My Tummy Tuck - Pre and Post (Video Diary) - Edina, MN

20 Days pre-surgery.  I'm nervous. ...

20 Days pre-surgery.  I'm nervous.  I've been gathering things to make sure that I will be able to do what I can for myself cause I'm not sure how much help I am actually going to receive from my family.  Arranging a ride to and from has given me enough greif alone to make me wonder if I can do this.  My boyfriend stepped up the other day and offered to pick me up from the surgery - but he says it's too much for him to sit there all day, I understand his reasons.  It was just enough to know that he would be there for me if I needed, it's all I had to hear from him. 

Pre-Op appointment is on the 11th, so is my final appointment with my surgeon prior to the surgery.  I just want to meet with him to discuss my expectations and find out more about possible limitations I may be under. 

I'm worried, stressed, and a little aprehensive about what I am going to be doing. Not the greatest economical times to be taking out a chunk of money for this sort of personal use, plus gambling with my employement for probably what will turn out to be 2 weeks plus.  We will see.  I will post again after my pre-op and final surgical appointment next week.  Almost there!

*On a side note, I am at 153 today!  That is room enough for celebration!

Ok, nix what I stated before. LOL (not...

Ok, nix what I stated before. LOL (not really)  Got broken up with today, although he states that he will be there for me either way.  Just another emotional hurtle to overcome, again.

Got the Pre-Op Appointment out of the way...

Got the Pre-Op Appointment out of the way yesterday, paid the costs for the surgery yesterday as well.  Final cost, $7650.  Felt weird in a way, dropping that much money.

Spoke with my surgeon about a few concerns that I had found on here and read about from other women.  My surgeon seems almost over confident in his abilities - almost assuring me that dog ears wont happen, facia tightening will not keep me from doing yoga, and other things.  It's okay, I'm wracking it up to the fact that I am likely just extremely nervous and overthinking things as usual.  13 Days.  Isn't that the title of a horro movie?  Ugh.

Weight as of yesterday: 155 at the Dcotors office, 157 at the Surgeons office, and 153 at home.  Love the fluctuations in all three scales.

LOL.. Soap Opera Continued: No boyfriend...

LOL.. Soap Opera Continued:

No boyfriend.  Not that it matters.  Just found out that he's been cheating on my the whole time we were together.  NOTE to SELF: When I have a hot body, I will be more selective!

Post Tummy Tuck #1: Procedure went well from...

Post Tummy Tuck #1:

Procedure went well from what I gathered as I woke from anethesia. I didn't see my doctor afterwards, but all the recovery nurses were extremely nice and patient with me.

I remember waking about 10 to 2:00 pm, thinking it went shorter than estimated. Must have been the drugs talking to me.  Ride home was - egh...  was sent home in my gown clothes, and their blanket.  When I finally arrived home, I set up in my recliner and with the exception of getting up and walking twice, this is where I have been.  Lower back needed a pillow, also extra pillows under my legs.  Should have got a larger recliner, but this one is doing well enough.

The pain in my upper thighs from the little bit of lipo performed there was a burning sensation, nothing intolerable though. Haven't felt my abs, thank you pain pump. Other parts that hurt: my upper back, the outer incision spots around the hips are slightly tingley and have sharp shooting pains when I am up walking.

Went home with a catheter, which was nice, and three drains. (pictures to come).

Medications: Vikiden (pain), Prednisoolone (steroid), and Chepalexin (antibiotic). Over the counter Colace I have started yesterday evening...  and Vitamin C - 1000mg a day.  That I added myself after reading how many other womens doctors suggested it.

I go in for a shower and dressing change today- I will hopefully get pictures of the war wound then.

Anticipation level: 8/10     Recovery level(from anethesia): 2/10     Pain level: 7/10

Post TT Day 2: Swelling has begun. ...

Post TT Day 2:

Swelling has begun.  Bloated still from anethesia.  Bruising on my xiphoid process is incresed slightly.  Doctor said that he had to go up that high to start the facia sutures.  Should recceed in time.  Tired.  Craving goodies because I pitty my condition, but am also trying to eat healthy to promote quicker healing time. Salads, grapes, berries, fiber one bars, tons of water...  still no bowel movement.

Tummy Tuck Post Day #3 Feeling tired, swollen...

Tummy Tuck Post Day #3

Feeling tired, swollen a little more yet.  Honestly just feels like one of my "fat" weeks, and even then, it's nice knowing that when I sit I don't have a whole nother fold of skin that I have to tend to.

I have moved from the recliner to my bed.  5 Pillows prop me up and 2 keep my knees slightly bent, less strain on the skin that is now healing around my lower abdomen.

Compression garment and I have had a slight disagreement as farr as where it wants to lay on my right hip and where I want it to lay.  It's rubbing the scar, which is still protected by the huge surgical pad that covers the scar.

Reduced the pain meds to one every 4-6 hours. Still no bowel movement. Colace on board, I feel like it might happen today! lol, maybe not.  I get to the potty, and I get dizzy when I see all the tubes coming and going.  I did manage to take a shower, wash my hair by myself, that was nice.  The whole shower process took easily 1.5 hours.  I took off the garment, laid down on the bed.  Let my pressure stabalize. Got up tried the potty, sat for 20+ minutes, nothing.  Still dizzy as heck after looking at my belly button.  Did the shower, 20 minutes later - I did allow the front of me to get slightly wet, run-off water, didn't directly put the wounds into the stream though.  It didn't bug me, I can't feel a thing in that area anyway - pain pump.  Laid back on the bed for another 25 minutes at least and air dried.  Made sure that the tape was mostly dry and re-dressed myself with the garment.  I like the garment on.  I feel tucked in, but like I said, I can't feel my tummy anyway.  Which is another source of getting dizzy.

Taking it easy today. Watching movies, hockey, whatever.  I'm sure by tomorrow I will have gone stir-crazy, thank god I see the doctor to get the pain pump removed. Plus my BF of 19 years will be here to keep me company. That will lighten my spirits more.

Post Tummy Tuck Day #4 Pain pump intact. ...

Post Tummy Tuck Day #4

Pain pump intact.  Colace WORKS.  Compression Garment still sucks.  Saw my surgeon earlier - he removed some tape from my belly button, rubbed it with a cloth and my nerves almost went through the roof.  Doctor says that most likely 2 of the 3 drains will come out on Thursday. My fear is that a seroma will develop because it will have been to soon for them to come out.

Gave my doctor kuddos today for acheving the two things I hold at the top of my priority list when I went into this surgery... 1) Symmetry on the scar (didn't want the typical "W"); 2) Nice graduation from flanks to hips to waist.  Both acheived from the reuslts I have so far.

The Pain Pump.  It's gotta come out.  Doctor says that I will notice a difference once it;s out.  This gets to sit in the back of my head now, I was thinking that this wsa a piece of cake, now I have to think about the added amount of uncomfortabliness that awaits me on Thursday.  My goal is to be back at work at least for 3 hours on Monday, Mar. 8th. Doctor says it's dooable, we will see.

p.s. Thanks to everyone who has been on here to read my thoughts and have left their comments, I appreciate them all so much, they are keeping me going!

Post Tummy Tuck Day #6 Doing pretty good...

Post Tummy Tuck Day #6

Doing pretty good.  Removed my pain pump by myself today.  Followed the manufactures guide in the brochure they sent home with me.  That went better than I thought, which was good, because I happen to be home alone at the time. :)

Pain since I took it out hasn't really changed, although I bumped myself back up to 2 vicodin for the time being.

I have resumed eating my normal diet prior to the surgery, just making sure to not over stuff myself, while drinking plenty of water yet.

A few notables. 1) Get a Robe. (I feel fat in them, but it would have been handy during this time).  2) Work out till the night before surgery (weight lifting is really important so you can assist your abs to the most of your potential (arms, legs)).  3) No Soda!  (seriously).  4) Shower daily when you get the go ahead (improves your state-of-mind way beyond what you think it might).  4) Have several pre-chopped fresh veggie/fruit 1-serving size bowls ready for you in the fridge (do I even have to explain the nutritional benefits that you receive from eating fresh fruits and veggies, no.)  5) Have lots of Lean Cuisine frozen meals in the freezer that you can reach!  6) Send your little ones away (they can visit, but for the first 4-5 days-you need rest-plus you'll heal faster)  7) Have a picture of you at your fattest around so you can remind yourself of where you were and why you are doing this, it will help you see the silverlining beyond the pain and swelling, which is temporary in most cases.

Thanks again for your support!  Take Care!

Tummy Tuck Day #8 My third post-op appointment...

Tummy Tuck Day #8

My third post-op appointment yesterday was the best yet!

THE DRAINS CAME OUT!  ALL THREE!!!

My doctor did a very good job of talking while he proceeded to clip the drain tubs, Rubbed my belly. Clipped the sutures keeping the tubes in. Then he quickly and with ease pulled the tubes out. He started with the middle, which was hardly noticable. Then the right, just felt weird, he didn't alert me that it was being pulled,. but I could feel just an odd sensation under my skin. Then he did the left. Again, no pain.  Happily!

He probably would have know that I would make a pitty party out of the tape being pulled off, so he just went and pulled it off.  Cleaned the scar line with... I wanna guess iodine? Blowed some air on it to make the stinging subside, and then replaced the tape.  Him pulling the tape without telling me was the best way to go. He's a great doctor, and knowledgable.  I checked the chaffing on my skin where he preformed the upper inner thigh lipo, and we decided that Destin and airing out would be the best choice.

Since the drains are now out. I have been resting more so then before. The thought of fluid accumulating into a seroma scares me, although if it happens, it happens.

My late nights laying awake suddenly brought me to research the lipo recovery and discovered that the slight hardening in the upper thighs is normal part of the body's healing process. Also, I placed an order for a "Stage 2" compression garment.  This type of compression garment is to be worn from weeks 2-8. I'm excited to get it because it has a crotch for one thing. And it is just a mid body suite. So, the leg part of the garment won't be necessary, further, allowing my inner thighs the air they are so desperate to have. Sick isn't it. Also purchased Scar Esthetique Reduction Cream for the scar line once it's closed up completely.  The reviews on this cream were pretty good, I am hopful.

More pictures to come, now that swelling has subsided slightly.  Gets worse as the day goes on, and that is normal too! :)  Overall, I've kept a positive attitude, haven't once regretted having this done, which is important for recovery. I haven't hit a low, as I have read many women do.  All about what you eat, your attitude, and expectations.

Post TT - Day 12 Wow.  Day 12 already...

Post TT - Day 12

Wow.  Day 12 already.  That's nice.  Too bad I'm so swollen I can't tell! LOL   -  The swelling is now being controlled by arnica montana, it's a homiopathic remedy for swelling, bruising & muscle aches. I actually stumbled across it from another site, being sold in a treo of pills that one would take for post surgical procedures.  I happen to buy my supply of just that pill at a local natural foods store.  It was cheap, and it's easy to take, 4 pills that dissolve under your tongue 4 times a day.  Jury is still out on if it helps.  Perhaps it's me just getting better. Couldn't hurt anyway.

My 5 year old has been with me at home now since Friday, Mar 5. It's been okay. I can't get up and do as much as I would like with him. I had two adventures over the weekend to help prepare me for work, which I started back today, Mon. Mar. 8.  I managed to sit at work and get a few things done for about 5 hours. I had anticipated 4 hours, so I exceeded my expectations that I had set for myself. Tomorrow, I will try and make it up to 6-7 hours.

The doctors office gave me two stage 1 compression garments. They are nice, researched them and found out they retail for $124 each.  Well.  This morning I decided to hack one of them, I cut the legs off, down to the zipper.  Put it back on, and discovered that the whole contraption was better adjusted with the legs, it happens to spring up now. :(  I went to Kohl's to buy some slimming under garments, bought a large, and turns out, I need an x-large. Ggrrr. Won't work right anyway. Besides, my thighs feel weird without the compression, it's almost a comfort now.  Another one of those, What was I thinking Moments.

I go back to the doctor on Thursday to see if any seroma's develop, and to check the tapping of my incision. I'm hoping that the belly button situation (it's just bloody looking) resolves slightly.  My inner thighs have had chaffing. I was putting on A&D ointment, but tried desitin, and sitting out with just airing them, turns out desitin does great weird things to dry out skin, and now they are peeling.  lol... I just have to laugh at it really. The worst of my concerns is the skin on my thighs.  Who would have thunk?

Ok, so... I have wanted a tummy tuck for almost...

Ok, so... I have wanted a tummy tuck for almost 3-4 years. My history. I have 2 boys, one 13, the other is almost 5. Both were delivered via c-section, both 9 lbs. I was 138 lbs. prior to my 13 yr old when I was 19 years old. I had my second son in 2005. I was married at the time, I weighed 160 lbs. prior to that pregnancy.

I gained 70 lbs. with my first pregnancy and 50 with my second. In 2008 I had my gall bladder and tonsils removed and found out that I have hypothyroidism. At the time of that surgery, I weighed in at 178 lbs. I now work out at a local gym 4-6 times per week, I also weight lift, not like a body builder, but I wanted to look tone. I never lost a lot of weight, but I went from a size 16 to a small size 12.

I could fit into a size 10 jeans now, if it weren't for my excess skin from the pregnancies. I weigh myself almost daily. I vary anywhere from 153-160 lbs. I know what I can and cannot eat, I know how much I need to exercise that week to accommodate treats. Regardless of how much exercise, I cannot loose the pooch that I have from having large babies and from not taking care of myself during the pregnancies/marriage (I am divorced now for 3 years).

I've decided to get a tummy tuck last year, but needed to get the finances in order. That was 2009. This past December (2009) I started my search for my Plastic Surgeon. I have had two consultations. The first consult was with a surgeon that my sister had referred me to, she had breast augmentation.

That surgeon was nice, his staff was nice. He spent 10 minutes with me discussing what he could do. The building looked like an office building. The atmosphere, was nice inside the office, but there were things that were not...update, seemed like stuck in the 90s or so. His cost would be $8500.

The second consult I had with a surgeon in an upscale part of the Twin Cities. I had high expectations with this consultation only cause of the location. I wasn't let down. I walked into a building across the street from a well known hospital. (I felt good about that). The colors the ambiance, all set me at ease.

This surgeon I met with spent roughly 35 minutes with me, he was funny, charismatic and his humor put me at ease. His cost with pain pump, $7600. Both surgeons included lipo with the tummy tucks. The second surgeon included inner thigh lipo as well, so there would be a more uniform look to the whole lower level makeover.

I scheduled my tummy tuck with the second surgeon after talking to Andrea, his scheduler. She was so nice, all the staff were so nice. I appreciated the care they took to make me feel like I was the only on in the clinic at the time.

My T-Date is February 25th, 2010. I am nervous. I have read more than 100 reviews on this site from the good, to the bad, to the absolute unthinkable. I am expecting the worst going into this. I cannot imagine anything, besides death, being worse than what I have been dealt to work with for my body. I am hoping to get into a bikini by maybe July or August. I want better confidence, a fresher more youthful appearance.

I want to be able to sit in a chair without pulling my shirt down to cover my flab/folds. I want to be able to go to the high impact gym classes without having to worry about my pants falling cause my flab bounces everything out of place, even underwear. I'm posting my pre-TT pictures now.

I was weighed at the last surgeons office at 164 lbs. (yeah, WHAT! was what I was thinking). I want to be down to 155 lbs before the surgery. If you have a stomach like mine, please respond to me with your results. I know that it's also the surgeons skill that has a hand in the results, but anything at this time, tips, what to do, what not to do... I would be grateful. I'm NERVOUS! I don't want to look worse,

I'm not sure I could handle it, but I know fairy-tales aren't always possible. I am very confident in the surgeon that I picked, and his skill. He has 20+ years experience. He pictures are remarkable. Everyone heals differently, that is my concern.

so my nurse called back, but not too happy with me. Its just so irritating. well half of my stitches will be removed this coming monday and the ones above my pubic area will be in for another two weeks. just makes me really mad that he is just gunna put me through one more thing of pain to remove stitches. I just viewed your youtube videos and how you said most people hit a low at 5 days, i didnt know that! i DID hit a low around that time! it was bad my husband didnt know what to do i cried all day. I think it was mostly due to the nurse telling me i was going to have to have the tubes in for a min of 3 weeks. those things were the worst yet!! anyways like you said on day 12 you were bloated. oh boy im so so bloated and im day 14 today. i hope it goes down because im stuck wearing my hubbys cloths. anyways i love hearing how your doing cuz im right there with you just one day ahead. i'll try posting pics soon!
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Ahh Smamer... ((((hugs))) I wish that there was a way to relay how bad I feel for you, really. I was prepared for the fact that A) Drains are an ugly necessity, I know they are a pain in the (bleep), but they are so important; B) Moods will fluctuate from day to day, it's okay to feel frustrated - but remember to keep in mind, you are in control of how you react to what is going on with your healing process, if you remain up-beat and positive, your body WILL RESPOND positively; C) Nothing comes fast, I don't remember if you had a huge weight loss, I did, it took me almost two years, and like the weight loss, this is going to take time, you should accept that you aren't going to bounce back for at least 4-6 months, even if its less time, tell yourself so - that way your level of expectation isn't too high, less let downs. It's okay, you have some stitches, you have to have them removed at different times, it's all going to be worth it in the end! You'll see! :) (p.s. Sometimes nurses aren't fun, I have a real... turkey-headed nurse at my surgeons office, she isn't pleasant, but like me, I remind myself, I don't see her all that often, so I can deal.) Keep me informed on how it all goes, and Good Luck! I hope this helped a little.
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Hey! Do you think that you are swelling because you are moving around more?? Also, when you say it is day 12 and you can't tell is that because you are so swollen? How do you like the progress so far? Are you still glad you made the decision? Being almost 2 weeks post i am hoping that you say you are still happy with your decision! I go for my pre opp on the 23rd. Can't wait to see more pics! You are such an inspiration!
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Post Tummy Tuck DAY...

Post Tummy Tuck DAY 14

DON'T    SNEEZE!!!!!!

Workin 6+ hours at my desk job. Tried Jeans yesterday. Bad idea. Went home and crashed, felt good to molt the normal clothing.

Weighed myself last night - 153.  This morning - 150.  See Swelling notes above.

Again, I REPEAT!!!!     DON'T SNEEZE!!!!!!
 

More pictures to come soon.

Post Tummy Tuck - Day....  #16 Recheck...

Post Tummy Tuck - Day....  #16

Recheck appointment today was a success!  Had 15cc of fluid sub-q my right abdomen, was removed via aspiration.

Tape replaced, and was on my way.  Put on my Avi-Motion shoes today, hoping to get some exercise, all is going well!

Congratulations! I just had a tummy tuck operation on February 25, 2010. So, it's like you’re in the same place as I am. So far for me everything went great. My doctor was excellent also. There was one difference in our operations; I did not have any drains or anything like that, and mine cost just under $10,000.00. There is just a thin line scar going from hip to hip, and a new belly button. The 1st 2 days were tough to get around, and because of the tightness I walked hunched over. I stayed mostly in bed. I went to my follow up appointments and the surgeon said it was healing perfectly. There was tightness, but not pain really for me. Basically, everything is fine, except for my new belly button needs some additional TLC. It was healing fine, but now is inflamed, and hurts. The doc gave me some advice for tending it and some anti-bacterial cream. Hopefully, it clears up quickly. All I can say, is I saw this posting and thought, wow, you’re like me! It would have been nice to have seen this earlier, as we did this at the same time. So far, I am really pleased. I hope your healing process goes well. We have a few more weeks to go before the binders come off. Congratulations again.
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thanks so much for the diary of your thoughts and feelings before, during and after. I'm scheduled for a mini tummy tuck at the same time as a hysterectomy the later part of April and am extremely nervous. You gave me some great things to think about and prepare for (get a robe..lol...i dont have one either). Thanks again, i have been searching for posts like yours for days and appreciate the time you have put into it.
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Your welcome! I enjoyed posting it, I felt like it was really needed on - I had only come across a few posts like mine that really detailed what they went through. I hope your mini-TT goes well, keep me posted if you can!
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Post TT - Day #18? LOL... How is it that I...

Post TT - Day #18?

LOL... How is it that I officially have lost track to how many days ago that I was a larger more tummier version of myself? Oh well...  So my weekend adventures.

Friday, got out to a movie on a date...  Movie, She's Outta My League - Hilarious...  Note, laughing has gotten much easier, as long as it's not an earthy deep laugh.  The date, Well. He was short.  Shorter than I normally date.  So...  the search continues.

Saturday I made an hour drive to my sisters new home.  Sitting in the car for that long while wearing my new Stage 2 compression garment.....  UGH.  Kinda uncomfortable.

Sunday.  Ok, I know I should know better.  There is my disclaimer.  I'm so tired of not being able to do anything, I'm not a pamper me kind a girl, I hate asking for help.  I found myself outside (it was so nice out!) raking.  Yes.  Raking.  The yard needed some doggy doo doo provisions.  Yuck, I know, part of life with two miniture Dachshunds.  I cleaned the floor in the house, gave the dogs a bath, and went shopping.  TOO MUCH.  I am now running a low grade fever, 99.1.  I have been getting these upper back pains, and it's been not fun to breath.  When I eat, I get an upset stomach, and more upper back pain. Yes. I know.  Rest Rest Rest.  Well!  lol

I will wait to see what Monday brings as far as temp...  I might call into work, I have the time available... might just take the day to lay in bed like I should have done in the first place.  Probably call the doctor and let him know what kind of crap I am experiencing.  Oh, and BTW - I have stopped taking the Arnica Montana.  I believe it is actually a cause of my upset stomach symptoms.  I have since replaced it with good old fashioned, Fresh cut Pineapple.  LOL... Pineapple has been known to help reduce inflammation and has natural pain releiving nutrients.

Anyway.  Enough for tonight.  :)

I just want to say I love reading your updates and seeing your videos. They have been so informative and have helped to put me at ease. Also, you look fabulous! You've given me hope! Please do keep posting your progress. I am scheduled for my surgery next week 3/24 and feel like i have become totally obsessed - now that it is getting closer to that day.One question, my Doctor told me i should be back at work within a week, after reading your post that seems like that is not a possibility. I am an Administrative Assistant so i pretty much sit all day. I really don't want to rush back to work and end up worse off, what are your thoughts?
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AMV781, Thank you so much for writing towards my posting! I really appreciate that I could help you and other out, it was a scary but exciting adventure for me as well, but it had to be done! As far as being back to work after just 10 days (i.e. one week and a weekend), I was fine. When you are relaxing for that long and just laying around, your body takes some time adjusting back to your regular routine. All I have to say is DON'T PUSH YOURSELF. Everyone heals differently, and my experience may not be yours, you'll know if your ready. I was terribly bored at home, and didn't have an option otherwise, I had to go back after just that many days, if I could have taken like 2 weeks, that would have been great too, but I was bored. I also have a desk job, people around you that you work with WILL HAVE TO BE PATIENT! You won't be able to spring up like a spring chick for at least the first week. I am just now starting to press myself to stand straighter. Congratulations on deciding to proceed with your TT! Make it an adventure! STAY POSITIVE! Take lots of Vitamin C! Laugh at the stupid things, and take your time in and out of the shower! lol Good luck, keep me posted to how it goes for you!
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I have loved reading and listening to your updates!! You look amazing! Just a few questions.... How tall are you? I currently weigh 162 (close to what you were in the beginning) and want to lose a little bit before my surgery? What was the time frame from when you first got on here at 164 to when you weighed in at 153? I would love to get to at least that number if not more by my surgery on May 14. I am so glad that you have done these posts. It is so nice to see the process instead of just reading about the surgery on plastic surgery site. Good luck to you! I hope I look as good as you do in the end!!!
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Day 19 Post TT The fever I was running on...

Day 19 Post TT

The fever I was running on Sunday was tied into me coming down with Antibiotic enduced Hepittitis.  :(   I'm itchy, ALL OVER.  I'm tired, but cannot sleep.  I've have nausea and a headache since Saturday.  Yesterday (Tues., Mar. 16, 2010) I was urinitaing an extremely tinted color of normal (i.e. DARK).

I drink 10-12 glasses of water a day, I eat normally (veggies, fruits) -so my urine color wouldn't be changed by diet.

So today, I called my doctor and he saw me immediately, and determined that I am in the 1% of the population that would have an Antibiotic reaction that can lead to Hepititis.  Yippe Skippe.

Agenda.  DRINK MORE WATER THAN EVER.  Stay off the drugs, any.  And eat healthier than ever!  I'm exhausted.  

I weighed myself this morning though.  There is a silvr lining.  I weighed 148.  That is easily the lowest weight I have had in well over 10 years.  I'm thrilled, note the undertones of just simply me being tired.  And this setting me back, maybe just slightly.

:)

Sorry to hear about your setback. Continue to stay positive and remember the body has an amazing ability to heal. Hope you can get plenty of rest and are feeling well again soon.
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Oh no! I've never heard of antibiotic-induced hepatitis either (you should see me sitting here just trying to spell it, nevermind wrapping my head around it).

I hope you're feeling better soon and thanks for sticking with us and updating even though you're under the weather. I'm sending you happy thoughts in the meantime!

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Thanks Sharon! I was surprised to hear about it too. I instantly researched it on WedMD, and was even more surprised to hear my PS concur that it was in fact what I had. No improvement yet with it, I hope soon! The itchy skin is unbearable!
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Post TT  -  Day ...  #24 Next...

Post TT  -  Day ...  #24

Next week marks an entire month.  I'm so happy that I had this surgery done.  Even with the set-back of having a toxic liver. lol... sorry, it just sounds funny.

My Anti-Drug loving liver has been....   let's just say, my diet is seriously restricted.  There are a few things that I can eat, all natural products... veggies, fruits, and whole grains.  My eyes are maybe going back to white now!  That's an exciting improvement at least.  The itching has gotten slightly worse, at night especially.  I've taken steps to latehr myself up wth lotion, not that it helps completely, but it does help slightly.  Benedryl is my new best friend, I take it right before I go to bed, even though sleeping is now done best during the day...  again, itching and night are... UGH.

I have always wanted to be back down at 140 lbs!  Although I never would have guessed that it would be because of my liver that I got there...  but I weighed in at 140 today.  At least I'm eating healthy.  :)

Hi I have a quick question for you. My stomach feels very tight, I feel short of breath quite a bit, and unfortunately burp alot (gross I know). Did you experience this, and if so, how long did it last? Any feedback you have would be great - thanks!
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Yep, I had all that as well. Will last about another 5-7 days I would guess, but everyone is different. I would expect that it's your body still working it all out, don't worry. Burps are part of life. :) The short of breath... I would eat smaller meals, and make vast efforts to stand straighter, if you can. Stomach will feel extremely tight... mine started to feel relief right around last week sometime... which mean you have another 1-2 weeks. Make small efforts to push yourself vertical, my doctor made it clear to me that he wanted me standing straight within the first week if I could. It'll get better! :) Make sure you rest and eat right for your tummy/intestines.
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Thanks so much for the feedback. I am so glad to hear it will go away. You are an awesome resource! Thank you!
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Post TT Day 30 Initial Liver Enzyme reults are...

Post TT Day 30

Initial Liver Enzyme reults are back.  Seriously elevated.  Alanine Aminotransferase (ALT) should be around 4-55 for women, mine is at 556.  Aspartate Amino Transferase (AST) normal values are between 0-45, mine is 137.

All my other liver enzymes also very elevated.  My initial findings on the internet have led me to believe that my liver toxicification (not sure that's a word) is a result of acetaminophen poisioning.  Weekly blood testing to watch the AST levels will help to evaluate if the liver is recovering.  Fingers crossed.

This is a lesson to all women on here who have been prescribed any pain medications that have acetaminophen - don't exceed your doctors prescribed dose.  Not saying I did.  I just happen to fall into that small percentage of patients who is apparently sensitive to acetaminophen and/or cephlexin in combination.  It's hard to say which made me, or better yet my liver go on protest.

It's uncomfortable.  It's not fun, I don't sleep much.  I'm eager to feel better, as good as my tummy now feels now that it's nice and flat.

On another note, swelling.  I hate it.  It is of course a natural part of recovery, somehow with all my other failing ailments, the swelling on top of that, just ads insult to injury. 

Saw my PS on Thursday, 3/25.  He was very compasionate and sypathetic to my constant concern over all of what's happening.  I am yet, remaining positive - as best as I can.

Either way, I'm looking forward to boating season. 

So sorry to hear about your challenges! Hope you are feeling better soon!!! If it makes you feel any better, you may not be sleeping so well even if you didn't have those health challenges - I wake up several times a night, and it takes me a while to go back to sleep. I am used to sleeping soundly all through the night. Well, hope you start feeling better soon!
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Hi SpeedRacer! Hope all is going well for you! I do have a couple of questions: Do you still have swelling? And are you regaining any feeling in your abdominal area, or is there still numbness? Wishing you the best of luck in your recovery and health of your liver!!!
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Ugh, Robyn. I'm sorry to hear about the liver issues. That sounds really awful. Please keep us posted on if this starts to resolve. Hopefully it will soon!
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Great News!  My liver is on it's way to...

Great News!  My liver is on it's way to liking me again and being part of my body's natural functions!  I have below the values on my liver panel.  A few things.  I have been eating rediculously healthy.  My PS advised me to use the indoor tanning beds, with my stomach and scars covered for a short period of time - same therory on this as in helping babies with Jaundace.  I think it helped, it got super annoying with the itchies for the first two days, and now, they are almost gone.

TEST           3/25 Results         3/18 Results       Normal Values
ALT               288 h                    556 h                 4-55 U/L
AST               80 h                     137 h                  0-45 U/L
ALK PTASE 154 h                     195 h                 25-135 U/L

Everything else is going well!  I started working out on Monday, squats, lunges, Plié relevé, more or less - anything to do with legs.  Also I've been doing push-ups against the wall, uses less lower back and abs, but still works the arms, and the arm gigglies.  They have become prominent since the surgery, which irritates me.

I can't wait to start running again, I think with the ab strength I have now, it'll be a breeze (or at least not as stressful on my abs) when I do start.

I don't see my PS again till the 8th, still have no idea what is under the tape that constantly covers my scar, I trust that it's okay, otherwise I'm Dr. Wonderful would say something.  :)

Nice to hear your great news!
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Post TT - DAY  #35 I'M...

Post TT - DAY  #35

I'M A SIZE 8!!!!!!!   WOOT WOOT!

You look fabulous! Makes me anxious to get a date set for mine. I had my consultation 2 weeks ago and am ready to go for it but am trying to find time to do so. How many post-op visits have you had? I live 4 hours from the Twin Cities and wondered how often I'll have to drive there for appointments. (I'm also trying to schedule things around vacations and a friend's wedding. I can't tell you how great you look...kudos to you!!
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Thanks Yankee! I've had one post-op a week till last week. So a total of like.... (two the first week), one the second, and so forth.... 6 total. I have another this week, probably will be spread further out again after this week since I am actually doing pretty well now. Remember the sooner you get your TT done, the sooner you will feel better prior to bikini season! :)
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You are looking absolutely fantastic! Even worth the liver troubles I am sure!
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Post TT Week #6!!! Started working out...

Post TT Week #6!!!

Started working out again!  I went to my YMCA on Saturday, April 3 for just plain old walking.  I was 40 minutes into a 4.0 MPH walk at an 1% incline when my usual class, TurboKick, was gathering.....   Ok, I really love this class.  I went.  I was ginergly with my movements...  I did it all like a senior citizen, and it felt wonderful! 

Since then, I have been working out daily.  Walking/Trotting...  I am a runner.  My natural instinct is to RUN!  So, the fastest I have gotten myself up to without creating a pain response has been 5.0 MPH at a 1.5% incline.  I'm up to running for 5-8 minutes at a time.  Which, is a far cry from what I could do prior to the TT, but I know that I need to ease back into this...  so, I am not pushing myself too hard right now.  I have a 5K in May that I wanna run...  not sure I will be there, but I am going to try.

Weight.  I am varying anywhere between 140-150.  I'm all over the board.  I belive that with a consistant workout routine, and proper diet (I fell off the wagon a few times - I'll admit, I'm an emotional eater, and the liver stuff sucked)....  I believe I'll be a size 6 by the end of summer.  BY NO MEANS did I think that I would be able to accomplish a size 6!  Unheard of!  I have never been a size 8!   But here I am, a size 8!  The pants I have bought, that are a size 8 are too big already.  So.  I'm doing something right.  I must be.  Everyone says I look great....  I feel great.  But I STILL see that fat chick in the mirror.  Why.  I'm gonna walk around the mall in a bikini just to brainwash myself.  LOL.... ok, maybe not...  but ....  ugh.

Again. Proper diet, exercise, and SLEEP!  Are essential for being fit for this procedure. I cannot emphasize enough to anyone who is debating to have this done, or is scheduled to have this done, WORK OUT!  WEIGHT LIFT!  I don't think I would be anywhere near the recovery I am not if I didn't already have pretty moderate ab strength and STRONG LEGS AND ARMS.  DO Pilates, do Yoga!  You will NEED it.

There I am done for week 6.  :) 

SpeedRacer! I would love to read an update and see pics or a video!! Your story has inspired me in so many ways! Do you plan on posting soon?
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I'll be updating this tonight! So much to say yet, and the results are AWESOME!
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I haven't been on for a while, but can't seem to find an update, if you've posted one, since my last comment. I would love to invite to you join a forum that I am a member of. If there's a way I can private message you, let me know! Look forward to an update!!
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3 Months Update! I had my TT on February 25th, I...

3 Months Update! I had my TT on February 25th, I am 13 weeks and 4 days out as of today. It's been a wonderful, fluctuating, interesting, and sometimes somewhat painful journey to this point. Previously I had reported that my liver enzymes were off-skew due to Drug-Induced Hepatitis. I can safely say that at least the levels are back to normal, however, certain activities, like enjoying a drink or two, are still not within my limits, I know, because I have tried, and failed. (oh well) The tummy. Is FLAT! I have had better weeks with my diet habits and exercise and such, but overall, I am happy with my results/appearance. I am still a small size 8, I am content with the size that I have molded to. Occasionally I still wear my compression garment, actually, at least 3-4 days a week to work I wear it. I feel like it helps with the continued swelling on my right side. Since my TT, I have gotten back together with my ex, and am happy to report that he and I are happier than ever! It's been quite a road to this point, and I would gladly do most of it all over again without much change. The future. I am going to get back up on that wagon and work out. I am eager to rejoin my healthier lifestyle, i.e. Working out at least 5 days a week, and eating a more balanced diet. With all changes in life, there are ups and downs. It's expected, but It will never define me and who I am meant to be or have become. It's been a happy trail. :)

you are back with the guy who cheated on you? I hope not. Congratulations on the stomach I wish I would have done that years ago.
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It's a long story with that guy. Thank you for reading my blurb about the Tummy Tuck! I wish I would have done that years ago myself, however, I think at the time I would not have had such a good appreciation for a healthier lifestyle. :)
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I am 3 wks post-op and I am 54. But in pretty good shape. Just couldn't seem to get rid of the belly. I also had lipo in flanks and under my chin and inner thigh, and a spot dermabrasion. I am doing pretty good now, and after they removed the drains it really got better. I want to start to work out especially on my arms. How long did you wait to do that? I am 5'1" and 1bout 140 lbs. I really want to shed a few lbs. Just all over. But I do think I am swollen. And I never had a regular compression garment Just spanx, they went up under the bra and down my legs. Very tight but no snaps or hooks to deal with. My Dr said that was more comfortable and works fine. Has anyone else done this?
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Six months have flown by! I love being thinner. I...

Six months have flown by! I love being thinner. I can say "thin" thin, not like I wanted to be kinda "thin" by the end of the summer. I have accepted the fact that, a) Working out is necessary; b) I like food; c) mostly junk food at times; 4) it's a fine balance between weight/working out/and food. I am currently hovering around 153-157lbs. Depending on the day, the amount of energy I spend working out, and what kind of other stress I have going on in my life. Work has kinda takin a fore-front to my life, so I don't get to the gym as often as I like. I am getting better at restraining from the processed goodies that plague our society. Frankly, I know I don't need the crap, but unfortunately to my brain and taste buds, it's a matter of addiction when it comes to that sweet talkin chocolate bar.

I enjoy being a size 8. The mirror lies to me still though. When I look at myself, I still see the thick me that I had been for so long, and then some. It takes my family, friends, and my guy to remind me that I am not perfect, but I have come so so far from what I was, and I should be proud of what I have accomplished. I am. But I am still hard on myself for not being as diligent with my new body as I had initially started out doing after the surgery. I remain loyal to the people here on RealSelf. The staff the commentators to my post. Without all of you/them I may not have held as tightly to my guns with staying on track. It really is a lifestyle change, regardless if I have the extra belly or not. It's a reminder that even though you may have your old figure back, prior to kids - you cannot continue to treat it as you did back in the days of eating this and that and not seeing immediate change to your thighs, back, love handles. Trust me, the bulge finds new creative places to accumulate once you have no where in the middle to stick it to. I will update again in a month, after I have been back on track for 6 weeks. I still wear a bikini, and I'm still a svelte size 8.

Don't misread me, I am happy, but I am still constantly improving as well.

your tummy look great!!
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Thanks!!!!
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Hi All. I am going for my TT on Nov,3rd, I am a little scared, but I have gone through a brest reduction. I go for a my pre op on October 18th, 2010. I am foing to the same DR i went to for my reduction. Wish me luck
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October is my 8th month Post TT. I am ecstatic...

October is my 8th month Post TT. I am ecstatic about my results STILL. I have started back at the Gym almost 3-4 times a week, and I am back on track with eating healthier. I've held my weight steadily at 150 lbs now for almost 4 weeks. The fact that I am now dealing with is that my self-image is much different than how others perceive me. I've start going to a therapist to help with any insecurities that I had developed while I was more plump, I am hopeful that it will help merge the new me with a healthier attitude overall. Will post pics again soon!

Hi Speedracer,

I wanted to thank you for your advice - I had emailed you about 6 weeks ago and asked your opinion on going back to work. Well, I did it, got the TT (I still can't believe I did it) but it went great. VERY little pain, back to work at two weeks, no one at my office has a clue.

Just wanted to thank you b/c without your encouragement I don't know if I would have gone through with it.

You can check out my story and pics, I'm 9170anon.

Thanks again!
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Your so very welcome! :)
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Hi fanuella -- Here is the link to add your own blog. Hope this helps!

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Oye - the holidays will put you into ... a curvy...

Oye - the holidays will put you into ... a curvy slump? Wow, seriously ladies and a few gents - Eat healthy, exercise, and be merry!

A few comments on other posts have taken me back slightly - wondering if I'm not putting in the effort, I mussint be.

I went to The Limited this week to purchase a holiday outfit, I managed to finagle my way into a size 8 skirt there, which I never would have been able to do, not even pre-babies. It made me feel good.

I will have to just brush off the fact that some community members here think a size 8 is larger, and that 0-4 is average.

While we all know that statistically American women are in fact around a size 12-14 on average.

My little rant. I treat this site as more of a blog. I enjoy seeing how everyone here has posted their own stories, and experiences. It is a fountain of ideas, and encouragement; and much needed during the holidays.

December 29, 2010 Am excited to report that...

December 29, 2010

Am excited to report that after the holiday season of eating enormous amounts of food.... I have only gained 5 lbs. :) Getting back on track with working out, and eating healthier. Salads for lunch daily... Less Caribou coffee in the mornings... (was daily for a while).

It's been a while since I have been on, almost 1 year coming up for my Tummy Tuck. It's been quite the journey, I would do it all again in a heartbeat.

Swelling. I can't say for sure, but I can say that I do still get puffier in the evening hours. Eating healthy curbs that mostly, but it still happens.

Still a size 8 and loving it!

I am post op for 4 years now and I would absolutely do it again. I went through the "OMG - what did I do" stage during recovery because I felt weird.. actually my skin felt weird. But once my recover period of 6 wks past, I felt better. I have dark skin and my scars heal a little dark. I have tattooed directly on my scar because I wear a teeny tiny bikini now. No more scar!! PS.. I just turned 40. Not gonna lie - I can maintain a pretty flat stomach but can gain weight still. You have to keep eating healthy and exercising. I don't have to sit ups but everything else. You will be fine. Just be patient with recovery. It does hurt but worth the results. I would do it again. All the help you can get would be a great help!
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Thanks Zuky. I'm almost 2 weeks away and feeling not too nervous because mostly everyone is happy with results in the end. however that's typical of me... I usually don't stress until the day before or the day of. lol.
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Great review. I wonder how you are now, 4 years post-op. My TT w/ lipo is happening in 3 weeks. I don't know if I'll be lucky to make a quick recovery but reading positive reviews like yours, makes me stay positive. I read a bad review last night and I thought, nope, not doing that again so close to my surgery otherwise it will really freak me out.
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