Mommy Makeover Done- Saint Louis, MO

I'm the mother of 4 children, my last being twins...

I'm the mother of 4 children, my last being twins that I carried fullterm making my belly 50" round. My post baby weight is now 105#. When I was very young I had saline implants after having my first 2 children. I thought they were put under my muscle, well, they weren't. They were pretty old anyway. My PS was wonderful about advising me what would be the best end results with them. He ruptured them for me (just a simple pin prick) which is giving my skin a chance to shrink up and not be stretched so thin when I go in for surgery (I have naturally thin skin already).

So, I'm having them replaced with silicone and a BL. A smaller size will fit my frame better and my husband will be so much happier with that silicone! I'm excitd and terrified for the TT, just like everyone else. I've coped with 2 C-Sections before, but I do fear this is going to be more difficult. I also have twins to come home and take care of! I do have help the first week. I don't know how to explain to the kids they can't climb and jump on me without them either taking it personal or being terrified of Mommy's 'boo boos'...

I did my 1st shopping excursion to prepare for my...

I did my 1st shopping excursion to prepare for my MM. It wasn't much, just looking for a shirt that opens in the front. You would think it would be an easy find, but you know the saying 'you never find what you're looking for'. The best I could do was a zip up hoodie or an expensive old woman looking shirt with 3/4 sleeves....I would rather wear a hoodie as a shirt. I will have to try again, I came home with nothing since I already have zip-up hoodies in my closet. I was hoping for something more summer-like. It's been in the 90's here and my date is approaching in 3 more weeks. I don't think it will be sweatshirt weather yet. I will gladly wear housecoats/pjs/anything while at home, but especially need a pretty to wear for my ride home :)
Maybe next week I will get to break away and try a couple other stores. Plus, I do need to pick up the much needed items on the checklist for post surgery. I am the forever procrastinator. I don't want to be running out at midnight the night before my surgery like I'm on a treasure hunt checking off things on this list. That is sooo me. I promise I will not do that.....I promise I will not do that...

I've started my overnight bag/case for my surgery....

I've started my overnight bag/case for my surgery. I've settled on a zip up hoodie and tie sweats to wear home. Haven't bought the granny panties yet. There are salt-free saltines for car ride home and my Imitrex shots just in case I were to get a migraine (I take no chances with my migraines, EVER). So far that's it, but I figure that's some good packing for me.
I was wondering about the potty-riser chair. I'm not sure if I should get one....I know everyone on here calls them a must have, but what if your short? I'm 5foot, that toilet's not too far away from me as it is. Would the riser make me have to climb up to get on it I have to wonder.....
I did buy my husband a new rain shower head with a handheld to it so that I can sit in his shower stall. I figured I'd rather spend my money on that than a stool for my bathtub that I will only use for a week or 2. He was happy with that!
I'm almost at my 2 weeks pre-surgery date. I'm not too nervous yet. Life is just too busy with routine to give too much thought to it. My quiet time comes when getting ready for bed. Then is when I see my ruptured implants, so, that gives me more of a determination/excitement to get this surgery done....not a fear as much setting in over it as much right now. There is more fear leaving my twins for the 2 days time. I hate that.

I had my pre-op appointment yesterday which helps...

I had my pre-op appointment yesterday which helps make the upcoming surgery become very real-life, doesn't it? Only real new advice I received was to wear a cotton tee under my garter for TT. So, I ran out today to get that. When I was trying to find the most comfortable fabric, I realized I wouldn't be raising my arms up due to the BA/BL. So, I went to the maternity section and bought a nursing tank top instead. It's actually a comfy material and will unsnapped at the shoulders and drop straight down off of me. It has the extra plus of easy breast dressing changes too :) Win Win!
I thin I have my youngest girls ready for me to go. They've been told I'm going to the Dr's. I have grocery store shopping to do tomorrow and my bag to pack then we will be leaving for the hotel. My surgery is Friday morning 7am!

Post-op update: everything went well. I stayed...

Post-op update: everything went well. I stayed over night at Progress West Hospital in St Louis. I didn't have any nausea all day after the surgery, but then overnight I seemed to use my Zofran a lot! The nurses were such a help with that and kept me comfortable for that first 24hrs. We left for home Saturday afternoon and everything has just been a bit of a fog. I don't remember sleeping this much my entire life. The pain meds have kept everything at an acceptable level I can handle. My PS put in 320cc silicone under the muscle and they look just like the size I was back in High School! I'm very happy, you can't get more natural looking than that! I didn't have any lipo done, but the PS said he cut 12" of skin off of me from my belly button down. I can't wait to see what that comes out looking like once it's healed.
Sunday I pulled my pain pump from my abdomen. It wasn't painful, just a slow process. My poor DH declined doing that for me. Once I started doing it, it wasn't all that bad and well worth the pain it saved me over those first couple days!
When I've changed my dressings I don't notice any bruising or anything ugly down there other than those 4 drains. I really wish they weren't there! They will be the last step of this process to get past (I'm hoping).
As soon as I can stand straight I will post updated pics. I know how much those encouraged me taking on this big decision. For me this was well worth it!
Good luck to all those out there healing with me :)

I had my 1week follow-up appointment today with Dr...

I had my 1week follow-up appointment today with Dr Prada. Everything is looking wonderful, but those drains just keep a drainin' too much. So, we will have to try again next week. One of my drains is even draining 37ml on one day. He said he could pull my right breast since it's down to only 7ml drainage, but I would rather be better prepared by taking a pain pill prior to the pull.....I'm a big wussy. He agreed to wait till next Tuesday when we're hoping to do all the drains.
So, today was pretty much just checking my drains and changing my tegaderm tapes. All of my stitches are interior, then covered in tegaderm. Dr Prada's work is impeccable. No stitches seen. Everything just looks like a seam.
I will post pics when at a computer.
Happy healing everyone!!!

I posted a pic from 6 days post-op. I look a bit...

I posted a pic from 6 days post-op. I look a bit rough, but I still wasn't standing straight and it's tough to take a pic and hold all those drain tubes. My husband won't take the pic....he would be horrified if he knew I posted 'boobie' pictures online. I know how helpful others who were courageous enough to post helped me with my decisions, so, I will do the same :)
It looks like it hurts worse than it did. I can't say enough good of Dr Prada. Him and his team were able to keep me more comfortable than I ever imagined this procedure would be.

Well, since we drive so far to get to Dr Prada's,...

Well, since we drive so far to get to Dr Prada's, we were to call with drainage amounts and color on my drains today before leaving tonight for the hotel. My drain appointment was in the morning. All are below 15ml a day output, but only 2 are yellow. The other 2 are dark red. Funny thing is those are the ones with the least outputs of all. So disappointed, I want these things out. Instead, we have made another appointment for this Friday and my TegaDerm Tapes will be removed at the same time...no stitches to be removed, just tape. Once again, I will call Thursday with drainage amounts and colors....

Big Last Minute Road Trip Today! I called to...

Big Last Minute Road Trip Today! I called to report my null and void drain amounts to my PS this morning and they asked if I could make the drive in today to have them pulled (even though 2 of my colors are still dark red). A big resounding YES! My DH has rescheduled his day around and canceled a few things he had going on, we scheduled a hotel for tonight and we will be there by 4:00 this afternoon. I was warned the lumen is a bit large and will be uncomfortable, so expect it. I dread going in there alone....my DH will be watching and taking care of the twins while it's happening. I'll get past it though and it will be over soon enough!

I had a difficult time finding a PS I trusted to...

I had a difficult time finding a PS I trusted to go through such an extensive surgery as BR/BL and TT. Once I had a consultation with Dr Prada though, I had no doubt. His staff is so friendly, accommodating and friendly. The procedure is done in an excellent hospital where I spent the first night completely comfortable. Then the Number One deciding reason is Dr Prada himself. I trust his judgement and his professional talent....I really can't put enough words together (they would be too many).....I will keep it simple.....he is a gifted surgeon, a gifted cosmetic surgeon.
I'm so, so thankful to have found him to be able to improve my quality of life.

Updated my pics for 16 day post-op. I STILL...

Updated my pics for 16 day post-op. I STILL haven't had my shower. I bled during the night on my right breast drain site. So, no shower this morning. If I don't bleed today from it I'm taking one tonight.....I'm sitting super still with that arm, man, do I want a shower!!! I thought I was in a hurry to get this surgery over with, but I can't be more thankful right now that I didn't do this during the summer's heat. I'm glad the weather's cooled off that I'm not a super sweaty, stinky mess right now.

I just had my first shower! I felt as though...

I just had my first shower! I felt as though Heavens Gates opened up and blessed me. It was Wonderful!

After reading a fellow realself friend's update...

After reading a fellow realself friend's update who is so good with her words, I was reminded why we write our Reviews: to help others going through this same process. So, an update from me on one of the more difficult things for me to get past....  I have been doing my own drains, dressings, cleaning, ect. My DH is absolutely wonderful and has been so helpful with kids, house, pillow props and everything....Everything, but the blood or incision issues. I believe it's mostly the incision issues. He avoids looking at them which means avoiding looking at me and my changes. This has been a tough thing for me to take and understand. I take it wrong and I'm too sensitive, I close myself in the bathroom and lock the door like I'm hiding myself (big blow to the self esteem). After a couple weeks of it, me being the Great Communicator that I am, told him he would have to touch me again someday.  Yeah, I know, NOT the right words.  
This is the reason all of us write our Reviews! The update that I read that helped me so much brought out such a good point that her DH has to 'get used to her new body' just like she does and it's quite a transition. I have to admit, my DH does not accept changes very well, could be a good point that I understand. Not to mention the easy to understand point that she brought out that her DH told her he only feared her incision because it looks so vulnerable to him.
It might take my DH a little longer to feel comfortable, but that's ok. It's probably easier for me.....it's the skin I'm in, I can get used to it faster. We'll see :)

I had to run through the Mall today. As I walked...

I had to run through the Mall today. As I walked past VS for the 2nd time I convinced myself to just browse through for just a minute, even though I know I'm not ready for any of the things they sell yet. Bras, undies, lingerie....everything was a bit discouraging to me. It's hard to patiently wait as I wear my same baggy sweats, CG binder and taped up boobies all the time. As I was leaving I caught sight of a strapless bra. That lifted my spirits! It has been so long since I've been able to wear one of those......soon.....I can't wait!

I just had my 2nd post-op appt with Dr Prada....

I just had my 2nd post-op appt with Dr Prada. Everything went well with no big new changes. The steri-strips were removed from my boobies. They are now free. He said they are basically at their final size. I have no idea what that final bra size even is, i havent tried any new bras on or tried to size myself at all yet. I will make a point to figure it out now! They have minimal swelling, but not enough to be a bra size difference when it goes away. In 2 weeks (when im 6wks post-op) he recommended I could try the VSX bra. I'm going to try that one. It's nice to actually see what my final effect of my top half looks like without all that tape. As far as my bottom half goes, I asked if I could switch to a Spanx instead of the binder CG. He said I could as long as the Spanx applies the same pressure on my front abdomen as the binder does. Well as soon as my appt was over I ran outside and got my Spanx out of the car to try on. I can't get a smaller size, I hope it's tight enough to wear. I think it will work for periods of time when I go out. Around the house and at night I'm afraid I'll stick to the binder. Then the last thing that I'll be changing will be with my incisions and belly button, especially my bb. I've been using neosporin on all my incisions and my bb. The last week my bb has been looking a little angry red. Dr Prada said that's a result of using the neosporin instead of a polysporin. Using the neosporin after several weeks in a row on some people's skin can irritate it. I had no idea! So, no more of that! Anyone getting ready to be post-op buy that polysporin like you're told...not neosporin.  He said I can switch to whatever topical stuff I want to put on them now. I'm open to any recommendations anyone has. I'm very fair skinned, so I don't know if silicone sheeting will help me or not or even where to buy it???
I will post updated pics soon, hopefully within the next couple days at the latest. Getting that tape off me is a big change that can be seen!

Part 2 of the above update Dr Post-Op visit.......

Part 2 of the above update Dr Post-Op visit.....Spanx isn't going to work for me for more than a couple hours at a time, yet. I wore it for 7 hrs and this is the most swelling I've experienced. I'd like to blame the salty fast food I ate on the long drive or doing too much....but, I've done both those things before without experiencing this swelling. I'm swollen all the way up to my ribs. It's so discouraging to be 5 wks post-op and still not able to take this binder off. I'm supposed to be able to go without it in a little over a week. That just doesn't seem possible....do you just grit your teeth at the end of the day about this swelling? I was so hoping I could get away without this since I didn't do the lipo, I guess not :(

I posted my new 5 weeks updated pics and measured...

I posted my new 5 weeks updated pics and measured for my bra size. Bra measurement according to charts should be a 32D, but the bra I have in that size here is too big when I put it on. So, I'm thinking I'll be a 32C. It's so hard to say with implants. I'm going to try to get out this weekend and go bra shopping since now I'm at my final bra size! VS here I come. Nothing fancy, but functional.
My Spanx Swelling went down after a good 10-12 hrs of wearing my tight icky binder. I did get some good advice from SoCalMM on swelling if anyone else does juicing (I do) these are some good recipes from her I'm going to start:
For swelling: 3 pineapple rings with skin, 1/4 ginger root, 1/2 pear; and the recipe says mix with sparkling water, but I don't & instead add a few kale leaves and 1/2 cucumber. Swelling & Tissue repair: Ginger Hopper: 3 carrots; 1/4 ginger; 1/2 apple; 1 red pepper; Garlic Express: handful parsley; I clove garlic; 4-5 carrots; 2 celery stalks. I have been throwing blueberries & 1/2 banana into a raw protein shake
I figure I'll battle more of the swelling when I start up exercising next week and I better have a plan so I don't get too disgusted with myself. Plus, I haven't been eating too well on this low sodium diet. I really should be juicing, which I haven't done since last spring. I would certainly be getting better nutrition in me that way!
It seems everyone is healing well and my thoughts are with those right now getting on 'the flat side'. Rest well everyone!

I forgot to add in my update that I have an...

I forgot to add in my update that I have an interior abdominal stitch I can feel below my sternum now. I feel it when I run my hand over my skin. It's a super ick feeling and I guess one of the risks of this surgery, especially if your thin with low body fat and thin skin (I have very old woman paper skin). The PS nurse told me with time it will soften and not bother me so much. Ugh. Time, time, time.
Also, I did buy a scar treatment a couple days ago called Scarguard MD. I'll update how I like it after 3-4wks. It looks, feels and smells like I'm applying clear nail polish, but it's a liquid silicone that dries to a solid. I was able to find it at Target for $27. The way it's running out looks like 1 bottle will last 1 wk. I'm using it on my breast anchor incisions plus my extended TT incision. I've got a lot of incision lines to 'paint'! The cost is reasonable and worth it to try if it can help.
Hope everyone is doing well!

I have my bra shopping done! VS sized me at a 32C,...

I have my bra shopping done! VS sized me at a 32C, YAY! I bought the VSX Angel style since it has the memory fit cup that's better for implants. I have 3....2 white, 1 black...like I said before, nothing fancy, but functional! I get to start wearing them at weeks post op then I'll just wear my surgery bras to sleepfoe my Mall shopping I wore my Spanx and got away with the 4 hrs in it without any substantial swelling. While at the Mall I also splurged on a few Hugo leggings to try to upgrade these baggy sweats I wear everyday (I only have 3 pairs I keep having to wash!) Then my big treat/reward to myself was a pair of Else skinny jeans that had a fabulous pattern on them. My size was on the mannequin and I waited patiently for someone to be found to get them off of her! I really wanted them....even though I won't be wearing them for awhile....maybe for the holidays! It will be a nice feeling. That lady working at Macy's helping me kept looking at me with hate in her eye though :(
Well I think that's plenty of updates from me for awhile!!! I hope everyone's healing well and preparing for their upcoming surgerys well!

This morning I've officially started wearing my...

This morning I've officially started wearing my Spanx in place of my 3 row Binder CG. My poor binder is mis-shaped and weirdly irregular now....I'm afraid it's not even doing it's job, the elastic almost wraps all the way around me now with very little stretch left in it. I feel like giving it a proper burial. I think instead I will bury it deep in my underwear drawer 'just in case' a desperate moment arises and I think I need it....such a security blanket, isn't it? Oh well. Currently I'm walking on egg shells around here trying not to over do anything, terrified I'm going to swell up like before. I look exactly like E.T. when I swell. Even though I'm 6wks post-op tomorrow, I'm scared to do any exercise without my binder as my back up. I think I will post-pone a workout until next week. What's a few days for the peace of mind?
Several days ago I had what looked and felt like 4 little zits 1/4 inch below my TT incision line. When touching them though you can tell it's an underlying stitch. It's such an icky feeling. Since it's a dissolving stitch I'm hoping what stays under the skin will dissolve still. One has poked it's way through and my PS nurse said to either take the 4 hr drive up to see her to clip it or sterilize my own scissors and clip it myself. I clipped it. It's called 'spitting a stitch'. I don't know why I am so lucky....

This will be my 5th day wearing just my Spanx...

This will be my 5th day wearing just my Spanx everyday . The swelling hasn't been too bad, although, it has increased below my bb more than before. The positive side of this increased swelling seems to be less spitting stitches. The 3 remaining are staying under my skin and no more are coming out so far. I didn't know if I can credit the swelling or not, but it seems to make sense to me....more cushion? I've resumed mostly normal daily activity, but not exercise yet. We spent one day over the weekend walking all day and I managed, but I was slow and hurting at the end. All in all, that's not too bad considering everything my belly went through.
I've started wearing my VSX Angel bras during the day. I had to do surgery on them though. Some might consider it blasphemy, but I snipped those underwires out. It might just be the problem I have with my narrow body frame and implants, but underwires have always caused me problems even with my previous saline implants. I was hoping putting in smaller silicone implants would correct the problem, but I still have it. These wires irritate the outsides of my boobs ...they poke me like it's too narrow. I have a very wide sternum (center), so to buy a bigger size doesn't correct the problem. Wires think I should be closer together in the center and my boobs aren't there, those dang wires just aren't in the right place for me! I stopped wearing my surgical bra 2 days ago during the night. They aren't fitting me right anymore. So, now I'm wearing a spandex-type sports bra that's comfortable to sleep. 
I'm doing my BA massage twice a day still. It's easier to do during my shower/bath with soap. My right breast is harder than the left...I blame the drain that gave me such trouble over there. Overall, that side has just seemed to have the most pain/trauma through this whole process. I've been massaging it more than I do the left trying to soften it up. I don't know how long this takes....
My incisions are dark right now, rather purple looking with the capillaries seen all around them in my breasts, ugh. The drain sites on my thighs look like bullet holes and are actually sunken indentions.  On a good note, the ruffle look is finally smoothing out of my tummy incision, whew! 

At my 5wks fu with PS he put a steri-strip at the...

At my 5wks fu with PS he put a steri-strip at the top of each vertical incision on my BL where it met my areola's to keep that t-site neat (it looks/ed really good). Well, I left the strips on for a week...then finally removed them and a bit of my skin came off both sides. I went ahead and didn't worry about it and put sporin on it with a 4x4 in my bra over the site. Now a couple days ago they are healing and pink....I started working out just my arms with stretching. Everyone keep in mind I have super thin skin -the right breast skin has torn about half an inch around that site near where the strip was. No more stretching or exercise for me until all of this is healed. I've also been going bra-less to help the tear dry out. It has scabbed over now. Tomorrow morning I'll start back with a bra again, hopefully.
I did wake up this morning with the least amount of swelling I've had since day 1 post op! I still have some pitting edema towards the sides below my bb, but there isn't any directly in the center anymore. Even where it is on the sides it is a pretty minimal amount. I'm 7 weeks post-op now!
It's been wonderful to read everyone's updates and how well everyone's surgerys have gone! All of you ladies are looking and feeling so great and I'm just so happy for everyone out there!!! Keep resting well :)

I just had my last fu appt with PS...next one will...

I just had my last fu appt with PS...next one will be in May.   Everything went well. I had my 1st set of post op pics taken and agreed to let them be put in the office binder for future patients to look through. 
My PS is really happy with all of my results, I am too. I did have a bit of belly swelling from the fast food eating and drive over the night before to get there....ugh, I didn't realize they would be taking my pictures. 
Breasts are great! They look perfectly symmetrical. My left one feels exactly how I want it to, it's loosely moving around and natural-feeling in the pocket he formed. The right one I asked him (the PS) what's going on with it. It's not so freely moving. It's firmer and harder to manipulate with the massage I do. He said it's because of the previous implants scar tissue in the previous pocket he closed off. I just need to continue massage and do it more aggressively over there. You'd never know there was a difference by looking at them and you'd never know what a mess they started as either!
I have another stitch spitting out that I clipped off. It's still open where i clipped it off day before yesterday. There are now 3 others I feel below the skin below my TT incision. I hope they dissolve on their own soon.
I'm going to give a try to returning to my normal preop diet.  My normal diet is very clean, by it's definitely not low sodium. If I swell too much as a result I'll go back to low sodium. I've had a very difficult time eating without my salt and I don't stick well to this 100% of the time either.  Right after my surgery, I started off not eating enough because nothing tasted good to me and here lately I've been a carb fiend and found a love for protein bars that I never would have eaten like this. I usually eat as preservative free and natural  as possible and I felt so much healthier. I need to get back to that. Everything on me seems to be turning to exhausted jello.
I'm going to post my updated 2 month post op pics after the Holiday. I hope everyone has a good one!

I just posted my new 9 wks post op pics and when...

I just posted my new 9 wks post op pics and when comparing them with the last 5wks ones I took....I don't think there's a great deal of changes since then. The last couple of days I have started to exercise here at home. I haven't been able to work on my core very much, but it is nice to be able to do a start. I think it will slowly improve with time. I tried to plank and couldn't do that at all, but was able to work from laying on my back.....baby steps. I hope everyone else is healing well and all those preparing for their surgeries, Good Luck, this is so worth it.

It's finally happened....I'm wearing jeans...

It's finally happened....I'm wearing jeans comfortably all day now! At 10 weeks post op I was able to. I've also stopped wearing my Spanx. I did go shopping all day Saturday and I was on my feet over 10 hrs by myself and ended up carrying a lot of bags. By the end of that day I wore my Spanx to bed for the night, but I really didn't look too swollen. I just felt a little swollen mid-belly line and by morning after sleeping in my Spanx I was flat as a board! Finally, after all these weeks, I am feeling, looking and behaving normally!
On a personal note, I've caught myself during intimate times with my DH reaching and covering my belly in different ways. Once I realize I'm doing it, it's such a relaxing feeling to STOP IT! I know the scars are bad and I do hope they fade soon (they will), but sex was soooo hindered by my floppy belly in the past. This new flat place is going to take some getting used to, but I like it ;)
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon

!Updated on 5 Oct 2012:He was on my list as one of my consults and it only took meeting him once to realize he was the only PS I would have do any work for me. He is a perfectionist and has a true talent that can be trusted. I wanted a natural look and that is what he gave me. Him and his staff are Excellent! I highly recommend him!

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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