As advanced maternal age and bariatric procedures have become more common, the number of women seeking pregnancy after having abdominoplasty has increased. This has traditionally been a relative contraindication and counselled against, though there are little data in the literature regarding the potential effects to mother and baby.
A systematic review of Medline and Embase databases was performed to identify cases of pregnancy occurring after abdominoplasty. Data were extracted and analysed for presentation.
17 studies encompassing 237 patients met inclusion. Mean age was 33.08 years. Mean parity prior to first pregnancy after abdominoplasty 2.13. Previous bariatric surgery was reported in 31.75%. Body contouring procedure was abdominoplasty (94.51%), body lift (3.80%) and other (1.69%). Rectus plication was performed in 89.74%, where reported. Mean time between abdominoplasty and pregnancy was 3.75 years. Method of delivery was Caesarean section in 43.63%, and vaginal delivery in 56.37%. Mean gestational age at delivery was 38.90 weeks. Preterm delivery (<37 weeks) was reported in 9.85%, and low birthweight (<2500 g) was reported in 7.22%. Diagnoses or complications were documented in 14 studies (136 patients). These were grouped as foetal/neonatal (n = 21), maternal (n = 104) or abdominal wall/aesthetic (n = 96); and are detailed within. There were no neonatal or maternal mortalities in any study. A lower-than-expected spinal anaesthetic block was stated in 3 cases. Mean follow-up was 8.5 months.
Pregnancy should not be contraindicated after abdominoplasty. The data presented allow clinicians to have an evidence-based discussion and provide information for shared decision-making.
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Karunaratne, Y.G., Romeo, P.B., Willis, M. et al. The Safety and Effects of Pregnancy after Abdominoplasty: A Systematic Review of the Literature. Aesth Plast Surg 47, 1472–1479 (2023). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00266-023-03423-x