Ready to Have my Tummy Tucked :-) I'm Still Looking for a Great Surgeon. Atlanta, GA

Hi, I'm new to Real Self :-) I live in the Atlanta...

Hi, I'm new to Real Self :-) I live in the Atlanta Area. I am 32, married with four kids and I am sooo ready to have a FLAT stomach. Honestly I don't remember ever having a flat stomach...I always had what they call "baby fat". After giving birth to my third child my doctor advised me that my abdominal muscles were separated. I end up having another child and it only got worse. I always been around 145 after college and 160 was my highest weight after my last baby (he's one). I was very interested in having my tummy tuck done last year around November. I even went to two consultations..one with Dr. Hedden in Alabama and one with Dr. Boutte in Lilburn. Dr. Hedden is located in Birmingham Alabama, and he performed lipo and a breast implants on a friend of mine. He was really nice, the wait time was long, but the price was awesome. I went to Dr. Boutte, she was nice, however I just didn't feel totally comfortable. So I was up in the air. In the meantime, my primary care physician did an EKG on me and advised I might have an enlarged heart and scheduled me to see a Cardiologist. I went to see the cardiologist in December 2013 and did a stress test and a echocardiogram, who advised me I was low risk and okay to have surgery without any complications. I know this is a Loooonnnnggg story but afterwards I kind of got scared about the whole being put to sleep during surgery and decided I would try to exercise. Needless to say...That didn't work...I lost 20 pounds..so now I am 140..however I still have a stomach. It really took the cake when my Co-worker asked me when I am due :-( I was so embarrassed. So I asked my Gyn doctor...how can I pull my muscles back together...she simply said "A tummy tuck". So here I am...it's been a long time coming but I am soooo ready. I can't wait to be able to walk in the store and pick out an outfit and now worry about it how it's going to fit or if my stomach is going to show. Also I can't wait to wear a Bikini...I have Never wore a bikini before...only wishful thinking. So I am planning on having my surgery either the end of August or around the 1st week in September. I've been on real self lately (I love it) looking at different doctors. I found Dr. Lisa DiFrancesco and I've seen a couple pic's of her work. I scheduled an appointment for Tuesday to have a consult with her. I also seen another doctor in Columbus...Dr. Thomas Cochran..he had really good reviews. There is also another doctor in his practice Dr. Pagadala..who has good reviews also. So now I am stuck I don't know who to have a consultation with...or I wonder if it is possible for me have a consultation with them both. I plan on going down to Columbus on Tuesday morning for a consult. Has any ladies had surgery performed by any of these doctors..or can anyone provide me some recommendations. I just want to find a great doctor who can produce some great results for a great price...I'm looking to have a tummy tuck done, lipo of the flanks and I'm really considering a breast lift. I'm Super Excited but I am still nervous at the same time.

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Perfect, I am glad to hear you are doing your research so well.  Finding the perfect doctor for you is so important.  You have done a great job with the weight loss and it's now time to finish your journey.  Nobody will ever again ask you when you are "Due".  

Keep us up to date on how this next consult turns out.
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My Before Pictures

Just wanted to post some before pictures :-)

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Thanks!! I will def keep everyone informed :-)

Found a New Doctor via Real Self

I also found a new doctor in the area.. Dr. Song..I called for a consult today..however the earliest consultation is in September...I really wanted to plan my surgery by then :-( The good thing is he is highly qualified..so it may be worth the wait...I'll see...I go to two consults tomorrow. Dr. Thomas Coochran in Columbus and Dr. Lisa DiFrancesco.

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Please take your time and go on as many consultations...Do not be in a rush. I was in a rush because I wanted to get it done before my kids went back to school & I thought I could enjoy the rest of my summer with a flat stomach.. Smh I doubt I will be showing off my tummy this summer bcuz I'm still swollen.. I only went to 3 consultations but I had booked with many more but I started to have car trouble and that delayed my process.. So I went with who I thought made me feel comfortable & who I thought could get me flat & the best post op care.. I do not want to regret my decisions but I do not plan on rating my surgeon & results until at least 3-6 months.. You are doing the right thing by looking into more PS.. Good luck :)
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Thank You so much...I hope everything is going great with you. I know it's a process so just hang in there. You're right I'm going to take my time and go see different PS..I went to one today with Dr. Hedden. This was my second consult with him and im still happy...only thing im still worried about is location. His office is in Birmingham...which is three hours away. Still going to two more doctors tomorrow.

Consult Today

I went on consult today with Dr. Hedden in Alabama. This was my second consult with him, my 1st was last year. I really like The PS. I'm not going to lie...I do feel this PS consultation was a little rush, although I do know he knew this was my second consult. But the nurse was really nice...she took time and answered all of my questions..which I really appreciated. It really put my mind at ease about the surgery process..,also his cash price is really good!! So I'm really feeling good about this PS..,the only bad part would be the drive to Alabama..but we can do it...we would spend the night in Alabama. We'll I have two more consults tomorrow...I'll post an update tomorrow. :-)

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Dr hedden is good. A Coworker had her tummy tuck surgery done by him and he did a very good job no complaints from her.. I went to him about my breast but... alabama is not far.
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Ok Great..so I'm glad to know you know someone that actually had a tummy tuck done by him...I've been looking at pictures but you know it's so much better to see someone in person. I was referred to him last year by a friend of mine...He did her breast, lipo of her stomach and fat transfer to her butt....Let's just say her shape is Amazing :-) but she doesn't have any kids...so she didn't need a tummy tuck. Your friend...did Dr Hedden also do lipo of her flanks? I know he offers the tummy tuck with or without Lipo of the flanks.
If its worth it ..I wouldn't mind going to a PS for a TT that is not more than 4 hours away. Make sure you ask them how would they schedule your post op visits.. and take that into consideration. But it is nice being in your hometown right after surgery. I plan to get my boobs done next year & I might travel but that PS have to work magic though lol.. keep us updated :)

20 More Days & The Countdown Begins!!

So I guess I need to start a list of everything I'm going to need. I have my Pre Op scheduled for Monday. They're doing it over the phone since I'm three hours away. I'm going to my doctor to get my blood work done. I'm going to be busy working up to the day before surgery. Any suggestions on Much Needed items. I'm going to start a list and look thru different reviews. :-)

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Here is a list of the things I've gotten. I may miss one or two so attaching a picture. VitaMedica Recovery Support Program. (Has a Morning formula, Evening formula, and Bromelain with Quercetin) Vitamedica's Arnica Montana Neosporin 4 x 4 Gauze squares Skintegrity Wound Cleanser Skintegrity Hydrogel Refresh Optive Sensative for LASIK dryness Ear plugs Marbles of varying sizes Cloth medical tape Ocean complete sinus rinse (to help my outdoor allergies) also have a pulsating sinus cleanser Tegaderm Merana postoperative comfort (goes to knees has suspenders) Scar FX belt Scar FX Sheet Biocorneum Trameel Arnicare Gel Bio freeze Gas X Miralax Oraser Body Emulsion Two eye pillows that can be chilled one can be heated Pads; and I ordered some depends silhouette since I don't have to worry about blood hurting them. Pads are for after my incision closes till I can use my MeLuna cup. Ended up using some pads to cover weeping fluid and pad me against clothing rubbing on the incision.
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Best of luck to you .... You will not regret it.
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Thank You sooo much..Loved reading your profile....You look Awesome!!

Tomorrow is Surgery DaY!! :-)

I must admit I'm really excited and looking forward to the outcome. I was a little nervous at first but I'm feeling a lot better. Thank You to all the ladies for the advice and encouraging words. I've prayed about it and I know I'm going to be Good!! I've even prepared myself mentally for the pain. The nurse called me today and said the arrival time for tomorrow is 1 pm...So we're going to leave in the morning around 7 am and head to Alabama. Ladies pray for me Please!! I'll keep everyone updated with the progress. :-)

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I know Dr. Hedden, did a great job on you. I can't wait to see your new flat stomach
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How are you doing/feeling?
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On the way to have the surgery now..Scheduled for 10 am. :-)

It's The Day!!

On the way the Dr. Office...Surgery is scheduled at @10..I'm ready!! :-)

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Hope you're doing awesome! We did it!!
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Best wishes ... Thanks for sharing
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I Did It!!

I had my surgery earlier...everything went well. I'm in pain, but it's not unbearable...I've been taking my pain pill's every four hours...drinking a lot of fluids and trying to walk around quite a bit. Don't want no blood clots. I Also have on my compression socks. Thankful to have a lot of help...my mom, sis, and hubby is here :-) Just checking in to let everyone know everything is Good... will update tomorrow...o yea I haven't seen my stomach yet...haven't took off the binder. My throat is sore a little but when I woke up I. The recovery room..I didn't realize I already had it done...lol..ttyl :-)

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Congrats! Drinks lots of water! :) happy healing! !
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Thanks I am drinking a lot of water and Gatorade...and it has me getting up every hour going to the restroom. ..so thats good.
Dont drink too much gatorade bc it has a lot of sodium....it's still good for the electrolytes! Glad u r feeling good. Pics when u can!! :) yes walking like that every hr. On the first few days is great!

The day after

Im feeling okay..just really Sore....here are some pics that I took when the doctor took the binder off.. :-)

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Watch out now!!!
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Lol :-) I keep joking ..,telling my friends I'm wearing belly shirts during the winter ...lol
You look great! !! How are you feeling?
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Today was great day!!

To be honest it didn't start off too good. I felt really bloated because I had not had a BM in five days :-( I refused to eat anything else. It's been four days after the surgery and I only took pain pills the first two days. I just did anticipate being so constipated. But I literally took three different laxatives..yes I was Desperate...I took magnesium citrate, Miralax and milk of mag...not yo mention I was taking stool softener daily...it was bad..but the good news was they all work...bad news was they worked all at once. But overall I felt 100% better. I thought my stomach was super swollen however once I used it...it became really flat. I was in awe...I just kept looking in the mirror. Then I put my binder back on..it feels really weird without it. There is one spot on my stomach which is completely numb..right under my belly button. The only pain I've had is my back...other than that...as long as I don't laugh or cough I'm okay. Hopefully I can take some more pics to post tomorrow. Can't wait until the swelling goes away for good. I have a dr appt scheduled for Friday and he's going to be taking my drain out. Ttyl ladies...thanks for all the advice and all the words of encouragement ...it means a lot!! ;-)

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So glad you are doing better. I can relate to not having a BM. I was so uncomfortable but the relief afterwards was golden. I had a TT and Smart Lipo to my flanks the week before your surgery. I am now 3 weeks Post Op. My stomach is tight and I still experience the numbness but everyday is a day closer to normalcy. Just take it easy for the first two weeks. Then add activities slowly. You don't want to make your healing process longer than necessary. Happy healing!
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Thank You..and thank you for reminding me that there is light at the end of the tunnel...or better yet...everyday is a little better..because I know you still progressing also. I read your profile...its great to hear that you are happy with your progression...I actually did a consult with your doctor but I didn't get to meet her at my consultation..I was only able to see the nurse..so I backed out. Your incision looks like its healing well.I haven't been able to see mines yet..I go back to my doctor on Friday so maybe I will see it then. Well happy healing to you..and I am taking your advice about taking it easy...my back is hurting really bad so im just going to rest the whole day and get up to walk every few hours...Thanks
You'll be fine. I think once you actually see the scar and have the ability to really see your full abs you'll be pleased. My back still hurts too. My husband has been massaging it at night which actually eases the soreness. You are very welcomed. Keep posting so we can see your progress.

I took some pics today:-)

Today has been good. I actually woke up pretty flat. However I didn't sleep well last night, im starting to have a lot more back and incision pain. Its funny because I realized that I didn't take my Arnica tablets yesterday...so that may have something to do with it. The Arnica tablets are supposed to help with muscle soreness. I am taking Bromelian capsules....which is supposed to help with swelling. So overall I'm feeling great. Im still drinking my protein shakes and taking Vitamin C supplements and I think Im healing well. Happy Healing Ladies. .ttyl :-)

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Hi sparkles! How much lipo did your ps do? Your waist is so tiny and looks so great! I've probably already said that, but had to again after admiring your pics :)
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You look great! ! You will have your good and bad swollen days.
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Looking good!
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Progressing Great!! Swelling is a lot Better :-)

I'm excited to say..I'm feeling normal again. I'm still taking it easy as far as no lifting, bending or doing anything to strenuous. I'm feeling great no pain or soreness except when I sneeze :-( but I've actually found out how to stop a sneeze...(tickle the roof of your mouth with your tongue) it really works....lol. Other than that...everything is going good. Swelling has been under control...I switched over to a compression 2 garment I ordered from Amazon. I also ordered an abdominal board. I wore it inside of my garment and when I took it off my stomach is really flat. So I don't know if it's the constant wearing of the compression garment, the abdominal board or the Bromelain pills...or a combination of all three...But It's Working for the swelling :-) I also called today about getting the lymphatic drainage massages...I've been reading about it and it seems to help after a tummy tuck of lipo suction. Happy Healing to everyone taking this journey with me!!

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So glad to hear you are doing well. Let us know how the lymphatic massage goes.
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Thank You...I sure will...I start next Friday.
YOUR results already look AMAZING!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Happy Healing!
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Sooo I .....

So I tried on a Bikini Today!! # Best Money I ever spent!!! Lol...I love my stomach..and I'm ready for the Beach next year. All in all it was a good day.. I go back to work next week...so I had an excuse to go buy new scrubs...I went down a shirt size. Today was the first day I got up to get the kids ready for school...my hubby has ben doing it so far. But thank God for my support system because they have really been Awesome!!! My hubby, My mom and my sister even came down from school to stay a couple days after my surgery. Im really blessed to have some Great people on my corner..and I know I couldn't have did it without them. Well I have to do two kindergarten projects tonight...so Happy Healing to Everyone!!!

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You look wonderful! :)
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Thank You!!
How's it going?! Almost 1 month po! Yaaay
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Dr. Hedden

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