Never Too Late for a New Beginning :-) - Orange County, CA

Hello Lovely Ladies... I'm 48 years young...

Hello Lovely Ladies...

I'm 48 years young and the mother of 4 beautiful children, ages 17, 19, 21 and 23. I am currently 5'3 150 lbs. Three of my 4 children were delivered via c-section. I have struggled with weight most of my life. In junior high my mother put me on Weight Watchers and I lost a lot of weight. So from 14 until I started having children at 25 I was 5'3 115-118 lbs. With each baby I gained more weight and the weight would linger, resulting in a lot of yo-yo dieting. Add that to a bad marriage and food became my best friend. Last August 26th (day after my 48th bday) at my highest weight 223, I had gastric bypass surgery (and double hernia repair.) I am down to 150, feel I have lost really slow and hit a lot of stalls, would like to lose another 25 lbs, but even if I stay at this weight, I feel so much better and am much healthier.

I am excited for my mommy make-over. Of course like many women on here, I've been struggling with the guilt of doing something so expensive for myself, yet it's the one thing I really want to do for ME.

I am scheduled Sept. 2nd for BA and Tummy Tuck. My PS is the wonderful Dr. Bui in Anaheim, CA. Dr. Bui discussed a lift with me, and said at this point I'm borderline and that I can do the augmentation now and see how my breasts settle and decide later on if I want a lift. I'm still on the fence about silicone or saline, Dr. Bui has been very informative as to the pros and cons of each and I have been really researching them both extensively, but I'm still indecisive. Any opinions/advice any of you can share on what type and why you choose what you did would be greatly appreciated. I am opting for the pain pump and as far as pain meds afterward, Dr. Bui said he will prescribe whatever pain meds have worked best for me in the past. I haven't really taken pain meds, for my gastric bypass I was given something in a liquid form and not even sure the name of it now haha. Any suggestions for pain meds? I heard Percocet helps a lot.

I'm hesitant to post my before photos because I feel my body looks hideous compared to everyone's before photos. My tummy is very deformed looking and I even have thoughts that no amount of surgery is going to improve it's looks, but Dr. Bui reassures me that the results will come out great. He did say that I have more fat tissue on the right side of my stomach, and I can see it when I look down and in the mirror, kinda odd.

I'm happy to have found this site and love reading about everyone's journey and all the support given to each other. Feel very fortunate to have you all there with me on this roller coaster ride!

Until next time...

The time has gone by so Mommy Makeover...

The time has gone by so Mommy Makeover is already this Thursday, Sept.1st...I'm getting very nervous and a little scared, second guessing if I made the right decision, fearing the recovery, etc. Any final words of encouragement and advice would be greatly appreciated.

Keep me in your thoughts and prayers.


Well, here I am ladies...9 days post op (surgery...

Well, here I am ladies...9 days post op (surgery was on Sept. 1st)

Surgery was scheduled for 10:15am and arrived at 8:15am. Had my procedure done at LaVeta Surgical Center in Orange, CA. Everyone there was professional and super nice, they took good care of me. My surgery was a little over 4 hours long.

I'd have to say that my recovery was just discomfort, I never experienced any excruciating pain. The worst was day 2 and 3, but still, nothing too terrible. I thought I would sleep in the recliner like most women have said worked for them but found I felt/slept better in my bed. And yes, the walking hunched over takes a toll on the back, I would use a walker to get around, did help some with the back pain. Most of the discomfort was in my breasts, not in my tummy.

Went to the doctor on Monday(labor day) to have one drain removed. He said he was impressed and pleased with how well I looked overall and how I was moving around. Went on Thursday, my one week check up and got the other drain out and dressings removed.

I have been happy with Dr. Bui. That being said, I have been very depressed with the results of my tummy tuck. He said I'm just swollen and to give it time, however, looking at everyone else's after photos at say one week post op, looks nothing like mine. It's like I have a butt in the front of my stomach. My stomach does not lay flat. That is not what swollen looks like. You can't even see my belly button and I'm getting sores from the skin being pushed together. And a small section of my suture area looks puckered. He says I need to be patient, but I have seen hundreds of photos and read hundreds of womens journey's to know something is not right. I have posted photos for you all to see, maybe someone can shed some light on why/what is going on. I have been extremely depressed and just want to sleep so I don't have to think about it or look at myself. I had this procedure so I wouldn't have to "hide" my stomach anymore and lift my self esteem/confidence...I went through all this to feel the same pre surgery, I'm just crushed.

The breasts are coming along fine. I was borderline lift and opted to wait on that. I ended going with saline and had 450cc on left breast, 470cc on right breast. I can see where down the line I may get a lift. They still are in the process of settling, but so far I am pleased with the results.

I wish I had better news to share. I will raise my concerns to him at my 2 week appt. But I don't know what he can say/do at this point.

I had so looked forward to this procedure, was so excited for the new me...only to feel depressed and disappointed.


Just can't stop being depressed over my results...

Just can't stop being depressed over my results and regretting my decision to do this for myself. I should have just embraced myself for who I was and what I devastated. I'm not going to wait until Thursday to see my dr., will try and get in tomorrow or Tuesday. I just know he is going to tell me the same thing, that I'm not giving it enough time and that I'm just swollen. I have a friend who said her stomach was flat from day one after her tummy tuck, of course you have swelling, but you are still flat. I see all of you lovely ladies on here and your beautiful results and how happy you are with your decision. I really thought that was going to be me too. It's like I have another butt in the front. I am posting some new pics of me spreading apart my stomach so you can see the sores/rash I am getting from my stomach being smashed together. This is just a nightmare *tears* I have no money to pay for anything to be fixed.

PS appt this morning went good. He spent well...

PS appt this morning went good. He spent well over an hour with me answering questions and giving me my options. Those are "fatty areas" which I knew I had, just didn't know they would come out that way post op. In 2-3 months I will be able to have lipo, which will smooth/flatten everything out. My fat/skin tissue is different than most women and he showed/explained how and why. He showed me some photos of previous patients of his that were similar cases like me,although not common. They required two steps...The tummy tuck then if the results weren't what they wanted, step two is the lipo of the remaining fat. I do feel some relief and am am trying to stay optimistic from this point on. If the final results aren't to my satisfaction, I will then seek the opinion from another PS, but I'm hoping my continued faith in my doctor will get me through this and help me stay positive. He was very compassionate/empathetic through the entire appointment and really listened to me, even through all my tears.

Thank you all for your care and concern. I will continue to keep everyone updated.

Love you all...xoxo


My doctor did my revision Oct. 2012. I am much happier and the results more acceptable. He explained that the elasticity in my stomach is different than most women. Their skin falls downward and mine goes downward and inward. To get optimal results I would have to have had the traditional TT incision as well as cut down the middle. Neither he nor I wanted to go that drastically. Therefore, he did a revision with what I have to work with. I am much happier and as always, Dr. Bui and staff were very professional and compassionate throughout the entire process. And he did not charge me anything for the revision. His goal is always work with his patients to ensure they are happy and have the results they desired. I am still very pleased with my breast implants and have referred other friends to Dr. Bui.
Orange County Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Bui has a wonderful bedside manner. He is soft-spoken, compassionate and very informative. His staff is also very friendly and helpful.

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
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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I was considering this Dr for my mommy makeover because a friend recommend me to him. After seeing your results I am so scared to even see him for the consult. Did he give you any resolution? Did he refund money? Apologize or even offer to re-do the work? I am so sorry you are going through this
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Just checking in on you!! Hope BB is better!! Let us know what the next PS says about your revision.
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I am so pleased you have had a second opinion as the way your p/s has left your tummy is totaly shocking, at least now you KNOW you can look forward to having the beautiful tummy you have always dreamt off because to so deserve it hun.
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How is your rash?
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Rash is healing, I had to stop wearing any compression garments bc that was squeezing everything together kept the rash moist and I needed it to dry out. How did your consults go?
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Consults went good. I got differing strategies. They both agreed on my breasts. Silicone with a lift. Going to book a third one and see what he says.
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I am glad to hear that you were validated in that it WAS done wrong! Got my fingers crossed for you that the PS will either step up and do it correctly or refund the money so you can have it fixed by another PS! I know it's an imposition but you want it done right! HUGS!
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Hello everyone...had a 2nd opinion yesterday and he (along with his office manager) said my results were nothing like they've ever seen in his 18 years of practice. I was in tears and even his office manager got teary-eyed. Beings that I had a lot of weight loss and weight loss surgery, a standard tummy tuck would not get ideal results, hence what happened to me. An extensive tummy tuck is what I needed. One where the incision would've went a little further back, which I would have been fine, but was never told that nor give that as an option from my PS. So my PS had this extra skin/fat left over once he performed the procedure on me and the result is it just being bunched together (as you see in the photos) bc my incision was not one to accommodate the amount of skin I had. He said some PS are not experienced in this and just do standard tummy tuck on everyone, but should not be that way, every patient is different. I'm still going to try and get one more opinion and then will approach my current PS about some sort of refund so I can have a revision the correct way. So the good news is yes, I can be fixed, bad news, another surgery, recovery, time missed from work and a lot of money again :( The doctors that have answered my Q & A on real self have mostly said that I should have had a vertical incision in addition to the horizontal incision for the best results...that just seems too invasive, and the dr. I saw yesterday agreed,he said that the amount of skin I had and my body type would not need a vertical incision. It's such a scary, hard decision for me now after what I've been through to trust anyone, but I have to in order to correct the damage done.

Thank you all for your concern and support. I will continue to keep you all posted.
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Your PS did that right thing by taking the time and giving you peace of mind. I have to add one tidbit- if he knew before your procedures this was or could be, an outcome due to your "fatty deposits"~ you should have been warned BEFORE he operated on you. If nothing else to help circumvent the stress you put your self threw over the weekend! Or, at the very least, let you decide if you wanted to go back and get more procedures done. Or if that was even a $$$ option for you! Just my opinion!!
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OK OMG! {{{{HUGS}}}}
I am having a high lateral tension which I would think should have been what you were to have as well. I had a lot of weight that I lost as well.
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Have him refund your fees. The technique was off, I agree with Here I Am. Is this second opinion in orange county? Please keep your chin up, this can be fixed! I saw an older review in the Tummy Tuck forum and one of the ladies had a redo at two weeks and it looked great. I think you will be in a two piece someday. I on the other hand am so stretch marked up, I'd be happy with a one piece.
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Hi OC Girl...yes, second opinion is in Orange County, Fountain Valley "Institute of Cosmetic and Reconstructive Surgery" T. Nguyen, M.D I just found out about him from my surgeons office who did my gastric bypass surgery, apparently they refer patients to him when wanting body contouring after losing weight, but I had never thought to ask them (dumb me) AND a friend from h.s. that I found on Facebook had a tummy tuck with him and said she is very happy, as other friends and family she referred to him. I wish I had know back then. I'm just afraid I am going to have to come up with the 5,000 plus funds all over again. I know I won't get any refund from my current PS, bc to him, all I need lipo now, although he never said I would look like this afterward.

Thank you for your encouragement, means a lot, and I will keep you and everyone posted, will let you all know what the PS says on Thursday. Do you know of any other good doctors I can get another opinion from?

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I'm just in the stage of getting consults myself. I live close to Fountain Valley will check out Dr. Nguyen. Friday I'm seeing Dr.Kessler and Dr.Agha in Newport Beach. Can't really speak to how good they are, wish I could find a patient of Dr.K's to talk to. My body type is like yours, just a ton more stretch marks. I'm 5'4, 145 pounds, lost 80 pounds.
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Hi OC-Girl,

Thinking of you and hoping your consultations go well. If you don't mind sharing with me what they said and who you liked better, I would appreciate it, since you said your body type is like mine. I do want another opinion, so I want to know who you think I should see, Dr. Kessler or Dr. Agha. I really liked Dr. Nguyen, he went over in detail what was done wrong to me and how he can correct it. He was very compassionate, as was his staff to my situation. If you also want another opinion, I do recommend you seeing Dr. Nguyen, I think you will like him.

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Please you do have a case it's called BREECH of Contract~ at this point take pictures everyday and journal everything you can remember from day one up until today~ You DID not get what you paid for ~ trust me you do have a Legal case 100% and one day you will be in a hot body with a two piece~
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TINK!! You WILL wear a two piece again one day, speak words of life girlfriend!!! I completely agree with HIA... lipo may fix it, but then you'll have to have the second TT & with that comes another rd of recovery! Your situation is one that breaks my heart... but I know that we serve a God who has plans for good!!! Keep us posted!!
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Crap, I am sorry : (
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Well I have to be honest here with you~ you would have thought if this is fat he would have number one cut it out when he had you on the operating table the first time~ that's what a tummy tuck is~ I am sorry~ I swear if I felt better i would go there with you~ I am not trying to be discouraging but holy smokes are you kidding me! Did he tell you this before the surgery? I have never heard of something like this~ and really you didn't have have that much fat to have a two stage tummy tuck~ I have seen women with a lot bigger tummies that didn't go through this~ man~ I am mad for you~ However I do think that the lipo with take care of it~ but he will have to re-pull the skin to make sure it's tight~ I am SO sorry I want to give you biggest HUGGS ever!!! You so did NOT deserve this~ in time you will be okay in fact hot but it going to take more time than anticipated! So what about the RASH??? What did he Say??
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You are just so your spirit! He just told me to stop wearing any compression garment bc that is pushing it together more. But honestly, it stays together with or with out a compression's my butt in the front :-( I dread the long road ahead. Don't know how I will get the money to pay for another procedure. I've been reading online and lawyers won't take a case like mine because it's not injury. I will for sure let everyone know what the 2nd opinion is and then maybe we can all brainstorm and see which alternative I should go to look halfway normal, I've accepted that with all this going on, I will never have the results I dreamed of. So much for thinking I would wear a two piece again one day.
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I'm glad to hear you are getting a second opinion. hugs!!!
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Luv n hugs back to you! Last time I looked none of the Dr. here had responded to your posted question so if nothing else you may have more ammo to take back to your original PS and get this done right!! Knowledge is power! Chin up and just keep positive and fight because you know your right.
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Thank you Wtbt for your care and concern, means a lot to me during this trying time for me.
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Well I posted how the appointment went this morning, which I thought went well. But now I got a return call from a PS that I emailed yesterday and sent photos too and his nurse is saying that this is definitely wrong and they've never seen anything like it. The dr. said lipo is not going to correct this error. And even the doctors answering my Q & A's on here are saying time is not going to heal this, further surgery is needed. So I'm back to square one of feeling so distraught. I have another appt on Thursday @ 11am with the PS who called me after viewing my photos that I emailed his office. I sure hope I get some good news on how this can be corrected...but my next fear is how much more is this gonna cost, I am out of funds, but I guess just take one step at a time. I would have never thought that I'd be that "one" out of hundreds that is procedure turned in to my worst nightmare. I am a healthy woman overall, not on any medications for any health issues, except for vitamins and all my pre-op tests came back perfect. *Sigh* keep praying the best for me all my lovely mommy make-over friends.

Luv n hugs
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Thank goodness! I am so glad for you! Treat that rash though, you don't want it to lead to more issues (i.e infection).

Good for you!
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That is a relief that there was an answer that it can be fixed and at this point all you can do is look forward to getting the lipo done and getting things evened out. In the mean time what are you supposed to do about the rash?
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