I'm scheduled for a full tummy tuck with an...
I'm scheduled for a full tummy tuck with an umbilical hernia and muscle repair! I have 2 wonderful children. I am petite and my stomach got very big during my pregnancies! Both of my babies were born via C-section. During my second pregnancy, I developed an umbilical hernia and diastasis rectus. I feel so blessed and happy that I have my two amazing kids, but after much hard work and research, I'm ready to get my body back! I lost all of my baby weight, eat healthy and work out 5-6 days a week. Nothing that I have done has changed the appearance of my abdomen. I need to have my hernia repaired, so I have decided to have it done along with a tummy tuck. I have gone through so many emotions in the past year with regard to having the surgery, but now I'm ready! I can't wait to wear jeans and not have my skin hang over the top and abdomen bulge out, making me look pregnant! I'm also really looking forward to wearing fitted dresses, etc. Most importantly, I feel like I will be able to be even more active with my kids, once everything is back where it should be.
Scheduled for Full Tummy Tuck with Umbilical Hernia & Diastasis Rectus Repair!
I'm scheduled for a full tummy tuck with an umbilical hernia and diastasis rectus repair! I did a ton of research and had consults with many of the top, well-known plastic surgeons in the Scottsdale/Phoenix area and once I met with Dr. Shaw, I knew he was the right Dr. for me! He has the most experience, is board certified in both plastic surgery and general surgery (which is important to me since I have an umbilical hernia), the best looking before-and-after photos, great reviews, and his entire staff is so friendly, warm and helpful.
I have 2 wonderful children. I'm petite and my stomach got very big during my pregnancies! Both of my babies were born via C-section. During my second pregnancy, I developed an umbilical hernia and diastasis rectus. I feel so blessed and happy that I have my two amazing kids, but after much hard work and research, I'm ready to get my body back! I lost all of my baby weight, eat healthy and work out 5-6 days a week. Nothing that I have done has changed the appearance of my abdomen. I need to have my umbilical hernia repaired, so I have decided to have it done along with a tummy tuck. I can't wait to wear jeans and not have my skin hang over the top and abdomen bulge out, making me look pregnant! I'm also really looking forward to wearing fitted dresses, etc. Most importantly, I feel like I will be able to be even more active with my kids, once everything is back where it should be.
2 days post op full tummy tuck with umbilical hernia and diastasis recti repair!!!
I'm on the flat side!! I just had my full tummy tuck with umbilical hernia repair and diastasis rectus repair two days ago (no lipo). I am thrilled with the results! The first two days were the hardest but I'm feeling better today! There was no sharp pain at all...just an extremely tight feeling and some soreness. It's uncomfortable, but not painful. The spirometer is definitely helping! As is taking slow, deep breathe and walks around the recovery center hallway. I have been discharged from the recovery center and am going home today! Dr. Shaw is the best dr! He fixed my hernia and gave me an innie belly button, and repaired my diastasis (which he said was 9 cm!! That's about a 4 finger width gap! Crazy.) I thought I'd be in a lot more pain, but it is just a sore and very, very tight feeling, but not painful. The hardest part is getting in and out of bed, but that gets easier every time. I'm so happy I had this done!!!
3 days post op!
Today started out good, until I decided to take 2 tablespoons of milk of magnesia. I hadn't gone #2 yet and had been taking a stool softener. I fell asleep until about 12:30, had lunch, and then Halas my first bowl movement. It was a bit uncomfortable, but I was so happy I had it! Then, about 30 minutes later I had 2 bouts of diarrhea. Then I started having more bouts of diarrhea every 30 minutes to an hour, all day long, up until about a few minutes ago. I paged my Dr. and he said it's likely from the milk of magnesia, and to stay hydrated and on a liquid/soft diet until the diahrrhea goes away. I'm praying that the diahrrhea stops! My mom just picked up some pedialite for me so hopefully that will help. Other than that, things are going well/as expected. I'm a total hunchback lol! I'm sore and right but stopped taking Percocet when I came home from the hospital. I'm sticking with tylenol and Valium (at night) for now and that seems to be working. Here are a couple of pics that I took this morning (before my crazy bouts of milk of magnesia induced diahrea). Milk of magnesia is not for everyone. I hope this helps someone! Happy healing everyone.
5 days post op
Can't believe I'm already 5 days post op! Every day gets a little bit better. A few things that I wanted to share. Before having my surgery, I researched what multivitamins to take to help prepare my body for surgery and healing. I came across some info here on real self about the VitaMedica clinical support program. I asked my dr about it, and he ok'd it. I started taking the vitamins 2 weeks prior to my surgery and am to continue taking them for another 2 weeks post. These are the best vitamins I've ever taken! They even improve my mood. I'm a big fan of holistic and natural health and have been taking vitamins and supplements for years and years. I believe that these vitamins gave me great energy before surgery, and are helping me now with my energy while healing. They are pricey, but worth every penny. I'm also taking probiotics (2 hours after and 2 hours before I take my antibiotic. I really want to prevent getting a yeast infection and boost my immune system.) I also rented a recliner lift chair to sleep and rest on. Also worth every penny! And I ordered a toilet seat riser which is also really helpful. This is definitely a slow recovery, but I am surprised that is is not nearly as bad as I imagined it would be. Before my surgery, I prepared myself mentally for the worst pain and fatigue, but when I'm sitting in my recliner, I feel no pain. Just super crazy tight and a bit sore. It's my back that really hurts when I stand up and walk. Also, my entire abdomen feels so tight when I stand and walk and I'm not even close to standing up straight. Thankfully that's only temporary! A support system is crucial, especially if you have you have kids. My husband and parents have been taking turns taking care of the kids and me, and I couldn't have done this without their help. My husband has been so supportive and helpful but today he got really overwhelmed (between taking care of the kids, working, food, me, household stuff etc.) I'm sure this is normal and all part of the deal. Overall, this is still 100% worth it!
Had my first post-op appointment today!
My first post-op appt today went really well! Dr. said everything looked great and that I'm healing really well. I will be getting my drains taken out sometime this week:). I can't say enough good things about Dr. Shaw and his staff..they truly make you feel cared for as a patient!! I'm so happy with my result and it's only day 6 post op! My bruising is starting to fade quickly, which is nice. Swelling is minimal so far. I'm just so thrilled to not have a hernia anymore (LOVE my new innie belly button) and my stomach is flat for the first time since before I had my kids!! :)
7 days post-op update and new pics
Can't believe its been one week since my surgery! Yesterday, my dr. cleared me to shower...so today was my first shower since before surgery!! My husband helped me, and with just washing my body and not my hair, it took every bit of energy out of me! I couldn't believe how exhausted I was after that shower. Don't get me wrong..it feels good to be clean, but wow did it zap my energy and it was very uncomfortable having my garmet off. The other day I sneezed and laughed for the first time since surgery..and omg...those were the two most painful things I've experienced since I've had the surgery! Especially the sneezing. I sneezed twice and there are no words to describe that pain! So every time I have to sneeze, I plug my nose to prevent myself from sneezing. Laughing hurts like heck too...OUCH!! I see why people say this is a tough recovery...and a lengthy one...but still it's 1000% worth it! Here are a couple of new pics. I'm swollen today but so happy to be flat! My left flank is more puffy/swollen than my right flank, but my dr said that the swelling will go down in time. (I did not have any lipo). Anyone else have more swelling on one side than the other? I'm sure it's probably common. Hope everyone is healing well!
Got my drains out! Post-op day 10
I can't even tell you how happy I am to have my drains out! I'm glad I had them in for 10 full days to drain the fluid and help prevent getting a seroma, but they were a bit of a nuisance! They pinched and pulled at times, and required daily drainage and care. I feel like I can even stand up a bit straighter with the drains out now (though I'm still hunched over). I still have a lot of tightness in my abdomen, but when I'm in my recliner I don't feel it much. Mostly when I'm up and walking etc. So today I had a bit of the post-op blues that everyone talks about. I'm thrilled with my results, so it's not that...I just started to feel a bit bad having my husband and parents doing so much to help when I am used to doing almost everything as far as taking care of the kids, house, grocery shopping, cooking, driving kids to and from school and activities, cleaning up etc.. I've read and have been told that it's totally normal to feel bluesy at times after having this surgery. I look forward to a continued smooth healing and getting back into my normal routine, but I know that will take time. Luckily, I'm patient for the most part. I can't wait to be able to sleep on my side again! My neck is sore from sleeping upright in my recliner, but I am not ready to comfortably sleep in my bed again yet. Anyhow, fingers crossed that my recovery continues to go well! I'm so happy I had this surgery! Just need to get past this bluesy moody feeling. It's that time of the month as well so that doesn't help!;) Tomorrow is a new day!
Feeling much better today! Post op day 12
I'm feeling a lot better today. I'm standing up straighter (though still slightly hunched) and have more energy (thanks to getting a good night's sleep most nights, my VitaMedica vitamins and high protein diet). My neck and back are still sore, and I still feel tight in the abdominal area, but I'm starting to feel better overall. Recovery is so much easier when those drains are taken out! Last night, I took my first shower without drains. It felt great! I didn't get as tired in the shower, but it still feels uncomfortable having my binder off for short periods of time. I actually really like wearing a binder as it makes me feel supported. The only thing that bugs me about the foam insert and binder is that it makes lines on my skin from being compressed against it, but I know these are only temporary/from wearing the binder. Prior to today, I had a couple of days of the post-op Blues, and reading fashion magazines helped cheer me up. It was fun looking at all of the cute clothes that I'll be able to wear again!! I've lost 5 pounds since having my surgery, because my stomach feels so full and tight after eating smaller amounts of food than I usually eat. Of course, this is a big plus for me!:) Hope it lasts for a while:). Once I am cleared to workout again, I will ease my way back into it. I am really missing my yoga classes (though i don't mind taking a break from my usual boot camp classes;). Happy healing to all of you. I will post new pics again soon!
2 1/2 weeks post op!
Where does the time go? This recovery is flying right by! Not to say it's a breeze, because it definitely has its challenges, but it's not that difficult overall. Today I saw my dr for a follow up appt. I'm not kidding when I tell you that he and his staff make you feel like royality when you are a patient in their office! I always enjoy going in there. It's a such happy place. Dr. Shaw said that everything looks great and is healing well! I was feeling so good this morning that I think I overdid it today. I was on my feet a bit too much (just around the house) and in the late afternoon my whole abdomen started to feel super tight and I could feel the "swell hell" coming on, lol. Now I know what people mean when they talk about "swell hell". I have been since taking it easy the rest of the evening in my recliner and am feeling a little better. Oh by the way, I was given the go ahead to wear a stage 2 binder. I bought one before my surgery and brought it in to my dr appt. It felt fine in the office but after wearing it for a while, I realized that it is not as comfortable as my stage 1 binder that I got right after surgery. For some reason it doesn't compress evenly on the top (it is a waist cincher type thing that I had bought at sports authority). So I did some research on various customer reviews of stage 2 garmets, and ordered the Veronique Stage 2 compression garmet. I hope it is more comfortable and provides even compression. Most of the reviewers say so:). I want it quick so I paid for 2 day shipping. In the meantime, I am wearing my stage 1 garmet (without the topi-foam insert...dr said i don't need that anymore). I am almost out of my VitaMedica vitamins and just ordered one last recovery kit yesterday because I want to have an extra boost with my healing. I swear by these vitamins...they give me so much energy and have helped me with healing. After I finish the next round of VitaMedica surgery recovery kit, I am going to try their regular multivitamins (apparently the recovery vitamins are only recommended before and after surgery, but not long term). That's all for now..I'm going to bed! Hoping that I wake up less swollen!! My least favorite thing about swelling is that it makes it a bit harder to breathe deeply with the compression garmet on. Fun stuff lol! I am loving my new flat tummy!!!! I've been living in pajamas and sweats while recovering though (when I'm at home) bc I want to be as comfortable as possible!
New pics - 19 days post op
So I decided to give the mcdavid waist cincher/2nd stage compression garmet from sports authority another try yesterday and am glad I did. (Dr. Shaw recommended this as a stage 2 binder). It compresses pretty well overall and supports my back as well, so I have been wearing it. I wish it compressed a bit more on the top and extended a bit lower on my hips though. So when I receive my Design Veronique stage 2 binder in the mail, I will alternate wearing that with the mcdavid one from sporty authority. When I asked my dr. about this at my last appointment he said this is ok to do. I think wearing a new binder just takes getting used to.
Hope everyone who has had surgery recently is healing well! And I hope that my posts are helping anyone doing research on tummy tucks and/or hernia repairs! In the year prior to my surgery, it helped me so much to read about other people's tummy tuck and hernia repair experiences here on real self.
Here are a few new post op pics (taken this morning, before the "swell hell" kicks in;)
3 1/2 weeks post-op!
I'm 3 1/2 weeks post-op! Starting at around 3 weeks post-op, I have been feeling pretty good energy wise and overall (aside from still being slightly hunched over and a tight feeling in my abs). Since 3 weeks post-op, I have been up and about with my kids and family and not resting in my recliner until I go to bed at night. I am really swollen now! I read a ton about "swell hell" prior to having surgery, but didnt really fully experience it until today. Here is a pic that I took today..I'm so swollen in the lower abs! I think this is a reminder to myself that I had major surgery and need to take it even more easy. I'm still not lifting anything heavy, not exercising (other than walking) and not bending and lifting. I just drove for the first time at 3 weeks post-op. Feeling a bit down about the swelling but know its only temoorary and have to keep reminding myself of that. So, increased activity definitely equals increased swelling. I have been wearing my compression garmet 24/7 since I had the surgery (except for when i shower). I also haven't been sleeping as well at night because i'm still sleeping in my recliner. I'm not comfortable lying on my side yet. Soon enough! I'm still 1000% happy I did the surgery, despite this:). fingers crossed that my swelling goes doen very soon! I have already started to decrease the time that I'm on my feet while at home and in general, since I noticed the swelling this morning. Will update again soon! I am posting this pic to show that now matter how good the result of a tummy tuck, do expect (hopefully temporary) swelling with increased activity! I have lost 5 pounds since after surgery so I know it's not that. Xoxo
1 month post-op! Update and new pics
Good morning Real Self peeps! Today I am 1 month post op! It's been exactly 4 weeks since I had my surgery! Yesterday I went in to my dr's office to have my tape changed on my incision and they said I could start with the silicone tape scar therapy! So that's what I have on my incision now!:) My plastic surgeon also checked to make sure i didn't have any fluid build up, because I had so much swelling the other day. But thankfully I have no fluid build up! He had me do some sit ups and crunches in his office so he could really check and make sure that there was no fluid. Then shortly after I got home from my appointment, my ab muscles were super crazy tight (from the few ab crunches that i did) and I felt lightheaded and like it was hard to take deep breaths! I took a muscle relaxer and sat in my recliner, and that helped, thankfully! This surgery is a miracle surgery, but it is major surgery for sure!! My dr. said that I could slowly start doing some ab exercises to strengthen my core, but since I felt so tight and uncomfortable yesterday after doing even just a few crunches in his office, I think I will hold off from doing ab strengthening exercises for a while longer. I have been trying to spend a few hours a day off of my feet and that has helped bring down the swelling in my abs, thankfully. I am still swollen (but not nearly as much as I was a few days ago) but I was reading on here that swelling peaks between 3 and 5 weeks post op tummy tuck. And I also had a hernia repair, so that could be part of it too. Only time and patience will heal! Here are a few pics that I took this morning. Hope you all are healing well!
6 weeks post-op!!! New pics and update!
Time just flies..I'm 6 weeks post op today!!! Feeling good overall but since I'm on my feet most of the day, I'm pretty tired by 4 or 5pm! I went to the gym for the first time today and boy, it's gonna take a while before I'm back doing boot camp classes, yoga etc. I walked on the treadmill for 25 minutes and then did some light stretching. That was about all I could handle! A little bit at a time. So this morning I woke up and was pleasantly surprised..my swelling has come down!!:) Weeks 3-6 I had noticeable and significant on and off swelling in my lower abdomen and mons area, but thankfully that has really decreased!!! Well, I haven't checked since first thing this a.m. so i'm probably swollen right now from all the activity today, but when I checked this morning, my stomach was the flattest I've seen it since I've had my surgery! Yay! I've also lost 9 pounds in the last six weeks/since I had surgery. I've really been watching my diet and eating a healthy, clean diet with high protein, lots of vegetables, some fruit and healthy fats, 95% of the time. Of course I allow myself little splurges here and there but then I get back on track. I highly recommend watching the diet after this surgery as it will really maximize your results!! I've always eaten healthy but am eating smaller portions now, which is making the difference. Anyhow, here are my pics from this morning, before any swelling could set in, lol. Oh I forgot to mention, about a week ago I had a minor scare as I was changing my scar therapy tape. I had noticed a small area on my incision that was oozing a bit of clear fluid and blood, so I called my dr's office the next morning and was seen by a nurse right away. Turns out it was just a suture trying to "spit". The nurse tried removing it but it wouldn't come out, so she put hydrogen peroxide and a band aid on it and said the suture will dissolve on its own. Sure enough, she was right!:) After a few days the suture dissolved and the area on my incision was healed. So if this happens to you, please don't freak out! Hope this helps someone. Btw I still wear my binder all the time except for an hour or so in the evenings after my shower. Also, at 4 1/2 weeks post op I started sleeping in my bed! Still sleeping on my back, but at least I'm not sleeping in the recliner anymore! I sleep with a pillow under my knees and that takes the pressure off of my incision. Btw my abs feel sooooo tight by the end of the day from being on my feet so much and active and busy with my kids. So thankful that my hubby helps me get the kids to bed at night because by the end of the day, I'm toast! Lol. So happy and grateful that I had this surgery! If you live in AZ, I definitely recommend Dr. Shaw!!