Breast Reduction - Part 1 - Includes photos up to and including Week 2 post-op
- updated 1 year ago
Hi folks! I've been lurking here for several weeks...
- 17 Apr 2012
Hi folks! I've been lurking here for several weeks and finally built up the nerve to post. It's not that I'm shy, I just don't have anything new to say. I'm 55, have 2 teenage daughters and big, saggy boobs that I've been sick to death of for about 25 years. I'm a 36 G in European bras....can't even guess what I'd be in a U.S. size. You know, the underwires that cost $150.00 each, but keep these water balloons somewhere north of my belly button. Exactly 10 years ago, I was scheduled for a reduction, but cancelled it 4 mos. beforehand because my father died during elective surgery (he was 87 and had an undiagnosed bleeding stomach ulcer which blew, so no relation to the actual surgery), and I totally lost my nerve. Convinced myself that big, saggy and healthy was a hell of a lot better than pert and dead. I now am again seriously considering a reduction.
I have my first consultation booked for early July with a Toronto PS who, apparently, has a great reputation and some wonderful reviews. I am also building my nerve up again to book a second consultation with another PS who seems to have the same credentials and reputation. I'm wondering if we're allowed to mention names of PSs here...to ask if others have any experince with specific surgeons? Obviously, I'm particularly interested in "speaking" with any Toronto women who have either had or are booked for reductions. I'm not at all concerned about pain or recovery - well, no more than is probably realistic and/or normal - but I am scared absoluetly sh****** about the general anaesthetic. Control freak that I am, I cannot IMAGINE just being put under and trusting I'll wake up again. I know there are always risks, but somehow, this concern has gotten totally out of hand in my twisted thinking. On the EXTREMELY positive side, I really and truly cannot imagine being able to slip in to a shirt without having had to sew the button placket closed, or finding a tailored jacket that I can comfortably button. I cannot imagine not having wire digging into my ribcage or bra straps slipping and straying. I certainly don't remember life before constant redness and irritation on the underside of these puppies. It's almost surreal to imagine having boobs I don't have to list to see my waist.
I'm 5'8" and weigh 160 lbs. Believe it or not, that's a good weight for me. I'm a runner and rower so do have some muscle mixed in there :) I am a size 12 on the bottom and a 16 or 16W on top and cannot imagine running and not being selfconcious. I am one of those lunatics who clocks her 10K runs at 5:30 a.m. or after dark because, while extremely confident and happy about MOST of my appearance, these jugs really do have a life of their own and I feel as though all eyes are on them when I'm running. It's almost indescribable the extent to which I cannot IMAGINE having pert(ish??), proportionate, higher boobs. It almost makes me teary...it literally feels more like a dream than a real possibility. So, you see...nothing original...another frustrated, uncomfortable woman with boobs from hell. I don't want, in any way, to cross any lines or break any rules on this forum, but I'm wondering if it would be appropriate or permitted to offer my e-mail address here for any Toronto women who might be willing to talk PSs? I understand completely if it's not and will continue to check in here every so often. This is a TREMENDOUS resource and incredibly comforting to know so many others share my fears, trepidation and frustration. So many happy stories...how I would LOVE to be one of them!
If anyone here has any experience with either of the two following PS, I'd love to hear about it. At this point, the only two with whom I have scheduled consults are: Dr. Mitchell Brown and Dr. Sean Rice. Good, bad or in-between, if you're willing to share your experience, I'd really appreciate the input. (sorry this is so long....I'll try to do me a lot more concise in the future!)
So, since booking my initial consultation - not...
- 25 Apr 2012
So, last night had my first long conversation with...
- 28 Apr 2012
Anyway, just a Saturday psycho-rant. Off to work-out and over think everything some more! Hope all my friends recovering are taking it easy today so that they'll be back to normal that much sooner. So hard to remember that the more you rest the better a job your body can do healing itself. We all feel as though we have to ORIVE we're okay faster than we are.....which, of course, is when we can run into trouble. So all you recovering beauties out there, if you're standing up trying to be useful, go grab a gossipy agazine or the book you're in the middle of and go SIT DOWN. Within a very short time, you'll WISH you had n excuse to do the same thing. Take advantage of it NOW!
^^. Ummmm.....that was "prove to ourselves"....
- 28 Apr 2012
This may not qualify as a very substantial update,...
- 7 May 2012
Had a longish session in front of the computer on Friday night with my long suffering husband. Showed him every good, bag and in between shot I could find of any and all boobs from day after surgery to 2 years later. Threw in a couple of hematomas and and a few infections and a dead nipple for good measure. Clearly, the man couldn't care less about the Frankenboobies aspect of things. I'm not THAT surprised; did his MSc thinking he'd go into medicine, but went into law instead. He is also is all full-vomit patrol in this house. I can't even be in the neighbourhood when someone is yacking or I lose it. (Not to equate vomit with breast surgery...just the general gross-out/gore factors seem - to my pea brain - somehow similar. Don't ask.) With 3 dogs and 2 kids, someone is usually vomiting in this house, so he gets put through his paces. Anyway, I figure when I keel upon seeing my patchwork boobs for the first time, he can pick me up and empty my drains - if any - etc. So, I've ticked another question mark off my list. He also reiterated that "I love them just the way they are (ed. note: speaking of vomit....), but if you're doing this for yourself, then you'll have all the support you need." So, all good on that front. (see what I did there?!)
Then - here comes the whiny, hypochondriacal rant - I absolutely, positively am TERRIFIED of all doctors. Started about 8 years ago with the combo of some prolonged medical stuff after a car accident and then followed the next year by Melanoma and all the fun that entails. I now have to be DRAGGED to my annual check-up and mammogram because I KNOW they're going to find something TERRIBLE and life-threatening every single time. I am a first class BABY when it comes to this stuff. So, I kinda, sorta skipped last's year's annual check-up (was due in January, 2011) and kinda missed this year's as well. Now that my mind is made up to downsize the rack, I realized that I had no choice but to go for a physical. So went for my lab work today and have my physical tomorrow and my mammogram booked for Thursday. I have to have a breast ultra-sound every year, too, because I was left with a few lipid cysrts in my right breast after the car accident. Couldn't get an ultrasound date until mid-June. Now I'm totally scared sh****** that the whole BR issue is going to get sidelined by THE HORRIBLE THING THEY DIAGNOSE as a result of my blood work/Pap/mammogram; pick one. I am SUCH a child. Anyway, if nothing else, the decision to proceed with the BR has forced me into the loving arms of my GP. Assuming she doesn't immediately check me into the hospital with the FASTEST GROWING SOMETHING she's ever seen, I also have the name of 2 more PSs I want referrals to - unless she has someone she thinks is outstanding. The one guy with whom I'm booked for a consult in July didn't need a referral because he only does "private"; he won't deal with OHIP (The Ontario Health Insurance Plan pays for breast reductions for those of us in Ontario over a certain size. It's a fully government funded insurance plan that all Ontario residents have. When it's good, it's very, very good. When it's bad, it blows.) The occasional PS will only operate privately and of course, the guy who came most highly recommended to me is one of THOSE. Hoping that my GP likes one of more of the other names I have; would prefer NOT to be out of pocket $6-10,000.00 if not necessary. Call me crazy.
So, I've more or less settled down on the "wait" front. I now accept that this ain'ta gunna happen as quickly as I'd like. Now, I'm just freaked out about the results of my regular check-up that I would have skipped AGAIN unless this whole BR thing came up again.
And I've also realized, as a result of obsessive and constant research, reading etc. that there is no way around the fact that I'm going to be cut stem to stern and be lipo-ed until I turn inside out. My boobs are so...what's the expression.....big circumference-wise...that I'm positive that there will be no opportunity for short-cuts (pun intended). I'll have an anchor, the bottom of which will probably go partway around my friggin' back. That's the only way my boob "base" can be reduced. I'd live to be wrong on this, but don't think I am.
So, not much movement, but if I get through my check-up without any red flags (pleaseohpleaseohplease), then I will at least have gotten 2 more referrals to PSs. THAT will make me feel like things are moving forward. But now, I'm busy bargaining with whomever is in charge of these things to just let me clear this hurdle. I know I sound like a total idiot (please don't tell me I don't...I can hear myself), but I just want everything to be okay generally so I can forge ahead.
Okay, end of whine. End of rant. Hope those that are counting down the days are now finding that excitement is overcoming anxiety and that those who are healing are doing so uneventfully and smoothly. Thinking of you all. :)
Okay, something interesting has happened in the...
- 26 May 2012
Only other BIG fear is clots. I'll drill the PS on that aspect, ask how often that happens, what the risk factors are and again, do what I can and not sweat what I can't.
So at this point, I'd say my excitement to terror ratio has been sitting at a solid 80-20 for the past 2 weeks. I realize it may reverse again, but for the moment, it's (nearly) all about excitement.
First consult is now Tuesday, June 5th and I'm SOOOoooooo excited! I had gone to my GP to discuss a BR etc. and ask for referrals to two PSs I had researched. She gave me those and recommended this guy she thinks highly of. It was hard finding anything about him, but when I did, he checked out fabulously and SOUNDS like he's a doll to boot. Bedside manner, even though it shouldn't count in the equation, does with me. I'm such a 'fraidy cat, I need to like and be able to communicate fully with any physician...otherwise I just can't trust him/her. If this guy meets even 75% of my expectations based on everything I've heard, I'll book my surgery with him, but still keep these other consults, just in case.
My biggest question for each PS is how small can I go SAFELY without a FNG? Proportion aside, a C is my dream, a D would be absolutely FINE if that's as small as I could go without a FNG. A DD or above; hmmmmmmm....have to think about this in a new way and consider my options yet again. I say all this fully appreciating no PS worth his/her salt will "guarantee" a cup size (not that there are even consistent cup sizes...), but in general terms, I'd like to have no overhang and be small enough to go bra-less and not shake, rattle and roll. Like so many lovelies here had pointed out, it's a hell of a lot easier to make these puppies look bigger than it is to make them look smaller! And I have HAD IT with my back and neck...HAD. IT. And once I get through this, the only "revision" I would consider would be in-office revisions under local. I'm NOT going back for lipo or anyhthng else. DO IT ALL NOW THANKS.
Next consult after that is June 26...heard good things about this guy...but minimum bedside manner apparently. Also, he allows 15 minutes for his consults. Forget HIM, I've got 20 minutes worth of questions, so this was a bit of a flag for me, but based on his rep and the belief that every consult will unveil some new info, I'm going to go see him anyway.
Next after that, and my final consult (for the moment), is with a PS who comes crazily well recommended. I've spoken directly with 4 women who pretty much idolize him, 2 doctors (one a cardiac surgeon who's a friend of mine) who think he's a brilliant surgeon and everyone, in addition to talking about his skill, calls him a"sweetheart". Sound pretty good. HOWEVER, he only does surgeries privately (I'm in Ontario so will be covered by our provincial health insurance if approved...which I will be). He will not deal with the provincial insurance though, so that would be $10,000.00 out of pocket. But I'm going to see him and see and hear what the (apparent) gold standard in BR surgeons sounds/acts like. It will give me something to compare the other two PSs to.
So, a week from this coming Tuesday, I'll meet my #1 (at the moment) choice. I just hope he largely lives up to his advance billing. Within the next week, I'm going to post the questions I have for him here and see if anyone thinks I've missed anyhting.
Happy healing to those recovering; hope every day brings a bit more relief (and a bit better shape!) and to those, like me, still playing the waiting game...we KNOW it will be worth it, it's just getting throughout the countdown, so hang in there and stay determined and stay strong!
Hi gang! Had a call yesterday to confirm my first...
- 30 May 2012
Sure, it may have been a formula response, but it was RIGHT formula response. And it's not as though this PS is trying to build business.
Since the beginning of my research, I've been making notes on questions I want to ask at the consults and thought I'd post them here in case anyone sees any glaring omissions, or in case they are of any use to any other pre-op gals. It's long - sorry - but I'm trying to learn from others than have gone before me and get everything out of the way up front. And yet, still...I feel as though I'm missing something obvious. If you have the time, have a look and if there's ANYTHING else you'd add, please let me know. (It'll be interesting to see how many of these I can actually ASK before I'm escorted out of the hospital by security - lol!) Many thanks!
1. How many reductions have you done?
2. What percentage of your overall surgeries do BRs comprise?
3. How many methods do you use/are you comfortable using/have you used?
4. What method would you use on me?
5. Is a natural tear-drop shape possible given my size and age?
6. I’ve heard the inferior pedicle method can produce a square looking breast; is this true?
7. How small can I go without a FNG?
8. How small (in your estimation) can I go without looking disproportionate?
9. How much do you think you’ll be removing?
10. Do you think I will be approved by OHIP?
11. Is a natural tear-drop shape possible given my size and age?
12. Would you recommend lipo on sides etc. to better shape the final outcome?
13. How do you address revisions, i.e. dog-ears etc., if necessary?
14. What kind of cost is associated with revisions as it won’t be covered by OHIP?
15. If so, can I get an approximate quote or find out what the charges would be (O.R. time, GA, etc.)
16. Am I a good candidate for this surgery?
17. What shape/size challenges do I face as a result of my age, current size, shape?
1. Do you use compression stockings during surgery?
2. What is incidence of DVT as a result of major surgery?
3. What kind of anesthetic do you use?
4. Can I be medicated with anti-nausea meds prior to surgery? (night before patch?)
5. Can I take something for anxiety the day before? (I have Lorazepam)
6. Overnight or same day surgery?
7. I keep reading about auxillary armpit incisions; what are they for?
8. What kind of sutures/tape/staples do you use?
9. If dissolvable stitches, how often/in what percentage of cases do spitting stitches occur?
10. Do you use drains?
11. If so, how long do they stay in?
12. Assume everyone gets intubated for surgery?
13. I hear many people have a reaction to the surgical tape, are there tapes made for people with sensitive skin?
1. Do you put patients in a compression bra? For how long?
2. Do you supply the bra? How many do you provide?
3. If I buy, what brand/style/model do you recommend?
4. If not compression bra, then what?
5. How accessible are you or your nurse post-surgery and on weekends/evenings etc.?
6. Will I be on antibiotics?
7. If so, What kind and for how long?
8. What kind of pain meds do you prescribe?
9. Will you/can you prescribe a stool softener?
10. Can I get scripts for whatever meds I will need prior to day of surgery?
11. What is the post-op appointment schedule like? How often and how far apart are appointments?
12. When can I begin using silicone gel spray or silicone tape or silicone sheeting? Have heard the spray us used 2x day for 3 months
13. Have you heard of Mepiform Strips or Mederma?
14. Which do you recommend?
15. May I see before/after photos?
Hello again ladies! Just had my long...
- 5 Jun 2012
As expected, he would do a full anchor incision on me and also as expected but hoped I'd avoid - side lipo.
My question is this. I know the pain from the lipo is significantly worse than from the actual BR itself. For you folks who had the pleasure of adding this additional discomfort, how long would you say it was until you were functional again? I was already counting on a good 5-6 weeks - barring any complications - until I was firmly back on my feet as a result of the BR, but now the lipo has me wondering. Any insight you might be able to provide would be ever so greatly appreciated. I'm assuming the discomfort from the lipo outlasts the discomfort from the BR by a long shot.....but by how much? I understand that this is a very subjective question, but I'm hoping there may be some pattern to your respective answers.
Either way, he figures a "small" D is doable, but I can forget about a C. Not surprised. He won't know for sure until he gets in there, but given that he's guessing my BOBs are about 50-50 fat vs. glandular tissue, he sees a D in my future. This is a good thing. A very good thing. Where I'm from, the alphabet should just bloody well STOP at the letter D - lol! Thanks for any insight you might be able to provide!
I have no idea how I went from a more or less...
- 7 Jun 2012
Yesterday (day after my consult), when I called to ask a few more questions, I also asked his nurse how far ahead he was booking and she said he was into October but, what do you know, they'd just had a cancellation for July 20. I didn't even CONSIDER it; it's only six weeks away for God's sake. But when I mentioned it to my husband, his response was - VERBATIM - "No. Doesn't give you anywhere NEAR enough time to make yourself sick with anxiety. Go for October. You should be able to work up a good bleeding stomach ulcer by then."
'Kay. Point taken. I do tend to over stress a bit- lol! - so, July 20 it is. Kid free environment for another 5 days after surgery and then only my low maintenance kid at home after that for the next 4 weeks.
At the moment, I'm riding high on excitement, but I know my stomach will drop again in the next few days. I absolutely cannot believe this is happening. It seems completely surreal at the moment. Even with the side lipo he wants to do, I'm hoping like hell I can be more or less back to myself (okay, 80% myself) by mid-September. The timing was just too good to pass up. I have one daughter who is moving to University in Montreal on August 25 (I've informed the family that I'll be directing/supervising only) and then school starts for my 16 year old right after Labour Day, so daily driving etc. so things get busy again end of August. This July 20 date means I'll have 5 days before my 16 year old comes home from camp (CIT) and even then she's entirely independent, but at least I won't be worrying about her for the initial few days immediately following surgery. It also means I'll have the first 3 weeks of July (kids leave end of June) to calm myself down and get prepared. Honestly, the timing was a bit of a miracle.
Okay, it's booked. Gotta go get started on that ulcer. Let the checklists begin. GAHHHH!!! It's happening. Holy S#@#!
P.s. They're really not THAT big...maybe this...
- 7 Jun 2012
Ummm.....Holy Crap???? Just watched three...
- 12 Jun 2012
I also decided, before I finished removing my permanent-marker-new-nipples to add a coiuple of photos to try to give a sense of just how saggy and BLECK!! I am at the moment. For anyone who has seen "Puppetry of the Penis", NO, I'm NOT taking this show on the road...
So, had my pre-op with the PS today. Bit of a head...
- 18 Jun 2012
So...on the way out, she handed me the form that I have to take to my GP for the hospital pre-op, a brochure that tells me what and what not to east prior to surgery, what to expect day of surgery etc. I'll get a call between 10:00 a.m.-12:00 noon on Tuesday, July 19th (day prior to surgery) to tell me what time my surgery is and......I was out of there. Talk about lunchbag letdown. I don't know WHAT the hell I was expecting, but I do remember someone remarking (jokingly, of course), that they couldn't believe how casually their PS was treating THEIR BR! That's exactly how I felt today. Here I am, scared witless, and he's all "hey, you're a great candidate for this surgery. Good health, good shape (not shape-shape, work-out shape!), non-smoker etc. etc. I still wanted MORE, damnit. I just don't know what.
Walked over to my GP (just a block away), made my appointment with her for tomorrow morning, and then she apparently refers me for my ECG, bloodwork etc.. and came home to be greeted by the Fedex guy who had the recovery bra I ordered from Amazon. Could NOT be uglier. I know that doesn't matter at ALL, it's just adding to the general -_______- feeling at the moment.,
Feeling totally blah about everything right now....sort of down on the whole thing...as in..."can this POSSIBLY be worth it??" Especially since, as we were again discussing size today, he repeated that he will not be able to get me down to a C. "If I can get you down to a D, I'll be happy." I appreciate his honesty and the fact that he told me, on the day of the surgery, to remind him to be "aggressive". He also mentioned that, the C aside, I will notice "tremendous relief" and a "huge difference". I get it. So why the hell am I suddenly being such a scaredy-cat, negative nellie at the moment? I cannot believe the next time I see him, he will be splaying me open with a filet knife. Okay, drawing on me first and THEN carving me some new 'uns.
Anyway, I know this is just a mental/emotional bump. Probably just got even more "real" for me today, so the nerves kicked in again. Thanks to all you guys, I know this will pass and I'll just wait to return to my naturally positive self. Right this very second, though, I'm wondering if the results can POSSIBLY be worth all the emotional peaks and valleys and the freaking series of medical appointments (yes, of COURSE I know they're all necessary, it's just that I like my state of denial to continue without interruption until I have to open up my gown for marker magic and these doctor's appointments are really harshing my chill :)
Hope all my post-op buddies are doing well today. And for those of you who are back at work for the first day today, (GG and Self come to mind), stop reading this and get to bed!!!! You've conquered day 1!!! Yay!! Life is getting back to normal...ish.
So, just returned from my final pre-op. This one...
- 4 Jul 2012
Fabulous nurse who was lovely, funny and thorough. Lots of general questions and many follow-up questions related to the pre-op questionnaire I had pre-answered and taken with me. She then took me through the dos and don'ts, pre-and post-op. She took my temp, blood pressure, a vial of blood and did an EKG. After that, I was on my merry little way. I was a little disappointed that I didn't meet my anesthesiologist; I had been told by my PS I would. But apparently, it's just a crap shoot whether or not YOUR anesthesiologist in on the day of your pre-op. Makes perfect sense now that I actually think about it. No biggie...I just needed him to fall hopelessly in love with me so that it became his life's mission to keep me asleep, keep me from waking up nauseated and basically just drug me up the ying yang. I guess I'll just have to wait to sweep him off my feet until I am without make-up, underwear, confidence or the ability to string three words together sensibly. Hopefully, that crappy little shower cap thingy you have to wear will push his buttons :)
I had a rather brilliant (if I do say so myself) idea the other day. I didn't want to rent a recliner - hell, I don't even like having library books in the house; other people's DNA is not my idea of a good time - and I didn't want to try sleeping in my bed the first few nights. I figure I'll be restless as hell and my DH is a veteran sleep-snuggler. I'll wake up and it's as though there's a squid atop/beside/underneath/on top/around me. ONE of those incidents and the poor guy will need a nut implant! So, anyway, as I was out on the deck on the weekend, a little light bulb went off over my head and I went "!! CHAISE !!" So following my pre-op and went and hunted down an "anti-gravity" (whatever the hell they mean by that!) chaise that is actually very comfy and has five different positions, as well as arms to prevent me rolling off and even ample room on either side of me to squish some pillows in. Light enough to be carried by DH around the house if I decide I want to spend some time outside etc. $100.00 and it can retire into the backyard in a couple of months. So, yes, I'm rather proud of that inspiration.
Deciding to maintain my momentum, I stopped in at The Gap on the way home. THEY WILL NEVER, EVER, EVER IN A MILLION YEARS FIT, but I bought two little....bralettes??? Two little bitty (okay, size "L", but still...!) fake-o bras that a 12-year old might wear. I tried one on and it just about disappeared under the boobular mountains. I'm not even sure why I bought them. I think part of me secretly hopes they may be wearable some day. I should post some "before" photos here to give us all a laugh. Actually, I will...when I can.
I also bought (drum roll please) another totally useless top that I DREAM might someday be wearable. A racer back, shelf-bra'd workout tank. Seriously, it was as though I were shopping for someone else. I CANNOT get my head around actually being smaller. I can't. Can. Not. Does. Not. Compute. I hit a mental wall...it's very hard to describe. Anyway, I pretty much just flushed $70.00, but it was amazing even pretending (but secretly hoping???) they MIGHT be wearable one day.
Now, the REAL wait begins. Two weeks this Friday. I guess it's really happening. It would be ever so nice if OHIP would hurry the hell up (our provincial health insurer), but I'm not even THINKING about that. I am SO ready.
Today is particularly amazing because yesterday I had a really bad day and was second and triple guessing my motivation, my sanity, my current discomfort level, my current size, blah, blah, blah, BLAH. Today...honestly, if they called and said they want to move me up to tomorrow, I'd LEAP at the chance. Go figure.
That's it for now. Sixteen more sleeps until yet ANOTHER man gets his hands on my boobs :)
Thank you OHIP :))))
- 9 Jul 2012
As part of my new goal of becoming the person to...
- 10 Jul 2012
Hey kids. If Armageddon ever actually gets...
- 19 Jul 2012
If Armageddon ever actually gets around to happening, come on over! We have enough food to feed you all and your families! I also have bought pretty much every medical supply in Toronto, so if you DO come, don't get sick or injured while you're here.
In tomorrow at 7:30 a.m. for surgery at 8:45 a.m.. I have no hesitation at all in telling you that I am absolutely, positively terrified. I'm talking, WORLD CLASS terror people. But I'm not that surprised.
I've got books, movies, seasons of shows I've wanted to watch, water bottles all over the damned house, enough frozen lemon juice to fill a pool, about 3 surgical bras, and way too much other, unnecessary shit to bore you with or embarrass myself by admitting to.
I've uploaded some particularly flattering shots of me, taken this morning, in what amounts to a transparent white t-shirt and a pair of old stretchy shorts. Nice to see my nipples are resting comfortably on my waistband. And the third new shot? Well, that's just because :)
I'll poke my head back in when I can, until then, everyone stay well; whatever stage you're at!
By the way, if I actually make it through this surgery, I will henceforth be known as "SheWhoShatHerPants". You've been warned.
Goodbye cruel world............
- 20 Jul 2012
...sorry, as I had a bit TOO MUCH TIME on my...
- 20 Jul 2012
Got to hospital for 7:30 to be greeted by info that PS had been callled to emerg at other hosp. 10:00 a.m....nothing. At noon, was informated if he wasn't on scene by 1:00 p.m., surfg was cancelled for day. WTF??!! at 12:45, didn't know whether to scream or cry, they came over to say he wouldn't be able to proceed today, but his office "would be
WOW. That was kinda douchey, huh?!?! Firstly,...
- 20 Jul 2012
Firstly, hope all went perfectly for my surbuds, Michele and Chippy!! Haven't had a chance to look yet, can't wait to read about their days :)
Secondly, I'm DONE!!!!! I've got little boobies!!! Go ME!! YIPFUCKINGEEEEEEEEE!!!!!!
Now, I'm on my iPad because phone's dead and there will be typos I miss, so I* swear* it's the Zaggmate keyboard and not my NON-drugggy head!
I'm going to provide too much detail for my pre-op buddies because I know the extent to which I DEVOURED the deets back in the day when I had big, ol' saggy boobs. Hmmm...seems like yesterday.
So, went to bed last night, I dunno...1:00, 1:30 amish? Anyway, same time as usual. Was waiting for DH to come to bed to let him have one last grope (TMI?), because sammysmomma INSISTED on some vicarious action, but, alas, he apparently came in to bedroom to find me sitting up in bed, glasses askew, phone on my OLD, BIG, SAGGY, UGLY boobs - drooling, no less - and decided not to wake me. Hmmm......go figure.
Okay, so, up at 6:00, out of house at 7:00, arrival at hospital at 7:30 and began the process of being "interviewed" by 4 nurses (this after 2 pre-ops in preceding weeks) and THEN the anesthiologist. Shouldn't complain about their diligence and duplicate safety nets, so I won't. But, really?
Then, my PS comes over to the little area we (dh& I) were in, chats it up a bit, and says, "Let's go do some drawings.". So DH and I go into little exam room where PS takes a LOT of time markering, measuring etc. 15-20 min or so. Don't ask me why, but I figured this would be like a 5 minute kinda thing.
We then walked into the O.R. At which point I am incapable of describing the pant-sharting terror I felt. No hyperbole whatsoever, felt as though I was about to star in a reality version of Dexter - the John Lithgow season.
Crap, DH is bringing in dinner. Will finish later or in a.m.. Sorry-just doesn't feel right to tell him to hold it until I finish with the people I REALLY want to be "talking" to - lol!!!
"Ahhl be bach!"
Apologies to all. I really blew it yesterday...
- 21 Jul 2012
Because I always DEVOUR other people's "day of surgery" details, I though it would be "funny" to start my story and thn get cut off mid-way. But to leave people hanging, I needed to be in the middle of a drama. What better drama that a postponed surgery? Will she??? Won't she???
So, halfway through my little ahem.....joke....as I had just faked my phone dying, my friend Toni showed up and stayed until 9:15 pm. I then went to resume and found far too many lovely and caring messages from people expressing genuine concern and worry. And yes, I only then realized what an insensitive and thoughtless trick it was to TRY to pull and I'm truly sorry if anyone felt manipulated. Once again, trying to hard to go for a laugh and went too far. I'm really not that callous and I offer my sincere apology for a bad joke gone wrong. If anyone is still interested, I'll continue from where I left off the "real" version of yesterday's events.
So, re resume our program with the title characters in the OR. Lie down on table with everyone being very solicitous. Nurse (lovely) says "so, let's talk about you for a while." Sure, whatever. Straps down left arm and anesthesiologist does a seamless IV. "this will be a big poke"..."This will sting"....."this may hurt but it will just be for a second". I didn't feel a THING. As in, are you KIDDING me? I had IVs when calving both kids and they didn't hurt either, so either they need to underestimate people's sensation tolerance, or I'm missing a synapse.
Oxygen mask goes over face. I asked if that was how I was being put out and nurse said no, through IV. I asked to be told when the druggie was starting, cuz I wanted to go out with a line. So as soon as Dr. IV said, here we go, I said, "goodbye cruel world". I remember someone saying "don't say that!" and......just like I've read a million times and now, having experienced it, STILL don't believe it, woke up in recovery. Probably the weirdest, coolest, creepiest, most fascinating phenomenon ever. So, out at 9:00 am, 3.5 hour surgery and woke in recovery at 1:15 pm.
When I woke, ZERO pain, ZERO nausea, ZERO anything. Asked to use washroom and was told it was "too soon". Wanna make a bet sister? Asked if I wanted a bedpan. Told nurse thank you, but I'd rather chew on tin foil. Not even a SMILE. Hour later after asking for something to read, or if I could get my iPhone from DH or just ANYTHING to do, I hear nurses saying, Let's move her out. Another nurse says, "no he'll flip" (don't know who, but not PS). So, finally get moved to next recovery unit where they don't MIND friendly, talkative people. Asked what my pain level was and had to say Zero. DH came in (thank GOD because once you wake up there is NOTHING to do but lie there reading notices on walls) and he read me texts from my kids (at camp) friends etc. finally got an apple juice to unglue my tongue from roof of mouth and just chit chatted until the PS showed up...4:00 ish.
First off, he hook my hand and DH's hand. Some part of me found this a lovely, non-clinical touch. Then proceeded to tell us, laughingly, that when he first started to call me back from never-never land ( he likes to be there when patients initially regain consciousness) my first words were, "Aren't you fucking done YET?!".
I. Almost. Died.
Then he asked me how I was feeling and I responded, "About the same you'd feel if someone had just cut off your nutsack".
Now folks, I DO swear. I work in an expletive-laden industry (television). We cru ally TRY to out swear each other. But I was brought up in a very, VERY proper environment. Like over-the-top proper. I do NOT talk to people like that. EVER. Wel, except friends and at work. I am mortified. (But in a sick way, kinda proud I still had my mojo when out of it.)
So, finally, just before we were leaving, I asked for some pain relief because I wondered how ride home would be. Popped a blue pill (didn't get the damned cookies everyone else was given with THEIR pain Ned's. STRONG LETTER TO FOLLOW.
On ride home, complained about my throat (only damned thing that was hurting from stupid tube) so DH asked if I wanted to go to our favorite little Gelateria :). Starving? Sore throat? Umm....YES, PLEASE!!!! HEAVEN.
Home around 6:00, started my ill-though out "funny" update and then Toni arrived and you know hat happened then.
Okay: here's what my buds (those of you that aren't pissed at me) want to know:
A) No drains
B) 500 grams from each breast (1.1 lbs. from each)
C) PS THINKS full D, possibly DD. Based on swelling and bandages, I'm going to guess D, but obviously won't know for ages.
D) LIpo'd sides under arms (ie: top of rib cage) and, unbeknownst to me beforehand, also along bra strap around sides into back. Now what's interesting to me is I am fairly lean at top of rib cage and my back doesn't have much either. So, given I was a 34H or 36G, I can't help but wonder if this won't mean a definite 34. If I'm accurate with my guess of a D, then, could that mean a 34D or a 36C :)))) ?? Can honestly say t this point don't care. DH says they look terrific and much, much smaller. Said he noticed the second he came into recovery. Won't get my first peek until Wednesday, damnit and no flipping' way I'm opening this bra. Ain't rockin' no boat, no how. Will post bandaged pictures in a bit when DH brings me my laptop. He's off making bruch at the moment.
Last night, wasn't tired, so read til 4:00 am and then kept well enough 'till 8:00 then need a coffee. (my one naughtly indulgence during next few weeks will be one coffee/day.....otherwise just proteins and leafy greens and fruit, so don't begrudge me my one au lait every day.). Ended up not on zero gravity chaise as planned and expected. Between IV fluids pumped into me during surgery and the two liters of water I drank when I got home (I wasn't thirsty, just am determined to flush all that crapola out of my system ASAP), I realized I'd be peeing like a race horse every 10 minutes, so opted for bed. I'd been told I could keep flat on my back, just not on sides (as IF!!!), but opted for a wedge which, as predicted, I kept sliding off of.
So far today, it's 1:00 pm EDT, I've stuck with Extra-strength Tylenol as opposed to Tylenol 3's that were prescribed, because I don't like feeling doped-up and I def want to feel some of the discomfort ( and it is JUST that, NOT pain....yet) because I am a quick mover and a vey "busy" kinda gal and this is my only early warning system re: doing too much, reaching wrong way etc.
PS wants me walking tn minutes of every hour while awake (no problem whatsoever) and I'm taking Colase (sp.?), 4,000 mg/day of vitamin C for eight days, arnica Montana for tn days nd Bromelain (sp.?) for...10 days, I think. He didn't suggest arnica zmontana or Bromelain, but when I asked, he said he's never seen any empirical evidence that suggested either dud any good, but no harm in taking, so. I figured, what the hell.
Instructions from PS, besides walking? Arms straight out to sides and lifted to shoulder height many times, throughout day. No raising arms above head. Back and forth swinging of arms okay, but don't exaggerate motion and if it hurts, stop.
So, I think that's every little detail for now. No seepage or sign of any fluid on bra or bandages sticking out if bra - yet.
Will post new pics when Chef DH does my next haul from upstairs which will include laptop.
Sorry again gang, for I'll- thought out and I'll executed attempt at joke yesterday. Just plain old insensitive and thoughtless.
Hope Chippy and Michele are both faring well as can be. Looking forward to reading their updates.
Pre-op gals: I cannot tell you what the next several weeks hold, but I CAN tell you that the surgery was STUPID easy and......yes....everyone is 100% correct; the waiting and worrying is - honest to -God - 500 ...1000 times worse that the ctual surgery. I shit you not. Wasn't possible to be more scared than I.
Post-op gals: I would NOT have gotten though this without your outstanding and loving support. Many of you know I chickened out if this three months before surgery in 1999. I would have again; I KNOW IT. Your insight, experience, honesty and bravery kept me committed and focused. I will never to able to thank you enough. I truly don't want to single anyone out, but I have to offer special thanks to sammysmomma, Iowa, Kate, west coast, se1flove and GG, all of whom I feel an extra special bond with and all of whom - along with every single other member here - have shared openly, willingly and honestly.
I'm buying the first SEVERAL rounds in Vegas :))
New (boring) shots posted from Surgery Day...
- 21 Jul 2012
Cost that I've posted is just for Lipo portion ($2,500.00 + tax) Considered cosmetic and not covered by OHIP, our Ontario government insurance provider, who covered my BR. I understand that completely, though and had no problem with it whatsoever.
Dr. Beber's ratings will change periodically as I progress through healing, but based on what I've experienced so far, full stars are his to lose.
Hi all! Well, don't have much to update, but...
- 23 Jul 2012
Well, don't have much to update, but will fill you in on what I can.
First and foremost what you've ALL been dying to know - I had a poop last night!!!! Off-loaded a few golf balls Saturday night, but they didn't really count. But once that seal was broken, I knew good times were ahead. Sure enough, last night, the real deal! Reminded me exactly of first one post baby #1. I mean, they should give out medals for this stuff. Couldn't have been more excited. Left the dinner table, went into bathroom and a minute later, yelled, " It's a boy!!". My mother-in-law who had brought over dinner - she's SUCH an AMAZING woman on all levels....and she's 82... and DH, both cheered for me, but declined my invitation to a viewing. I'll spare you the posting, but I did take a photo. Yup, I'm THAT pig. :)
In other news:
Took my T3s until bedtime Friday night (Friday was surgery day). Saturday, took extra-strength Tylenol in late afternoon and just before bed. Nothing at all yesterday until bedtime when I took 2 ES Tylenols - just in case. No need for anything today yet.
Forgot to mention in first post-op update; full sensation in left nipple and at least a lot in right. Seems to be more gauze in right cup, so can't tell if the difference in sensation is surgery related or just extra padding. Don't much care either way. One'll do the trick anyway :)
Taking it super easy, but not tired at all. My energy level is absolutely no different than prior to surgery. I am fully cognisant of the downside of this - the temptation to do too much etc. and am being extra vigilant for that reason. Limiting myself to two or three walks around the block/day and that's IT.
I do NOT want to sound the least bit cocky, arrogant, self-satisfied or anything like that; I fully realize I'll hit many challenges and down days etc. over the coming weeks, and I'm fully aware there are some folks who have bad a rougher ride since their surgery on Friday, but for any pre-op gals out there, I want them to know my experience as well. I fully expect to be on here in the not-too-distant future, down in the dumps and reaching out for support - week 3 anybody??? tomorrow?? - but for now, I'm just very happy to not have any complaints at all.
I'm taking Arnica, Bromelain, 2,000 mg of vitamin c every day and confining my diet to lean protein, greens, fruit and 3-4 liters of water/day and two lemon teas. Have no idea if the Arnica, Bromelain and lemon tea are doing any good, but cant hurt, so what the hell. The peeing is a pain in the ass, but I want all the IV crap GONE. I was not prescribed any post-op antibiotics, although PS pumped me full during surgery. Taking 2 Colase every day and a tablespoon of Metamucil and one dose of Miralax. Will continue this until Wednesday and then ease off when what goes in is coming out - regularly.
PS's only instructions were to sleep on back ( no elevation necessary) and, for first 10 days, to walk for at least 5 minutes of every hour that I'm awake. Lastly, not to touch bandages or bra until he sees me Wednesday at 3:15 pm EDT. No problem there buddy!
As I've mentioned to a few of you, I'm very surprised at my ambivalence around my first peek. While OBVIOUSLY curious as hell, I'm also not in a rush to see my re-sectioned tender, white fillets. I'm not squeamish about most things, but I've read about too many people who freak when they get their first view. Makes total sense, too. Right now, I'm just so damned grateful to be in no pain and to see how much LESS freight I'm carrying, I really am in no hurry to witness the reality of blood, guts and stitches. Having said that, however, I realize that when I'm cleared to shower (surely to God Wednesday?!?), I won't have any choice and will need to be monitoring the incisions anyway.
So, that's pretty much it for now. I hope my Friday surgery buddies are coming along nicely and look forward to comparing notes.
Thank you all so much again for your outstanding and deeply appreciated support, humor and intelligence. Without a word of a lie, I would not have made it through this surgery without all of you. I chickened out in 1999 and I would have again; no question. I can't express the depth of my gratitude. Truly.
I'll be back as soon as I have anything to update. Or even if I don't. :)
Hi Kids! What up?! Everyone doing well, I...
- 24 Jul 2012
Everyone doing well, I hope. How are our 2 adopted kittens doing? I'm persona non grata around here at the moment because our two labs are used to some serious lap time after dinner when DH and I usually settle on the couch. And, needless to say, they are both having to make do with DH's lap. I try to explain that in a few months when they are once again accorded lap privileges, there'll be more lap to enjoy, but that concept seems to elude them. They're just pissed. If they keep up the attitude, I may just threaten them with a kitten. PNW made an excellent point about the appropriateness of kittens for we convalescents :)
So, the big news from day 4 post op (surg was Friday):
1. I WASHED MY BRA!!!!!!
2. I went to the mall
and last but not least, I went totally rogue last night and snuck onto my side for 15 minutes. The guilt and wild imaginings of blood and guts pouring forth and drowning/smothering my DH, coupled with the fact that it hurt like a mofo, finally flipped me back, but damn, it was sweet while it lasted.
Even though the PS said not to take my bra off, I could no longer stand myself, so had to change. Weirdest damn thing EVER was taking it off and nothing fell out! Swear to God, it was almost.....I dunno.....I don't have an adjective. Some part of my brain still things it was the tape and gauze holding them up. Seriously. Can't get my head around that one.
The Lipo bruising has moved in with a vengeance. Still no where close to what my poor former boobs experienced in a car accident in 2002, but pretty damned impressive nonetheless. Goes down to my waist on the left side.
I was surprised to see my underboob incision seems to end at the outside of my boob; it doesn't extend across the ribs like I've noticed so many do. Believe me, I'm not complaining, but I wonder why. Perhaps because he lipo'd he didn't need to cut out side boobage? Does that make any sense? I'll obviously get a better view tomorrow because this was all seen through gauze etc. which I couldn't and wouldn't remove because it was stuck on with some dried blood. Have to admit, I'm dying to see how my nipples look. The little buggers are certainly on the ball in terms of sensation and I THINK theyre standing proud when asked, but tough to tell through the gauze, padding etc.. Anyway, what I was getting at, is that I always had very pale NACs, so now, thanks to the carving, they'll actually have a defined perimeter which will be a trip. Can't imagine what I'll/they'll look like.
Have serious cabin fever and walks through the hood just weren't cutting it. So tonight I asked DH to take me to the mall (Yorkdale for you Ontarians). Was dying to try on a couple of things at J. Crew and TopShop, but was a good girl and resisted the urge. Was able to blow right by Victioria's Secret; I think I'll always be pissed at them for excluding me from the cool girls' club for so long. (oh he'll, who am I kidding? Talk to me in a couple of months....). Anyway, an hour and a half there and I was DONE. Home, Jeeves!
Currently sitting on my butt, which, sadly, was not reduced, waiting for DH to get dinner the hell on the table. Yes, I did say that. The guy is a fabulous cook and has been overly solicitous and thoughtful, but when it comes to cooking, he's slow as molasses in January. And when I get really hungry, my inner bitch rears her head.
SO HURRY THE HELL UP IN THERE! The patient needs sustenance!
Tomorrow is first pot op appointment and that SOB has GOT to clear me for a shower. Baby wipes and kitchen sink shampoos we're cute for about 24 hours. A girl has needs.
Hope everyone is faring well and has a good day tomorrow. Look forward to everyone's update as always.
High five from T.O.!
p.s. On my phone and too damned hungry to check for typos, so apologies in advance.
Pretty nervous/scared to see the crime scene this...
- 25 Jul 2012
Okay, I fully admit it; this procedure has turned me into a narcissistic f***. I swear to you all, I'm not usually self-obsessed, but by God, I am now. Yesterday, when I changed bras (YES, Virginia, there IS a Santa Claus!), I MIGHT have snapped a few lame photos of the new and (hopefully) improved booblettes with the bloody gauze a hangin' off. Very yummy looking, but you've been warned :) I still can't get a REALLY good idea, but I've seen enough to know they are DEFINITELY boxy. Totally cool with that as given the girth of these bad boys, I figured with an inferior pedicle that would inevitably be the case. I also have seen the extent to which this resolves over the months. In some cases, they seem to maintain a boxier shape (flatter bottom) that some of the perfect tear-drops we've seen here, but I'm totally and utterly cool with that as it's a small price to pay for the lightened load AND it's nothing that a good bra doesn't camoflauge :) So I've posted a few interim shots that don't show much but some bruising - which as usual looks about 100X as bad as it feels, but is buying me some serious sympathy :))))) The stuff you're able to see doesn't hurt AT ALL. The only discomfort is right along the bra line under my arms (Lipo) and it is still not in the least disabling, but I'm not about to slam my upper arms against my sides...if ya know what I mean. Noticing a little incision discomfort under righty this morning, so I'll be interest to see what's going on down there.
Anyhoo, off to degrease and slough, so back later, post appt. Hope everyone has a good day and to those recently post-op gals, hope you're taking it easy and resting up! Have a good day everyone!
I have not had one appointment with this PS for which I was kept waiting more than 5 minutes past appointment time. (With our extremely over-burdened medical care system here in Ontario, this is very unusual.) His front-office staff (Patti-Ann) is sweet, smart, intelligent and immediately responsive (within minutes) to voice-mails if I don't get her when I call. Dr. Beber has been nothing but very friendly, non-intimidating/non-condescending and extremely informative. He knows I love details of procedures and all the blood and guts stuff and will get into any level of detail I want. He was very forthright from the start. Told me a C would probably not be possible GIVEN MY SHAPE if I wanted to have an attractive final shape and explained clearly why. I was 100% fine with this as it made perfect sense to me. Having said that, I believe when all the swelling has gone down in a few months, I will most likely be a 36C or a 34D. Even if I end up a 36D, I won't be surprised and am more than thrilled-to-death with every aspect of his care and my outcome to-date.