Holy Cow Am I Nervous - Denver, CO

I had two children in less than 3 years. I was...

I had two children in less than 3 years. I was later in life when I finally decided to have kiddos, and I think it took its toll! I've always been healthy, but for some reason my stomach muscles ripped down the center with my first pregnancy and never went back...

So here I go - onto a little lipo and squishing down those muscles again to pre baby. I never, ever thought I would get any sort of plastic surgery, but I'm tired of looking 4 mos pregnant at the age of 41! Jump in, with both feet, here I go on Friday...

Day before and boy am I really freaking out now....

Day before and boy am I really freaking out now. UGH I went to bed last night with a sinus infection. I could feel it in my cheek. Thank goodness I started on the antibiotics already. I called the doc and the nurse said as long as I don't have a fever I'm fine. Which I actually don't - I'm right at 98.6, so I go in at 4:30 to get marked up and ready for the morning. oh dear...

Well here I am on Tuesday - surgery was last...

Well here I am on Tuesday - surgery was last friday. I stayed in hospital suite two extra days and it was so worth it. With a 2 and 4 yr old at home I needed as much time as I could being taken care of by someone else. I suggest it to anyone! Take the extra days. The first 48 hours I was in hell, no lie. Lots of nausea, headaches and pain. I had a hard time with the anethesia. On saturdayI ended up with a migrane and didn't sleep well at all. I got up to walk around for the first time that day and turned a beautiful shade of green the nurses said!

I'm finally moving well, not totally upright and these drains are a pain ( I have 3 of them) but so far leaps and bounds better than the first 48 hours.

I have a doc appt tomorrow to be checked out again and will update and hopefully have some good pics. I got to see my stomach for the first time in the hospital and I almost fell over. For 2 years I have always looked 4 mos pregnant and all of a sudden its gone! I'm swollen and still so thrilled even with a bit of pain. :)

Every day is slowly getting better. But I have a...

Every day is slowly getting better. But I have a weird side effect I wasn't expecting - I have blisters on my butt from the padding that was put there after the lipo. That hurts more than anything! I can't cover them, so they are open and sticking to my clothes. Of course they are on my backside, the only side I can be on for two weeks!

I'm heading to the doc today to check everything out. I still have 3 drains, but they are only draining about 5 ml each which is pretty low. I'm hoping they go away soon, I really don't mind the binder, makes me feel like everything is staying where it needs to be, but the drains suck. I have a fanny pack I keep them in for now and I'm just counting down the days.

After today I will take another shower and take some pics so you can see the difference. Even with all the inconvenience it is not much worse than the two c sections I had. In face a bit easier since I'm not watching a new born and trying to heal at the same time.

For all those with dates coming up - don't be nervous, you sleep, you wake up and a couple weeks of slowness in your life to look super is so worth it! I'm so glad I did this now. I'll do more updates later in the week. WOOOHOO!

I forgot to add - I had almost a 4 inch split of...

I forgot to add - I had almost a 4 inch split of the muscles that my doc had to repair. She said they were almost to a hernia point, one of the worst she has seen. I'm glad I went with my gut and got it done!

THANK YOU M.O.M. Whew....that was going on a week...

THANK YOU M.O.M. Whew....that was going on a week and I almost couldn't take much longer. Yesterday I went the doc and one of the 3 drains removed -yeah! Looks like the other two are coming out on Monday. I can handle that. Mornings are pretty good for me once the family heads off to school and work. I can get around and get a few things done. I'm down to one pain med every 4 hours instead of 2. Hopefully by next week it will just be tylenol. Believe it or not one of the most painful things are the blisters on the back of my hips from the hospital. I still can't believe how much is gone from my stomach! I'll try to take some more pics today. WOOHOO!

Feeling a little nausea today. I keep thinking I...

Feeling a little nausea today. I keep thinking I can jump up and start doing everything. I've never been down more than a couple days with a cold so this is tough. I don't think I'm doing too much, but I guess I thought after 6 days I would start to feel a bit better. HAHA I am usually always on the go and I'm sure my body is just keeping me in check. I hope after the last drains are out on Monday I will start to feel super again. I am still overwhelmed by the results!

Ahhh - I've hit the 1 week mark. Two more days...

Ahhh - I've hit the 1 week mark. Two more days and the last of the drains will be out. Lots of gross ozzzing from the first drain, but it will all be over soon.

I can feel the pinch of the incision more every day as I cut back the meds, but the pain is still really not too bad. Probably a 3 on a scale of 10.

For those considering this I can't impress to you more that all these little things are so worth it! Just follow the instructions from your doc to a T. I've always been pretty anal about organization and structure so I have kept a log of every little thing I do and feel.

Having a 2 and 4 year old has been challenging during this time and even for the two to three hours at night I see them after school and before bed wear me out, its not as bad as I thought. They understand that mommy has an owie and needs to be careful.

So mommys - DO NO WAIT until your kids are teenagers! Take the plunge. :-) After the drains are out on monday I will take more pics.

Alrighty - 9 days post op and starting to stand up...

Alrighty - 9 days post op and starting to stand up a bit better and the pain is starting to get much better. It really was never worse than the my c sections but the recovery is a bit slower. Of course now that I'm feeling better I want to get up and do everything! I know that will be my downfall if I do so I'm doing my best to keep sitting on my hands and not do the 7 loads of laundry staring at me and picking up all the toys...

My remaining two drains are still draining 5 and 10 mls so I have a bad feeling they may not be removed tomorrow even though they told me they would be. We will see! Updates to follow....Can't wait for the holidays!

I'm lucky so far, I haven't had the down moods that I have been told happen in the second week I guess because I had such a drastic change that even with the swelling I'm so freaking happy I could scream! :-) More pics to come this week, stay tuned....

WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! ugh I am so mad at...

WARNING! WARNING! WARNING! ugh I am so mad at myself. That second week is a killer! Not because of the emotions, but you start feeling better and think you can do everything you did before. Well not so. I could have had the last two drains out yesterday, but I have swollen up and too much fluid to get rid of both, so now I'm still stuck with one drain. ARGH and I was doing so well.

So word to the wise ladies - don't do a thing for at least two weeks if not more! Even if you are feeling great. Heal the right way.

On top of that my lip incisions are itching so bad it would be considered a form of torture in most countries! AND the evil period started today, so needless to say this week has not started off as I hoped. Only good news is that the kids are finally back in school after a 3 day weekend and I can get back to resting. WHEW So I was hoping for more pics, but they will have to wait until after thursday when hopefully the last drain will be pulled...

So if you are like me, there is probably nothing...

So if you are like me, there is probably nothing worse than that one to two days a month that SUCK when it comes to your period. Well that just happened to fall on infamous second week of my recovery. My cramps are insane, I couldn't sleep, and I was bloated on top of being bloated. NICE...

Well onto another day of recovery. I finally saw my belly button today for the first time! Holy cow not so bad! Of course the belly ring hole is gone from years ago - haha. I don't think I will try that again.

So here I am almost 2 weeks post op tomorrow and I...

So here I am almost 2 weeks post op tomorrow and I see the doc again today. Thank goodness the cramps from my period have subsided but I'm still worried about my drainage. I guess we will see.

If anyone out there has had all their drains out can you tell me what you were still draining on the day your last one came out?

I guess if it has to be in until Monday it will be what's right just a bummer. :-(

Other than that I also have a bit more swelling on one side than the other. Bring on week 3 please!!!!I want to be done with week 2...

HORROR STORY ALERT - ok for those weak of stomach...

HORROR STORY ALERT - ok for those weak of stomach pass by this posting today....

So yesterday the rollercoaster emotions finally hit me. Wrong day to happen. I should be excited, I was hoping to get my last drain out! So I'm close to tears on the way to doc for absolutely no reason, but I was expecting a few emotions.

I get there and she said yah - we can take out the final drain. Alright! My day is looking up. So I'm expecting the usual tug, burn and done. Well, she tugs, tugs, tugs and tugs again. She grabs another nurse, tugs tugs tugs and snap...

The drain tube snapped in half inside my stomach. Oh yes....at this point tears are streaming down my face and my husband has grabbed my hand as he did when I was giving birth. It snapped under my skin and they can't find it - she leaves the room again and comes back after 5 minutes to tell me they've prepped the room and they are going to have to cut. WHAT? I already went through this and I have to be cut again and AWAKE? oh crap....

So now I'm crying like a baby, it burns and stings. They move me to the other room and start the local - that hurt more than anything! 6 shots of local in the one spot on my stomach that I now have feeling of course!

She starts to cut, can't find it, has to cut more, can't see it, and finally cuts more and pushes and finds the end of the tube buried down there somewhere. After an hour and some good tugs they were able to get the last of the tube out.

I was shaking crying and such a wuss but I didn't care. The nurses were great, I can't blame them for what happened, it just sometimes but rarely happens. Of course after 3 drains the last was the worst.

So now I have more stiches and I'll have another scar below the first one, but that's ok. Once that local wore off that was worse than any pain I've felt in the last two weeks. But this morning I'm better and gladly on the mend.

The horror stories don't happen often, but every now and again they do! At least my drains are out!!! whew

More pics to follow later today :-)

Well I'm back to work as of yesterday and am I...

Well I'm back to work as of yesterday and am I ever tired! I started to have back problems last friday with a bulging disc I've had for years. I'm sure the stress of holding myself up made it act up, but it was more painful than my surgery! I have that under control now, but just working half days this week. I'm still sore and "oozing" a bit through the tape. I've been wearing my binder but decided to wear spanx today to see how they hold up. Everything is still a pain in the butt - but slowly but surely getting better.

Tomorrow will be 3 weeks post op - I can't...

Tomorrow will be 3 weeks post op - I can't believe it! I worked 3 half days this week and it was do-able, but I would suggest to anyone, depending on your job, to take a full 3 weeks. I'm exhausted and so tired every afternoon. And I'm more sore. My ribs hurt and it feels like I was in the ring with a pro boxer! I'm still oozing as well, but doc said it was normal. Changing the tape is kinda gross, but I know it will end soon. I'm pretty swollen and bummed I'm not as flat as I was right after surgery, but again I know it will just take time.

For those ready to jump - just plan on a good 6 weeks of uncomfort and emotional rollercoaster. But I wouldn't change it for the world! Time goes by so quickly its amazing!

I heading toward 4 weeks post op now and am...

I heading toward 4 weeks post op now and am feeling a little better every day. I still get incredibly swollen if I do too much in a day and I can tell! I had to throw my daughter a 4 yr old bday party on Sunday and by Sunday night I was looking for the ice and pillows to put under my legs!

My other stiches for the horror story were finally removed yesterday and it looks fine. I'm more concerned that I was still ooozing a bit. The PA was a bit surprised but said I shouldn't be within another week or so.

I still don't get the full effect of wearing my clothes with my new body since I wear this binder non stop. My tops fit so much better which is awesome, but my pants are close to the same for now with the swelling. That's ok I just have to be patient! I'm back to work full time this week and its a shock to the system as well, but I need to get back into the swing of things. :-)

So I'm coming up on 5 weeks po on Friday and...

So I'm coming up on 5 weeks po on Friday and I'M STILL OOOZING from two sites along the cut. UGH! I go to doc today to have them look at it, but it looks a little infected to me. I'm worried - I make sure I clean it and dress it properly, but I'm just not healing in the center at all. I guess I'll see what they say.

I know when I've done too much in a day I'm super swollen - but today the swelling looks pretty good. I thought I would be further along at 5 weeks, but maybe I'm a slow healer...I wouldn't think of exercising yet - maybe at the new year to make sure...

Great info from everyone on my "wound"!...

Great info from everyone on my "wound"! Thank you - I will be buying some protein this weekend for sure. I think "ooozing" may have been a strong term, I think it was the puss that was freaking me out. I went to the doc yesterday and she said it looks fine, not infected or anything. I guess some people just take longer to heal than others. My sides look great - its just right where my c-sections were done that seems to be taking its time. If I remember correctly, it took a while for the csection to heal as well.

I am doing a wet to dry dressing on it for a week to hopefully move things along quicker. I'll take a pic tonight to show you all what it looks like when I change the dressing.

OK GROSS ALERT - I just posted my pics for this...

OK GROSS ALERT - I just posted my pics for this week. Although they look bad, in fact with the new dressing I'm using I actually think its working! The skin is coming together and the scab is close to healing and coming off. I'm just a slow healer I guess!

Well I head to doc tomorrow for them to look at me...

Well I head to doc tomorrow for them to look at me again. It looks slightly better, but still looks like a wound to me. My stomach is so sore from changing the dressing twice a day that it hurts to think of having to change it again. I'm frustrated and bummed this week. I'll be 6 weeks post op on Friday, I never thought I would still be changing dressing at this point. I'm taking my vitamins and tons of water but nothing is making this go much faster. I feel great physically and would feel 100% if I didn't have this last issue. Looking at my 5 week pics it does look better than it did a week ago.

I have only seen my doc once in 6 weeks and they told me yesterday that is normal and she reviews my chart. I may try to go see my normal doc today to get her take on it. I don't know what to do anymore....

Here is the question I asked of the docs on this...

Here is the question I asked of the docs on this site about my "wound". You all are welcome to read about it as the comments come in. Good info for those considering doing this. I must say again - this is rare and I am slowly getting better. I would do it again in a heartbeat to not look pregnant anymore. :-) http://www.realself.com/question/tummy-tuck-normal-after-weeks#411033

Ok - so I'm almost 6 1/2 weeks post op and it...

Ok - so I'm almost 6 1/2 weeks post op and it seems to be slightly better than last week. I started up on my vitamins and protein (thanks marine mom) and it seems to be slowly helping. Lots of water as well. I'll take another pic tonight. Needless to say they are keeping a closer eye on me than before. I guess it finally hit a magic mark for everyone to be concerned. I call tomorrow for an update and see them again on Wed. I found another stitch coming through that did not disolve. I guess I just didn't like them! I'm still planning on Vegas on Thur - but I'll just have to take it easy...

Alright blog followers on the squishy drama. I...

Alright blog followers on the squishy drama. I updated with a new pic of me this morning at almost 7 weeks post op. I keep posting because I think it is important for those of you in my situation to hang tough and those of you thinking of this surgery to know that our bodies are unpredictable, but still worth the drive! All the more so to do what the doc says and watch what you do and take care of yourself first after something this big.

So comments? Is it looking better than before? Its hard for me to compare. I am going to Vegas still tomorrow, just no pool or dancing in my future. :-( I can still sit there and look hot though right?!

Almost up to week 8....frustrated....

Almost up to week 8....frustrated....

So we've passed the 8 week mark and still...

So we've passed the 8 week mark and still looking the same to me although last week they said it is actually looking better I think I'm blind to it at this point. I just want to get back to normal and start running again. Hopefully the new year...they said the yellow stuff underneath is new skin and it could take up to 3mos to heal. LUCKY ME! :-) I guess its the price I pay to not look preggers forever. I will probably go back in a year for scar revision.

10 weeks post op today and we are finally starting...

10 weeks post op today and we are finally starting to see the redness of the healing starting. I've become an expert at wet to dry dressing and tape and probably need to go into nursing at this point...What can you do but just continue to try and heal. :-)

Here I am at 11 weeks, yes it has almost been 3...

Here I am at 11 weeks, yes it has almost been 3 months and I am still healing. I went to the doc last night and you will not believe it, but they pulled out 4 more barbed stitches that were not absorbed. For some reason right in that csection area, none of the stitches absorbed and my wound is having trouble healing because of it. We go back to the problem of having so much scar tissue there from my csections that my body is rejecting the stitches. All is good underneath,the stitches have no more purpose, but until my body spits them all out, this wound will have trouble healing. Nothing we can do but keep up on it. New pic below, you can see they did a lot of scraping last night to help the new tissue form. Hopefully with that and pulling the stitches out, we are on a track of better healing! We will see :-)

Over 3 months now - the small openings are finally...

Over 3 months now - the small openings are finally starting to heal after kicking out about 10 barbed suchers. The big one I think still has a few to get rid of, but its slowly healing. I hope I will heal by spring at this rate!!! :-)

4 months post op and I'm finally closing. We've...

4 months post op and I'm finally closing. We've pulled out sutchers every week and as we have it closes more ever so slighty. I'm one of the 1% but at least I'm finally closing. Pics below.
Denver Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Rodgers is one of the top docs in Denver, I'm so glad I made the decision to go with a female doctor that knows how to work on a woman's body. She is wonderful!

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5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
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Comments (94)

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Hey you are looking great!! Way to go. How do you feel overall about the TT?? Are you still glad you did it?

I stopped packing mine on Jan 1st. I'm still not 100% closed but I don't give it much thought anymore. I don't have to do anything to it. It's still healing slowly as it fills in the ridge that it left behind. Saw the dr at the beg of Jan and he said I'm still swelling and that will go down more. He's right. I've seen it decrease it bits and pieces.

Isn't it amazing that such a small hole can take so long to close?? But it will close :)
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So are u saying Ur in the 1% that their sutures didn't dissolve?
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so glad you are healing! Looks almost fully closed now. You still have an amazing attitude, and I hope it's all downhill from here.
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Squishy~ I can see the healing! Just the edges of the wound look smoother and more defined and that is a good sign. Sucks about the stitches. I hear you on that one too. But really you can see the healing.

I don't do any taping. Can you try holding on the pad that covers the dressing w/ just tighter underwear? I know that has saved me all these weeks with the wound issue. I just hold the pad on when I use the bathroom. It would give your poor skin a break.
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I hear ya! I tried that, but with work and the kids I was so worried about movement. I adjust the tape every morning when I put new dressing on so hopefully we can just get through the next couple months. When I wear spanxs its a bit easier to keep them in place. Another problem is they dry out faster if they are not taped in place and I need to keep the wet to dry dressing on it. I'll get there right?!!! :-) You are looking great!
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Thank MMom! I too will probably have scar revisions in a year. Its just a bummer that I have to, but oh well. I can't help that I'm a poor healer! We finally decided that the csection area was so damaged, each time you go into that area it takes longer and longer to come back. But I'm on the protein shakes and vitamins thanks to you!
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Hey Squishy, hang in there! It will heal, but patience is a virtue that really tries us during this time. I am going to have a scar revison from my splits, it happens, you will be fine!
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Squishy how are you doing? How's the incision? Are you seeing some improvement? Thinking of you.
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Hi Puggy - just starting to get better. Honestly I'm just trying to move forward with life like its not even there. Nothing I can do but heal now and it might not be until Feb or even March. Frustrating, but oh well right? How are you doing? Looks like everything looks fabulous on you!!! Thanks for checking in with me. :-)
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I do see way more redness and in this case that is just what we needed to see. So that is a good sign. I know what you mean about just trying to move forward like it isn't there. What other choice is there? It will heal in due time and look much better. Glad you checked in so we know you are doing ok.

I still have 2 holes. One is tiny & draining. Can't pack it anymore which is nice. The other is shrinking daily. When will they be closed? No idea really. I'm hoping by the 1st of the year. I go to San Antonio in a little over a month and would love to be "pad free". If not then perhaps I'll use some small bandaids. Not stressed about it.

If I get my butt in gear I'll post new pics. My after pics are very old. Time to show some new ones!
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Squishy~ Sorry to hear it is still not closing. As you know I get how you are feeling. Go check out my pics. I posted my last 3 weeks of wound healing. I just know my doctor removes that yellow so it can heal. The wet to dry dressings also help remove it. It can't heal til it looks really red. You'll see in my pics how that has happened. I've seen it heal from the inside forward & from the sides inward. I'm in my 8th week of healing.

So my friend I totally understand how crappy it is to look at an open wound and to just want to be done w/ all of it. I can't wait to not wear some kind of pad on my body!!!

Hang in there.
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Vegas was ok but couldn't really do what I wanted. I don't understand where this all went wrong. I followed directions to a T! Argh... I hate to say I'm glad to hear you are in the same boat, but its nice to have company in this mess! I hope you heal soon as well!
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I understand what you meant. I like knowing someone else has gone through it too and healed up. I'm always looking for the posts where people have had to deal with it. That's why I posted pics and your pics will help people too.

I just updated mine for the last 3 weeks w/ pics. It's closing but I still think it may be weeks. So tired of it too.
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Squishy- oh I so feel your pain at wanting to be healed & feeling frustrated! Realistically it will probably take weeks to close up. When mine first started I was told 1-2 months and it is indeed taking that length of time. Mine is closing but still not there yet either. I lost it the other day and ended up depressed about it for a bit. I see my dr on the 30th and still think it may not be closed.

Yours is less yellow which is good but it has to look really red to close so watch for that to happen. Hang in there. I know the waiting sucks!

How was Vegas?
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I think it's looking better. Have fun in Vegas!
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Hang in there. I know it sucks to watch it and just want it to be closed. That yellow still has to go so be patient. The wet to dry does work.

Enjoy Vegas! I'm glad you are going. Have fun!!
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Definitely looks more healed. It looks like it's actually sealed up in the inner layers and will just need a bit more time to close on top. I had a major cut on my finger and the doctor told me I might have a permanent dent as it was only sealing from the inside. The outside portion was all rigid and swollen but just shed off, and I can barely find the scar on my finger now. Hope your belly heals the same way. Keep up with your great attitude!!
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It is looking a tad worst on the left but that is normal for a wound opening. The yellow will be slowly removed by the gauze/saline dressings or your doctor can speed that up by removing a lot of it. You want the wound to start to look really red and "granular". That is when it will start to close up really well. The other side looks like it is closing up. So yes, it is working. Just takes some time. Glad they'll be seeing you more often til this closes.

I have a really tough, hard stitch that sticks straight out about 1/4 in right near my incision that is closing. It hurts but they said to leave it as it will resolve on it's own. I tugged on it and won't be doing that again. Ouch!
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OMG Puggy! Don't tug on them - OUCH! Well I actually got to see the doc tonight holy cow. She did just like you said, she scraped off most of the stuff and pulled out two more barbed stitches. She said although this is highly unusual, it is healing underneath. So I guess I'll just take it easy and we are back to wet to dry dressing for another week...ugh
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Well I saw the PA again last night and now I'm doing a cream on it and dressing. I do have a bad reaction to the tape at this point and its burning so we are only changing dressing once a day. Believe it or not, no infection - in fact I posted it in the Q&A portion of this site and got the advice of other docs as well. They said sometimes this happens and it splits in the middle, just takes longer to heal. I'm frustrated to say the least, but the scabs are now off and my stomach did push through one of the barbed stiches. I'm supposed to go to Vegas in one week, but now I'm not so sure!
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Squishy ~ well glad you finally saw your doctor. My doctor (Dr. Pousti) was one of the ones that answered you. Kind of funny since we talked about the Real Self site at my appointment yesterday and he said he had just answered a few questions about wounds that day. And you were one he answered.

I don't think you have to cancel your Vegas trip unless you are feeling badly. Just take what you need to care for the incision and enjoy yourself.

Hope you are also taking some protein shakes each day on top of meals and Vit C too so that you will heal better.

I know it sucks to have an open wound. Hang in there!
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Thanks puggy! What a small world! I was really thankful that all those docs said the same thing so that's good! But still frustrating. :(
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Wow squishy ... I'm sorry things are taking so long to heal. I'm having similar issues I just haven't posted any pics up. My incision has been draining from the center and it's just a bit split at the surface. I've been on additional antibiotics since last Wednesday. I saw my PS this past Monday and he said it looks like I was getting the beginning of an infection but thanks to the antibiotics its resolving.
I so understand the changing the dressings ughhhhh so freaking annoying. I'm 2 weeks and two days post up today and still changing my gauze around three times a day. Not ridiculous draining but enough. This shall all pass... Recovery is harder for some than for others I will keep us in my prayers so that our wounds can start finally healing and we can enjoy the results even with swelling.
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Squishy get a second opinion on your wound. You could be reacting to something (stitches that did no dissolve) but your healing is not typical. Are you on antibiotics.
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Squishy your story scares the crap out of me! Oh please god don't let my drains be that horrible to have out. I am so sorry that your wound is being so uncooperative!
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