) and are considering a plastic surgery procedure, discuss these issues with your doctor. Combining these procedures decreases anesthetics, costs, and recovery time. .

Your procedures should always be performed by a #PlasticSurgeon who is board-certified and has a great deal of experience specializing in cosmetic #surgery. You will then greatly improve your chances of getting the result you desire, and, without the need for a revision surgery. It is suggested that you look at before and after photos of the surgeons actual patients, and read patient reviews. Gathering all of this information will help you make a well-informed decision.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Choosing a surgeon

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Thank you for posting your question. 

Choosing a surgeon who you trust to perform your operation can be a very personal decision. Ultimately, your procedure should benefit your areas of concern and minimize your overall risk. A great deal of evaluation goes into patient selection on the surgeons part and young, healthy, non obese patients with few additional risk factors have better outcomes overall. That being said, there are risks that come along with any operation and outcomes demonstrated on other patients are not necessarily translatable to every patient. I believe that choosing a well trained surgeon who you feel that you communicate well with and feel comfortable talking to is very very important. 

Rachel Streu, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Researching a surgeon for Mommy Makeover

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I applaud you for doing your homework.   I appreciate patients who do their research and take time to make the right decision.


I recommend that you consult with 3 board certified plastic surgeons that you narrow down based on internet research and discussion with previous patients and your other doctors.


I would review before and after photos of patients close in body type to you, and ensure you have a realistic understanding from your surgeon of what surgery can improve for you.


I wish you a safe recovery and amazing result!!!

Paul S. Gill, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 94 reviews

Will The Internet Help Me Find A Good Mommy Makeover Surgeon?

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The internet is an incredibly good tool to start you on your quest to find the appropriate plastic surgeon for your Mommy Makeover.  While I like your approach to the internet, it is merely a tool and not the complete answer.  One would expect plastic surgeons to show their best work in their galleries.  If you find the work less than appealing to you, then either the plastic surgeon does not know what looks good which is a red flag, or they don't have a lot of pictures to draw from which is also a red flag.  Cross check all the plastic surgeons that you like to be sure they are Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery.  This will eliminate a few of the good marketers who lack good training.  

Set up five consultations (any more will confuse you), then pick the top two based on clarity of thinking, confidence, quality of staff, and your own gut feelings.  The decision between #1 and #2 has to be on all the above criteria plus who would you trust to take care of you if things are less than perfect (which sometimes, unfortunately, they are).

The plastic surgeon who makes a cameo appearance during the consultation and leaves the discussion about the surgery to his or her people is someone I wouldn't personally trust.  

If you go through the rigorous decision making tree outlined above, you will no doubt have a wonderful outcome and a rejuvenated body and spirit. 



Finding a surgeon for a mommy makeover / Buscando un cirujano para cambio de imagen

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Finding the right surgeon for a life changing experience is not easy.  You definitely need to consult board certified plastic surgeons.  Do not just go see one, even if they charge for the consult.  Because the more information you get the better the decision you will reach.  Obviously ask to see there results.  Ask to talk to their previous patients as well.  Check out the facility they will use for the procedure.  Finally you must feel comfortable with the doctor and his staff because you are partners in this process.


Good luck with your surgery!




Anire Okpaku MD


Encontrar al cirujano indicado para una experiencia de cambio de vida no es facil. Usted definitivamente debe de consultarse con cirujanos certificados. No vea a uno solo aun que le cobren por la consulta. Mientras mas informaciones usted tenga, mejor para llegar a una decision. Obviamente pida ver resultados, hable con otros pacientes. Conozca donde hacen la cirugia y finalmente deve de sentirse segura con el doctor y su personal ya ustedes seran un equipo en este proceso.


Suerte en su cirugia!




Anire Okpaku MD

Anire Okpaku, MD FACS
Miami Plastic Surgeon

Choosing a plastic surgeon

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 You are in the right forum to ask that question. I will advise you to check the American Society of PLastic Surgery website for a list of plastic surgeons in your area. Check their websites, look at photo, get consultation and you can ask to talk to patients who had the procedure. And then you can make your decision. 

Moneer Jaibaji, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon

Choosing a Mommy Makeover Surgeon

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Thank you for your question.  Your selection of a well-respected, experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon is probably going to have the most significant impact on the result of your surgery, so you are very wise to do your homework. In addition, for this particular procedure your plastic surgeon should have several different body contouring options available to you and should be able to address your own specific goals for a mommy makeover.  Trust and open communication are the cornerstones of any doctor/patient relationship.  This is a big procedure, so I recommend you talk to several different board certified plastic surgeons in your area and find one that you are most comfortable with. 

Good luck to you. 

Steven L. Ringler, MD, FACS
Grand Rapids Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.