Hysterectomy/Tummy Tuck Combo Two Surgeries in One

I have three children, all C-section births and...

I have three children, all C-section births and had a partial hysterectomy in 1994. After my third child's birth in 1996, I weighed 268 lbs. Over the course of about a year, I lost 125 lbs. by making a permanent change in my eating habits and exercise. You can imagine what my lower abs looked like! Yes, the icky, nastiness you're left with after working so hard to change the shape of your body. About three years and countless bottles of Palmer’s later, I asked my gynecologist if it would be safe to have a tummy tuck. To my surprise, he told me absolutely not! Quote: "You have had four stomach surgeries and to even think about having an elected surgery is out of the question." Respecting my doctor and his opinion, knowing he is the ABSOLUTE BEST, I accepted my fate of wearing Spanx the rest of my life.

This past year, my 40th birthday brought me brought me the news that I needed a hysterectomy. My first question was, now that I HAVE to have another stomach surgery, can we do a tummy tuck at the same time? (I was half way joking...) To my surprise, he said absolutely!

I had my first consultation that very day with the only plastic surgeon my doctor would work with. He said I was a perfect candidate and would need a full tummy tuck. I had my surgery on December 18th and during the first four weeks I swore I would never, ever recommend the procedure to anyone, ever! This fifth week has begun to change my mind. My pain is lessening and I'm not feeling so helpless.

If it wasn't for this website and the numerous accounts posted, I think I would have quickly become the worst patient my PS ever had. This is why I decided to post my story. Usually, I am extremely guarded concerning my personal life, but I know there may be someone out there who will be in the same situation as I, (combined surgeries) and need the reassurance that everything will eventually be all right.

The first time I saw my full body reflection, I cried. I felt like Frankenstein and thought to myself what a horrible mistake I’ve made. How could what I saw ever appear normal? I looked totally out of proportion, with this stretched tight tummy and what I felt like were huge hips and thighs. I looked like a paper doll!

I will tell you now, 5 weeks after surgery, I still have quite a bit of swelling, but the difference in my tummy is just fabulous! I’m still on the fence whether it’s worth the pain…the worst I have ever experienced, but this morning I put on a dress jacket I haven’t worn in over 4 years and it buttoned right up. I weighed at the doctor’s office yesterday and since my surgery, I have lost 12 lbs.

My recovery time from the combined procedures is the same 6 weeks you would have with either surgery alone. The symptoms were a bit different; I had a lot of floating feelings when my binder was off that made me nauseous, which was from the hysterectomy. I developed a UTI that took two rounds of antibiotics to get rid of. I have lots of pressure in my lower abdomen and BM’s? Yeah, without Colace, would have been impossible. Just this week, I stopped taking it and had my first on my own! (Each little successful progression towards recovery is worth celebrating!) When I have swelling at the end of the day, it feels like my intestines are going to shoot out my belly button! I do know, and have faith that I will eventually heal completely and my body will feel “normal” again. Each day is a day closer to that time.

Update:  9 weeks post op today!Let's start...

Update:  9 weeks post op today!

Let's start with the positive stuff....my tummy looks better than it ever has before, in my entire life!  Even when I was twelve, it did not look as smooth and flat as what I have now.  I literally have the beginning of a six pack!  I credit it all to my surgeons.  Incredible doctors, both of them! 


Golden ticket question:  "If I need a revision for any reason, is that cost included with the initial procedure cost?"  This is your out.  I have read horror story after horror story and if this question had been asked, I am convinced a large percentage of the horror stories would not have happened.  This question holds your doctor accountable for what he does during surgery...he is agreeing to fix anything you may not be happy with, at no additional cost. 

"Please give me the most realistic idea of my final results."  

"What type of sutures and method of suturing do you use?"  This can make all the difference in the world when it comes to the final scar.  

Okay, so how do I feel?  I am still exhausted and swollen at the end of the day.  I still have discomfort across my abdomen and numbness, especially around my new belly button.  Even though my doctor said I do not need my binder, I am married to it.  Just this week, I started going the whole day without it, but without fail, putting it on as soon as I get home.  I still have contraction-like pains, electrical shock pains and this horrible sticking feeling I can only describe as a "cock-a-burr under my skin" when I sit down sometimes.  All normal... 

I am slowly forgetting the severity of pain in exchange for this tummy that is so foreign to me.  So after nine weeks, is it worth it?  Yes, I am finally there!  It was worth it!!

Upon request

Both of my doctors gave realistic expectations of the final results and complications that could result from the combined surgeries.

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This is very helpful as I am having my hysterectomy/tummy tuck surgery Sep 10 and I am scared to death
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How are you doing now? I am having the se combo on the 26th and I am also scared. I hope your doing great.
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Not Se , meant to say same.
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hello sherware2 I am doing ok I think still in pain and uncomfortable and bored of being in the recliner all day but my doc told me not to do stairs for 1 week so I am on my main floor.Had my first bm today thank god not constipation but I don't really eat my husband makes me fresh vegetable juices 2 x a day plus vegetable chicken broth and some ensure. I don't feel tired at all I don't seep during the day and I take my meds every 8 h if it really hurts.
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So glad your doing well, thanks for sharing. It's nice hearing from people that were as nervous as i am that have had the same procedure :)
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I would like to know the doctors who helped you. I've had 4 large babies & have wanted a tt for years but couldn't justify it. I am having bladder & uterus issues now which make abdominal surgery necessary so I would like to have both procedures at the same time.
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I'm just starting to research doctors in and around Tulsa for a tummy tuck later in the year, as I lost 150 pounds and have the same issue with the appearance of my stomach that you reported. Would you mind sharing the name of the plastic surgeon you used? There are so many horror stories floating around, it's always nice to hear a success story and get some recommendations.

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Thank you for sharing your story. It was very helpful.
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when lost the weight initially what did you do?
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I made 5 major changes in my diet; I call them the 5 No-no's... No red meat or pork. No soda (diet or other) It's evil and your body doesn't know what to do with it but turn it to fat. Check the ingredients, if you see high fructose corn syrup, do not drink it! It's no better for you than soda. You should be drinking at least 120 liters of water per day to flush the bad stuff out. No cheese, on anything! (Fat free cottage cheese and yogurt is a must to add to your diet to replace the dairy) Nothing after 7:00 PM but water. No trans fats! This includes any kind of margarine, (even if it says it's good for you), Crisco shortening or any processed food that has partially hydrogenized oil of any kind. (These are evil too!)Remember, just because the package says it doesn't have trans-fats, does not mean they are not in there. They are liars! Check the ingredients. I also started walking every evening. I had to exercise, and being the size I was, this was the only comfortable thing I could do. Soon, the weight started dropping off. Every time you feel like you want to put that candy bar in your mouth, you have to ask yourself, "Will this move me up the scale or down the scale?" Food is fuel...Calories are energy. When you eat more than you use, it's stored as fat. Plain-Simple-Truth.
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I also share some of the same motto's you have made yourself learn. I don't do any soda. If it's not water or coffee, I don't want it. Coffee even is my guilty pleasure, I get it twice a week. NO red meat, no pork! So TRUE. Since I have cut out those two meats, I have seen a huge difference. I cannot even eat either one now without having an experience in the bathroom afterwards. Following the FDA approved Food Pyramid is really key. I still do dairy, I love cheese, I just eat a LOT less of it. It's really straight forward as far as what you put in is what you will get out of your body, and the Biggest Loser show has taught me a ton of that and kept me going when I didn't feel like it anymore!
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This is absolutely the best advice I've ever heard. Short, brutally honest, true. Thank you!
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Thank you for your posting. It's nice to read the realistic recovery process and hear the feelings that you experienced. I am getting my TT in 4 weeks, and am trying to go into the ordeal with a realistic approach, knowing that it will likely be painful, and have a long recovery timetable, but am excited to be rid of my own excess skin. Good luck with the continued recovery for you! I have seen first hand a post 6-month TT from one of my friends, and she is ecstatic about her results! I hope you are too!
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Oh my goodness! It's getting awefully close to time for your tummy tuck. As I heal each day, I am getting more and more excited over the results. I still have swelling by the end of the day, but it's getting better. I wore my binder the full six weeks and I think that did me more good than anything else. I will post pics soon. Please keep in touch and let me know how your surgery goes. I'm excited to see your results!
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