Peace Out, Muffin Top! - Smart Lipo of Abdomen - Temecula, CA

My mini-story as it pertains to this Smartlipo...

My mini-story as it pertains to this Smartlipo decision –

I am 33 with 3 children. They are 9, 3 and 18 months. Before we had our 2nd child, my husband agreed to allow me any cosmetic procedure to fix my belly and breasts in the event that they’d gone awry by the time we had our last child.

Child 2 – had a 5.5 lb. bay, gained 50 lbs., and lost it all in the first 3 months after birth. Body didn’t bounce back to pre-pregnancy appearance; it punched through to a WAY better body than I’d ever had before. Boobs didn’t look 18 anymore, but I was 29, so, you know, who cared? Everything was firm, tight, and shapely. After I developed a gym routine for the first time in my life, that only added to my physique. My new and improved body turned the heads of people who remembered what it looked like before pregnancy. I was 180 but didn’t look a lb. over 160 and was definitely healthy, and happy.

Child 3 -

Ummmm…What the heck is this? Had a 5.75 lb. baby, gained 40 lbs., breastfed for a year. I do 3 miles on the elliptical and 30 minutes on the Pilates ball minutes 4 days per week and have not lost one once. Well, when my milk dried up, the breasts did go from a 36J, to a 36G. So I guess that’s something, lol.

Breasts – noted above

Arms – a little meaty at the top to help carry these huge mountains, but nothing a few more push-ups can’t handle.

Legs – not a buncha cellulite. Big, but not enormous. Exactly where I want them to be.

Face – not fat. You wouldn’t put my face with this body if you didn’t see them connected to begin with.

Back – little sister says, “You have gills”. Lmao, not rolls, ladies, “gills”. It’s cool though; I can work those off too.

Gut – oh my! Gut and chest is where I carry most of my weight. I could deal with the chest (on days where they aren’t causing neck and back pain) but this gut is ruining everything. Jeans that fit my legs are too small for my gut. Jeans that fit around my gut are too big for my legs, ARGHHH! I live in yoga pants cuz I can’t wear good looking jeans without having to literally roll the gut bottom into them, lol and eww. What kind of meat patty has my belly become (hahahaha)!?!

Sooooo I have been researching (AKA obsessing)...

Sooooo I have been researching (AKA obsessing) abdominoplasty for about 2 years. Had 2 consultations and realized a tummy tuck is not for me. I’ve not been able to get past that chopped up look it brings. That new belly button, and that scar…can’t do that scar. Even when the scar is covered in really pretty tattoos. What if the surgeon leaves dog-ears? Then you have to pay to get those fixed. What if you get a gross type infection? Can’t do it. Even with three kids worth of stretch marks, I’ll take these stretch marks and my own non-butchered belly button over that scar.

Once I was done considering Abdominolasty, I began researching Traditional, Smart and Tumescent Liposuction options and like that Smartlipo and tumescent Lipo use a laser that does something to help shrink the skin to better contour to your body. Also, the Smart and Tumescent lipo cause less bleeding than the traditional method. So, smart or tumescent it is!

Why SmartLipo?

One month before Smartlipo - I was surfing through before and after pics on RealSelf.com and came across smartlipoca ‘s profile. There are many, many, many, many before and after’s of women who chose Smartlipo, they all look better after than before. My body and belly are noticeably bigger than hers, but I felt like hers was both closest to my body shape, and yielded the results I wanted for myself. Once saw her before and after pix, I knew I was seeing the work of the doctor I would be choosing. I called her doctor for consultation the very next day.

First impressions…

Nurses and Staff

His staff was polite and had a good repoire. Its was’t like when you walk into an office and can feel the tension in the air. These women were busy and seem like they wanted to be there. I could tell that the ladies behind the counter had either worked together for a very long time, or they were so professional that they knew how important their first impressions (and any impressions thereafter) were.

Another thing, all of their faces were beautiful! They must know some secrets (or get some phenomenal discounts from a very good dermatologist. lol) I know some times you walk into these cosmetic surgery type offices and you know immediately that everyone has had some work done. Not like that for this office. Maybe a novice can tell, but I couldn’t tell if they’d all had work done, or if they had all just taken immaculate care of their faces. But, I digress….


The Doctor…

The doctor has been working in dermatology and liposuction for around or over 20 years. When I met him two Fridays ago, was overviewed, and was able to converse with him, I was very confortable with his personality, and manner. I informed and asked him everything I wanted to know about the procedure and what I expected from it. He answered my questions quickly, knowledgably, frankly, and painlessly. It was as if he was a real expert, rather than someone whom had NOT been doing lipo for 15 to 20 years. He didn’t beat around the bush or try to sell me a pipe dream. I respect that kind of honesty. That’s why I ultimately chose him.


Cost…….
First off, I’m using Carecredit. I was approved for $3,500 and my husband will supplement the rest. Dr priced my abs at 3500, my garments fat 200, and offered a deal for the back area. I opted out of the back area because I am curious to see how all this exercising will affect the rest of my body when I no longer have fatgutitus in the way, lol. Plus I’ve never had a problem with a fat back before now. I think its gut related and will go away now that I can focus on it. Dr. offered a discount if I decide to come back and fix 2 areas in the future. Sounds good to me.

10 days before… I chose the doctor and and...

10 days before…
I chose the doctor and and scheduled my procedure for 10 days later. So I didn’t give myself a lot of time to prepare. But I didn’t really need a lot of time wither. Got all my prescriptions together, got my labs done. Asked hubby to take a day off, cooked 14 days worth of breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and fell out for the night.

Day one…
Morning of procedure…

Did my Hipicleanse bath, grabbed a money order from 711 and headed to the office for surgery.


After surgery, went home and didn’t hurt at all. Was just a little sore. Knew I wasn’t gonna want to hold ice packs and peas to my core the whole day and didn’t want them to fall off while I was asleep. So, I put a tube top style shape wear over my surgical garments and put the ice and pea bags between the two. Now I can do everything (even sleep) hands free because the shape wear holds it all in place. Winning! Lol.

Got up to use the bathroom about 8 hours after surgery. Unsnapped the undergarment and a flood of blood poured down both legs and pooled around my feet. Must have come from the drainage material, ugghhh! Couldn’t remove the compression stalkings, so I just blotted them clean, cleaned up the huge floor puddle and rolled the drainage paper back up and into the top of my panties.

Vomiting - I knew I had pills to take and couldn’t take them because I threw up every thing I put in my face. Finally, at about midnight, I was able to hold down a litter of water. So I waited 30 minutes and drank another litter and took all my pills except for the one for pain. No longer nauseous, yay!

Day Two…

Morning
Not nauseous at all. Barely sore. Drank 2 litters of water and have not had to take a pain pill at all. Got up and made hubby and big boys’ lunches. Sat down to type this up while I still have energy and the babies are asleep. Now I’m gonna lay it down myself. I read somewhere that day three is the doozey. So I’m gonna drink another 2 litters and get as much done today as I can, because I don’t know if I’ll be in pain tomorrow.



Day Three…


I slept with two bags of ice and a bag of peas on the outside of the girdle. All held in place by the top layer of shape wear I have ben wearing since I got home on day one. I just couldn’t do anything and hold the ice in place at the same time. So the shape wear I already had on hand came in pretty handy.

OUCH! Even though the skin on my Bely is numb, I feel like if I stand up all the way, I’ll pull a muscle. Must be from a combo of suddenly missing 33 years worth of fat, and having to sleep on my back for 2 nights in a row (tummy sleeper here). Not a broken bone ouch, but a sore muscle/stinging skin ouch.

Its shower day!
Took the compression girdle off at 7:30 with hubby on standby in case I got lightheaded. Didn’t get light headed at all. Did a little self-evaluation in the bathroom mirror and am very bruised and very swollen, but am satisfied thus far. It’s only been almost 48 hours, but even with all the swelling, my abdomen is way smaller than it was before the procedure.

I noticed that only one drain has been (and was still) doing all the work. The bottom left side. Noticed there was a flap on the bottom of my belly. From researching online before the procedure, I’ve gathered that gravity plays a part in the draining process. Fluids that are not drained are reabsorbed and your body has to find another way to eliminate it (urination). This little belly flap hung over the drain. I’m not a doctor, but I couldn’t see how the drain could pull from the flap upside down.

Since the drain was still heavily working, I pulled the flap up and let gravity do its business. Stood like that for about 2.5 hours until the drainage had gone from a pour to a drip. When I finally stopped, the belly flap was totally gone. Soooo glad I’m a curious person, otherwise my body would have that much more undrained fluid to eliminate because the drainage stopped completely as soon as I took my shower.

Showered (very quickly), put on new set of girdle and ice packs, and shape wear. Went to the mall with my cousin who came to visit and had to move slowly as the dull pain was creeping in. Just popped my first vicodin to avoid this major soreness from turning into major pain.


Day four…

It is sooo hard to get comfortable while sleeping with this girdle. Pain is the same as last night. I’ll take it easy today and not go leaving the house for errands. I don’t want to take another vicodin because last night it was hard to breath, my throat felt like it was being squeezed fro the inside, I was lightheaded and nauseous. I cant tell if it was a side effect from lipo (because I did throw up on day one), and don’t think I can take anything else for pain. So Ide better chill out to avoid a painful night.

Day five…

Against my better judgment, I took a half a vicoden for pain and was up allll night throwing up and sweating, lol. Forget this, tossing this mess in the trash. I’ll just hurt. The pain isn’t bad enough to trade it for this. Really, its not.


Day Six…

Still sore and stinging. Not a big deal though. As long as I am doing things standing up I’m cool. Only hurts to go through sitting, getting up, and rolling over motions. When I walk slowly and purposely, I’m in no pain or discomfort at all. I have noticed that its better to keep the girdle unbent. When I sit and it creases, it creases the skin underneath, and that burns.

Day Seven…

You know, these compression girdles are uncomfortable, but I can see myself wearing them all day, even after the timeframe required by my doctor. They are so feminine. Anyway, measured myself. Pre-op my waist was 39 and hips were 44. Today my waist was 35 and hips are still 44. Lol, whatever, I’ll take it! Abdomen is still as numb, swollen, stinging, and sore as yesterday, but I don’t expect things to not be numb, sore, and stinging for another month or so. I expect it to be swollen for 3 more months. i'm very happy with the results thus far.

Day 9... Still swollen and stinging. Not so...

Day 9...

Still swollen and stinging. Not so sore as the other day. Easier to sit and turn. This might be T.M.I. But i failed to mention how swollen my pubic mound is. Its obviously carrying some fluid, lol. I mention this as a segue into discussing how glad I am that the doctor advised that I purchase two corset garments. I have one from rib to knee, and another from rib to crotch. The long one is crotchless, the short one hooks at the crotch. With all this extra liquid in my pubic mound, there's absolutely no way in the world I would be able to wear the short corset for longer than 2 or 3 minutes. I tried it and the whole thing went numb, lol. So, ummm, no. I'll be sporting the long one till this netherland swelling goes down.

Oh yeah! My ankles are just as swollen as...

Oh yeah! My ankles are just as swollen as everything else, so I'll continue to wear the compression stockings for another week to try and remedy that.

I called the office today to ask about exercising. I wanted to know if I am to take the corset off to exercise, or if keep it on. Don't want to ruin it, and can't figure getting it all sweaty, taking a shower, and putting the same wet corset back on (now that I can't comfortably wear the short corset, i'm limited to one).

The office said to exercise in it. "Never take it off. Well, only to shower, then put it back on". Okay. That sounds simple enough. I'll just have to wear a vinyl suit between the corset and my skin so the corset never touches sweat. Problem solved!

Day 11... WHY DID I TAKE MY GIRDLE OFF!!! Went...

Day 11... WHY DID I TAKE MY GIRDLE OFF!!!

Went to Vegas with the hubby last friday for our anniversary weekend. The bruising was nearly gone, I was in no real pain, and swelling hadn't changed. So I figured i'de take my girdle off because it had made me uncomfortable during the 4 hour drive there.

After 2 hours with it off, my gut swole up to be huge! My legs and ankles swole up to the point of edema. I squeezed my shin to see if it would leave a mark and it left deep finger indentations. As if I had squeezed bread dough.

I only packed skirts, capri-pants, and high heels. So, I had to buy long pants and flip flops so I could leave the hotel room, lol. Anyway, I have no regrets about having this done. I just would have waited till after Vegas so I could have been girdle free. WHY DID I TAKE MY GIRDLE OFF! Especially after the nurse already told me last week to never take it off, smh & lol. It was way too soon and I should have done as I was told.

Day 15...

First day of the second week. Only one small little bruise left and my stretch marks are even looking better, whooohoo! What an added bonus, as I was never even worried about them. Waist is 33 (down 6 inches). Hips are 43 (down one inch).

Three Week Update... Hi! 1. The bruising...

Three Week Update...

Hi!
1. The bruising was actually gone at the end of week 2.

2. Still swelling. Waist measurement is 33 some days and 32 on others. Hip is 41. That's down 9 inches from my pre-op measurements of 39 inch waist and 44 inch hips. Friggin awesome.

3. What is working best for me to reduce swelling are Arnica pills, ginger capsules, vitamin A, fish oil capsules (in addition to the vitamin a), and ibuprofen. All of which are known to reduce inflammation. When took my girdle off too soon and developed all that swelling and edema, I started the aforementioned vitamin combo and the edema was gone in two days. The extra swelling was gone in three.

The bruises are gone, so i'm done taking the arnica.

Three Week Update... Hi! 1. The bruising...

Three Week Update...

Hi!
1. The bruising was actually gone at the end of week 2.

2. Still swelling. Waist measurement is 33 some days and 32 on others. Hip is 41. That's down 9 inches from my pre-op measurements of 39 inch waist and 44 inch hips. Friggin awesome.

3. What is working best for me to reduce swelling are Arnica pills, ginger capsules, vitamin A, fish oil capsules (in addition to the vitamin a), and ibuprofen. All of which are known to reduce inflammation. When took my girdle off too soon and developed all that swelling and edema, I started the aforementioned vitamin combo and the edema was gone in two days. The extra swelling was gone in three.

The bruises are gone, so i'm done taking the arnica.

Week Four Update... Tummy almost totally flat...

Week Four Update...

Tummy almost totally flat. Stretch marks are really fading. Guess they couldn't do that before since they never got a break. Now to really begin actually working out. Have these hard knots on the bottom of my tummy that I am supposed to begin massaging this week, but we'll take that slow since its uncomfortable to even lightly massage them. Stitches fell out. No longer painful to twist, sit, bend or stand. Slept on my tummy last night too.

LOVE these results.

Still wear the corsets because my skin just feels more secure when i'm wearing one.

Measurements fluctuates between 32 and 33. Hip is pretty constant at 41. Can't wait to see all the shrinkage once I begin my 2 hours of exercise 5 days a week! Whooohooo!
Dr. Kelly O'Neil

I was surfing through before and after pics on RealSelf.com and came across smartlipoca ‘s profile.

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 Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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Comments (15)

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Hey!!...just wanted to say i love your results, what compression garment are you using??
  • Reply
Thankuuu! Both garments are Veronique. Kinda spendy, but they're well worth it.
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Thanks alot for your post. I had my upper and lower abdomen done 6 days ago.. I can't lie I removed my wrap around not the garment/ girtle for a night of sleep but put it back on in the a.m like 3 a.m. I hope that wasnt too long, but my garment is sooooooo tight OMG
  • Reply
lol, I wanted to take mine off so bad. It will get looser as your swelling goes down. You know what I found to be more uncomfortable than the compression garment? Spanx! Ugghhhh. I cannot.
  • Reply

Hi there, welcome and thanks so much for sharing your journey with us!

Wow, your review is very detailed, which is awesome! It's going to be a great resource for many of the Lipo members on here!

You're definitely braver than I am, all of that bruising looks really sore! Hopefully it will all be worth it though and your results will just keep getting better!

  • Reply
Hi Kirsty! Yeah, it's pretty detailed. I hate having to sera all over the internet to get info that could really be in one spot. So I included as much into this as I could so that whomever stumbles upon it won't have to search like I did. Today marks the beginning or the second week and the bruising is nearly gone. Honestly, the worst part wasn't the bruising, it was trying to move in the compression garment. Anyway, thanks for the warm welcome! :-)
  • Reply

Thanks for the updates. That's so crazy about the swelling, once you took your girdle off! I guess they really do mean to *never* take it off!

I'm glad you're liking your results so far, just remember to keep the girdle on all the time! ;-)

  • Reply
lol, yeah. That was unwise.
  • Reply
You are looking great, I can see a big difference already. I am 2 weeks post op and I'm still swollen too...I agree wearing the compression garmet helps a lot...I'm wearing it about 22-23 hours a day. And I'm still taking arnica and bromelain. I can't wait to see you final results in a few months!!!
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Thanks! Im about six weeks out now and looove these results thus far. I can see myself wearing the garments for another few months.
  • Reply
You look great! My surgery is Wednesday with Dr. O'neil! Reading your blog has calmed my nerves and made me even more excited! Thank you!!!
  • Reply
Thank you and glad I could help! Isn't he awesome? If it weren't for this site, I wouldn't have even known him to exist. Would still be sitting around with a whole extra gut wondering what I was gonna do with it, hahaha. Good Luck!
  • Reply
Thank you ao much for allowing us to go on this journey with you! I am considering having this procedure. My only question so far is how long do you have to wear the compression garments? Is it months or literally forever??? I cant imagine that being very sexy!
  • Reply
:-) My Dr. instructed to wear the compression garments for 3 weeks. I do, however, still wear mine 24/7. Some days when I take them off, I get busy and forget to put them back on. Those are the days I'll experience the 1-2 inches of swelling around my waist. It's not noticeable to anyone but me, but still.... It has only been almost 2 months, so there's still 2 months of healing to go. I expect to be wearing the corset for another 2 months or so, just so I don't see swelling and freak myself out.
  • Reply
How'd it go? Pics, pix, picks?
  • Reply