I'll make my story short; I got...
I'll make my story short; I got married at 24 and had a beautiful daughter with my ex-husband at 25. He always wanted me to look more beautiful and more attractive. I was young, immature and in love so he talked me into getting breast implants. Two to 3 years later he left me for an 18 yrs old girl; go figure!
Now I'm 35 and I have learned to love myself. I have been on my own for a very long time and I have done well as a single parent. I am now ready to get rid of these implants. I'm not even sure if I really wanted them 7 years ago. I think I just got them in order to please him and he ended up leaving anyway! LOL...
So, I've gotten a quote from my old doctor in Houston, Texas his name is Dr. Patonella and he did a great job originally and was very reasonable 7 yrs ago. I live in Virginia now and was able to send him pictures for him to review and I just my quote back. It was an astronomical $9,800 but said they would do it for $8,800 which is almost twice the cost of the national average. I would love to go back to him but I can't afford that price tag. He is good but this is definitely out of reach; that's not even including flights and pain medication, etc.
At the same time I was researching Doctors in the VA Area and through the internet I found Dr. Buenaventura in Alexandria, VA. I also found great reviews and it seems she could be much more affordable. My appointment is this Tuesday afternoon and I'm really excited about it. I hope I can get this done during late November or December. I want to make this a Christmas present to myself.
The one thing I've wondering about is if I really need a lift. I'm not sure I guess I don't really have to have it but the results seem to be much more pleasing with the lift. I'm also wondering about how long before I can go back to work. I have an office job and its not very intense as far as physical activity. Would it be smart to take a week off so I can have no issues at work?
I also have BCBS and I have sort of the Cadillac Plan its a PPO and I'm wondering if they would pay for the removal. I've heard the insurance companies sometimes might pay for the removal but not for the lift, which would really help. I would like to hear from other ladies and their experience with returning to work, and to work with the insurance for this. Oh and scaring also, what can I do afterwards to help the healing process?
Thank you so much for all the posting they have really encouraged me to move forward with my life. I am ready to close that old painful chapter and I'm ready to be myself again! : ) I'm attaching a few pictures of what I look like now, I'm hoping to have more exciting news next week after I meet with Dr. Buenaventura.
Update from Tuesday's Appointment
Hi everyone, its been a very busy week at work but here is the update! : )
Doctor Buenaventura was great, she listened to my every concern, answered every question, and was very easy to talk to. Her staff was also very nice and I felt welcomed. Another thing I noticed was that in her office she was a ton of plaques and awards being recognized as of the best plastic surgery doctors in the area. All this gave me allot of confidence in her skills to perform my surgery.
Overall she mentioned that yes, I have allot of my natural breast tissue which is great. On the downside I do have quite a bit of stretch marks which means the elasticity of the tissue is not there so there will not see much pull back or retraction. This means that I will need the lift but I'm okay with that. Also, the implants are a high profile and they are a little bit too big so they have caused a little bit of sagging and the nipples have gotten a bit larger as well. She measured everything and we went over the details as to how the surgery gets perform. She will remove the saline implants by first draining the saline fluid, then she will remove the actual implants. She will wash the capsules with antibiotic fluids, etc. Then, she will perform the lift, which is only a removal of the skin under the nipple and re-positioning the nipple a little bit higher and she will also make them a little bit smaller. Overall, I will end up with cute, perky boobies, which is great. She uses solvable stitches which is great because I won't have to go through the process of removing those later. She will place drains for a few days in order to collect any fluid, but those get removed in a few days. Total surgery time should be about 2.5 hrs total.
Overall my experience with her was great and total cost for the surgery is: $4,500.00 dollars for the surgery and $1,025 for the Anesthesiologist. Total price comes to: $5,525.00; in order to set up the surgery I have to give a $500 dollar deposit but that should be no problem. 3 weeks before the surgery we have a preop appointment and the entire balance is due then of course. She also had an option to use CareCredit which I think most doctors have now days. She also went ahead and gave me a form to take to my primary care physician and its a Clearance for Surgery form where she also ordered to have some blood work done. She also recommended to have a mammogram done as well to ensure everything is okay. Overall very through in her approach, a little bit of extra work but I think its worth it! This was all on Tuesday...
Friday of that week I went to my primary physician and I took her the Medical Clearance form and she conducted a physical, ordered the blood work and ordered the mammogram all which are normal and routine so my Insurance will cover all that so that was great news. I explained to my doctor also that I wanted to have the implants removed because they were becoming unmanageable and I'm not happy with them anymore. Also, I had a few problems with them about 6 months ago with them and my birth control. About six months ago, I wanted a longer term birth control and my OBGYN recommended the Implanor (5 yr plan) After a few weeks of having it in place, I got high fevers, was throwing up, could not sleep and my breasts got red, swollen and I got very sick and ended up in the ER. My breasts felt as if they were on fire and I couldn't even wear a T-shirt, it was awful. My doctor agreed that the birth control hormone level might have had a negative reaction with the implants. So, she is going to approve and give me the Surgery Clearance Letter and she is also going to provide me a strong case letter summarizing those problems with the birth control hormones and will recommend that its medically necessary to remove the implants. We also sent over my history since that incident and they have been a bit tender, I didn't think much of it but she made me realize the it is a big deal because its not normal to be in constant discomfort. So, overall my primary care physician will provide me with what I need in order to have my Insurance pay for the removal. I'm not sure if they will agree to pay for it but even if partially that would be great too. I would highly recommend for you ladies to take a look and see if your BC is causing you any issues as that could help you out as well. This was something I had not thought about until we started digging into my records and previous events.
Overall, we have decided to do the surgery on January 7th, and I will have a pre-op on December 15th. I will be going to do the mammogram in a few weeks maybe late November. I've taken lots of half days from work to go to all these appointments so I want to take it easy for a few weeks before I start taking any more time. After the Surgery on December 7th which is a Wednesday I will be taking a week and a half vacation from work so it should all work out. I hope!
So, overall great experience so far, a little bit of work, but hopefully I can get my insurance to help pay for this. Now the way all this will work is that I will pay for everything up front of course and then the insurance will reimburse me. I wish they would just pay the doctor if approved of course but why would they make it easy on us right?! Also, another thing I learned was that there is a Medical Code for Silicone Implants and allot of times the insurance companies will pay for the removal of those implants because they have been notorious for causing problems. However, there is no Medical Code for Saline Implants therefore the surgeons don't have a way to submit a claim to the insurance companies and they don't often cause issues that is why they don't often pay for the removal. Hope this was useful to you ladies out there who want to have them removed, I learned quite a bit of information and there was a lot that I didn't know. Hopefully everything will work out okay.
I will keep you posted on what the insurance company says. All the best and thank you for all your kind comments, I hope my situation is able to help out and encourage a few more fellow girlfriends out there.
Explant Date Moved a few weeks earlier! YAY....
Ok, now I have butterflies in my tummy! I got a call today and they told me they had a cancellation and my doctor could do the explant on December 17th instead of January 7th! So, I took it!!! Oh my gosh, Oh my gosh! I'm excited and nervous and worried and I can feel myself getting a little panic attack here and there.
My pre-op is now scheduled for November 24th and I have this week to get my mammogram scheduled. My blood work came back and everything came back normal and on target so I hope it all continues this way. Will you ladies posted!
Unexpected Twist of events! But I think all for the best!
So, remember I mentioned this great gentleman who as ohhhh so supportive. Well, here is a little background. Over the last year and a half I discovered 1 extra child and 2 additional x-wife's. He goes weeks without communication and says he doesn't call or reach out because he is depressed. But never says about what; when I call, he never answers and only calls back when its convenient for him. First time, walked off without a reason and I was heart broken. Second time he disapeared he said I was not strong enough as a woman! So, I told him to go screw him self and go find a stronger one then. So, came back crying and crawling. So, this time, is the 3rd time and I told him to pack his crap! Remember, I mentioned getting rid of the TOXIC things in my life! I'm doing it! Enough is enough.
Not once did he ever say he would fly down to VA from Chicago to be with me for the surgery. I realize that I simply a Free Storage Facility for Car and his motorcycle, so I'm done with the games and the lies. He has till this Saturday to pick up his car and his motorcycle or I'm disposing of them by putting a lean on the items and I'm donating them to charity! I'm done with selfish and abusive man! I don't know where I'm getting all my strength from I hope the Lord to keep on going.
I deserve better! About six months ago I also found blond hair on his pillows and he said they were from the laundry machine. But I thought those were caught by the lint remover in the dryer machine! LOL, and I have long black hair... go figure...
So, I just got rid of the Toxic Man! Implants are next on the 17th, woo hoo..... : )
A little bit worried!!!
Ok, tomorrow 9:30 am is my Preop and I'm starting to get a little nervous! Full payment is due too which is ok. I have it and can write the check but I'm freaking out a little bit of course. I don't know what the Preop entails, so I don't know what to expect.
I want to be myself again and I don't want these fake things in me any more but now that I'm a little older and a little smarter I'm a little bit more nervous about the surgery of course. Go figure! Years ago when I wanted to get the implants because of my husband I remember being so excited. Now I'm a little worried and nervous. I hope everything goes well tomorrow.
Will keep you posted ladies. Holy cow, I can't believe I'm doing this. Butterflies in my tummy big time!!!
Pre-op was today & Ready for surgery!
Ok, so my pre-op was today at 9:15 am and it went very well. The pre-op consisted of signing all the waivers, going over the do's and don't prior to surgery. We went over a lot of things, instructions, what to do, what not to do, how long the recovery time was going to be, etc.
I got 3 prescriptions to be filled before the surgery. One was an anti anxiety because I am a little bit worried and I panic a little now. The staff was really great and they walked me over all the paperwork and all the details. Then, they also took pictures, front, angle and side from the left and the right. Very good evaluation and lots of notes.
I asked if the doctor planned on removing the capsule too and I was told that it depends on the condition of the capsule. If its too thick and its too vascular than no because it increases the risk of bleeding. So, that is something that she would decide during the surgery and she does what is best for the patient. So, good enough for me!
I gave full payment and everything is ready to go. I do still have a mammogram setup for December 5th. My doctor wants to have it done just make sure she knows whats going on with the implants inside so I will get that done on the 5th. I guess there is no turning back now as its all paid in full.
I will be having the implants removed and yes we will be doing a lift as well. I have many stretch marks so with the skin being damaged by them, my breasts will not naturally pull back up and contract so I do have to have the lift. So, it all went very well, I'm excited and nervous at the same time.
Trying not to think about those butterflies in my tummy for the next few weeks! Phewww
Will let you know how the mammogram goes on the 5th. Thank you ladies for all your support! :)
All is set...
Ok, the surgery is all set up and paid for, and yesterday I took care of the anesthesia. No turning back now. Holy Cow... I can't believe I'm going through with this.
I started a list of items I will need for after the surgery, and I will be getting all those things ready through this weekend. Thank you for all your encouragement ladies, I couldn't have done it without you. Any particular items you recommend?
Mammogram Today, those things hurt!
So, today I had my mammogram, first one ever, and holy cow those things hurt! I didn't know they have to squeeze you with that machine to take the pictures. OMG, that was not a pretty feeling, the side pictures hurt the most I think.
Monday I will go pick up the CD with the images and I will provide them to my doctor. So far, so good and I have all my supplies at hand and the prescriptions too. The only thing I'm waiting to order are the sports bras, I just haven't gotten around to do it but I guess I have to order them and have them express shipped. As a matter of fact I will do that tonight...
I'm excited and nervous and worried then I get excited again, then I get worried again. So many emotions. Holy Cow... 5 days left! Oh my gosh!
Post-op Bra (What do you ladies think) ?
Do you think this one would work okay, or are there any others you would recommend?
48 hrs left with implants! Holy Cow!!!
Hi ladies, I got 48 hrs left and spent this weekend mega cleaning the house so I don't have to worry about a thing at home. Tomorrow I will pickup a ton of groceries and get to cooking and freezing so I don't have to do much of that either.
I picked up some Mederma and Neosporin and hand sanitizer too. Can't be safe enough, I rather have it than not have it. how soon did you ladies start using the scar cream Mederma? I definitely want to focus on that.
I was doing some research on the front closure bras and I settled on this one. It was expensive compared to the $7.00 bargain at Walmart, but I figured this is a good investment and a smart decision. So I got the Amoena Patricia Compression Vest for $60.00 bucks at Metromedicalonline.com I also ordered the 36 B/C. I hope it fits well. I'm not chancing anything, I've had it with bad decisions and mistakes. So, I think this was a good choice for me.
I will keep you all posted, I can't get cold feet and chicken out. Now that I'm actually thinking unlike when I was in my 20s, it just seems so much more scary! Go figure... Love you ladies! Thank you for helping me get this close, 2 days left! Woo Woo!!!
Explant Completed yesterday morning!
I wanted to write something quick to let you know I've completed my Explant. I'm very drowsy and groggy from the pain medication of course but doing very well. No fluid so far in the drains as you can see. Great work by Dr. Buenaventura, I was worried about the fluid but as you can see, not much at all. The bra is kind of short and it is digging a little bit around the incision area but its not bad at all. A little discomfort but its manageable of course. I can't remove anything till my consult next Tuesday at 10:00 am. That's when they will take off the bandages.
They look so little and so cute already. I love how little they are! : ) I smile every time I look down at my new cleavage. I just keep thinking they are so cute.... lol... I'm so happy to be me again! This is was so worth it.
I will post more pictures as I recover, right now there is not much to report. Except great work and no fluid in the drains. I highly recommend Dr. Buenaventura, great work so far. I will post more pictures as soon as the bandages come off. And I discovered ice cream makes great breakfast, lunch and dinner...lol.. : )
Day 4 Post-op update: Very Itchy
I'm able to sleep a little flatter on the bed, no much discomfort, I'm getting around the house very well. No fluid still, which is a good sign, even after lowering the drains. The only thing I'm noticing is that I'm super itchy all over. Its driving me crazy but after doing some research I'm learning that the itching is a good sign. It means the tissues and incisions are healing well. Dryness and itching is a good thing.
I do rub gently where it itches to calm down the area but very very gently in order not to disturb anything of course. Nothing else to report for now, I'm still taking my prescription pain medication and the antibiotics and I'm drinking lots of fluids to flush the anesthesia out of my system.
Will keep you ladies posted as progress continues.
Sign of a Quality Plastic Surgeon & Staff
One of the things that makes a huge difference is a great Plastic Surgeon that really cares about their patients. I went to check the mail this morning and this what I found. The day after my surgery, they mailed me this beautiful card. Here is the coolest part, the staff and Dr. B signed the card themselves. I can't stress enough that you do get what you pay for. We spend so much time researching these procedures that sometimes we forget that investing a little bit and paying for a good doctor saves us money in the long run.
I know myself I couldn't afford the $9K that Dr. Patronella wanted but luckily I found Dr. Buenaventura who is kind and who is amazing at what she does. It took me three years to find her and to save the money as well. Here is this amazing Doctor who is not only reasonable, she is fantastic at her work and really cares about her patients.
I would even say, consider a couple of hundred dollar ticket a hotel room and a taxi cab if you can so you can see her. Maybe flying and a short stay at a hotel would be cheap compared to the risks you could be taking anywhere else. I'm so glad that I found such a great Doctor and such caring staff.
Here are the new girls! Day one look...
Ok, so today the drains were removed and here is the first look at my new girls. No bruising, no swelling, healing very nicely. No problems encountered at all. Drains were removed easily, it does feel weird but what are you going to do? It is what it is...
Overall, they are even, they are healing very well, and no problems at all. I love my new boobies!!!
Returned to work w/no problems
I returned to work on Monday, today is Wednesday and I do get a little tired from time to time. Walking slow if I can too. I usually wear a cami under my shirts and now I hate them because they have a little under-bra and the elastic bugs me. So, the incision area gets itchy so I stopped wearing the cami shirts under.
So far no issues to report either. No bruises, no fluid, no nothing. Thank God!!! I've been very lucky! I have my second follow-up on January 13th, I think. At that point the tape will come off completely and I will be able to post new pictures without the tape. I'm dying to see how the scars look under the tape. I want to take the tape off and peak but I'm so scared to mess anything up so I'm just going crazy dying to see what the cuts and the scars look like.
I'm able to sleep on my side and I'm so comfortable. At work everyone looked at and ask "you look different"? What did you do, did you loose weight? So, I told them I did... LOL.. I was gone for almost 2 weeks through the holidays. So, they think I went on some kind of extreme diet! Its hilarious.... All the girls are mad at me and they all want me to tell me what I did so they can loose weight to... lol... I love it... Everyone tells me I look great, refreshed, thinner and they all want to know what I did... So, I'm glowing!!!
Explanting those implants our of my body is a much better feeling than when I even first got them in. Best decisions I have ever made in my life! 2015 will be all about loving myself and the beautiful woman I have become! I can't wait to continue this journey will all my new girlfriends here in this community.
A toast to a new year, no toxic crap in our bodies, and to tons of self love!!!!
4 Weeks Post Surgery Update w/pics & Scar Cream
Okay, so today was my 4 week follow-up and all the tap was removed, thank God! They trimmed the stitches that were still left and everything looked good under it. Here are some pictures of what the look like tape off. Skin is dry and very flaky as you can see. But they have healed very well. The stitching is critical I think, this prevents from wounds opening up, then the tape over that helps to keep the skin together as well. So, I guess they kept me pretty tight, no problems with anything.
I just my first shower in 4 weeks and I feel I lost so much dirt! LOL... I was so sick and tired of baths, I couldn't wait to take a nice hot shower. YAY... : ) Isn't it funny all the things we take for granted, something as simple as a hot shower! unbelievable.
I was given the green light to use any cream, lotion or moisturizer so I just use my Burt Bees Lemon Body Oil after my shower. I put lots of it on because my skin is so dry and right after all the dead skin just came off and my skin feels so soft. A few more of the little scabs fell off too. So, over all, I would say great results.
No more itching, no discomfort, no bruising, I can sleep on my sides and I even tried upside down the other night and I was very comfortable. I did have my arms under the pillow so I wouldn't put too much pressure on them but I slept so well.
Its so good to feel comfortable! I as given this particular Cream for Scars which I was told works "miracles" it was not too expensive so I got 2 tubes of it at the doctors office. I'm posting a picture of what the package looks like and for what I can see this is some powerful stuff so I'm all over it. Twice a day on scars starting now, I can't wait to use this and post an update. I have another follow-up in a month. I will let you ladies know how this Scare Cream works, its supposed to be magic! : )
Red incision lines?
How long does it take for them To fade? Does any one have an average time frame?
5 Weeks pictures
So far so good, i dont like the red color around the incisiones but i guess it will time for that yo go away.
Having difficulties uploading pictures, one more time.
8 months after explant/scar & a little tender...
19 Jul 2015
7 months post
Hi ladies It has been a little while since my last update. It's been a long 8 months since my explant in December. I feel great, I just hate the scars but they are better than having those nasty implants inside of me. The scars look red and dark in a few areas, especially underneath the breast. Around the nipple they look lighter. I wish those were darker, lol... Go figure!
Also, every morning when I wakeup, the area around The nipple hurts and i wakeup soar. It goes away after 30 min once i get up forma bed. I dont know if I'm sleeping wrong or what. Sometimes through out the day they get a little soar too. I've noticed that if i massage the area a little bit or press, they it kind of goes away but it's anoying as hell. I wish this would go away!!!
Has anyone had issues with scars like this? Will they fade away? I'm becoming self concious now and I'm starting to worry they will not go away. Have any of you experienced that soarnes? What si it? How can I make it go away?
Almost 1 yr and 2 mo after surgery! : )
The tenderness went away, healed completely... No issues what so ever and I fit very comfortably in 36 B's. I wear T-shirts and no bra all the darn time now, I'm just so comfortable. I enjoy the fact that I feel well, healthy and comfortable. I wish you all the same... Ex-planting and being myself was the best decision I've ever made! Have not taken any recent pictures but I will this week.
Confidence; the new standard...
Thank you Thomaschat for you comments... You are 100% correct! I was forced into changing my body to meet some else's wishes and standard. I ignored my self and it took years for me to realize I was beautiful.
None the less, now I am myself and I am full of confidence. So confident I raised myself to be the be only female in my industry and I help to lead a multi billion dollar organization. At the same time I had enough strength to start my own company and I also made my real estate investments profitable. All after being abandoned as a single mother and with a body that was not me.
Being myself has give me not only confidence, strength and new perspective in life. I hope I can be of some help to other women who have gone through this. They too can reverse the damage done and can reinvent themselves into a crown jewel just as I have.