I feel like I've had large breasts my entire life,...
I feel like I've had large breasts my entire life, I think I got boobs when I was 13 and they were instantly a big C. By the time I was 16 I was over a DDD and now at 26 I'm a J. My weight has fluctuated pretty much my entire life, but my breasts never got smaller. They are so heavy, and they cause me severe pain in my neck, back, and shoulders. I've tried everything to relieve the pain from special bras to chiropractors and physical therapy, but nothing has helped. Not only are they large, but very saggy where my nipples (which are huge) point towards the ground.
I've wanted a reduction since I was 16, but my doctor always told me to wait until I had children because they would get large again. So I put it off for ten years expecting to have children by now, but I have no plans of kids any time soon and I can't suffer any longer. So I've been researching for months and finally decided on a great plastic surgeon in Beverly Hills, Dr Daniel Golshani. I had my consultation last week and it was more than I expected. He was so warm and understanding and really helped me feel at ease about the procedure. He gathered all of my info and documentation to build my case for insurance, and he seemed very confident that they would cover it. I should know early next week what the status of that is, fingers crossed they'll pay for it!
We're going to do a reduction with the anchor scars, but he doesn't think he will have to remove my nipple so thats good! I'm hoping to go down to a full DD, but I'll be ecstatic with anything smaller than now. We're also going to some minimal liposuction on my bra roll, sides, and abdomen. He asked me if I wanted to inject some in my butt, and even though it was something I'd been thinking about I said no. Then I left and immediately wish I had said yes, why not, I'm going to be under and in pain anyways! So when I hear back about insurance, I'm going to ask about adding that in.
I've got a surgery date set for 3/4 (less than a month!!), but that is pending insurance approval. It should be about 7 hours, then I'll spend the first night in a recovery center (Serenity in Santa Monica). After that I'll have my ex staying with me to take care of me. I'm terrified of recovery, so if you all have any tips that would be great!!
I am so excited for this process, I've waited so long!
Also, I'll upload some before photos when I get a chance!
Original surgeon no longer covered
So I met with my first surgeon and loved everything about him and hist staff, however, they called to let me know my insurance would only cover $350! I was shocked and really upset, but they gave me a good cash price and I decided I thought it was worth it. Well, today I called my insurance just to understand what was going on, and it turns out Dr Golshani is no longer in contract with BS of CA. What a bummer, but I was glad to know that I still had an option for insurance coverage. So I called my second choice surgeon and verified that they are indeed actually covered, now I have a consultation tomorrow. I had such a miserable past few days thinking I wasn't going to have this surgery after I put so much effort into getting things in order, but now I'm feeling excited again. The worst part is that I put $1000 down to hold my surgery date, I'm really hoping they can refund it due to the circumstances.
I really think I have a strong case for insurance coverage, so I've got my fingers crossed!
Adding Pre-OP photos
I've attached some photos for reference.
I finally got the call from my surgeon today telling me insurance had approved my breast reduction! Holy shit I was so excited, I almost started crying. I'm so so so very excited and relieved. So now I have my final date set (4/13) and my pre-op appointment scheduled (3/30). I was so nervous they were going to deny me, so I am just so thankful.
For anyone who is curious about insurance, here is how I handled it:
1.) Gathered documentation from other doctors including:
2.) Had a consult with the surgeon where he took pictures of all angles (including rash underneath and posture).
3.) Had PS and PCP write letters of recommendation outlining all symptoms caused by large breasts and other means of relief previously tried.
I definitely tried my hardest to include everything I thought would help, no matter how insignificant it seemed. I'm so glad I did my research and gathered all the necessary documents.
My PS sent off the claim to insurance on 2/16 and I got the final approval today (2/29).
My insurance is covering all but $800 for the reduction, and I am paying $4000 OOP for liposuction in my lateral chest, abdomen, and flanks.
If anyone has questions about this part of the process, please let me know! Also, if any of you know how to make time move quicker, I'd definitely appreciate it! :)
Less than one month!
Wow! I can't believe I have less than a month left, this is getting so real! My original surgery date was scheduled for 3/4 and that has come and gone, then I had a second one for 3/30 which is right around the corner. My actual date is 4/13, I cannot wait! I'm trying to get everything ready, but I feel like there is so much left to do. I'm all paid up for what I owed out of pocket, so at least I have that taken care of.
I've got so much work to finish up, but thankfully my boss is incredible and is working with me through this process. I haven't told him what I'm having done, but if he asks I will. I'm kind of nervous he will be upset with me for taking so much time off to get a 'boob job' since it is going to be very obvious what I had done. I know that is all in my head, but I'm definitely a little nervous of my coworkers reaction (hoping it will be a good one). I have three different post-op appointments next week (hematologist, PS, and PCP), so I know I'm going to be exhausted.
I'm getting nervous, but I'm even more excited. My dad came to visit me this past weekend and we went to Joshua Tree and hiked. He loves taking tons of pictures, and I just saw the ones he posted of me. I look huge, but it is just because of how large my breasts are. I can't wait to get rid of them. I just want to feel good and not worry about how huge they are.
If anyone has any tips for the weeks leading up to surgery, it would be greatly appreciated. Also, any tips for things to buy/post-op supplies. Really, just any advice would be great.
I have one more day until my surgery, and I am so excited and nervous all at the same time! My insides feel like they're in a big knot, has anyone else had bad GI probs the day before? If so, what did you do to help? Also, what are the standards for taking anti-anxiety meds the night before/morning of?
Ah, I feel like I have so many questions that just came out of nowhere!! Other than that, I am very very excited. I've waited for this day for years and it is finally here.
I feel like I am very organized and ready for the recovery process (maybe a little too prepared), so that makes things a little easier. I have a lot to do tomorrow so that is a little stressful. I'm just so ready to get the surgery over and get back home.
Any tips and well wishes are greatly appreciated (as always)!
Day of surgery
So today marks 1 week post op, holy crap! I feel like I have so much to say, so I think I will separate this into separate reviews for each day/period.
Day of Surgery: I had to be at the surgery center at 6:00 AM and my procedure started at 6:30 AM. I was the only surgery they had that day, so I didn't have to wait for anything. They took my back to the pre-op/recovery room and had me put my gown on and take a pregnancy test, then I went to an exam room to be marked up. I was so incredibly nervous at this point, but my doctor and his staff were great at calming my nerves. After this I went into the OR and got on the table. This was terrifying, so I tried to keep my eyes clothes during all of it. I had talked with the anesthesiologist the day before, so she knew I have bad nausea and anxiety. She was quick to get me knocked out and hit a vein easily the first time.
The next thing I know, I'm waking up in the recovery room. I had slept for over an hour in there, which was good. I woke up and was feeling nauseous, but not too bad. However, I was feeling some pain. This is my fault though. I am on a medicine that blocks narcotics and was supposed to stop a few days before surgery. I stopped the day before, but apparently that was not enough time. Also, the pain meds they gave me were not strong enough to cut through the other meds completely. I got some relief from what was in my IV, but if they had given me more I would have had to wait longer to go home. After about twenty minutes, I felt like the anesthesia had worn off and I was back to normal (for the most part). I took some nausea meds and they went over my drains and other recovery stuff, but all I really remember is saying 'I feel like a baby' about 10 times. After being awake for around 45 mins, I got dressed and went pee, then was in the car. Thank god for everyone who said to bring a pillow in the car, that was truly a lifesaver.
Once I got home, I ate some soup and took all my meds, then I passed out. I slept for about five hours (incredible), but then woke up with some back pain. I have an impossible time sleeping on my back. I don't remember too much from the rest of the day other than being in and out of sleep. The pain for my boobs really wasn't that bad, but when I would stand up I felt like I had to hold them bc of the pressure. I also go some lipo near my armpits and my love handles, that pain was much worse.
Days 1 & 2 Post Op
Day 1 I had to wake up and go to the doctor. The drive was difficult since my surgeon is about 45 minutes from my apartment, but thankfully traffic wasn't too bad. They changed my bandages and said everything looked good, and then I was on my way back home. This day was pretty tame, but it was kind of difficult staying on top of my meds/drains schedule. I think I was still numb from surgery or at least feeling the stronger meds still because I felt ok. I slept off an on throughout the day, only taking breaks to eat, pee, and take my meds.
Day 2 was similar to day 1. I went to the doctor again (it was Friday so that wanted to check up before the weekend) and was hoping to get my drains removed. However, I had too much fluid still in them so that was a no go. The nurse pretty much just made sure my bandages were all in place and sent me on my way. My drains were less full than the day before (night of day 1 I had 60 ml in left and 100 ml in right), but still high (30 ml in L and 20 in R). The nurse gave me a longer garment for my liposuction and that made a big difference in my discomfort. Sleeping was still uncomfortable, but I honestly felt ok. This led me to believe that recovery was going to be smooth, but that was definitely false.
Days 3 & 4 Post-Op
Days 3 and 4 were both awful. I was miserable and uncomfortable all day long. I couldn't sleep more than an hour at a time, and my normal medicine had made the pain meds not work. I was also feeling some withdrawal from stopping my normal meds, so I was just all around not good. I went #2 the first time on day 3 and that was interesting. Thankfully, I had been taking stool softeners and bought a bidet. I couldn't wipe at all, so the bidet was definitely worth it.
I broke down into tears a few times throughout these days because I was just so uncomfortable. My poor ex (who flew into town to take care of me) did a great job comforting me. At the end of day 4 I started realizing that most of my uncomfortableness came from feeling withdrawals from stopping my normal meds. Since the low dose norcos they gave me weren't strong enough to cut through my normal meds, I finally figured it was best to just get back on my normal stuff (it just blocks opiates but doesn't relieve pain or have any euphoric effects). Once that started working, I felt so much better. It was like night and day. I started taking extra strength tylenol in addition to the bromelain, and I think that has more of a pain relieving effect. I was able to sleep much better that night after I straightened out my meds.
1 week Post-Op
I just wrote the reviews for the previous week since I had so much bottled up in my head, but now I can go into more detail about today and things in general. My boobs are starting to hurt from typing though, so I keep taking breaks to just hold them. I went to the doctor yesterday and was in for a surprise stitch removal. I knew they were going to remove the drains, but I had no idea some stitches were coming out. They just laid me back and starting pulling them out of my nipples....ouch!! I ended up having to have a free nipple graft, so I think it was a little more intense than for other people. That was intense, I had to just lay there for ten minutes before I was ready to leave. I go back next Monday (2 weeks) to have more removed...I'm nervous.
Things have been going really well the last few days, but now I am all alone and I think I may be overdoing it. My arms are really sore, as are my lipo areas. My boobs only hurt when I stand up or bend over, but they have these weird twitchy pains every now and then. The only thing that helps i just holding them tightly with my hands. I've been able to sleep through the night, but still not comfortably. My doctor said once it is comfortable I can sleep on my side, but who knows when that will be.
I saw my boobs for the first time on Monday before I took my first shower (holy crap that was incredible). I really like them, but they are definitely very swollen on the sides. The bruising is no where near as bad as I expected, so I was pretty pleased. The next time I change my bandages (which is hard to do alone btw), I will get some pictures to upload.
Photos for 1 week Post Op
I've attached some photos I took today. I'm a few days past 1 week and I think they look great! I have a lot of swelling on the sides of my breasts, but I'm hopeful that will go down.
Healing better than expected - 3 weeks PO
So today marks 3 weeks Post-Op, that is so exciting! It feels like forever ago that I had those huge breasts, but it also feels like yesterday. I'm so thrilled with my results, I think they are perfect! I got exactly what I wanted, proportional, symmetric breasts. They fit my body perfectly and are so perky (my nipples no longer point towards the floor), it is incredible.
As far as healing, I never had much bruising (a pleasant surprise) but have had a lot of swelling. I got my stitches all out this 5 days ago and my incisions already look seamless. I think my doctor does a lot of facial surgeries so he is great with minimizing scars. I've been out and about for the past week and have felt great other than some random soreness. My ribs and armpits have been the most sore, I'm not sure if it is from the lipo or the compression garments though. Speaking of garments, I am ready to not be sucked and wrapped in 24/7. I'm able to wear normal spanx instead of the abdominal binder, but I'm scared to ruin my great results so I haven't fully switched over. I have two surgical bras (exactly the same) from my doctor and they aren't that great. The bottom rubs and digs so I have panty liners in there.
While things have been mostly good, I've had a few negatives (very few). My breasts have been so itchy the past few days, I've started using a mixture of bio oil and coconut oil to massage them and it seems to help temporarily. My nipples have been peeling (dr said it is normal with free nipple graft) and bleed sometimes, so that sucks. Also, I feel like I have a tiny opening in each of the t-junctions of my incisions. I don't know if they are actually open or if the scabs that came off just revealed a deeper layer. I go back to the dr on Monday, so I'll know then. I think I've been doing far too much because I was feeling so well, so I'm gonna try and take it easy again.
My bandage/care schedule has been different than what I've seen in most other posts, but it seems to be working. When I got out of surgery I had guards on my nipples and dressings everywhere else. Once the drains came out we moved to a self stick pad with ointment on my nipples and loose gauze over the other incisions. I have to shower/wash them every day, apply Biocorneum gel to the scars, and put my gauze on. I've never had tape or glue on my incisions, nor did I have any of the scar strips. It has been pretty simple, so I'm not really concerned.