I am 5'4", 120 lbs. I have always been...
I am 5'4", 120 lbs. I have always been "genetically" blessed for the most part, but after two kids, I have a very large lower abdomen pooch that cannot be fixed with exercise or diet. After 2 years of it getting seemingly worse, I began researching options online and went on 3 consultations. All 3 doctors seemed nice and experienced, but when I went to Dr. Adams, the nurse that sat in on the consult, said she was 2 weeks out from having had the same procedure (abdomen and flanks) and she (although dressed) looked great. Finally meeting someone who had recently experienced it sealed the deal for me and I scheduled my procedure for March 25th.
I'm starting my story a day before and I must say that I am getting very nervous! During my months of online research, I only saw positive posts and now, the day before, I am only reading negative smartlipo reviews:( I will add that I have not seen any negative reviews about my doctor in particular. And many of them are from 2011, even dating back to 2009! I know that the Smartlipo technology has come a long way since then (Smartlipo, Smartlipo MXP vs Smartlipo Triplex) and the doctors are more experienced with the machine so I am going to try to stay positive. And as vain as it may sound, some of my biggest worries is how swollen I may be and for how long? I will post before pictures as well as updates soon.
Update - Where do I begin? First let me back up a...
Update - Where do I begin? First let me back up a little bit. A few days before the surgery, I started thinking I should go ahead and have my outer thighs done too. If I was going to be paying for the anesthesia and facility fee, and going under, I may as well get it all done! I called to find out how much more it would be and had not made a final decision when I made my original post. After arriving and discussing my outer thights with Dr. Adams, I told him I didn’t really want to change the look of them, they are thick, but I like the hour glass look, but it was the divots in them I wanted fixed. He said he could just ease up the “peaks and valleys” so I decided to get them done too and I have changed the "Amount it cost."
Surgery Day - I was very nervous going into surgery as I kept replaying the negative reviews I read. My biggest worries were 1. Spending the money and not seeing results, 2. Being swollen for months, 3. Finding out my pooch was more muscle wall related and not being able to get rid of it. I remember seeing the nurse, laying down and that was it. When I woke up, I was groggy and a little sore. My friend was there to pick me up and she brought me home and I went to sleep. I woke up a few hours later still just a little sore. I had to change my gauze over the incision wounds (I have 4 incisions, 2 in the belly button and 1 on each hip) every couple of hours except for one incision that needed to be changed about every hour. I ate just enough to take the antibiotics and pain killers prescribed. They also prescribed a nausea medicine which I took half of one every time I took any other meds. I think that this helped me, as I never was nauseated. That night, I was very swollen, but I could already see the difference and was very excited! The first night I barely slept, but not because of the pain, but because of the itching from head to toe. I took a Benedryl around 5am and that seemed to help.
Day 1 - The next morning, I had to take my girls to school and get more gauze, so I refrained from the pain killers until I returned. I do suggest not driving for the first 2 or 3 days if you can avoid it. I wasn't prepared at all in this department! I do also suggest getting more gauze before the surgery. The nurse gave me a huge stack, however, I went through them very quickly. I have seen on other blogs that maxi pads work too. So less than 24 hours from surgery, I was able to drive (in pain of course) and run an errand. I did call the nurse that morning and she confirmed the use of Benadryl for the itching and a few other questions I had (would the swelling get worse? - yes, was the swelling in my groin normal????? - yes and she reminded me that wearing the garmet 24/7 is key!) I went back home to rest. Later that same day, OUCH!! I couldn’t believe how painful it was! Warning to all, the soreness 24 hours later is a false sense, so get ready! I could barely get in and out of bed by myself. The pain was from below my breast to my knees! Definelty worse than my breast augmentation years back. I continued with the pain killers although I did not feel like they touched the pain. I did take a warm jacuzzi bath that night and washed my hair and washed my garmet and felt better. My stomach did seem more swollen then it did the night of the surgery. One thing I want to emphasize.. even though the nurse told me, it’s one of the things you won’t believe until you are going through it… You are not going to get instant gratification! It may look good one morning and super swollen a few hours later. I have to keep reminding myself that I put my body through an extensive surgery even though the positive Smartlipo posts make it seem like “lunchtime lipo!” I had read on some other posts to try Arnica pills (supposed to help with the bruising and soreness) and Bromelain pills (supposed to help with the swelling.) My husband stopped at the store and did get the Bromelain pills, and Arnica gel (they did not have pills.) I don’t know if it is mental, but I do feel the bromelain have helped reduce swelling and I did rub the gel on all my sore, bruised areas and again, may be in my head, but It was very soothing! I do plan on getting the arnica pills too. I also need to mention that I am very bruised! I have read many blogs where this varies and most of my bruising I believe is in place where it looks like he was working out the “peaks and valleys.” Also my right side of my torso had a lump before surgery, and now the lump is gone and replaced with a bruise again leading me to believe that my bruising was where I needed “extra” work. I slept a little better that night – took Benadryl every 4 hours. If anything kept me up that night, it was the pain!
Day 2 – Very, very, very, very sore! If I lay down, I am fine, but moving or trying to get up, sit up, is unbarable! Also, if I am sitting for a bit and then try to stand up, I am so stiff! I look like a 90 year old trying to walk! I no longer need gauze for the incsion sites. The swelling is up and down but my stomach seems to be flat for the most part. I still have some swelling in the groin, but nothing like the day before – Wow! My thighs are VERY swollen!! Even my daughter commented on how “huge” they were! Thanks;) I don’t feel like I slept well at all last night. Note, you cannot sleep on your side?
Day 3 – a little better. Still very, very, very sore (3 very’s;) Tomorrow is Good Friday and the kids are out of school so I am dreading not feeling good enough to take them somewhere fun. I have been taking a few pictures and will post soon and I plan to get my before pictures from the doctor when I go back from my 2 week. I spent hours on www.realself.com from start to finish (and still reading) so I hope this helps someone out there!
2 weeks since surgery - Sill soar, numb and...
2 weeks since surgery - Sill soar, numb and bruised. Of couse still swollen, but very, very happy with my results after only 2 weeks! I can't wait until my stomach becomes more defined! I still taking the Bromelain pills for swelling and started taking Arnica pills last week to help with the bruising (mainly on my thighs.) I can already wear my small size clothes and see where they are looser even with the swelling! Can't wait to see it at the 8 week mark when Dr. Adam say the majority of the elasticity in my abdomen will return!