A decade ago I lost a substantial amount of weight through diet and exercise. I managed to lose over 140 pounds and I am now at my ideal weight. I felt great but there was a constant reminder of my obesity by the large amount of loose skin I had. I was carrying this uncomfortable burden around my midsection and no matter how hard I worked I couldn't get rid of it. Clothes did not fit right and the pounds of loose skin around my belly made it look like all my hard work was for nothing when I didn't have a shirt on. It was a constant emotional battle with myself and for years I was contemplating seeing a doctor to have the skin removed. I finally made the decision to get the ball rolling and seek out a doctor to help. I scoured all over Long Island and met with countless doctors but didn't feel 100% comfortable with any of them.
One day in the midst of my searches I read about a procedure called the no drain tummy tuck and I was determined to find a doctor that knew about this procedure. A no drain tummy tuck is an abdominoplasty without the need for those uncomfortable drains that seemed everybody hated when I was reading reviews from abdominoplasty patients across the world. The procedure is far more comfortable than a standard tummy tuck with a much quicker recovery time. A simple Google search for no drain tummy tuck on Long Island led me to a doctor that changed my life forever. His name is Doctor Epstein located in Stony Brook New York. My first meeting with Doctor Epstein was extremely thorough and he answered all the questions I had.
Since I lost an extreme amount of weight I was a candidate for an extended abdominoplasty which goes almost all the way around. The book went over what medications, vitamins and supplements I should and shouldn’t take before surgery. It described what I may feel emotionally and ways to cope with it. It went over exactly what to do and how to take care of myself after the operation and exactly what to expect. There were details about the hotel I would be staying at after the surgery because I chose to have the operation done in his certified accredited surgical facility instead of a hospital. I chose this because I honestly felt safer in his facility then in a hospital. His facility replicated a hospital surgery room minus all the random patients, chaos and everything else that comes to mind when you think of a hospital.
The day of the surgery came and I was excited but noticeably very nervous. I laid down on the table and the anesthesiologist gently put the IV in to start the procedure. The doctor’s assistant was right by my side and was the very comforting. She actually held my hand until I dozed off.
When I awoke I was honestly in no pain and had no tubes, drains or pumps attached to me. There were also no visible stitches which meant nothing to be removed. He used a new non narcotic pain management analgesic called Exparel. This medicine lasted 3 days and kept me quite comfortable in the beginning recovery stages. Instead of stitches he used a highly effective wound closure tape called Steri Strips which stood on for two weeks. After waking up I was checked up on by the Doctor Epstein and his staff and cleared to leave. I opted to stay at the Holiday Inn which is right next to Stony Brook Hospital. The doctor includes a night stay here at no extra charge just as a safety precaution in case there are any emergencies because the first 24 hours after any kind of surgery there are minimal chances of complications. The room was on the first floor which meant no walking up stairs. It had two beds for my family and also had a very comfortable recliner for me because you cannot lay straight the first couple of days after surgery. I fell asleep immediately after checking in. At around 11pm the doctor called on his own time just to check up on me. That was very reassuring to know he was thinking about me. The next morning he came to the room to check me out and make sure everything looked good. We were both very happy with the results and I was cleared to go home. The Exparel was still in my system and I was quite comfortable. When I got home I walked around as much as I could tolerate because the doctor informed me to walk for 15 minutes every hour or so to keep my blood flowing. This was not a problem for me. I slept well my first day home and had no issues. The next day I got a great surprise. The doctor and his staff sent me a personalized get well soon basket of fruit. This made me so happy and really confirmed that I was in the best hands possible. As the days went on I was healing and the pain was not as bad as I expected it to be. I was eating normally and felt pretty well considering what I just been through. I followed all of the doctor’s detailed instructions and that is why I think the pain was as tolerable as it was. A couple more days passed and there was some swelling I was concerned about. I called the doctor and they rushed me in immediately with no appointment. He seemed very busy that day and still took the time out of his schedule to check me out. The second I walked into the office he took me right in. He assured me the swelling was completely normal. I felt pretty bad for taking up his time but he told me that he would rather one hundred people call thinking they have a problem and really don’t than just one have a problem and not report it.
I am now four months post op. The first couple of months I have seen the doctor every two weeks. Now I see him once month. We are both incredibly satisfied with my results. I still have a bit of loose skin around my chest that I will go to him without question if I choose to take care of it. I highly recommend Doctor Epstein and his whole staff and practice. They made me feel so comfortable and really treated me with the upmost care and professionalism on every level possible.
If anyone is considering having anything done by Doctor Epstein I will be more than happy to answer any questions regarding my experience with him. You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I will tell you more about my procedure and anything else you may want to know. This was one of the best decisions I made in my life and I have absolutely no regrets.
Thanks for reading my story and if you are considering an abdominoplasty, Doctor Epstein’s your man for the job!