Scar Revision and Liposuction of Axillae and Bra Strap Area. Arlington Heights, IL

Day one after scar revision and liposuction of...

Day one after scar revision and liposuction of axillary fat.

10 months ago I had a breast lift by dr. Horndeski in houston Texas. I've written a separate blog regarding that procedure.
Although the procedure went quite well, I anticipated that I would need a scar revision and dog ear repair. I've always had a fair amount of tissue under my armpits and the presence of this was much more apparent after I had my breast lift. I think that some surgeons address this area when they do a breast lift or reduction (I saw it referred to on an MD forum as a 'nicety' of the procedure) but as my mastopexy was quite lengthy, I think that adding another 2 hrs onto the already 5 hr procedure would've taxed the surgeon as well as the limits of how long I would want to stay under anesthesia.

Due to logistics of getting back down to Texas for scar revision, (coordinating travel for me and a caregiver, with time off and travel time) I elected to pay out of pocket to have surgery with a more local Physician, Dr Placik, whom I trust.

I'm writing this post op day 1 while I still am wrapped up like a mummy and eyeballing the hydrocodone Rx. I find myself dreaming about my beloved and blacklisted ibuprofen. I absolutely hate narcotic pain medication. It zonks me out and glues me to the bed. Yes, the pain is gone, but grrrrr..despise the buzz, the constipation etc.

As this was the third procedure I've undergone (decided to not do everything at once) I didn't do all the obsessive preparation that I did prior to my first surgery...maybe because I already have a wedge pillow and chlorhexidine scrub. Ha. Honestly, I have a million compression garments if anyone is interested in a deeply discounted used but clean garment. I'll check the sizes when I get home.

Partly out of necessity in getting enough time off work, I worked up until the procedure... actually overnight the night before, and left from work to drive 100 miles in the Midwest's first ice storm of the season. Yay!

Needless to say I was semi psychotic from lack of sleep when we got started. They premedicated me with Dramamine, Valium, antibiotics, and zofran. When I had an abdominoplasty with Dr Placik 2 years ago, I freaked out the ancillary staff with a litany of F bombs in the post op suite because of a nuclear back spasm. We took proper precautions this time (ie drugged me up), and the staff was spared my trucker potty mouth at 120dB.

It's a universal truth that anesthesia will bring out the most extremes of your personality. If you're PMSing, coming out of anesthesia is like melting ants with a magnifying glass in full sun. I had an ACL repair nearly 3yrs ago, and found out in the post op suite they had to carve out half of my medial meniscus during the procedure due to collateral damage. Needless to say, I blew a drugged out gasket bemoaning my missing meniscus, and knowing that I will now have 100% chance of developing arthritis in my knee and probably need a knee replacement down the line. I was sobbing for 30 minutes while staff was desperately trying to usher me out. Ha. I was just so exhausted this time, so all went well.

Also out of necessity, spouse is current nursemaid. He's not doing too bad, actually, so I'll give him credit. Only real downside is that we're staying in a hotel near the surgery afterwards, and he snores like a banshee. At home, I would just relegate him to 'the snoring room' but here, I get to cut up my Vicodin into small pieces (whole pill is too strong for me) and hope that it knocks me out before he really gets the pipes going.

So more about the actual procedure. After exhaustive search on RealSelf, I noticed that there's not a lot of reviews of 'bra strap liposuction' or 'axillary liposuction.' I also had a scar revision to correct dog ears from a previous mastopexy, which I felt was going to be an inevitability due to the particular procedure that I had. See my breast lift review regarding this.

So a lot of us have fat/tissue in the underarm area. I'm surprised that more people haven't had this procedure. Reading about it, it seems that there's always a chance that the tissue is actually breast tissue, glandular, and can't just be liposuctioned. I had lost about 50 lbs 8yrs ago (have gained some back) but have some leftover areas of fat/redundant tissue that no matter what I do, still hang out. I didn't notice this are so much until I considered a breast lift.

Actually, a girlfriend pointed it out to me (this is a dear old friend who also has no tact, but she did speak the truth)...I had some junk hanging over my swimsuits. The breast reduction/lift that I had didn't cover the 'nicety' of treating this area, and I elected to delay dealing with it when I had the dog ears fixed.

The breast lift that I had is a unique procedure with different scars than the traditional one (lollipop or anchor). In order to fix dog ears, one must extend the scar out a little further. I asked Dr Placik if there were any 'rules' about where the scar had to go, and he felt that within reason, we could keep the scar from the dog ear repair on the side of the breast, instead of extending it into the underarm area. So I tried to keep my scars located in the distribution of an 'underwire', rather than extending it straight out under my armpit. I don't get my bandages off until 12/31 (procedure 12/28) so I'm curious how it went.
I have thick ABD pads on my chest; its wrapped in an ace wrap, and I have a leisure bra on over it, pretending to hold it all in.
My chest wall is pretty sore, and again, I'm confined to a sleeping position on my back. I'm a god-given side sleeper, so this is hard for me.

No drains. Yay.

I'll attach before pics and post surgery pics. No much to show until 12/31. Whoo whoo!
Thank you for reading my blog, BTW. I have used RealSelf as a resource when I was researching procedures, and find that blogging helps me to remember things later on. I tend to ramble but the devil's in the details. I'm in the medical field, BTW, but I do not do Plastics.

Sometimes it's the peripheral stuff that you don't expect (not being able to wipe yourself correctly on the toilet, for instance) that helps one understand what a procedure is really like. Of course it's going to hurt, duh. Of course youre going to get constipated on pain meds, duh. Who would ever have thought that you might need a walker after a tummy tuck? Read about it! :)

Post op day 4

Wow, what a difference a few days makes from the initial sugery. Already the haze of anesthesia is wearing away, and Im feeling more normal.
I had my first post op appointment yesterday (POD3) where the post operative compression wrap and abd pads were removed. Wow. What a shocker. Not painful, but like having someone kick your leg that "fell asleep". All the nerve endings were on high alert. No issues at the appointment. We discussed proper garments and made an appointment for one week.
Moving around has been much easier. I'm taking no pain meds during the day, and only 1/2 tablet of pain med at night. Going down to tramadol @ night because of what I feel is excessive sedation from Vicodin (hydrocodone).
Moving bowels has been good. Eating lots of high fiber foods (fruit smoothies) and taking milk of magnesia at night.
I brought a bag of bras to my post op appointment, but the one that I'm liking wearing is the Moldeate 4003 (unfortunate name). Photos on blog. Brick shithouse of a bra. Not that expensive either, at mid $20's. I just bought another one. Be careful with the measurements..make sure that you measure yourself OVER your boobs for your torso measurement. Waist and hips dont matter. Its relatively soft on the inside, and doesn't have seams which hit you on the scars. I bet that this would be a good post-reduction bra for those who weren't getting implants or who needed an underwire. I may use it as a sports bra as well. :)

So on POD2 I went out with family to see Star Wars. Wore a bulky sweatshirt and no one noticed any dressings or anything. On POD3, went to local club to celebrate New Years's eve. Since I had all the compressive stuff off, I wore a sweater dress and took it easy. No issues.

So scar revision. I have to see how they look once all the steri strips come off. I asked Dr Placik to bring them up on the sides of the breasts instead of a comet tail going towards the armpit. I think that lines extending toward the armpit (whether scar or extra tissue) look matronly. I'm not ready to look matronly. I think the natural shadow (OK, what SHOULD be the natural shadow..if one's breasts were NATURALLY centered on one's chest..haha) would be a good place to hide scars, as they will face into this area well. The lipo looks good. No more breast pannus under the arm pits. When I'm allowed, I'lll start doing pushups again. Such a good chest and arm exercise.

Thanks for reading. Happy New Year!!
Chicago Plastic Surgeon

I've had a previous procedure by Dr Placik. I elected to use him for this surgery because he has a fine eye for detail.

Was this review helpful? {{ voteCountOthers + ' other' + (voteCountOthers == 1 ? '' : 's') }} found this helpful