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Tummy Tuck + Large Volume Lipo - 18 Feb 2011 - Pennsylvania

Hello - I enjoy this website and feel it has...

Hello - I enjoy this website and feel it has helped me tremendously in the planning process. The experience and advice I've received here is invaluable to me. I'd appreciate your comments, your suggestions and especially your enouragement. I'm getting a bit nervous as the surgery date draws near. Only 5 days before "the big day"...

My surgery is extensive. I'll be under (twilight sedation, I believe) for approximately 4 hours on Friday morning. I am having a standard (full) tummy tuck and liposuction of the upper abdomen, lateral chest, lateral hips and the submentum (double-chin).

I've done all my research, I've selected the best surgeon, I've prepared for this day for two long years. I am ready. I am not afraid of surgery...I've had several. I'm not afraid of the anesthesia...I've been under twilight and general before with no ill effects. I'm not afraid of the recovery...been there, done that. My fear is different, although I doubt it is uncommon.

I've been having some trouble beliving I will see a real change after surgery. I am afraid I will go through this major expense and all of this pain for only a subtle change in appearance, i.e. one that is comparable to wearing Spanx.

Is anyone else having (or had if post-surgery) this? I'm sure I sound silly. The surgery I'm having is pretty extreme. Surely I will see some visible changes. I just can't stop the negative thoughts. Any advice?

I will post before pictures asap. I won't promise immediate after shots because I am going to be staying at a surgical facility overnight on Friday so I can be properly monitored. I can promise that I will update regularly and give you all of the gory (ha ha) details.

Wish me luck! Talk to you all very soon.

Hi all, Thanks everyone for your comments, you...

Hi all, Thanks everyone for your comments, you have really put my mind at ease. The surgery went very well yesterday. I am very thankful that I had a nurse to help me last night (the doctor provides 24 hour nursing + on call treatment at their surgical center). All in all, I am feeling ok.

I had a little nausea, so that was a challenge. They gave me 2 medications for that, plus some serious pain medication. Aside from feeling like I was shot in the gut (ha ha), I'm managing the pain okay.

I'm so sleepy all day today. I keep drifting in and out of it. That is kind of good because when I am sleeping, I'm not thinking about the pain. All of the literature said that the pain should ease up by the third or fourth day. I hope that is right. This may be the first time that I've ever looked forward to a Monday!

I don't have too many tips yet - right now I'm just focused on the drain. It is seeping a little bit on my clothes. My husband and I discovered that men's jockey shorts are ideal for stabilizing the drain. We just poke it though the flap in the front and clip the drain right to it.

Thank goodness for my wonderful husband. He has been so supportive and helpful. I would be in pretty rough shape if he wasn't around. My advice is to make sure you have a very good suport team. You will be heavily relying on them after your surgery. I'm so tired and thirsty now. Think I'll go lay down. I will be posting photos (hopefully tommorrow)

Ahh bliss!! I had a lovely shower at my post-op...

Ahh bliss!! I had a lovely shower at my post-op appointment today. It was wonderful. They removed the drain (very happy about that) and all outer bandages/foam sponges are gone! I got a little glimpse at my new torso and belly button before the binder was put back into place. Even with all of the bruising and swelling, there is a pronounced difference in my shape. Doctor said they removed almost 17 lbs of skin and fat during the operation. The entire staff was pleased with my progress. They told me that I was "a perfect patient"!! To note: if you've had or are preparing for this surgery, you may already know about this little "surprise". For everyone else, here it is: after a tummy tuck, your crotch gets so swollen. It can even turn purple! Nothing to be worried about, perfectly normal, just a little alarming.

I'm particularly happy right now because I've had my first post-op bowel movement and it wasn't anywhere near as bad as I thought it would be. I'll admit that I did take a laxative and a stool softener this morning to "grease the works" and that probably made the whole process better. I took a pillow with me to press against my belly during. This really works, try it!! I'm cutting down on the intense pain meds because they are making me a little constipated. Very grateful for them when I needed them, but I think I can get by with just some extra strength tylenol every other dose now.

My appetitite is not the greatest. I only want to eat water ice, italian ice, icees, slushes and popsicles. I'm still so thirsty from the anesthesia. I was advised to add some protein to my all sugar water diet :), so I had some chicken for lunch. It was delicious!

I have vitamin K cream to rub on my bruises. There is also a lot of vitamin K in peanut butter. Looks like the next couple of days will be dedicated to moisturizing my skin and eating my daughter's favorite lunch-time treat..pb&j.

I know I keep promising photos. I swear they are coming. I need my husband to help me crop and upload, I am afraid of the mess I will post if I don't get a little help with that.

I'm getting pretty tired, so I'll rest a bit now. Everyone have a great day!

I've finally added pictures. As you can see...

I've finally added pictures. As you can see from the before shots, I was not within 20lbs of my "ideal weight" prior to surgery. At a little over 5 feet 2 inches, I weighed approx. 195 lbs on 2-16-11. I understand there were/are risks to having this surgery at thie weight. However, realistically, I know I will not be losing a tremendous amount of weight after surgery, so redundant skin probably will not be an issue for me. I was not looking to become a size 4 overnight. I just wanted to fit comfortably into my current size 16 clothes - in other words, no muffin-top, no cinch marks on my belly when I undress.

The post op day 4 shots show a lot of swelling (and wow, check out the bruising). I'll keep adding more photos so you can track swell hell progress with me. Enjoy!

Posted some new pics. Feeling very, very good at...

Posted some new pics. Feeling very, very good at 16 days post op. I still have a lot of swelling, but really no pain. After a long day I have pulling and pressure at the main incision site, and have to take it easy. Tylenol is helpful. I'm using an antibacterial RX cream on the incisions. I am so itchy! Palmers lotion is the best (and the cheapest). My doctor still has me wearing the binder 24-7 and for that I am glad. The binder is annoying, but gives me extra confidence. Without it, I'm afraid I'd bend weird or lift something too quickly and cause some damage. The binder reminds me to take care.

Everyone is asking me what I've done. The changes are very noticable now. Most people ask me if I've lost weight. I can honestly tell them yes, about 15 lbs. A few of my closest friends and family know about the surgery. I'm not sure yet if I'll tell anyone else. It's not really a secret, I just don't want people to judge me. I know this sounds harsh, but cosmetic surgery isn't exactly common-place where I live. But, I always knew it would be right for me, and I am a big advocate of enhancing appearance to promote self-esteem. My biggest critics dye their hair, had braces on their teeth, wear make up and Spanx, so I take their opinions and comments in stride. And if ever they decide to have surgery themselves, I'll be right there, cheering them on.

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I loved your story. I'm in my 40's but I weigh 250. I need a breast reduction along with a TT. Your story was an inspiration
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Amazing! You look so great!
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your results are incredible.. I am in a similar position and girl! I'm so encouraged! I am very happy for you and your results (plus a supportive hubby? u win!)
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Dear Beakidding; Your results are fantastic! I hope you can somehow post some updated shots of yourself now in April 2012, just so we can all see the long-term results of LVL. There are so many of us women who are not at our "ideal" weights and I think it is truly wonderful that women just want to celebrate their curves by having some supplemental help....when one's hormones (insulin) have been overreacting, this is a medical problem that truly does need help. So many people just do not understand that one does not have to be a full-blown diabetic in order to qualify for the term, "insulin resistant" or "metabolically resistant to weight loss". Thus, the help of plastic surgery to assist this fat to leave, also helps to correct insulin imbalance and regulate sugar metabolism, thereby reducing triglycerides by as much as 43% after liposuction! (Anyone doubting this post can research this for themselves). At any rate, Beakidding, I am guessing that you are still celebrating your curves and I am sending you a huge congrats for this healthful accomplishment...p.s. I'll be joining the ranks soon with a tummy tuck & lvl. :)))
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Wow, you give me hope as I'm not at my ideal weight either. Please stay in touch and keep us updated. You look great!
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Got any updates? How you feeling? :)
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aaaw I really enjoyed reading your updates. I am 7 days post op and r bodies are very similiar. I am 5/7 225lbs size 16 too. Just wanted to get rid of the extra skin and fat in mid sections. I too know that I will never be under a size 14. I appreciate seeing other pluz size women deciding to enhance our natural curves. My PS said he removed approx. 20 pounds of fat n skin. Thanks for the info about PB &J as I will begin eating them too. So quick and easy and also very tasty. Well u look great! Have u heard that once the drains r removed to expect to lose 5 -10 more pounds? I still have my drains as I'm still producing 60 cc's. Love ur pics and there is defintely a big difference in the size of your tummy! Congrats again
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Hi there 40plus: I can relate to your story. I'm 5/7 size 16 and a young 42 y/o. My TT is April 7th. I have never been (well in the health parts of my life) smaller than a size 9. I embrace my curves but just want them in all the right places ;) What did you find you were most comfortable when resting in bed, (ie. First day home- will I be able to slip into a nighty over my head or should I plan on getting a hospital gown?) and what kind of comfortable clothing to your PS apts. for the first 2 weeks? My hubby is my caretaker so I want to have an easy selection of things picked out for him. I have never had a surgery before so I don't know what to expect, how “out of it” I will feel for how long. Exciting but it takes lots of planning! I run a business so I’m a bit anxious about that too, but I have a great team I can trust so that helps. Uh, anyhow, any words of advice?
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You look fabulous!!
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Awww..thanks guys, you're making me blush! I really appreciate the posts. I've had a very good experience so far. I hope everyone with upcoming surgery has a recovery that is at least as easy as mine has been. :)
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Wow! Every time I see your pics. they amaze me. Your waist is TINY! I feel the same way about telling people. After seeing this website I am curious about who has or hasn't had surgery! I just want to feel better about myself! I dont care if my family (outside of hubby) agrees with it! Good luck to you!
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Your surgery was absolutely fantastic! Thank you for posting the pics as you healed. Just looking at your belly alone, you would not recognize that first girl :-) You have such a tiny waist now! I can't wait till you find out how many pants sizes you dropped! Congratulations to you and wishing you a speedy recovery :-)
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You look wonderful, and you sound like you are doing wonderfully, also! Congrats!!
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This is a great review. I just sent you a message, please post a response to help us, soon to be's out. Thank you so much for sharing!
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Hi there,
I'm scheduled for my tummy tuck on April 7th. Your story caught my eye because we look (your before) very similar. I wish I had a crystal ball to know my outcome, but perhaps you can be my window into what its like & like you I pray that all that it takes to go through this is worth it!
I am very interested on how you feeling now that it has been nearly two weeks. Are you mobile and able to have some norm in your life yet? How is the pain management and bruising?
I would love some recent pictures if you’re up to it. :)
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I'm so glad I can help. At 11 days post op, I am feeling great! Today my doctor removed the last of my dressings and I got to see my scar for the first time. I was surprised at how big it is, but it looks really good. I was also surprised with how quickly the bruises are fading. I should warn you that I happen to bruise very easily, so maybe the amount of bruising I had wasn't normal. No matter, it is almost gone now. I still have a little swelling, but every day it gets better. My pain is very easily managed with extra strength tylenol now. I even went back to work full time yesterday. I get a little bit tired by the afternoon and end up walking slumped over to take the pressure off of my belly. The only mistake I made at work was to try and carry my computer bag from the car to my desk (the walk from parking lot to building is about 1/4 mile). I could only carry it about half way. Luckily, my carpool buddy took pity on me and carried it the rest of the way.

Now that the dressings are off, I'd like to post some new pictures. I'll try to post some tonight.

I know what you mean about the crystal ball. I couldn't envision what my results would be like. It didn't matter how many pictures I looked at or stories I read. I was so anxious before surgery. I was somewhat reassured by my doctor and his excellent staff. They told me to expect a flat belly and more of an an hourglass figure. They said I'd drop about 1 to 2 pants sizes. Honestly, I didn't believe them. But so far, so good. I think they might be right!

This website is an excellent resource. Keep reading and posting. The info you'll get here is top notch.
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Wow! This is very encouraging seeing you healing quickly and looking so great.
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Wow! Such a difference! Before this websight I had no idea such results were possible. You are gonna ROCK!
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Thanks so much! I'm really excited because every day (as the swelling goes down) more changes emerge. I finally tried on some of my clothes - everything is too big in the waist!
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I am not scheduled for lipo. My dr. said I really don't need it. I am surprised because most people seem to get it. I just dont want to be disappointed by the results.
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I think it depends on the distribution of fat in the hips, waist, stomach. If you have a low percentage of extra body fat in these areas, then the lipo isn't necessary. That's good news! Your recovery will be a lot easier without the extra stress from the lipo. Good luck with your surgery.
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Congrats! Great tip for using jockey underwear, I wish I would've thought of that. Keep taking it easy, you will feel so much better in just a few days!
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I'm glad you made it through the surgery well. Pain is a consuming thing. Liked your comment "shot in the gut", while this is sad its a funny comparison. Hang in there, you will hopefully be back home to your comforts. Kudos to your fantastic hubby. Keep us posted. Big soft hugs to you..
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Well tomorrow is the day!! So exciting! :) Make sure and update us as soon as you can on how you are doing, and how the surgery went! ;) My thoughts are with you! :)
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