- updated 10 months ago
I am mom to two wonderful boys and our youngest...
- 10 Jan 2013
I am mom to two wonderful boys and our youngest just turned four. After he was born and the baby weight started to come off it was already apparent to me that some surgical intervention was going to be required to get my pre-baby bod back. I had a surgical consult with another plastic surgeon in Birmingham shortly after I stopped nursing (about 8 months postpartum) and had a bit of sticker shock (almost $13 K plus facility fees) at that initial consult for abdominoplasty and mastopexy. I should tell you that I'm a surgical RN...and that quote included a "professional courtesy" discount as I had worked with one of this surgeon's colleagues on the trauma and reconstruction side of plastics.
Looking at his "brag book" I really wasn't that impressed with the results, and the thought of having to travel out-of-state to see a aurgeon I knew and tristed just wasn't in the cards with a baby at home and hubby who traveled extensively for work. After that experience I put a laser-focus on my exercise and nutrition to see what changes I could make on my own. Fast forward to present day and I now run about 10 miles a week, do intensive cardio in the gym on my non-run days, light weights, and yoga/Pilates to keep things interesting as well as maintain flexibility. At 38 years old I am in better shape than I ever have been, but have had several laparoscopic surgeries (tubal ligation, hiatal hernia repair) that have left me with scars on my belly and also am frustrated that excess belly skin and sad boobs (left to their own devices, they tend to stare at the floor) mask great muscle tone from the hard work I have put in. Not-so-fun fact about weight loss- the sag has gotten worse as my body fat has decreased. Ugh. My initial surgical consult with Dr. Hedden is tomorrow morning and I have definitely done my homework this time around. I am excited and looking forward to discussing options and outcomes tomorrow with him. Will post with updates and photos here soon. Stay tuned!
Met with Dr. H this morning. It was about an hour...
- 11 Jan 2013
Anyhow...I really liked him and his nurse. He's very efficient but thorough and kind, and answered all of my questions quite thoroughly. He showed me exactly where the necessary incision line for the abdominoplasty would be based on the demarcation of pendulous (loose) belly skin. This was a briefer discussion as I had done my homework and pretty much knew what to expect...I'm all too familiar with every inch of my "mama apron" haha. Then we discussed pros and cons of breast lift with/without a small implant simultaneously placed (better to do it in my case where my tissue volume loss was in the top hemisphere of each breast) and what kind of incision would yield the best results (V-shaped, aka lollipop). Cost of abdominoplasty was $5500, and $6500 for the mastopexy with small saline implants placed. Alternately the quote mentioned $7300 if I chose silicon gel implants- but since I am not trying to significantly increase breast size Dr. H felt that the saline implants would be the best bet. Cash paying patients are required to make a 10% initial payment in order to schedule surgery, with the remainder due 2 weeks prior to surgery. Pretty standard stuff.
Unfortunately my original plans to have surgery done in the next 8 weeks or so are going to be postponed somewhat...upon examining my abdomen Dr. H found a supra-umbilical hernia, likely from one of my laparoscopic surgeries, as it was immediately underneath one of the little incisional scars. This was the equivalent of a big turd in my punchbowl, to say the least. He of course can do the repair (and our insurance covers that portion) when he performs the abdominoplasty...but as a surgical nurse I also know that if he gets in there and the herniation includes bowel or is anything more than a simple repair with mesh that I could be in big trouble...an OR suite in a cosmetic surgery center may not be equipped for what I need depending on what he finds, and incarcerated bowel tissue can end up being a, pardon the pun, shitstorm of a surgical procedure. All surgeons are primarily trained in general surgery and so they know what to do, generally speaking, but a surgeon who has been creating new boobs for 15 years is not exactly a first choice to fix something that is more of a general surgeon's forte. Not slamming my plastic surgeon in any way here...just speaking as someone who has 15 years experience in the OR and ICU. You wouldn't call your electrician to fix your toilet, right? At this point I am going to mull things over this weekend but my first instinct is to hold off on the TT and call a general surgeon on Monday to evaluate and then fix the stupid hernia.
Saw Dr. Michael Beckenstein today and I can't...
- 23 Jan 2013
Dr. Hedden was recommended to me by my primary care physician. Ultimately I chose another plastic surgeon who is dually trained and board certified in not only plastic surgery but general surgery due to my specific surgical needs.