There is never a shortage of trends when it comes to the aesthetics field, and often the ones that get the most buzz are those that seem too good to be true. One such example is the so-called “C-tuck,” which involves having a cesarean section immediately followed by a tummy tuck. At my Los Angeles practice, I have fielded questions about this combination, but I don’t recommend it (or perform it). In this blog post, I’ll explain why.
An OB-GYN Isn’t a Plastic Surgeon
A tummy tuck is a complicated procedure and plastic surgeons are uniquely qualified to perform this surgery. An obstetrician may trim some excess skin after the cesarean birth, and while they might refer to it as a mini c-tuck, it’s not really the same thing. A true tummy tuck repairs the separated abdominal muscles and removes an extensive span of skin, and you need a board-certified plastic surgeon to create truly rewarding results. Even if a plastic surgeon performs a C-tuck, the conditions aren’t optimal.
A woman’s abdomen immediately after delivering a baby via C-section is very swollen. The abdominal muscles and skin stretch during pregnancy and the uterus takes weeks or months to return to normal size after the delivery. The idea of a tummy tuck is to get an aesthetically pleasing result, so you feel comfortable with your body. Having the procedure combined with a C-section won’t produce the best possible outcome. Waiting several months after the delivery is the right time.
Recuperating after a C-section delivery is challenging enough. Coupling it with the additional surgery involved with a tummy tuck is not ideal. A tummy tuck involves tightening stomach muscles, limiting the mom’s movements and activities for longer than what’s required after a C-section. For example, patients aren’t able to do any significant lifting for about 6 weeks after a tummy tuck. That could pose some problems for the parent of a newborn.
Tummy tuck patients should be in good overall health before the surgery. After pregnancy and a C-section delivery, women are understandably exhausted. Their bodies are vulnerable and hormone levels are all over the place. They’re more likely to get blood clots and retain fluid and there’s also an elevated risk of infection when a surgeon operates on the uterus.
I believe the bottom line is that the risk of including a tummy tuck with a C-section delivery isn’t worth it for the patient. The best-case scenario is to schedule a tummy tuck after the body is fully healed and that the patient maintains a stable weight for at least a few months. When you’re ready for a tummy tuck, the results can be transformative as you can see in our gallery of before-and-after photos.
If you’re in the Los Angeles area and considering tummy tuck surgery, you can contact us using the online form to request a consultation. Or call us at (310) 300-1779 to schedule an appointment.