Mini tuck with lipo for Very Fit 43 Year Old Mother of 2 with "Belly Flap"

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I am 43 years old 5'10" 142 pounds. I have dreamed...

I am 43 years old 5'10" 142 pounds. I have dreamed of doing this procedure ever since I had my children. I was not very active during my first pregnancy and spent most of my days munching away on whatver I pleased thinking "it will all just go away after I have the baby". we all know, 68 pounds is an insane amount of weight to gain and nearly impossible to lose. So, it took me 3 1/2 years to lose it. I did it by training for triathlons and running daily. I was in the best shape of my life and feeling great. I did still have a bulging flap that hung over my c-section scar. It was during this time that I got pregnant with my second child...surprise!

I was not going to repeat the experience of my first pregnancy. I competed in triathlons until I was 6 months pregnant and continued to swim an hour a day until the day I went into labor. Sadly, this still did not prevent me from gaining 55 pounds!!! This time I lost it all in 30 days. It paid off being in shape. Anyhow, the stretch marks were not too bad, but my skin was very loose. Your skin does not bounce back as well when you have a baby at 38. Belly flap was still bad.

I run 5-8 miles 5 times a week and runat least 3 half marathons a year. All that activity and I still can't wear a bathing suit with out wanting to hide my mid section.

My husband said "you work hard...stop talking about it and do it!"

So that's what I did. I got a referral from a friend and booked my surgery. Today I am one day post op.

1 day post op

This was a good day. I had 10 hours of uninterrupted sleep the night of my surgery. I woke up feeling minimal pain. I walk almost perfectly upright with only a faint feeling in the incision area. I tried to make sure I moved around to try and avoid swelling and bloating. I'm now pretty tired and ready to rest. Feeling pretty bloated as I have not had a bowel movement. Hoping to down some prune juice tomorrow and take care of that.
I have one bit of advice for anyone who wants to do this procedure....try to work on your leg strength. May seem silly, but the potty is the devil! It's really tough getting on and off unless you have good leg strength. I'm thankful for my years of running right now.
Has anyone worried about swelling so much you get stretch marks on your new perfect tummy? I'm kind of freaking out about that!
My nurse called to check on me and answered some questions I emailed her last night, which I honestly do not remember sending!!! Ha! Here's to what I hope will be another night of great sleep

Day 2 bring on the prune juice!

Holy bloat!!! Prune juice is my new best friend. I feel like if you were to stick me with a pin I would fly all over the room like a deflating balloon.
Felt really good when I woke up, other than the aforementioned bloating. I decided to move around all day. Me being out of commission has meant that the house is in a state of disarray. The kids were at a swim meet all weekend so I had the house to myself. Before they left I had them toss the 5 loads of unfolded laundry, that have set up residence in my master bedroom, onto my bed giving me no option but to fold them before crawling back in! Folded them all and moved around all day and just continued to bloat. A dear friend brought over a bottle of pure prune juice and now I've been power pooting ever since.
The only negative of the day is that I've been running a temp of 100.1 that won't go down with Advil. My lipo areas are really hot, is that normal??? What about the fever...should I be concerned??? Looking forward to a good night of sleep and hopefully a restful day tomorrow.

Dropping the pain meds today!

I woke up with a wicked headache and nausea this morning. I took 3 advil and some nausea medicine right away. It felt very similar to a bad hangover. Im not a good drinker. I'm one of those people who can throw up after 2 glasses of wine, so I figure that pain meds are not really my friends. I had a low grade fever of 99.8 this morning that dropped to 99 with the advil. Ive been moving around without any issues and was able to give my 4 year old a bath before sending her off to my mother in law for the day! I am still a little worried about the heat that is being give off from my lipo locations. Should I be concerned??? As far as the "bloat" from yesterday is concerned...after a very hmmmm "musical" evening my tummy is much much flatter with far less pressure.

I am a little bummed because the compression garment that my Dr gave me to wear for the next 4 weeks ripped! Does anyone know where to buy a new one?
I sure am anxious to have a shower tomorrow FINALLY! I'm a bit concerned about removing the dressing over my incision. I was not allowed to do any "landscaping" of my lady partsfor 3 weeks prior to surgery and was told they would be shaving it to avoid ingrown hairs. Imagine my surprise when I saw that they put the medical duct tape RIGHT ON TOP OF MY PUBIC HAIR!! Im terrified that removing the tape is going to throw my stomach and pubic muscles into full blown spasm. Does anyone have any suggestions on how to remove this tape without ripping out all the hair???? Help!

I feel like a new woman!

Last night was a mojor accomplishment! I spent some quality time with my bathroom AND slept throught the night with no drugs. I will be oversharing, but that what this site is all about right?? I was on the toilet with my phone because well... who doesnt bring their phone when they know this could be a loooonnnggg process when my sister decides to Facetime me from Singapore! Ha! of course I texted to explain my "situation". We giggled but I credit her with my success at the first quality poo!

Today is the day I get to check out my incision. Im soooooo nervous to look at and check out the scar. I'm headed to the pharmacy to buy some removal tools (nail scissors, baby oil...). I accidentally busted out of my compression garment!! Eek. The entire top is ripped. Looks like I need to head to the dr to buy a new one. Im going to make my first adventuure in the cat. Im very type A and I'm starting to lose my mind being trapped in the house. Its bad when you are anxiously awaiting the arrival of your 1099 so you can start your taxes! Husband went back to work today, Kids are in school so I am on my own!

Wish me luck on the tape removal. I hope I don't pass out ;)


This is the most appropriate title I could come up with for what was revealed from beneath the bandages...I thought "what the fuck is that" might get bumped off the site!

Anyhow, they warned me it would not be pretty. Unlike with a full tummy tuck, the mini has a far smaller incision and appears very folded and puckered during the first week. UMMMM that is an understatement. I have a weird bellybuttonless giant vagina look now. Be warned the pictures are not pretty. I am extremely encourage about how short my scar is and the fact that once I fured out the you pull the tape with the grain of the hair...not against that there was no pain in removing the tape.

Also, my PS does NOT use drains but rather a "quilting" method which adds to the freaky look I have going on. I have not really seen any other mini tuck "after pictures of when the tape was just pulled off, so I really have nothing to compare to....

A little less folded and dropping pounds

Well, it's been over a week since I last posted an update. The last time I posted I had just removed my dressing for the first time and freaked out about what was traveled...deep crazy folds like I was a sinched bag.
I went to my doctor who kind of laughed at me when I expressed my disappointment and shock of how I look. He assured me that as the internal stitches dissolve the fold will smooth and flatten. I'm still a little skeptical.
I am finally losing some of the bloat! On surgery day I was 142 pounds. 2 days later 147...ugh. This morning I was 137!! Yippee!! We are stuck inside with ice and snow and I'm playing the "recovery " card to avoid freezing my butt off outside. The hubby has this one!
I feel fantastic and sleeping in my side and stomach like before surgery. The goal is to start running again next week when the snow melts!!!

Low tiny scar

Even though I'm still creased I'm very happy that incision is low and short enough to be completely concealed by my low rise bikini!

Yippee! All clear to run and swim laps!!!

Met with my PS today and he said I was ok to hit the road running. Soooo happy as I have been jumping out of my skin. As soon as this snow melts I'll try a slow 3 -4 miler. Can't wait and I'll let you know how it goes

First day of exercise

Yesterday I got the all clear to go out and exercise and I could not do it fast enough! I called my running buddy and set it up for first thing after carpool drop off this morning. I told my husband my plan and he BEGGED me not to run but to walk. BOOOOOO .... not a big fan of walking but fine, I'll take the baby steps. My friend very kindly agreed to join me on a hilly walk and not the run I'd had my heart set on. I am happy to report that we did 4 miles in an hour and it felt great! Even though it was cold and rainy with sloppy melting ice everywhere, it was awesome to get out with my friend and move. I had no pain at all. I could definitely feel that my skin was taut but that is to be expected since they just cut a bunch of it off! Tomorrow I'm hitting the pool. yay!

First run post mini tummy tuck!!

This is the face of a happy girl who just ran 3 miles 3 weeks after surgery!! Woohoo!!! It felt fabulous. My biggest issue was that I ran in my tightest compression garment and could hardly breathe, lol....and of course my pants were falling down :) I can think of worse problems. The folds in my belly are softening and smoothing out a little more each day. Incision is closed and looking better. I'm still swollen but my PS says my activity is helping not hurting and to keep it up. Cheers for now and hope to have a smooth belly picture to post soon.

Almost 4 weeks post op and folds getting a little better

i am almost 4 weeks post op now and the folds are definitely getting softer. The left side still has 1 internal quilt stitch attached and the big fold in the middle also has a quilt stitch that has not yet dissolved. My lipo sites on my flanks are still really hard and swollen. One side had more lipo than the other and ironically it looks larger. I attribute this to trauma swelling. I do have a couple pesky spots on my incision that continue to ooze so the dr told me to take off the tape for a couple days to let them dry out. This makes me nervous since my 4 year old likes to give flying kamikaze hugs!
I did have a nice thing happen today. I was watching my son's swim practice tonight and it was super hot, so I took off my sweatshirt leaving me in a tight tank top and leggings. The mom next to me looked over and said, holy cow did you just get super skinny over night??? I guess that's what we all hope to achieve! I've posted a few pics from this morning. It's hard to tell how much the folds have soften, but I can tell a big difference. I still believe I will need a revision on the right side where I have a big dog ear. I font see the ps until 2/17 but I will address it at that point. Still running every other day, but keeping it to 30 min.

Less folds!

i know to many of you these pictures look really awful. For me they look dramatically better. I still have a few internal stitches that have not dissolved which is why I have the crazy seam down my middle and on my left side. My right side is getting much flatter. I have wrinkles in the picture since I still wear my compression garment 24/7. I also put on my skimpiest bikini and you really can't see the incision which is encouraging. I'm posting the fold today (4 weeks and 4 days post op and at 4 days post op)


i hit the courage to do my new measurements this morning...gotta say I was kinda shocked! When I started this journey I was 38 (bust) 34 under bust, 30.5 waist and 38 hips. Today I was 38 bust, 32 under bust, 27.5 waist ???? and 38 hips! I'm not going to complain about that!

Pictures of new measurements in clothes

Loving my PS right now!

so I went in for my 6 week check up last week and was allowed to stop wearing the compression garment. Yay! All was normal, still have 4 internal stitches attaching the skin and muscle which is keeping the crease down the center :( he says it will be totally flat in 6 weeks.

Anyhow, why I'm loving him is for this...I asked him what I could do about my super terrible bitchy face 11's between my eyes. I've had up to 50 units of Botox in my forehead and it never seems to solve the problem. Well, they also have a skin clinic as part of there practice. Dr Davis swore that his best nurse could work miracles with Botox and he felt certain she could "fix" me. She was unavailable at that exact moment so he made me an appointment for the following Tuesday. I went yesterday to the appointment and she was shocked at how crazy strong my forehead muscles were. She described several processes that she recommended to try...all of which sounded mighty expensive. So I asked how much it would cost and she "NOTHING, this is complimentary from Dr Davis!!!!!!!" Holy smokes! They even used 55-60 units of Botox and said they wanted to see me in 10 days and would do more if I needed it. Wow!!! Now that's some awesome customer service. Thanks!!! I've included my before picture and how I look day one.

Week 8...I think!

i feel great! Pleating is almost gone. I'm still swollen on my left side where I had more lipo but it is getting better. My central internal stitches under my belly button are finally dissolved so my belly button should start to go back to normal soon. It looks less tightly creased every day. It's hard to show this in photos.

The OTHER thing I did last week was get Restylane under my eyes to fill the sad hollows I had. HOLY COW!!! It made a huge difference. My husband dies not notice anything I do to my face. This time I didn't tell him I did anything. He came home from a business trip and said "you look GREAT! Did you do something to your eyes? You look like you did when we met 15 years ago" now that's a compliment and a testament to how great this little tweek was. I did it at Skin Raleigh which is part of my PS office. I'll include some sane day before and after.

Signing off to go for a run! 4 weeks until Jamaica!!!

10 weeks post op

I wish I had better news, but the folds are still there. I have been super optimistic about my outcome thus far, but I am begining to suspect that I will need a revision. I have total confidence in my PS, I just feel that perhaps the mini tuck was a bit optimistic. Right now I am uneven on my left and right sides from the lipo too my this swelling?? Only time will tell. My belly button is still long folded and crazy looking and I am not flat. There is a substantial amount of saggy loose skin around my belly button. The unfortunate thing about a mini is that nothing above the belly button is addressed. Although I was thin before the surgery, I think I reall had a lt of loose skin and might have need a longer incision. One side of the incision is hight than the other as well. Lastly, I'm not thrilled with the visible hump you can see in my clothes. The removal of said hump was the entire purpose of the mini TT. The PS office has been understanding and asked that I be patient and wait at least 6 months before we discuss a revision. Everyone heals at different rates and they still feel some of the lumps, bumps and wrinkles are due to residual swell. Oh well... I am supposed to have my "after" photos taken on Tuesday...I suspect that this will not actually happen. I will keep you posted

Cool sculpting!

I had my 3 month follow up and after pictures done today. Dr Davis is awesome. I showed him the larger flank area I was unhappy with and he said cool sculpting would take care of it. He said the belly button crease will still go away but might be as long as 6 months. I'm ok with that. If it's not flat by then we will cool sculpt the belly area as well and make it flat. My first thought was "great, how much is this gonna cost me?" I asked how much and he said it will cost me nothing!!!! We will do what we need to get the results we want and it's part of what I've already paid for. THANK YOU DR DAVIS! I made my appointment for cool sculpting for March 6th. They would have done it tomorrow but she thought it best I wait until I get back from Jamaica in case there is any bruising. All in all, I'm happy with everything and I think Dr Davis will get me the results I want.

Before and after

Here are the photos from the dr. I'm sucking in my gut in the before photos and totally relaxed in the after..,

Amazing what a tan and time will do!

I spent the last week with my family in Jamaica rocking my new bod! It was awesome. My belly is nice and flat now and my muscle tone is starting to show through. We did cool sculpting on my left side a couple days ago so it is still a little swollen. This was not a charge to me, just the quest of my PS to make it perfect. Super pleased with his follow through and my results.

1 month after cool sculpting

Much smaller on left side after only 1 month! Training for my first post surgery 1/2 marathon which is MUCH easier 20 pounds lighter!

One year later

I am so so so pleased with my results! It's been a year and I've held steady around 133 pounds since the surgery. All the crazy folds are gone, my scar is hidden by my tiny string bikini and I feel like a million bucks with and without clothes. Best of all I finished my first marathon exactly one year after surgery! It's so much easier to run without the extra flab that I beat my goal. Thanks Dr Davis
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon

They have been great so far. Dr Davis was very helpful in guiding me towards making my decision as to what procedure would be best for me. I was very happy to hear him say that I was an ideal candidate for a mini tuck with minimal lipo. The staff were all very nice and happy to answer any questions I had leading up to my surgery. I do wish had opted to do my surgery in the hospital and not the surgical room because I felt I was being rushed out the door during recovery. They were very informative about the procedure and did not go overboard on the liposuction. I really just wanted to remove the ugly flap of skin.

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