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Tummy Tuck Gave Me my Body Back

I am so thankful I decided to have my tummy tuck...

I am so thankful I decided to have my tummy tuck after having 2 children 18 months apart.  Now the youngest is 5.  I spent over a year working out with a personal trainer and lost inches off of my thighs and hips, but still my stomach never budged after instense work outs. 

I finally went for a consult with a plastic surgeon in Orlando, FL.  He recommended a full tummy tuck with lipo on my love handles.  I am now 6 weeks post-op and very pleased with the results.  I was in very good shape and have been on Juice Plus vitamins for 6 months prior to my surgery.  Fortunately I also have a high pain tolerance, so I would describe it as "uncomfortable". 

As long as you keep up with your pain meds for at least the first week and don't fall behind in taking it you should be fine.  I weaned myself off Vicodin after the first week and a half and started taking Tylenol.  You really need someone to take care of you for the first week, you do not realize how much you use your abs until you've had them stitched back together.  Just lifting your legs hurts and sneezing is the worst.  

Also, see if your Dr. can prescribe Phenagran or some type of anti-nausea meds that you have with you after your surgery.  I was very nausiated from the anitesia and threw up, that was the most pain I have ever felt -- to me worse than childbirth.  Luckily I had the meds so started taking it immediately. 

Also, I had the typical regrets and depression immediately after the surgery due to the pain, the drains, and the scarring.  But now 6 weeks later, I am happy as a clam and already shopping for new bikinis!.

Dr. Chois

He spends as much time as you need in your consultation -- I had many questions and he answered all of them. I brought in bikin pictures of me from 20 years ago and he guaranteed he could make my stomach the same again, if not better. I didn't believe him, but he delivered on his guarantee! Just look at the pictures. He was also highly recommended by several other doctors I know. His office staff is a little flaky and you have to wait a long time to see him (because he spends so much time on each consult) but he is well worth the wait!

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My swelling was bad to me, uncomfortable, but I did buy a compression garment online (rather than the binder they give you) and that helped tremendously. I don't think anyone noticed the swelling but me. It was mainly in my upper abdominal area. I'm 5 months post-op and have been doing great until recently, was feeling so good started working out harder and went out dancing with the girls, I think I pulled some stitches or something and my swelling is back! I need to go back and see him for a followup. I still have numbness around my bellybutton --probably a full circle 4 inches around is all still numb. It seems to be going away though because it used to be my whole belly was numb. I think the hardest part in the long run was the lipo. Still very sensitive on my sides. Good luck! It's a long healing process. Don't go wild like I did thinking I was completly healed. The begining is very tough so be prepared and have someone look after you and/or your kids (assuming u have some) :-)
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Thanks alot, this information is really hepful to me. I will look for a compression garment, thanks so much. Good luck with your healing hope your swelling goes down and it will.
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Hey Im having my sx with dr chois also on june 25 you look great. how was your swelling, when did you stand stright up and do you have numbness. thanks
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I too have scheduled my sx and agree with Stay Young....we would appreciate any tips from those that have gone through this!
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Do you recomend anything else to have ready at home? I have sched my surgery and just want to be prepaired. It's great to get info from someone who just went through it.
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Hi, yes, you should have sterile gauze dressing & tape so you can change the dressing around your drains. Also, Dial anti-bacterial body wash to shower with. Baggy - elastic waist shorts or sweatpants. My friend who is a doctor, also recommended I have a stool softener because the pain meds cause constipation. I can't think of anything else, I know I was unprepared with the clothes situation, I had to wear my husbands shorts when I went back for my check up (all my shorts had zippers/snaps). It's not so much because of the swelling, but the drains, you have to stick them somewhere, it's like walking around with a set of balls :-). To me that was the absolute worst part of the expereince. Lucily I only had them in for a week, but some people have to wear them longer. Good Luck!
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One more thing -- Neosporin I used that religiously around my drain port and on the incision. Happy to say I did not get any infection. Plan to be off of your feet for one week -- you need somone to take care of you absolutely. You still need to get up and move around every hour to avoid clots and getting stiff. I moved a recliner into my bedroom and slept in it for 2 weeks straight. Also that way my kids could not jump on me in the middle of the night.
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oops. I dont know hoe I missed that! Thanks.
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Hi Tracyface, Provider information is located above the review. You must be signed into RealSelf to view.
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Do you mind sharing with us, who did your surgery? I too, live in Orlando and in search of a great doctor. YOU LOOK GREAT!!
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You look awesome, can you tell me who the name of your surgeon was, i live in the area also and would like to visit your doctor for a consultation, i'm planning on having one done sometime in july.
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OOH, thanks for your note. I'm DYING to know what my waist size will be! My waist is bigger than my hips (I have a straight boy body) but I have some love handle fat that will be lipo'ed away. Your photos are awesome because I cna't seem to find many bellies like mine but yours is close! I appreciate your mention of regrets/depression. I hadn't heard about that but I can see it happening. Good to have the heads up. Congrats :)
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Good luck with your surgery! I forgot to mention my size. I'm 38 years old, 5'1" and now weigh 128 lbs. At the time of the surgery I was 139 lbs. My doctor doesn't weigh or record how much he removes, but I'm convinced it was a good 8 pounds that came off just from the surgery. I was always pretty curvey and very muscular, but after I had the babies my waist completly disappeared for 5 years. Now it's back :-) I went from a 32 inch waist to 26.5 inches (the size when I was 14 years old). I think the key on the depression is to #1 - don't look at the scar too much #2 - keep thinking it is only temporary. If you are light skinned it should fade in time (at least that is my hope). The drains are the worst, luckily I got my removed after 7 days. My Dr. said to use Dial anti-bacterial shower gel, so I was very careful and used that and carefully around the drain port. I came up with a trick to throw on a bikni bottom to hook the drains to (they have little clips on them) so I could shower without holding them. I'm glad to share anything that helps other women, I am sooo happy with my results!
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