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Pamela Prindle Fierro

Parent's Poll: Tummy Tuck After Twins?

By September 12, 2011

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There's no denying that a multiple pregnancy takes a toll on a mother's body. The physical demands of growing more than one baby means that a body must expand larger, stretch further and work harder. Even after the babies are born, the effects linger on. The legacy of stretch marks, sagging breasts and shriveled excess skin remains long after the babies leave the womb. This series of pictures from The Shape of a Mother depicts the expanding midsection of a triplet pregnancy from six to thirty-six weeks, and also includes some pictures of the mother's abdomen at three months postpartum. The pictures can be startling, clearly showing how a woman's body accommodates a multiple pregnancy, as well as the ravages -- and benefits! -- that are left once pregnancy concludes.

What do you think? Are the physical effects a badge of honor? Or something to be erased and amended? Cosmetic surgery can correct some of the impacts of pregnancy, such as removing excess skin and fat, flattening the abdomen, improving stretch marks and tightening the muscles of abdominal wall. Mothers of multiples, whose bodies stretch and distend more than most, may have a permanent separation of their abdominal muscles that can only be corrected by surgery.

It's a difficult decision. In some cases, insurance may cover a portion of the cost for such a procedure, but most mothers must pay thousands of dollars out of pocket. This blog post at Howdoyoudoit.com describes a mom's initial consultation with a plastic surgereon, who estimated that her corrective procedure would run about $14,000. Plenty of women would rather live with their "twin skin" stomachs rather than cough up that amount of cash. And the surgery takes an emotional toll as well, putting a mom out of commission during recovery and taking time away from her family and work. A mom of quads describes her mixed feelings about the decision to undergo surgery at 4tunate.net.

What's your feeling about plastic surgery for mothers of multiples? Is it something you would pursue, or something you would avoid? Share your thoughts by voting in this week's Parent's Poll.

September 22, 2011 at 12:04 am
(1) Mommy2twingles says:

Wow! I was pretty surprised at the poll results…I’m usually in the majority, but not on this one. I guess that if I REALLY had the money for a tummy tuck, I might do it, but it’s NOT because of having twins. I’ve always had a belly bump on my lower abdomen, and bigish thighs, but it goes along with my pear shape. Maybe since my fist child was over 10 lbs, my body was able to carry the 6 lb 1 oz and 6 lb 11oz twins just fine? The only difference I noticed since the twins (who are 5 now) is the small bump now on my upper abs. I looked at the photo of the mom with triplets, and I guess if my tummy looked like that, I’d want to fix it – and maybe if this poll came out right after I had the twins, I might have answered differently. Right now, I’ll take my stretch marks and belly, but if I ever came into that kind of money, and didn’t have a much better reason to spend it, I might be willing to take the risk – but it’s a surgical procedure that I wouldn’t take lightly.

September 22, 2011 at 12:07 am
(2) Mommy2twingles says:

…”first” child, not fist, ;-) (sigh)

April 21, 2012 at 10:50 pm
(3) Mother of five says:

I had a tummy tuck to get rid of my twin skin. The results with clothes on is great. I have hips again and don’t look four months pregnant anymore, but I think I thought I would look 20. Actually look slightly disfigured. A lot of stretch marks were removed but the ones over my navel are now under it. My surgeon said my abdominals were 4 inches apart before he sewed them back together. I wish I had dealt with my low self esteem first. The plastic surgeon also screwed up my body with lipo that I did not need I guess to make him feel better. Left me with lipo dimples. It also leaves your abdomen numb below the navel. Thought you might want to know.

November 28, 2012 at 6:57 pm
(4) Mika says:

I was pregnant with triplets when I miscarried one of them and ended up with twins 25 years ago. I have been working on reducing the extra skin since they were 6 weeks old (I had a C section and needed the recovery time). There will always be the “flap” hanging there and I want it gone because I don’t feel good about myself this way. I wish medicare would cover it, bu am going to do it either way.
I was 124 lbs before the twins (they were my third pregnancy) and went back down to that after about 3 months postnatally. There is not a lot more I can do at this point. I just want to feel good again.

May 12, 2013 at 10:01 am
(5) mom of four says:

My third pregnancy I gained 60 pounds and gave birth to two 21 inch 7 and a half pound boys. Needless to say, I was stretched beyond my earlier pregnancies. Contrary to reports, you CAN correct the resulting separation without surgery. I used the Tupler method to bring the separation together and strengthen the tissue and as far as a flat stomach the result is amazing. However, the extra skin and subcutaneous fat remain and are a bummer. I would like them gone and hope there is a surgeon who might not need to touch the muscle. I just want the skin gone. And a normal belly button. I wish it did not bother me. But I guess I have more vanity in me than I thought. or more self esteem issues. I also want my face to look 5 years younger! Aging is definitely a journey!!

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