43 Years Old, 100 Lb Weight Loss - Much Anticipated Tummy Tuck. Claremont, CA

I've been heavy my whole life. About 6 years ago,...

I've been heavy my whole life. About 6 years ago, I decided I'd had enough. Years before that, I had tried to get weight loss surgery but was denied many times by my insurance as I had no co-morbidities. At the time of surgery, I was 181 lbs. I'm 5'8" and wearing a size 10. I was happy with my size but not the excess skin. I've been looking into having a Tummy Tuck for a few years now. I've maintained the weight loss for about 4 years. (Although I've had a setback where I had to work to lose about 40 lbs. again)

I met with 3 surgeons just to say I did my due diligence. To be honest, I couldn't afford my first choice. Then I met Dr. Wali. I ended up putting my deposit down that day in November and got my surgery date of February 3rd.

It was a rough couple of months after that. I lost my mother unexpectedly 4 days after my consultation. I didn't eat right, I stopped working out, and just barely got through Christmas. I finally pulled it together about a month before the surgery and got back on track. I was nervous about the surgery and had a ton of questions when I went in for my pre-op appointment. Dr. Wali and his office staff were very patient with me and answered any and every question I could think of.

The day of the surgery was kind of a blur. I was as prepared as I possibly could be. I've been reading everyone's stories here on RS and watching videos. I remember how I kept waiting for the nerves to kick in and the fear and was surprised that it hadn't. All the way up until they brought my husband back to see me before I was wheeled into the operating room. That's when I cried. Not blabbering idiot kind of crying, but soft tears like I hope this isn't the last time he sees me kind of tears. I would hate to leave him and my kids for something that was such a personal choice and not a life necessity.

When we got into the operating room, I remember telling the anesthesiologist and the nurse that I would help them with scooting over to the table because I wouldn't be of any help on the way out ????. Then I remember them putting the oxygen mask on me. That's it. I don't think I helped them at all! The next thing I know, the nurse is waking me up and asking me to pee and change into my clothes. I got up and walked to the bathroom. She helped of course. Then it was time to go home. It was so fast, I felt almost cheated. Hahaha. I felt like it should have been this dramatic, life altering occasion on which I would look back on and play over and over again my head. Nope.

I'm not trying to sound cocky or smug, but the pain was nothing like what I expected. I was fine. The first night was the worst as I was so nauseous from the anesthesia. I took the Norco for a week because I thought I should and thought maybe the pills really were masking this horrendous pain that I was supposed to be in. I will say that I really felt it if I had to cough, sneeze or even just clear my throat. That part was not fun. I still dread it at 3 weeks out but it's a nice reminder of how tight that muscle repair is. I had two drains. 1 was taken out at 2 weeks and the other at 3 weeks. I've had no issues (knock on wood) and I'm currently 24 days post-op.

The scar is low and the belly button is INCREDIBLE! I can't believe it's me. I still have some extra vertical skin because of the massive weight loss and I didn't want a fleur de lis scar, but it is a night and day difference. At first, I was scared that I didn't look much different but as each day passes, I see improvement. I didn't go into this thinking that I would ever be a model, but I will definitely be in a 2 piece this summer on the boat! Can't wait to see what I look like in 6 months time!


When can I take a bath?

It will be 6 weeks in 2 more days since my tummy tuck. When am I able to take a bath? I completely forgot to ask my PS last week.

Vertical fold

This picture is post-op day 14 when my vertical fold was probably the worst. My PS told me it's due to my excess vertical skin and to use a folded towel under my binder to help distribute the pressure. It's worked Thank God! It's still there but not nearly as ugly I don't think.

Does this look like necrosis?

About 2 weeks ago, I found a bruise above my incision and below my belly button. It kept getting darker and then formed a small blister over it. The blister popped a couple of days ago with my binder rubbing on it and now it looks like this. I have an appt. with my PS on Thursday but was curious if anyone has had this. I am almost 11 weeks post-op. Everything I've read indicates that Necrosis would have shown up sooner than this. But it sure looks like it to me. Thanks for any information or pics you can share!

It's not necrosis! Whew!

Saw my PS yesterday and the sore I have is not necrosis. He said it's likely a burn (I was in the sun for half an hour the day the bruise showed up) or a reaction to the sunscreen. The reason it I taking so long to heal is that is the furthest area from the blood supply after the tummy tuck. He said it doesn't look infected and to keep treating it as I have been. That's good news!

I still cannot workout though :(
He says I am still healing as it is still sore when I cough or press on my belly. He said to walk and keep wearing my binder. This was kind of upsetting. Even though I have no intention of going against his recommendation, I am struggling to keep weight off with just diet. And to be honest, I'm not making very good food choices and feel myself thinking like I used to. Exercise was my anti-depressant and not having the ability to do that, I start to feel sorry for myself. Especially with this 10 pound gain since the surgery. I should weigh less not more. Ugh! So frustrating. Enough complaining. I'm still happy I did it and would do it again knowing what I know now. Off for a walk! TTFN LADIES!

3 months post-op

As of yesterday, I'm officially 3 months post-top from the tummy tuck. I wish I was feeling better but this weight gain has me down in the dumps :(
I've been dieting again for about a week and a half. Working harder on the treadmill (more incline since I can only walk per the PS) also. The scale isn't moving. Literally. It has stayed the same for 5 days in a row. My body has done this since I started this journey 6 years ago. Any change to diet and/or exercise and I stall completely. The hard part is sticking with it until I push through the plateau. Ugh! I feel so guilty and angry with myself that I let my old habits and cravings creep back in. The binge eating and the lack of self-discipline.
It helps to read stories here on RS of others with similar struggles. I don't like to feel sorry for myself because that is how I always ended up just throwing in the towel and succumbed to my old ways. I'm praying that I will stay the course and see the weight come back off. Wish me luck girls!
Claremont Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Wali is a magician! He is very professional and to the point. "Dr. Wali, can I start exercising?" "No, rest." I love that about him. He probably doesn't know it, but he makes me laugh because of his seriousness and directness. I'm so happy I chose him. He takes such an artists' approach to his work and takes such pride in it. When he is examining my tummy, I can tell he's proud of the work he did so that must mean I will look great when all of the healing is done.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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