I've been working pretty diligently to get...
Years ago I though about this but it wasn't until last July that I actually went for some consultations and tried to get insurance to cover it. They denied me the first time (Horizon BCBS) but told me what I needed. I had to show documentation, actual notes from office visits, for at least 6 months showing that I am doing some type of conservative therapy. I met with a wonderful orthopedic who wrote a letter and took x-rays, I attended my chiropractor 2-3 times per week for 8+ months, plus had office notes from both my gynecologist and general practioner stating that I was wearing support bras, taking ibuprofen and using heating pads with no relief. I visited them about every two or three months. The real tough one was that Horizon wanted the actual notes from the visits. This meant a lot of work for the doctors but each were willing to help me out. (one of them not so helpful, he didn't want me to receive copies of my office visits and he procrastinated). Finally, Horizon sent the surgeon the approval. I never received any notification though! All in all, it will never be totally covered for me as I have an 80/20 coverage for out of network. Even though my Dr. ended up being in network, which is great, the surgical center is not and not sure how much I will have to pay after Horizon pays their 'reasonable' amount. I did have to put down a $4500 deposit, but hey, I'm worth it!
Then the tough part came, quitting smoking. I thought about continuing to smoke throughout my surgery and after, but just not let anyone know. After much research, I realized I would be an idiot to continue smoking. I was able to quit cold turkey during both pregnancies but I couldn't quit for myself! Even with the e-cig, nicotine gum and patches. I tried it all. The patches worked the best but I needed to be off nicotine, not just smoking. I was so bummed but I talked to my gynecologist and prescribed Chantix. Awesome stuff! My husband still smokes (no where around me) but with Chantix it is WAY easier to fight the cravings, what little cravings there are! So now I've been nicotine free since June 18th. I wish it was sooner but it was probably the toughest thing I ever tried to do.
Then I had to find front closing sports bra! Ugh! I ended up ordering some from Sears and Walmart because of the cheap/free shipping. None of them seemed comfortable at all. I wish my surgeon was giving me a surgical bra, that would make my life tons easier! I don't even know if they will work because I am not exactly sure what size I am going down to, but they really do seem too uncomfortable. Could be because I basically don't fit into them right now.
I guess that is enough information for now. If I think of any other tidbit of info that may help or inform others during this process I will add it.
3 more days!
So now I am tying up loose ends, getting food shopping done, cleaning the house, etc... so that I may be completely lazy and recouping without any worries.
2 days post op
I highly recommend someone help with the shower, I really don't know how I would've been able to shampoo my hair and get my back, especially without getting the sutures wet in the front. They got slightly damp but I just dabbed with a towel.
So far so good, I really hope everything stays this good!
Day 5 ...almost day 6
Majority of Pain has definitly subsided, sometime yesterday. The nights are a tiny sore if you did too much (which i found out last night). So today was lazy day,
Another thing i havent mentioned is the constipation from the suergery and meds. I was a bit constipated even before the surgery so by thursday night i was very ill feeling. My husband bought a bottle of magnesium citrate which did wonders in 5 hours. But then i ended up taking a med on an empty stomach and vomitted on friday. Needless to say my stomach is a bit screwed up. Make sure you are regular when going into the surgery, that would help tons.
Any advice about the bar/wire feeling would be awesome. Maybe the pain will go away after steri tape is removed?
One Week Post Op (writing this a day late)
My doc said to just use Neosporin or any bacitracin now in thin layers. That is AWESOME
Awesome cause the Neosporin takes any pain away. The 'zingers' are irritating, but not painful really. Repeatedly said by many, I am so happy I did this!
23 Days Post Op and still a bit sore
I am surprised though that there is still pain and soreness. I get a 'zinger' once in a blue moon now (use to get them constantly). Hate the muscle-pull feeling I get from time to time on the side towards the front of my armpit. By the end of every day I am sore, even though I'm not doing much! There is not one bra that I can wear all day long, as nothing is comfortable. Even the Genie bra rides up when sitting and bunches under the boob against the incision. Last night I freaked a bit because there was a lump and bruising look on my ribs a few inches down from my left breast. I took an ibuprofen before bed and it is mostly gone today. But as I'm sitting here typing I can feel the bra bunching up and pushing the skin down. I think that was the cause of it, especially slouching when sitting.
The swelling is slowly going down. I do still drive with a pillow for comfort and bumps are still somewhat annoying. I try to get others to drive when possible. Making a turn when driving is uncomfortable as you tend to stretch not only the incisions but the muscle too.
The incisions are looking pretty good. I am trying to upload pictures to show so others can compare at this stage. For some reason some of my skin is peeling slightly as you might see from the pics. The pics make it look 10x worse with the lighting. Redness seems to show up in the pics more than in person. But, there are small openings at the junctions that are 'crusting' (thats what the surgeon calls it) and sometimes oozes a bit of yellowish fluid. It is minimal though, maybe a small drop. I have been cutting up non-stick gauze pads about an inch in size and placing them on the openings, on top of the neosporin, to save from having to keep washing the bras. There is usually only a dot of fluid on the gauze so I know I'm healing.
Finally, one of the coolest things (besides no aches) is bathing suit shopping! I couldn't believe how happy I was and how good I looked (well, on the top at least). I wasn't spilling out or squashed, I just looked feminine! Now to work on the bottom half of my body :-/ Looking forward to that 6-8 week mark where I can start jogging a bit, bike riding, sit-ups and doing laps in the pool.
I think that is it for now. I have been researching where everyone 'is' at the 3 week mark and that has been helping. Hopefully this review will help others.
1 month post op
6 weeks post op...
My spirits are definitly rising now. I am feeling like the old me again, just loads lighter on my shoulders. I have my 6 week checkup tomorrow and hoping all is well. I did start jogging on Monday with only a minor instance. I was feeling a slight pull in a muscle in my left breast going from my armpit to the inside of the breast. It is pretty constant as I'm running but it goes away without any aches or pains. I will ask about that. I need to exercise because I REALLY did take it easy the past 6 weeks. I was too afraid to open an incision!
Speaking of incisions, they do look really good. They are still quite prominent, it seems they are more noticable then the pictures on here of other women at 6 weeks. Most of the pics I've been seeing is in dark lighting so I'm hoping my recovery is normal. I still have the smallest, little openings where the vertical incision meets the areola. I feel like it will never close up totally but I know it will eventually. I will ask my doc tomorrow if there is something I can do to speed it up.
The neosporin worked wonders, I did not get any infections. I have been using Mederma now for a few weeks. I don't notice the Mederma doing much of anything, but I'm guessing it will take time and plus I see it everyday so I may not notice the changes.
Last thing now I'm waiting on is my insurance company to get back to me to see if I receive anything back.
I will upload some pictures soon since they do look different.
Have a great day!
After getting 5 other consultations, some which I had to pay for, I ended up choosing Dr. Cuber to perform my surgery. He has a wonderful bedside manner, is extremely patient and I just feel comfortable with him.