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PO 5 months - Still at a stand still... swelling not going down at all

Ok guess since I’ve been reading since Sept 2012...

Ok guess since I’ve been reading since Sept 2012 I should probably post my story too.

I have 9 kids, 6 I’ve given birth too and 3 bonus daughters. I’m 39 years old, 5’4” …well technically 5’3.5” ? and float around 140 lbs (that’s right fat floats ?) My first 2 were c-sections, then 3 natural & final was a c-section. I gained 50-80 lbs with each of my 6 pregnancies. Collectively I’ve gained and lost more than 2 of me which sounds really weird. I was eventually able to get back to pre-pregnancy weight but definitely not pre-pregnancy shape. Round and lumpy are shapes right?

My last c-section is what really started to bother me. It was done by a resident who had only been on the job for a couple of months. Between different size staples, turned staples, incision not lining up… the list could go on. My little pouch never seemed to really heal properly. The final straw was this past year the itching of my final scar got worse and worse. I was scratching myself constantly almost to the point of being raw.

Visited 2 different PS and both said no guarantees but a TT would remove the various scar tissue and pouch therefore removing the moisture source which could alleviate my problem.

I had the surgery on Dec 12/12 so I’m now 5 days PO. I had a drainless tummy tuck with muscle repair. I had 800 cc’s removed but no Lipo. I have to say I was freaking out PO because I had staples, 51 of them! Yes 51 staples instead of stitches. I looked and felt like Frankenstein. Of course I had nothing to do for a few days but read this site and was pretty much in tears by Friday night because hardly anyone had staples. Now I know I was fretting for nothing about the staples. Still not sure why no lipo. The nurse said not everyone needs lipo and for my frame 800 cc’s could be considered a lot. Of course I have no idea who to believe anymore but since I’m so swollen right now I’m going to have to trust the nurse for now.

I went today to have them taken out and wouldn’t you know my sole belly button stitch was the son of a gun that hurt. My incision is beautiful! Staples or stitches, doesn’t matter if your PS knows what they’re doing and you follow your post op care.

My favourite post is a fellow flat-sider who said the best thing is the BackMax Body Wedge. For the first 4 days PO I used a standard 23 degree wedge and pillows and made due. My BackMax showed up on Sunday (who knew the post office delivers on Sundays right before Christmas) What a God send! I can’t tell you how comfortable this pillow set is. It’s worth every penny and then some. I highly recommend it!!!

http://www.contourliving.com/p-21-backmax-body-wedge-cushion-sets.aspx

Well here I am 5 days PO and still quite hunched over and very swollen. Geez right now my stomach is so swollen I almost feel like I’m made of plastic if that makes any sense. I really wish the PS and patient coordinator prepare patients better for the range of emotions that you could go through. From fear of what have I done to I’m being selfish to damn I’m doing this for me ? Now hopefully in a few months I’ll look as good or better then when I was sucking it in and passing out LOL.

I’m just SOOOOO glad I’m not itchy anymore the swelling is nothing compared to the pain and embarrassment I was going through before.

I wish I knew I might feel like Violet Beauregard...

I wish I knew I might feel like Violet Beauregard from Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory at times

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z4_cf_fZDc0

Well I'm PO day 9 and the swelling isn't going...

Well I'm PO day 9 and the swelling isn't going down. I know everyone heals differently but seeing some postings where by PO Day 5 people are flat and wearing regular clothes is starting to really get me down. I'm really happy with the positioning of my scar and belly button. My scar has some puckering but seems to be healing well despite using staples.

I'm trying to remember I didn't do this to be a super model or any model. I really wanted to get rid of the c-section scar itching which appears to be gone (at least for now) but I did kind of expect to be a lot flatter in my lower stomach.

I'm hoping this isn't because my PS didn't do lipo or is it because I didn't have drains and it's just fluid? Or is it something else?

Anyone?

Well now I'm convinced I'm just REALLY swollen and...

Well now I'm convinced I'm just REALLY swollen and there wasn't a secret plot to actually add fat to my stomach. I usually wear size 5-6 and have a pair of old size 9 jeans that I keep for days that I just 'bum' around. My size 9 jeans wouldn't do up! They were at least 2-3 inches apart from the button and I tried sucking it in but couldn't.

I see a slight difference from day 9 to day 11 in the pictures. My scar is looking pretty good. Just started using bio-oil and polysporin (for any open areas) aka areas I'm too wussy to still rub. I have a pretty good bruise on the lower left but other than that bruising seems to be gone. Now only if this swelling would go away.....

'I wish I'd known that I'd go through a WHOLE lot of different emotions after the surgery'

Happy holidays everyone!!!

Finally realizing that Christmas is not the best...

Finally realizing that Christmas is not the best time to have a TT. Too many good things to eat, too much activity and not enough opportunity to rest... especially with so many little ones. Oh well, c'est la vie. Guess I'm going to have to "suck it up buttercup" mmm butter ... I digress .... and get back to eating properly. Now I'm really wishing my PS did lipo so I had a better excuse about why I should eat all the sweets and stuffing and bread...

Salt, carbs and junk are not my friends. Salt, carbs and junk are not my friends. Salt, carbs and junk are not my friends. K now that I've said it 3 times that makes it true.

My next check up is on Dec 28. Hopefully they'll have a magical pill to deflate my tummy even more. These comparison pictures make me feel a little bit better about "pre TT" and being on my way to the flat side (don't feel like I can say that I've made it quite yet but I'm definitely on my way.

Hope everyone has been enjoying their holidays and are recovering well.

So went for a follow up yesterday and having...

So went for a follow up yesterday and having casual conversation with the nurse just before she checked my tummy. I was wearing a big sweater since it's so cold out. When I lifted my sweater and dropped my pants her eyeballs bugged out and she said "Wow! Are you ever swollen!"

Yeah! Whew! It's not all in my head. She said based on how swollen I am (I don't even fit in size 10 pants I was an easy size 6) that I'm carrying 3-5 pounds of fluid. Which would explain why even though they took 1 3/4 lbs of skin off I've gone up 3-4 lbs. (I admit I've been enjoying the Christmas goodies on occasion the last week but not that many. She checked my tummy for seromas because I'm so big but said everything feels normal.

I've gotten the all clear for walking on my treadmill but no weights or ab work yet. I went for a big walk today with the family and I feel pretty swollen but was glad to get out though I'm sure I'll pay for it tomorrow.

So I've been feeling a bit down because the...

So I've been feeling a bit down because the swelling isn't :) I do feel that my 'baby bump' has been simply shifted down rather than removed and I'm not sure if that's because I didn't have lipo but the nurse insists I don't have very big fat pockets. She obviously didn't look at my thighs ROTFL

I've read sooooooo many of these posts I've decided I'm going to think about how far I've come vs how far I still need to go.

As you can see I'm still VERY swollen (edema) and still can't stand all the way straight for very long. I had edema really bad with all 6 pregnancy's too so why would this be any different? My scar is healing very nicely. I have Mepiform tape on now. Didn't know the tape would be so expensive!

And despite everything I like my belly triangle! Can't call it button because it's shaped like a triangle :)

To spare you my spare tire and the pain of all my...

To spare you my spare tire and the pain of all my pictures I've moved my recent comparison pictures right after my Pre-TT pictures.

Well here I am 5 weeks PO and haven't noticed a...

Well here I am 5 weeks PO and haven't noticed a huge difference. Still pretty depressed that I used to wear a 5-6 but now wearing a size 10-11. I'm crossing my fingers that it's just swelling and my PS didn't secretly shift my bulge from my upper abs to my lower :) Very disappointed about my back fat. I should've insisted that was lipo'd when I was in for the TT. He assured me he does lipo when necessary and that I didn't need it but it still hangings over my bra, which emphasized even more when I'm wearing my compression garment. (you can't see it in the picture - I'll take one next time)

I am wearing my CG 23 hrs a day and only take it off to shower and wash it. I'm eating 90-95% clean and just started doing light exercise.

You can see from my picture pre-tt I could suck it in (and not breathe) and look pretty similar to now (sucking it in and not breathing). The end shot is me po week 5 standing normal first thing in the morning. I still have that little "pouch" though not as pronounced it's still there and my upper abs are only there if I'm not breathing.

I'm not entirely happy with my results. I still...

I'm not entirely happy with my results. I still feel like I should've had a bit of lipo in the upper abs and possibly the lower abs and he should've recommended a bit of back lipo.

I didn't do this to be vain (as my husband keeps telling me I am) I did it to get rid of the itching below my pouch (which did go away). But I did pay $8000 and expected better results. I still look down and see a bump (though a bit smaller). When I turn to the side, there's no further difference in swelling. And still have quite an overhang over my pants when I sit down.

I'm around 138 lbs (so only down 2 since the surgery) with a low of 136 and as high as 144. I'm going to try really hard to lose another 6 lbs.

I'm trying to be patient but boy is it hard. Next appointment isn't until May 28.

I'm disappointed with my results. Admittedly I've...

I'm disappointed with my results. Admittedly I've gained 4 lbs since my surgery but I swear it's because I've been so depressed about my lower ab swelling. I still look like my bump from the 2nd and 3rd photos were moved down to my lower belly. My surgeon didn't do lipo but I really think he should've done a bit.
Frank Lista, MD

Though I was a bit nervous the staff were excellent! My patient coordinator and nurse never made me feel rushed or silly. Just as I was about to be put under a nurse and the anesthetist kept their hand on mine and reassured me everything would be fine. I've only seen Dr. Lista three times now for a total of about 11 min. I don't know how to rate because his staff are excellent - all 5 stars and he's polite but he makes you feel very hurried. He does ask if you have any questions but asks it in a way that makes you feel like your question will be silly and bothersome. I'm a little worried about my lower ab area and how swollen I am. It looks like my 'baby bump' was moved from my upper abs to my lower abs. I wish he had recommended lipo on my upper back. Not liking that I still have back boob. Next appointment I'm definitely asking why he didn't do lipo on my upper abs for better definition. While I did this to get rid of itching (which it did) I still paid $8000 and expected better results.

4 out of 5 stars Overall rating
3 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
1 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
4 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
1 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 tmes
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Comments (36)

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I didn't have lipo either and feel lie I should have insisted. My ps told me I didn't have any fat to suck out, so where the hell did it come from after surgery??? I'm sure most of my bulge is swelling, but I feel like there is extra skin and fat too :0( I don't see my ps for another month, I hope he can make me happy! Good luck to u. I hope ur swelling goes away soon! Happy healing :0)
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:( what does your ps say?
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Hi There, I noticed that you said that you eat clean...you may have already tried this but thought I would share: - Eat every 3 hours small meals - This should consist of a complex carb(fruit/veg) and a lean protien together. I do 20 grams of protien per meal..you may not need as much depending on exercise routine. I did a lot of wieght training prior to the surgery. - Avoid starchy carbs unless you consume them in the morning this would include the starchy veggies too. - Try cutting out the pop all together and up your water consumption. - Allow yourself one meal a week to have whatever you want it helps with your metabolism. Theses are just a few things and if it is too much just try one thing at a time. I have had weight issues in the past and during both pregnancies they were at their worst...I have lost 80 lbs with this lifestyle and kept it off for 4 years. Remember you want to make changes that will fit into your lifestyle so you can maintain them..It's about adapting to a lifestyle and not a diet...Diets are why most people fail because it is not realistic to maintain it after you have lost the weight. Hope this helps. (0=
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Keep up what you are doing and I bet you see improvement. Taking pictures for this site has really helped me to notice how slow the changes are, but things do head the right direction. Hardest part for me has been my diet, sounds like you are right on track with yours.
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Hi! Don't get frustrated. This is a notorious week for swelling and sister I'm right there with you. I was less swollen last week. I was wondering if use any compression? Your 6wk looks like me when I sleep with no compression. In bummed my dr didn't offer back lipo too. I now have a flat stomach and back rolls. But we can always lipo later. It's hard not to judge our results so early in the game but we still have a few months to go before swelling is gone. We will be perfect in time for summer ;)
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Don't worry the swelling will go down but even with it you're looking fantastic and your incision looks like its healing awesomely as well!
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Ok so I am at day 18 and have to say I am swelling like hell and can't stay in my new cg that theps gve me yesterday which was a stage one marena way too much compression. I hope for both of us the swelling eases up.
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Me too! I'm trying to stay away from salt & pop (soda). I'm finding massaging my stomach pretty aggressively helps a bit too. I just went to a used clothing store and bought size 11 dress pants and jeans b/c I go back to work on the 7th and my size 6's don't fit :( My hubby keeps telling me I'd make a lousy doctor .... I have no patience :)
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Unless your doctor did lipo to your upper abs, he basically stretch the fat down to your lower abs. That could create the pooch. I'm talking to my surgeon about this in my 2nd consult because he said I didn't need lipo. I'm pretty sure I do.
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You look great! I can seethe difference. When you posted the before and after pics you can hardly think you are swollen bc you look that good. Wow! Did you ask how long until the swelling go down?
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Thanks you're very kind! I'll ask at my next appt, which is on Fri Dec 28. Secretly I hope they tell me "my my Ms. Violet Beauregard down to the juicer with you"
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Violet Beauregard! That's exactly it! I'm at day 6 (with drains and putting out 40cc each per day still) and I am swollen like a huge Violet blueberry! Nothing fits at all, even my biggest pre surgery stuff. I've gained about 3 sizes and petrified that I've ruined my body (that was a size 0/2 just a week ago). I hope this swelling gets better for both of us! Mine started on day 1, so I never felt like I've seen anything I am happy with yet.
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We'll get through it together! I bet it's also a bit of the season. We're both probably feeling kind of guilty and useless around the family and house. Big hugs to you.
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to runner77... I'm reading as much as I can on this site because I am at day 9 po (no drains) and I'm more swollen now than b4 the surgery. I had a full TT with muscle and a bit of lipo on love handles. It was mostly the skin from having twins but doc recommended full TT. Anyway, I too was a size 0/2 and I'm so disappointed with the swelling. I feel like i'm 5 months pregnant. You posted your comment on Dec. 26th. Has your swelling gone down by now?
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I'm still swollen but not nearly as bad as early on. When I wake up in the morning I'm flatter then I am by mid morning. The PS said this is normal and can continue for 6 mths to 1 year! Yikes! I really think I should've had a bit of lipo in my upper abs and just a little in my lower. Hang in there. The swelling does get better. It's just hard seeing that some fellow TT's don't have the swelling like the rest of us. We all heal differently so I'm holding onto that right now.
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Hey, we have the same measurements. I've been taking this stuff from CVS, Scarguard Bruiseguard, that's for post surgical/trauma. And I have no idea if that's why I'm not swelling or having zero bruising but I bought two weeks supply. I feel slightly swollen but I'm fitting in my clothes which are extremely uncomfortable on my incision so I don't stay in them for very long (jeans). Plus I drink tons of water. I've had NO sodas. I've tried to watch sodium intake and I wear my binder 24/7 and I draw it in tight. I did not have lipo either and I had around 654cc removed, which my surgeon said was a lot because it was all skin, no fat. My surgeon usually puts in two drains but she said I was too tiny (WHAT?!?) to put two drains in. I've never been called tiny. That's so dreaming awesome. Anyways, I hope something I said helps. Everyone heals differently. Plus you have so many little ones you are caring for. I only have two and my husband and my mom have been so awesome that I have been able to stay seated and keep my feet up. I got reprimanded (lol) for cleaning up the living room when my husband walked in and saw me up. Remember how you looked the first day or two.... Best wishes! Merry Christmas.
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Thanks! I hadn't had pop ...soda for the Americans :) in 1.5 weeks and now I've had 2 in the last 4 days. I'm putting the soda to the side and just water or tea for 1 week. Then I'll see how I'm doing.
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Hi there! We have the exact same measurements (weight/height), so I was very excited to find your profile! My surgery is scheduled for January 31st, so have to start preparing soon! I have bookmarked to link for the backmax because I am already super worried about the back pain as I have a bad back that has been acting up lately. Anyways, I think you look great and presumably the swelling is because of your no-drain surgery. Can't wait to see your future pictures!
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Yep me too I have a saggy baggy pair of 12 that are ridiculously big but so comfty and they were tight in my thighs and couldn't button them. I'm 11 days out too
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I missed your newest pics holy swell hell on pod 8. Poor thing. But I love seeing the dramatic before and afters. Looking awesome. I just wanted to add another reason December is not a good TT time, cold and flu season. Every cough has me writhing in pain and at risk of rupturing my sutures :(
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So I had the same experience last night I put on my fat pants and couldn't button them . At day 5 I was flatter bc of the drains although the swelling is worse now I am sure it will go down
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You not having drains is HUGE! The only reason I looked so good at 5 days out was the drains..Now that I don't have them by evening I am swollen. The pics I have up are in the AM, but I did NOT have muscle repair and this causes even more swelling. You will get better, I have seen so so many TT pics and I have seen some like this and then by 3-6 months they are flatter than a pancake!
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Does muscle repair cause more swelling? Supposedly I had quite a bit of repair.
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Yes, My PS said it does and that is why I hardly have any.
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First of all, i think you look awesome, and you're funny as shat. Lol. Second, i second, third, fouth, etc everyone else. Swelling. And from what my ps and dh tell me, drains make a huuuuuuge difference!
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