18 Months Post Op: Recent Tummy Tuck - No Regrets - Birmingham, AL

Like most stories, mine starts with four little...

Like most stories, mine starts with four little words. Except, in my story, those words are not, “Once Upon A Time...” or “A Long Time Ago...”. Hell, I would have settled for “In a Galaxy Far, Far Away.....” But, while I’ve often lived in my own little world; always hoping for a fairy tale ending, dreaming of magic, and believing, just a little bit, in the unbelievable; my journey does not begin like most fairy tales do. Instead it begins with: “When are you due?” And, here’s the crux, the kicker, the major PROBLEM. I was not due; not even a little bit. There were no pregnancies in my foreseeable and immediate future. The short and the short... I was fat, not pregnant. But, after all that, I took a moment to truly assess myself and my life. And, just like all my favorite heroines, I realized that somewhere along the way, I have lost sight of myself (and my waistline). More importantly? I’d had enough of being overweight, and so i started researching bariatric surgery.

I originally was drawn to lap band because it is reversible; but when I truly considered it- i realized I did not want to have the option to reverse this surgery. I wanted something permanent- and so I made the decision to go forward with vertical sleeve surgery. VSG is more invasive, which means more pain, and recovery is longer. But, the five year results are amazing, and it is less invasive than gastric bypass.

I went to a seminar, filed for insurance, and 5 weeks later, i was headed into surgery. I weighed over 270 pounds. Since that time, I have lost down to 125 pounds. So, here's the disclaimer: it has been hard. Coming out of surgery is like being a toddler again- you spend months relearning what you can and cannot tolerate. Personally, I sometimes crave sodas, I still hate sweating, and I occasionally miss frappucinos. I cannot eat rice or corn. I over ate and threw up a ton in the beginning. I have to take B12 injections monthly, and a round of vitamins daily. But, about six months after surgery, I woke up and had the most astounding revalation. My life pre surgery was consumed by food and my next meal. And, one morning I woke up, got ready for work, made it through my shift- and I had a startling thought. I no longer spent time obsessing over food or about what or when my next meal would be.

I have never felt such a sense of freedom. I am now 18 months post op, have lost over 135 pounds, and I went from a size 24 to a size 2. My main complaint has been the excess skin on my belly causing issues and a hernia- so one week ago, I had a full tummy tuck. It is the only reconstructive surgery I will need. VSG changed my life, i have no regrets.

D. Touliatos

This is a bariatric center of excellence with everything you need to suppor you on site.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
4 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
4 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
4 out of 5 stars Wait times
Was this review helpful? 6 others found this helpful

Comments (11)

Sort by

Loved reading your positive experience!
  • Reply
TLC has two doctors, Yu & Scarborough. May I ask what characteristics helped you choose one as opposed to the other?
  • Reply
Hey jujubee I was wondering if you continued to lose weight after about 9 months? Were you losing weight all the way up until 18 months even if only 1-2 or 3 lbs a month? I hope you don't mind answering because I'm coming up on 9 months and I'd like to hope I can lose a bit more
  • Reply
Good for you!
  • Reply
It was my insurance- my CoPay is only 300 dollars, and they covered surgery at 100%. Good luck!!! What doctor are you using in Tuscaloosa?
  • Reply
I was looking at Dr. Bilton. My insurance will only cover 50% and I have a $200 major medical dedcutable. Trying to figure out how to pay for it and all the little details of it all. I just read up on the dr your used and he has awesome reviews.
  • Reply
The bariatric group at Trinity is amazing! Being a bariatric center, they have so many people to support you. I loved my doctor, his practice made the whole process seamless and easy. Feel free to message me if you have any questions through your process!
  • Reply
I am in Tuscaloosa and looking for a dr to do the sleeve. How were you able to only pay $300. Its looking like $5000+ for me with insurance.
  • Reply
jujubee... you look awesome!!!! Congratulations! I had bypass surgery over 5 years ago but did need more reconstructive surgery: lower body lift, breast, arm and thigh lift (I'm 51 lol).

isn't it amazing? I went from a size 24 to a 4-6!!! I think having the follow up surgery and getting to a point where I love my body (it's not a perfect body by any means) has allowed me to keep the 140 lbs I lost... Off! you will LOVE your new stomach; can you even believe your stomach is finally flat?

Exercise has been a key as well. Good luck and congratulations!!!!
  • Reply

Wow, you look awesome! You've totally transformed yourself, great job!

  • Reply

Hi JuJu,

Thanks for sharing your journey with us and congratulations on your success. You must be very proud of what you've achieved! If you ever feel like sharing we'd love to see your before/after pics!


  • Reply