I'm 48 years old and 5'1" tall. I've had 3...

I'm 48 years old and 5'1" tall. I've had 3 children, my first two at ages 19 and 21. I had my last child at age 38. I've been overweight all of my adult life. In 2011 I had the Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy (VSG). My highest weight was 236. I've maintained in the 160's for the past year.

At my 2 year follow up with my WLS surgeon he discovered a hernia. We discussed having my hernia repair and tummy tuck at the same time. I will have a general surgeon repair the hernia and my abdominal wall then the Plastic surgeon will complete the tummy tuck.

I will post before pics soon. I'm very excited about this new part of my life. I've never had a flat tummy, even as a teenager. This is like a dream for me. I'll be 50 soon and hopefully I'll have a body better than I had in my 20's. :-)

As far as the cost, the insurance will cover for the hernia repair. I will have to pay the PS for the tummy tuck. Right now the cost is just an estimate.

Before Pics added

This is really hard to put out there for all to see, but I know it will help others along the way. I love to look at others pictures before and after.

Making my list...

It's only 35 more days until my TT w/hernia repair. I've signed my consent forms, made my pre op appts for labs and ekg, and making my list of things needed. This has all happened so fast, but at the same time seems like it's taking forever to get here. Not looking forward to the pain, but so looking for the extra sleep time. LOL I know that sounds odd, but I can't wait to be able to sit around and sleep for a few days. Not having to worry about work, the house, etc....just to worry about me and getting rest so I can heal. :-)

I love that so many of you share what you needed for surgery. I like to be organized and have everything on hand, just in case I need it.

So far I have:
extra pillows
body pillow
toilet seat riser
walker (already had from when my husband broke his leg)
recliner (already have)
extra compression garment
vitamins
and the list continues....

Vitamins

My physician gave me a list of vitamins to take before and after surgery, so I thought I would share.

In order of importance for surgery and healing, Vitamin C, Zinc, Vitamin A, followed by the "B" vitamins, such as thiamine. He also recommends a multi vitamin which I already take daily.

He also recommends eating lots of fruits and veggies before surgery to get in even more natural vitamins your body needs.

Getting nervous

I've already started having dreams about my surgery. Not sure if that's a good thing or a bad thing. LOL My doc already called in all my meds, so I'm set there. I think I have everything ready, not it's just the waiting part.
Trying to get organized at work so my time off won't affect to many people. But at the same time I don't want to come back to work with tons of work to do either.
I plan on taking off 2 weeks and maybe 1/2 days on week 3.

Just 3 more weeks...eeek!!

I'm so excited I can't stand it. The closer it gets, the more hopeful I am for the best results.

Spoke to my PS office and was told the surgery will take from 4-41/2 hours. Wow. I didn't think it would take that long. Also I'll have at least 2 drains in the pubic area.

I think I'm ready for this to happen. I just need to do some more deep cleaning on the house and meal planning.

Thank you so much everyone for the support.

My goal jeans...

Here is a picture of my goal jeans. Right now I wear size 12. I don't like a lot of pressure on my tummy. But I can get these size 8's on and buttoned....not pretty at all. Hoping after surgery they will fit perfect. I would love to be a size 6/8 someday.

Do any of you have goal jeans or a goal size after surgery?

One week away to be on the flat side.

I'm so excited and a bit nervous. I keep going over everything in my head to make sure I'm prepared. Still need to do some last minute organizing/cleaning on the house. Next weekend I'll get to the grocery store and prepare some meals to put in the freezer. I have some great friends who are also going to bring some meals over. I know DH will love that.

I've been in menopause for over 4 years and yesterday I started my period...WTH?? I totally expected it after surgery. When I had my VSG surgery I had one for a few days. I guess the shock to my body. Now I guess its the stress and my body is going wacko. Oh well, its super light and hope its done before next week.

I plan on taking a few more "before" pics and my measurements today. I'll post later.

My husband and I bought a new toy yesterday. Well more for him than me. :-) We bought a used (new to us) touring motorcycle. This is something new for us. We've always wanted to take short trips down back roads and enjoy the views. We plan on taking our first big ride today. Not long, but it will be a first for us. About an hour away, have lunch then ride back. He knows I won't be able to ride for some time after surgery, so getting in what we can now. But I can tell you, its so much easier to get on and off the bike than it was when I was over 200 lbs. And I hope it will be even easier when my belly is gone. I can't wait. :-)

Question...colon cleanse anyone?

I have problems with constipation on and off. Now is was of the "on" times. I'm also very interested in detoxing my body before surgery. Anyone do a colon cleanse before surgery? I would love to know I'm all cleaned out...LOL I know its going to be worse afterwards because of all the pain meds. Any suggestions would be great.

Just a few more days..

Today is my last day of work...woo hoo. But so much to do and get caught up before 5:00. Then the weekend begins to get all the last minute details done before my surgery on Monday morning. I have to be at the hospital 6:00 am Monday, surgery is at 8:00. I'm so excited and scared. I'm afraid I'm going to get more nervous as it gets closer. Good thing my PS gave me some Valium to take if needed. Did any of you take something to relax you before surgery? I haven't taken any yet.

Just an update on the Colon Clenz...it works great. I'm taking a stool softner and the Colon Clenz daily. Makes me just have a normal BM. So rushing to the bathroom or having to stay close to home, just normal. Thank goodness. Now if it will just stay that way. :-)

Thanks to everyone here and your awesome support. This site has been a God send.

The night before..

Well it's almost time ladies. In 14 hours I'll be having my surgery. Starting to get a little scared, but still excited at the same time. All I have left to do is pack my bag for the hospital. My recliner area in my bedroom is all set up. I have books, note pads and computer all set. Pillows everywhere as well. LOL

Trying to figure out what I want to eat as my last meal tonight. I know I need to eat something but at the same time, too nervous to eat.

I bet I don't get much sleep tonight.
Good luck to everyone else having surgery this week.

I'll update with pictures as soon as I can.
See ya on the "Flat Side".

I made ut too the flat side,

Day one post op. I'm doing well. Lots of pain but not as bad as I expected. Will try to post pics later. Too sleepy right now. The doc did remove 5lbs of skin.

Day 2 post op

Pain not as bad as I expected. About a 3-4 right now. I was expecting the worse.

Took my first shower this morning and it felt great. Here are some pics of day 2.
Still very swollen, so I have hopes my shape will get better.

Post op day 3

Feeling pretty good today. Didn't feel like I needed my pain meds when I woke up this morning, so waiting almost 2 hrs past time to take them. Went ahead and took one before I got ready to take a shower. Going to try and go longer in between and see how I do. I've attached a few pics of day 3 post op. Not much different from yesterday.

Post op day 4

Finally had a BM tonight. Feel much better now. Now much change in the swelling but here are a few pics taken this morning before my shower. Hope everyone else is doing well.

Swell Hell....why?

I woke up so uncomfortable this morning. Super swollen than any other day. Why on day 5 would I be more swollen? I feel so tight...urgh!!! I've done nothing different than any other day.

How long before...

How long before you were able to move around in the kitchen, do some light cooking? I don't want to over do it, but I'm so tired of sitting in this recliner too.

7 days PO pic review

It's amazing how much my shape has changed in just 7 days.

10 days PO....

I'm feeling pretty good for the most part, but a couple of days ago I started having horrible pain in my left upper back/shoulder area and up to my neck. Doc thinks its either gas (why did it wait 8 days after surgery to start) or referred pain. I will say using a heating pad has really helped. It was hurting to just take a deep breathe. I was wondering if it could be the fluid. he removed one of my drains and late that day is when the pain started. If wearing my compression garment tighter if it could push the fluid up and its pressing on some nerves or something...just a thought. LOL

I removed the steri strip tape and got a good look at my incision. Its low (which I like) and for the most part smooth. But a couple of area where its not and just wondering if any of you had this and it smoothed out. Haven't discussed this with my PS yet, just wanted your thoughts before my next appt.

Weight...

I know I know...shouldn't weigh yourself soon after TT. But always concerned about my weight and weighing daily I just had too. I was prepared for the worst but guess what? I have great news. On day of surgery I was 167.4 10 days out I'm 159.7 :-) And I'm still super swollen, so I very hopeful my weight has decided to start moving again. I guess it had to take a shock of the surgery to wake my body up. LOL

Remember the skinny jean pic...update

Today I put those size 8 skinny jeans back on...WOW, 12 days PO and they fit so well even with the swelling. I would have never guess I would be in them this soon without a muffin top. Before surgery I was in a 10/12, more of a 12.

Seroma :-(

Had my follow up today with the general surgeon, he removed the other drain...woo hoo. FREEDOM at last. But still have the seroma my PS talked about last week. Been wearing my CG tight, so tight it's hurting my hips/incisions. Neither doc talked about aspiration. Said it will go away on its own, and I'm on with that. But it looks terrible. It's very puffy on the right under my BB. Looks deformed. But I know in time it will go away. Still swelling a lot by end of day.
Start back to work yesterday and stopped working by 2:00, I was very tired and a little sore from sitting upright all day. Today went until 3:30 before I called it a day.

Been reading a lot about the Marie E CG's. Tell me more please. I need something. Stopped by Macy's today on way home and didn't like anything they had.

17 days PO pics

Here are a few pics from this morning. Still very swollen and you can see the seroma. Still get really tired after working most of the day. But not much pain at all. Each day is a little bit better.

Muscle aches...Pain

Day 22 PO, well its almost 3:00 am. Been awake since I don't know. Moved from the bed back to my chair. So much pain, can't take a deep breathe. Almost like the pain I had on day 8 out of the blue. It started on my left lower back, then within a couple of hours a deeper pain. Woke up around midnight asking for the heating pad. Didn't help, now the pain is all the way up into my neck on left side. I now have an ice pack on my neck to see if that helps. Feels like a muscle thing going on instead of gas pains. If I don't move a muscle no pain, try to breath more than a shallow breath and I feel like I'm dying. It's a deep tightening pain in lower back. Pain pills not touching it. I had some Flexerill, took one and hope that helps relieve the muscle pain. Calling my doc in the morning to see if he can give me something for the muscle spasms. Anyone else have this off and on during recovery?

pics

Here are some pics of me in leggings I bought over the weekend. Even with the CG on underneath, I'm loving my new shape. :-)

Seroma update

Back from the PS visit. He drained 50cc out of the seroma. He poked and poked (didn't feel it) until he hit the jackpot and it was gushing out. He tried a few more places because its still swollen but nothing. Going back in 3 weeks unless I need to come back for more drainage. He also started me on scar therapy with silicone gel strips. He gave me the go ahead to wear my new compression garment I got from Leonisa. Love it so far, no binder riding up or pinching me. As far as the back pain, he agree's it was me over doing it. Doesn't like giving muscle relaxers but instead he uses Valium. He said that is what he gives Breast aug. patient for the muscle spasms. So I'll see if that helps. We also talked a little bit about revisions if needed. Wants to wait and see how I heal.

Scar therapy pics

Just a few pics after I applied the silicone gel strips and covered with tape.

Pics never lie

These pictures really put things in perspective for me. Even after I lost weight with my weight loss surgery, I still felt huge. I went from a size 20/22 to a size 10/12. Having my Tummy Tuck has made me really feel like I've succeeded.

More pics

I took before pics and wanted to take more as I healed from my TT. I really didn't think I had changed much since the first week or so, but as you can see by week 5 there is a difference. :-) I love my TT.

Seroma update

Back from my PS doc appt. He drained 60cc today from the seroma. He was sure he could get more, but didn't want to put me in any pain. The more he took out the deeper he had to go and I could feel it more and more.
I see the general surgeon (for the hernia follow up) next on the 19th. At that time if it needs draining again, they may discuss going back in to remove it, so it doesn't get infected. I'll know more in a couple of weeks.

No more binder..

I'm graduating to spanx type garments during the day. I think I will still wear my binder at night though. Makes me feel better.

9 Week update with seroma

Wow I didn't realize its been awhile since I updated every one. I had the seroma drained again on Nov. 19th. I already have surgery scheduled for Dec. 18th for excision of the seroma cavity. It will not go down even when drained. My PS also thinks he will be able to remove a little bit more skin...woo hoo. This will only be a day surgery.
Here are a few pics I took this morning. You can see the seroma :-(

In two more days, another surgery

On Dec. 18th I'll have another surgery to remove the seroma cavity. I can't wait. I was super busy over the weekend trying to get everything in order, Christmas bought and wrapped, stocked on groceries, clean the house....because of all that activity I was in super pain and super swollen last night. I don't remember being this swollen since the beginning. And I haven't had paid with the seroma until now. I mean bad pain. Better today, but every so often I feel it again. So taking it easy until Wed.

6 Days PO after seroma surgery.

I had surgery to remove the seroma cavity on Dec. 18th. It was a success. The doc found a seroma about the size of a grapefruit. He drained 100cc out of it before trying to remove. He also fixed a small dog ear on my left side and removed more skin in the middle as well as raised my mons more. I have one drain this time, thank goodness.

I'm very happy with the outcome. I do have to take it easy for awhile, but nothing like the first surgery. I'm still tender in the area where the seroma was. Of course swollen as usual.

I go back for my first follow up on Dec. 31st.

I hope you all have a very Merry Christmas.

4.5 months Post Op

Thought I would add a few new pics. I'm very happy with my results from my Hernia repair and TT. After having the seroma cavity removed and more skin removed, I'm in love with my new Tummy.
I don't regret this for one minute. I'm almost 85% back to normal. I'm not able to walk/run very far, but this past week has been better. Not as much swelling after my walks.
I do still swell especially if I don't wear my CG all day long. But I'm weaning myself off of it. I still sleep with my binder on every night. I feel lost without it. LOL

If you have any questions, please ask away.

Updated photo's.

These pics were taken in March 2014. Scar looks much better now. I will post more pics at my one year mark in September.
Dallas Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Trovato and his staff have been wonderful. He sits and listens to all my questions and answers me until I'm satisfied. :-) His office staff has always been kind and fast to respond to phone calls and emails.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (211)

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You look great ! When the dr fixed your hernia did he use mesh? I also have a incisional hernia , so I am curious to know how he repaired it , thanks take care!
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Thank you. He didn't use the plastic mesh, he used bio mesh. Which is human dermas. No problems at all with it. I was scared of the old mesh you hear so many stories about having to be removed. Good luck.
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Hey your lookin' good! September will be my 1year too! I've about given up on the scar, and now its undoubtedly on its way to getting lighter! Hooray! Are you staying active? Oh I want to but its so easy to nap on the couch after work!
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My scar is soft and I think starting to lighten up more and more. Active...hahahaha.....in my head I am...but I can't get my body to follow along. It's been so hard to get back into my regular routine of being active since the surgery. But everyday I tell myself, today is the day.
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LOL! Same here. Every weekend I ask my husband "why didn't u take me for a walk" like I'm his pet and its his responsibility! So, today he's trying to get me to go walk 5 miles...
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you look great!! so what was the actual cost for the tummy tuck only?
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I don't know the actual cost of the tummy tuck since my hernia surgery was done with my tummy tuck. Yes I paid much less than if you were to just have the tummy tuck alone without insurance coverage. But I don't know how much it would cost if you only had the tummy tuck with Dr. Trovato. He is a very nice man. You can call his office for a consult. I do recommend to get 2-3 consults before deciding on a PS. But I will say Dr. Trovato is very good and really cares about his patients and how they look afterwards. He wants is patients to be happy with the results.
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did your scar get better on the pubic area?
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Yes, it looks much better. I'll post some new photos.
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So glad to hear from you...been thinking about you lots. You are looking FANTASTIC! Glad everything finished up well and that you are so pleased. I'm 3 weeks PO from my TT/MR. Am doing well, swollen of course, but healing well. Have some weight to lose yet, but very happy nonetheless. Take care and keep up the good work, you are GORGEOUS!!!
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Wos you have been through it. Happy healing. How does the doctor fix a seroma? Intesested to know.
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So glad to hear everything went well! Merry Christmas to you too!
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Good luck! Get lots of rest!
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Good luck sweet lady. You are looking good, so glad they will be able to fix your last little hitch (seroma cavity). Then you'll be set. Best wishes for a quickee sx, and SPEEDY recovery. I'm getting ready for my TT in Jan (gettin nervous). Happy Holidays
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Thank you so much. Good luck on your upcoming surgery.
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Wow! Awesome progress! I'm day 5 and my drains have hardly put out anything but the swelling is surreal. I'm wondering if they aren't working right and I need to be aspirated? After reading your post I'm going to call my PS tomorrow and see.
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I hope you don't have to be aspirated. What did your doctor say when you called?
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My doc said it was all good and said it was a good sign that the drains weren't putting out much. I have them both out now and it feels so much better. I'm dealing with the hunching now. Day 11 and it's just starting to get better. I'm practicing standing next to the wall. My dr isn't concerned with the swelling. Drives me nuts as I feel much bigger than I was before I started this journey.
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How often have you been aspirated? I'm draining about 15 to 20 ccs a week. I'm just in a panic about this.
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He was doing it every 2 weeks. Hasn't since my last appt., been about 3 weeks now, I guess waiting until my surgery. I'm not freaking out about it. He promises to take care of it. I wouldn't be in a panic, I'm sure your PS knows what he is doing.
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Thanks and good luck with your surgery.
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Robin I'm 10 weeks and also have seroma. I go in twice a week to get aspirated. How is your dr treating yours? Do you have any pain with it? I have a lot of pain with mine. Hope it heals up soon!
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He has drained it 3 times. Because it never goes down is why he is going to do the surgery. He is afraid it has formed a capsule around it and doesn't want it to become infected. I don't really have any pain with it, just discomfort and that weird feeling of the fluid under my skin.
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When he drains it, he gets 50 to 60 cc each time.
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U look great! Good for u:)
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