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Now I Look Bizarre: Lower Belly is Flat and Top Looks Pregnant - NYC

It's been three years since my full TT with a...

It's been three years since my full TT with a highly regarded cosmetic surgeon. Now the lower part of my stomach from my navel down is flat and above it swells out as if I were pregnant. It's as if all my intestines got pushed up to the upper half of my torso. I am short waisted and the doctor said my muscles were very weak so that the stitches didn't hold on the upper part of my abdomen.
Has anyone had a similar experience or heard of it?

I can't spend a lot more on cosmetic surgery and don't know if this can even be fixed, but I am embarrassed by how I look and can't find any clothing to mask this strange profile. I wonder if I would have been better off with nothing at all (though the lower belly is definitely a big improvement). I am 5'5" and weigh 145 lbs. I do tend to gain on the abdomen and wonder if lipo on upper torso would help. Advice please!

New York Plastic Surgeon

I strongly suspect that this big name doctor had a training surgeon do the work, or that since I'm not a celebrity he just hurried the job. The result is quite poor.

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Brooklyn1379 : So sorry to hear about what happened to you with the Dr.Nolan Karp but you are not alone. People place a lot of trust in doctors, and nothing is worse than when a doctor violates that trust. Maybe You should post photos online showing what he did so everyone can see what kind of work this guy does. A picture is worth a thousand words, and photos don't lie. But doctors do....
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Awesome for you! I can't wear anything but yoga pants and flowy tops still, and have gained, not lost weight. :(. I've started to run again so hopefully that helps. I am sooo glad when those good days happen. Good for you!
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Do you have pics of your belly?
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No, i havent taken any pictures.
I am glad that your belly is feeling softer and hope that it keeps getting better,as the days go by.
Well today has been good for me !
I tried on a lot of my fitted tops and i liked how I looked in them!!!
I still dont want to wear my jeans yet,because they r still not comfortable;but even with a not so flat tummy ,it felt good not having the extra pouch look. Though the scale is not showing that much difference, probably have lost 4/5 lbs max,but everyone has been commenting that i look thinner.( I was on the thinner side anyways except for my belly,which always bothered me)
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So funny how Ive tried many different things to see if I could get the swelling down too. Eating less definitely helps. I even asked my ps if I just happened to have giant, fat intestines and that was my problem. Everyone says to drink lots of water, but I found that for me, drinking only when I want or need, keeps me feeling and looking better than forcing all those fluids in my body. The treadmill is great for you and doesn't seem to strain the belly at all! I have seen a positive change in my belly: It used to get as hard as a rock (literally you know what I mean) and now it has softened somehow. Maybe this is the begining of good results??
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I know it is a slow process, and I guess we just have to be patient.
It was quite bad for me today, I had to take off the spanx because my chest felt squeezed and the swelling was like a brick on my upper abdomen. I have been thinking may be i should eat less and see if that will make a difference. I have been trying to drink more water too. I have also been going on the treadmill for 35/40 minutes but not too fast.i didnt do it today though.
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hi cchad,
how are you doing ? I am almost 8wks post op and i still have swelling and it is just like yours was at 4 wks. I am not going to see the doctor till the end of May.
At my appt last week he said that i should wear the spanx as much as i could and that the swelling should subside over time. At this point it doesnt look like it is going down any !
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Hi Houston. I am ok. 11 weeks tomorrow and trying to stay positive. My lower belly is flat, but the top looks like I have a beer belly. PS says to be patient and she will see me in three months. I wear compression garment 23 hours a day. This certainly is a very slow process!
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I am only 3 weeks out and this is exactly how i look. The bottom of my belly is completely flat (almost weird) and the top still looks pregnant. I know from reading this isn't normal and plan to get my sx report today and find out why this happened. Pls post an update.
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please let me know what you find out! I went back to the surgeon and got absolutely nowhere: he said it just happens sometimes and there was nothing he could do. I'd love to find out what you learn.
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We have been getting killed with snow here, so I haven't been able to go anyplace! I know that she did work in the upper belly bc that is where all my pain is. I did call the office to tell them I was concerned and they said that I was swollen and just needed patience at this time. My belly is great first thing in the morning, but after being up for a few minutes, the bigness returns and gets progressively worse as the day goes on. I am able to "suck" in my belly and thought I wouldn't be able to after sx, that that is what the tightened muscles would do.
Brooklyn, How long ago was your surgery?
I don't think it's typical that "the stitches don't hold" From all I've read, those stitches are super strong and they put a lot of them in. I have read that some people just have very lax abd muscle, and also read that losing weight and doing a lot of abd/core work will help improve results. Keep me updated please.
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Hi Sue
I finally got in to review my operative report, and everything looked normal there. The PS describes the stitching of the muscle, so that is reassuring. I will see her this week when I am 5 weeks post-op and will again express my concern about the upper belly. Last time she said it was "normal" but I doubt it. And it's not getting any better. I will take a pic and post with my story. I have read many stories on here, but this bulge is not common. I fear that I will have paid 8k and messed with a very healthy body only to be deformed.
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Sounds like your surgeon tightened the muscle fascia of your lower abdomen but not your upper abdomen (harder to reach). Doctors need to stop doing this! Can you get a copy of the post operative report?
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Are doctors required to provide patients with post operative reports and how long are they required to keep these reports after a surgery?
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You can post this in RealSelf's Expert Q & A section and see what doctors have to say.

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How disappointing! Here is what some doctors have to say about a woman with a similar sounding issue.

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