I am 6 days post op of a lower body lift, this round was a butt/thigh lift. I had done my tummy tuck a couple years ago, and had to finish the rest.. I must say I am glad that I broke it up in 2 seperate operations.. I seriously could not imagine having to deal with tightness from the back and front..
From the beginning.. I lost 120 pounds through diet and working out. I was left with a lot of stretched out skin, no matter what I wore, or what I did, this excess skin was haunting me, I made the choice to take care of, I had interviewed several PS, and entertained going to another country for lower cost, but in the end I choose a PS in Az, he is now retired, but worked out of BodyNew in Scottsdale, Az.. I was uncomfortable with the thought of going to a foreign country for such an invasive surgery, although, I would have been able to get everything done in one shot for the same amount of money, I just couldnt take the chance of having a problem, it was worth it for me, to get? my surgeries done in stages.
Anyhow, I choose my tummy tuck first, since this was the main issue, I was in and out of surgery in 3 hours, and was in a hotel near by for 2 days recovering before our drive back home 2 hours away. I was very sore in my core area, not so much where the incision was, I had drains for a week, and minimal bruising, i dont remember any actually, but I it has been a couple years, so I dont remember much of the first couple days.. My swelling was out of control, and the lower part of my tummy was raised a bit, I at one point thought I had seroma, and so did the doc, he inserted a needle, but nothing came out, it was just how my tommy healed, seperated from the lining underneath. So I was disappointed with this, but I was happy with progress I was making.. The swelling did get better after 4 weeks, but was a long road to recovery, by 6 months, I felt good, after a year, even better.. I still get weird aches within my core area, and swelling does arise occasionally, usually around my period, it never fully goes away.. compression still feels good in that area, just an fyi, purchase several different types of compression garmets, including a binder (which is the easiest to use in the early weeks, I lined mine with pads, like the ones you use for pets that cant stop pissing in the house, anyhow, they where great in that it was one big bandage, I was left with some stretch marks from prior, and then new ones around my thigh area, my pubic area seems to be fat still and bothered me for a while, but has since gone down in size, not sure if its the more weight that i lost or if it was swelling, but ask your doc about this, cause it looks weird..
My next operation would be 2 years later, a breast lift is what I chose on that round.. My breast where very saggy from the weight loss and from breast feeding, so it was my next priority.. This operation I chose a different PS from Tucson, Az which is where I live, so it made sense, I did interview a few and chose Dr. Todd Case, my reason for choosing him, well after meeting with several PS, he was the first that was totally honest with what my results would be, and at no time did he try to sale me on implants, some docs made me feel like I was shopping for a vaccum or something, so it was nice to have a doc be totally straight forward. My goal is to not have any foreign materials in my body, my breast where a dd going in and I where a 32d after. I was very happy with my PS work! Everything was even, he uses no drains, so that was awesome! And the best part, he does his surgeries in a hospital! My swelling was minimal, and recovery was quick, I never have any issues of swelling from my breast lift, I will advise, if you choose no implants, your breast will be tight for a couple months, once things settle, they will drop a bit and look 100 % natural, its best to always wear a sports bra, or some support or gravity will take its tole again, but I love my boobs! They are smaller, but fit my body well, I am looking for a more athletic body with smaller parts, then inhanced, I may change my mind later, but for now, lean and clean lines is what I like.. Anyhow, I highly recommend a lift first, then later on add the inplants, I remember thinking, how the hell will my body heal right with that added extra weight along the incision, i know many go through it, but I think its better to do in 2 seperate operations.. so, no problems with the lift, and 2 years later, I still love the natural look I have! My doc made my areolas perfect, and my breast match in size, youd never know, unless you got close and saw the scar underneath..
So now it has been 2 years since my breast lift, and I was ready for some more work, my current adventure is my butt and outer thighs, this area was getting on my nerves, since my tummy was good, and breast where good, my backside looked like it did not belong! I was tired of tucking my skin in my pants like it was a fricken shirt! So I went to Dr. Case again, and told him what I wanted, and scheduled a month later the operation, which was Jan.2, 2013.. I was very calm pre op, being a cosmetic surgery frequent patient now, I pretty much new what to expect, and since I had good results with Dr. Case before, I totally trusted him, so I was not nervous at all! I was set up for surgery, hooked up to everything that was needed, and the last thing I remember was my anastegiologist telling me to have a good time in dream land and I will be back before I know it, then that was it, I was out!
I woke up in the recovery room, and looked around confused trying to gather where I was and what was going on, and I progressively was becoming more awake, and alert. My chin hurt from being upside down for 4 hours, but other then that, I was feeling good, I did not request any meds, and within an hour my dad picked me up and off to recovery at home! I was not hungry but forced myself to drink water, fruit juice, and some beef broth, I watched Tv until 10pm, and finally chose to go to bed. I did not take any pain meds that night either, just the antibiotics, with bromelein and arnica supplements that my doc gave me pre op.. this stuff is magic, and I sware this is why my healing is so much better then with my tummy tuck! Buy it and take it as directed, you will be happy you did! They help with bruising and swelling..
Anyhow, the next day I was getting sore, and chose to take a pain pill, and kept on it for 4 days, I am now 6 days in, and feeling ok, not great, but I feel ok... the 2nd day till the 5th day I was swell hell, my legs where like sausages, I chose to change my diet completely and this has helped tremendously! Very low sodium! I suggest oatmeal for breakfast, a good protein shake with raw honey mixed in and a cup of plain greek yogurt, dinner could be a salad with fish or lean meat.. the idea is to eat a lot of protein! 50grams or so, and the raw honey is very good for healing! I will go into that a little later, but your body needs healthy sugar to heal, I also recommend putting flax seed in the shake or oatmeal, you will need lots of fiber, because going to the bathroom can be a bit of an issue! I ate flax seed and drank smooth move tea, this did not cure the constipation totally, but it helped! Also drink water, lots of water, if you dont like water get some crystal lite and mix it with your water, whatever you need to do to get the extra fluids in your body, you will wanting to flush your body out of toxins from surgery, and it will aid in healing. This time around I also did nothing with my bandages for the first 4 days, I left everything alone, I recommend this as well, my other operations I waited the 1 or 2 days as recommended but seemed to have a bit of an issue with incisions, nothing major, but this time I tried just leaving everything intact for a few days, I think this was a good idea, in that I have had very little discharge.
When you take everything off and go to take a shower for the first time, you will get light headed, so make sure you do this sitting down, then take a quick shower, not touching the incision, but use dial soap around the rest of your body, then get out slowly, and wrap yourself up quickly again and leave it alone for another 2 days or so. The least amount of times you mess with the incision the better, for you newbies, you will be excited with your new body, and will want to look at it often, but this will extend the swelling period and recovery, again I used a binder a binder and the pet pads... although this time I carefully put raw honey along my incsion and this seemed to help a lot! Honey is supposably a great anti everything and will help your incsion close and heal, and help with potential stretch marks, so far so good, it seems to relieve that area of pain as well. So my showers as of now are every other day with changing my pad during that time only and leaving it alone and binded up. I was very swollen the first couple days and have gone down a lot in just a few days, so my new method seems to be working.. you will want lots of pillows if you do not have a recliner, finding a comfortable postion is very difficult if not impossible, and the pain med at night has helped with this as well as falling asleep. What I also did was get a massage pad, I plugged this in next to my bed, and I sleep with it on, rotating from back to stomach, my theory on this is that the vibration will help with moving fluids through my body more effectively.
I also recommend keeping your surgeries private, unless one reads up on it, no one will know what you are dealing with, they will assume, you go in and come out 100% different, and thats not the case at all, and this will depress you if you let it, the first few weeks, you will look like crap, and will be bigger then preop, but its normal, everything falls in place eventually, all the pics you see where someone had a ton of skin, then you see the after and they look fabulous, ya, this is not the typical case, dont look at pictures of other people because it will upset you that you do not look like that.. it takes a few months to get there, so do not panic.. and remember one thing, it took us a long time to get obese, and it took a long time to lose the weight, so it will take a long time to correct as well... please do yourself a favor and do not try to do everything at once, this is very dangerous, many do this, and seem to be ok, but many have issues, with one thing or another, why is this, well think about it, our bodies are NOT designed to heal several areas at once, its not normal, and you will have more of a chance of complications.. I know we are all anxious to continue as a thinner person, but do it the smart safe way.
So anyhow, I have been recovering alone, and many of you might be as well, so get use to watching tv! And just relax, dont rush your recovery, everyday get up slowly and do something around the house that does require lifting or bending, I would not go out for awhile, if you need something at the store, have a friend bring it to you. This time is crucial, you want things to close and heal right. Anything you do will wipe you out, this is normal because your body is using all its energy to heal the trauma that has occured, I waited 4 days, and then started taking my vitamins again, a multi, a multi mineral, zinc, b12, and a few others, I feel better doing this, and I am glad I started back on them...
All of my tips are from my experiances with my several operations, so check with your doc first before you do anything i suggest, since we are all different, and we all heal different, what works for me may not work for you, I am not a doc, so my advice is just a suggestion to help you.. for the ones looking to go abroad, please do your homework, honestly, my PS rates where very close to the ones in mexico, ifanything travel to Tucson and get it done by him.. i highly recommend him, again his name is Dr.Todd Case from Profiles Cosmetic.. Tucson is very cheap to recover in too, hotels are cheap, food is cheap, ect. If I missed anything, or if you have any questions please ask, I know before each surgery and after, I was on the web constantly looking for experiances, you will not ever be able to prepare yourself enough, so dont try, just remember to rest and listen to your body, if something seems like its messed up, then it probably is, and talk to your doc immediately... otherwise, happy surgeries :)