Am I Too Old for Post-Pregnancy Body Contouring Surgery?


From enlarged or deflated breasts to separated abdominal muscles and fat accumulation, the female body can go through many changes during and after pregnancy.

Post-pregnancy body contouring combines different treatments to address multiple areas of the body that have been affected by pregnancy or childbirth. Sydney Specialist Plastic Surgeon Dr Ellis Choy personalises each procedure according to the individual needs and body frame of each patient.

There is no strict limit on when you can have post-pregnancy body contouring surgery, so long as you’re in good overall health and are done having children. Regardless of your stage of life, there’s no right or wrong age to undergo post-pregnancy body contouring if you decide it is the right procedure for you.

What Is Post-Pregnancy Body Contouring?

Post-pregnancy body contouring is a comprehensive surgical treatment that combines different procedures to address the physical effects of pregnancy and childbirth. This surgery is performed to reduce bodily discomfort, address aesthetic preferences and in some cases, treat medical concerns such as diastasis recti, back pain or urinary incontinence.

What’s Involved in Post-Pregnancy Body Contouring?

While the surgical plan will vary for each patient, the most common areas of treatment include the tummy (abdomen) and breasts.

This treatment process begins with your in-person consultation, which is crucial for determining a suitable approach and techniques. At Dr Choy’s Sydney and Coffs Harbour clinics, he will take the time to understand your needs, primary concerns and reasons for treatment before designing a surgical plan.

Tightening the Abdomen

Tummy tucks (abdominoplasty) are performed to remove loose skin and reshape the abdomen. During pregnancy, the abdominal muscles separate to accommodate the growth of your child, which may alter the contour of your body. A tummy tuck helps to remove excess skin, re-tighten loose muscles and reshape the area. The cosmetic and functional benefits of a tummy tuck may include:

  • Creates a flatter, firmer abdomen
  • Treats diastasis recti (separated abdominal muscles)
  • Reduces back pain
  • Improves urinary incontinence

Reshaping the Breast

The breasts undergo significant changes during pregnancy and breastfeeding. This may lead to elongated breasts or excess fatty tissue, among other changes. Breast procedures are highly individualised for each patient.

A breast lift (or mastopexy) serves to reduce stretched skin and raise the breasts to a more elevated position on the chest wall. Depending on your current quantity and quality of tissue and the look you wish to achieve, this procedure can be performed with your own breast tissue, fat from your own body or breast implants for a fuller and more rounded contour.

Breast augmentation with implants is one of the most common procedures among post-pregnancy women. Since implants range in size, shape and material, the surgery can be tailored to your unique needs. An augmentation can also be performed with fat grafting for patients looking for a subtler enhancement.

Women with overly large breasts can experience physical discomfort and activity limitations. Breast reduction surgery as part of post-pregnancy body contouring serves to remove excess tissue and reshape the area for smaller, lighter breasts.

The benefits of undergoing a breast reshaping procedure may include:

  • Removes excess fat and skin
  • Alleviates back pain
  • Improves comfort and physical ability
  • Balances body proportions

Reducing the Labia

Your most intimate area can also undergo significant change over time and during childbirth. If the labia tear and stretch, it can lead to physical discomfort and skin irritation that can affect your quality of life. Labiaplasty aims to address these concerns by removing excess skin so the labia minora or ‘inner lips’ to tuck into the labia majora. The benefits of labiaplasty may include:

  • Treats irritation and hygiene issues (due to excess skin and trapping of moisture)
  • Improves comfort during exercise, athletic performance and regular activity

Candidates for Post-Pregnancy Body Contouring

Post-pregnancy body contouring is a complex procedure. While there is no set age when it is appropriate undergo this surgery, the most important factor to consider is your health and suitability to treatment. Candidates should be stabilised in a healthy weight range and should be at least six months out of childbirth and breastfeeding, as the body is still in recovery and requires time to revive itself.

After six months, pregnancy hormones will have subsided, and the stretching around your body will most likely have settled and healed, which means that the tissue will hold together more efficiently if you undergo the procedure. Post-pregnancy body contouring may then be a suitable option for you.

Post-Pregnancy Body Contouring by Dr Ellis Choy

Dr Ellis Choy is passionate about helping mums with their aesthetic and functional needs. As one of Australia’s plastic, aesthetic and reconstructive surgeons, Dr Choy has helped many women decide whether a post-pregnancy body contouring procedure is right for them. If you are ready to learn more, call Dr Ellis Choy’s practice on (02) 8692 9388 or complete our online enquiry form.