I am in the process of researching doctors for my...
I am in the process of researching doctors for my mommy makeover. I have always been unhappy with the size of my breasts and after having kids, the rest of my body went downhill too. With my son, I blew out my back and gained a substantial amount of weight (205 lbs at birth) with that pregnancy due to pain, as well as being young and naive that my body wouldn't bounce back if I gained that weight (what I can't eat all I want?!?!). I lost some of the weight once I felt better and my daughter came 2 years later when I decided to get healthy and lose the rest, down to 135-140 lbs which I have kept off ever since. Despite this, I have laxity in a number of areas that no amount of exercise with wear off. I have done triathlons, warrior type races, and a few 5K's but as soon as the race is over, I give up on a complete workout schedule as I am unable to see the results and get frustrated! Also, there is nothing more irritating than your loose belly flopping around when you run/workout!
To add to the complexity of my case, my health was significantly derailed 3 years ago when I was hit in a rear end car accident and had to have disc replacement surgery due to the pain. I am still in pain at times, but it has been much improved by PT, exercise, and a diet that helps with inflammation and pain control. With all of the work I have done to get myself to a better place, I have decided that it is time to get a "mommy makeover" to finally take care of me and reward myself for all of my hard work. The accident made me realize I need to do this while I am young and in relatively good shape, or it might never happen! I am nervous I am a good candidate with the meds I currently take and health condition.
I recently have seen Dr. Vath and liked his ideas. He said I need a breast augmentation with lift, abdominoplasty, and possible belt lift. I was surprised by the belt lift (never even heard of it before!) He says it is optional but the extra fluff in my flanks is excess skin and not fat, so liposuction will not remove it and it is up to me whether I am okay with a little extra muffin top at the end of the day. I'm not but the cost of adding this was substantial ($14K without, $20K with). EEK! I have decided to get more opinions, since even though I absolutely love his work and the reviews on here are glowing, I want to get a sense of if he is the right fit for "me". I did not feel the warm fuzzy feeling that I expected, and felt a little rushed at the appt,. I feel pretty knowledgeable about the procedure and wish I could have spent more time on questions important to me rather than discussing actual surgery that would be performed (this took the most of the time). By the time we got to the "undressing" it went very fast and hurried (10-15 min maybe?) I only tried on 3 sizes too and he didn't offer me the computer imaging which I was bummed about. I chose 500 cc HP silicones but nervous because it went so fast! However, my only other experience is with my sister's surgeon and she said she had a great consultation where all her questions were answered and she didn't feel rushed. I helped take care of her post-op and have a good idea of what to expect although the pain makes me much more anxious! My appt was over an hour so I wonder if I just simply have different expectations and need to be more grounded! I also didn't like that I will see a NP the week after surgery instead of him. However, hopefully seeing the other surgeons will give me a sense of who really is right for me! I have an appt with Dr. Hunsicker the end of the month. I'm already put off by Dr. Hunsicker who charges a $100 consult fee, so we will see if the others go better (I can use this for facials and other things though). I'm also considering going to Dr. Campanelli, Dr. Folk, and Dr. Buford. I'm so nervous I will make the wrong decision! Any ideas to sort them all out? Eek! I thought I would love Dr. Vath and that would be it! :)
I will post pics soon!
Here's some pics
Here are the pics from my boob sizers. These are the 500 cc hp's that I chose. I was very sad to take them out and give them back. ???????? also here is my wish board!
Some before pics! ????
i know I will appreciate these later after surgery. Here are my before pics. You can see how I have a lot of side fluff despite being thin. I can't wait to get rid of this. In my Zumba class I was so self conscious today because my stomach was flapping all over. I need a girdle to work out! Bleh! ????
What's with all the ????
I've noticed many of my posts have a weird ??? thing. I'm not putting them there. Strange!
I went to my second consult. Although I loved the doctor personality wise, it just didn't feel like a match. Compared to Dr. Vath, I felt like he had more experience in the types of procedures I needed. With this doctor, she wanted to divide the procedures, making them about $20K total and that didn't include a belt lift or booby lift! Ouch! She said she doesn't like to do the belly with the boobies because it will pull them down and I don't need a breast lift (Dr. Vath said I needed one absolutely and not to let anyone talk me out of it no matter who I went with!). Even though I KNOW I will be miserable, I would rather do it once than two or more times! So, when it came down to it, I knew I had made my decision. I would rather vote for skill and technique over how I personally feel about a doctor. I don't need to feel some weird kinship vibe. I would rather have someone who stands behind their work and has superior results! So, I called up Becky the next week and scheduled my mommy makeover. I still do not know if I will do the belt lift as it adds $10K to my total. She scheduled the date with it to secure the surgery time, but I will meet with Dr. Vath again to discuss my concerns with the belt lift - cost vs benefit, scar placement, etc. He is booking up fast though and my MM date is now Dec 25th since I waited! Xmas eve. We are going to celebrate it early with the kids as they don't pay much attention to the date and we are not religious and the kids are getting over Santa, so it doesn't matter when we do it as much. My hubby says, "Merry Xmas to me!" when I asked if that date would be okay! So, deposit is in and no backing out now! Nervous and excited all at the same time!!!! I want to buy new clothes so bad for fall/winter but figured I will save the money when I can rock my new bod!
I got my packet for pre and post op instructions in the mail today. There is a lot to read! It makes it so much more real and I'm a bit nervous!
The love affair is real...
I just went to my pre-op check up with Dr. Vath and his staff. I wanted to meet with him beforehand to discuss pain management and incision of the belt lift. He was in-between surgeries and I thought for sure he would need to rush out. Nope! He sat down and answered all of my questions and took the time needed to feel both confident in having my questions completed thoroughly. Now, I get it. He is super amazing and I have stars in my eyes! I wondered why other patients liked him so much but I feel the love now too! He makes you feel like a real person and not just a number in his patient line. He also is incredibly confident at what he does without being vain. Compared to my other consults, he blew them out of the water with doing that and now am so completely excited for my surgery!
After my visit with Vath, I met with the coordinator again to go over implants. My previous choice was no longer available and he has switched to using Mentors. I tried on 500 and 550 cc. I couldn't tell much different than before so Carrie recommended I go with the bigger size. My DH came with me and I like seeing the look on his face when I turned around. He doesn't say much but that gave it away and made me feel more confident about my size. I want to make sure to go bigger than by Victoria Secret double padding bras and think this will do it! I hope I am not going too big but I would be more sad if I went to small so I think I am ok. I also brought in wish pics for Carrie to look at to explain better what I am going for. Fingers crossed I will love them.
After that, we went back out to the waiting room. What a place. They had a fruit tray, veggie tray, cookie/brownie tray, and a fridge stocked full of beverages! This place feels like a top notch spa and you feel quite pampered. (and more in need of plastic surgery enjoying the treats! lol ) We waited for a bit and Dr. Vath came over again to make sure we were not waiting too long and everything was okay. Just amazing....
Next, we met with the nurse to go over my preop information and meds. I have an extensive history and am a chronic pain patient so this took awhile. I actually wonder if she is a Nurse Practictioner as I think she is the one to do the meds for post op which would require either Vath or an NP signature. I was happy to see and know she was very competent. I am a RN and am very picky about other RN's. I have been in the hospital before many times and have had some who literally almost killed me when I had an severe allergic reaction and she kept trying to give me tylenol for a "migraine". Uggh! I know we all have to start somewhere but I don't want a new RN! But, the gal I had is not a teeny bopper fresh off the market RN, which I worried about. She seems to be incredibly competent and I was happy to hear she knew all of my meds I was taking - where even MD's have had to ask me. When she find out what I did, she said I should of told her but I said I still want to know everything and I was happy to know she really knows her stuff! All of the RN's and staff I have seen seem incredibly smart and good at what they do. I have seen some offices where it appears looks are more important than talent when hiring (judgey I know but hey I'm picky about my team). Although they are all beautiful, it doesn't seem to be a theme that this offices hires just one type which makes me feel oddly comfortable even tough I will soon be that plasticy barbie so better loose the judgements! :)
After getting my meds and giving them my children's future college fund (haha), I finally felt relief and was on my way home. I slept like a baby for the first time in 2 weeks because I was so nervous they would tell me I wasn't fit for surgery or whatever. Phew! Now I am flipping out with excitement!!! I've waited and saved so many years for this that I can't believe it is finally happening! in just a little over a couple of weeks! I feel like I need to nest to get ready!
I won't write too much as I am pretty drugged us and I'm lot of pain which makes it hard to focus! I'll do better soon to give the lowdown but here are my latest pics. Love them so far and doc said I'm in more pain since I went so big for my first try????
Slowly getting better
As far as neck pain and back it was a lot less for me. The dilaudid was a much better post op pain choice as it didn't make me sick like oxy does but sometime feel a hangover type head ha's. I've used a tens unit and pain creams which has helped tooX I would do it in a heartbeat as I feel and look Like an s million $$$ already! I do feel the doc and staff is being me feel a little judgy but I can be sensitive about it too so hoping its just me. my sisters received 2 scrips after her surgery but when j asked I got the cold shoulder. End of rant . I wa n recovery for 2 hours because they would only give me Valium but finally my husband pushed for a pain me and then I felt a million times better and was able to pull myself together to go home. I'm pretty sure if I was a junkie I would find easier, cheaper, less painful ways to get meds. I'm not sure he's an individualized care type of doc. BUT I look incredible already. The scars are super kid, have even list back and back of leg which he did not excpect to do and already have thathourglass shape toy see in Mexico, island ladies I have loved so much. I can't believer I didn't do it sooner as it is so worth all of the pain and restrictions!!!! I swear I even look like ihave a sick pack!
A little more clear headed update!
Good grief, my last update was a hot mess! It was pretty hilarious to read though! I actually ended up falling not long after I got home. My husband had Dr. V paged and we decided to not go to the ER because I did not lose consciousness. However, at my week appt one of my pupils was bigger than the other so I got sent to the ER for a CT scan and vision check. Thankfully, it came back normal. But it explains why I couldn't type or read anything, plus a little over the top scary scattered brained! I have a nasty bruise around my eye and all down the side I fell on. They think it might have been the scopalamine patch having a delayed effect as it is possible some got in my eye. But, I washed before and after application and have applied on patients for years without this issue so curious if I did have a bit of a head injury. SO important to have someone help you up and be there every step! I was disoriented from the anesthesia and stubborn to wait. What a dumb move. Especially for me as I have emergent delirium and get incredibly disoriented, get on the fight, and overly anxious. Happens every surgery. Don't trust yourself to not get up on your own because you may not remember! I still want to post more about my actual surgery but wear out quickly. I'll just write tidbits here and there. So far though, Dr. V has called me personally xmas eve, and I think the nurses twice. So caring! I wanted to explain my goofy last posts. Sheesh. I'll post some pics from my phone next so you can see more of the body lift work (which doesn't hurt that bad actually). So far, I am very happy with my results and he did a fantastic job.
2 weeks out today!
I took all my tape off today and wow, look at how well I healed. I feel narcissistic but holy hotness! I just had to share!
1 month out
I just got back from my doc. Everything went well and I look great, said he is impressed I have no complications AT All (I told him that was all his doing!), and to come back in 6 months because he definitely wants to do pics!! I can't believe how well my scars are healing. I am still sore but week 4 has been my turnaround week! I almost feel crampy like my period is due, esp by the end of the day. Still swollen too, both boobies and belly but it is going down. I've noticed my boobs have dropped a little and are perfect position! I am nervous they will go down more as I've fallen in such love with them!!???? but end of the day I can't wait to get out of my bra and into my surgical one! I need to find the comfy Amazon ones everyone talks about but of course now that I need it I can't find! I am a little self conscious of their size and will have to completely revamp my wardrobe as I used to wear a ton of baggy stuff to hide my belly! Not complaining though! One thing I don't like right now is my butt. I used to have a big bubble butt, it had some serious loose skin though and didn't realize that would change! Now though, it is all muscle to can't wait to up my squats and exercises to build it up! I also have some sore areas along my lift incision line that the doc said are stitches my body needs to dissolve. The feel like little needle pricks. ???? hope that goes away soon! Overall though, I feel so much better - not 100% but it's a journey! I will post pics of week 3 to week 4 as there are stubble changed in how I look!
Well that's a bummer
Went to target today because I'm sick of my surgical bras, but not yet ready for underwire ((ouchie)) so thought I could pick up something. I was excited because they had bikinis and thought they were cute! However, I tried on 10ish different bikini tops XL (biggest size they had, as well as XL soft bras and 34DD sports bras). They were all too small! ???? they were huge going around and/or way too small in the cups. Apparently I'm bigger than I thought! ???? it was a downer day for sure. I love them but what a bummer it will be harder to find bikinis or bras! Also, for some reason I have a small red area that is sore and red. Why couldn't that be there yesterday when I was at the doc! ???? hopefully it is just irritation and will go away. On the plus side, they had clearance tees that I look amazing in for only $6!
Need to reset my body
I'm at a point where I feel like I should feel better but my body just gets angry at me sometimes. I haven't been eating the best and my stomach has been bloated. Which really hurts when it pulls on those tightened muscles! I haven't been in the gym because we put a hold on for two months but it is having a snowball effect on how I feel, both physically and mentally. I don't do well staying home and working out. I tried a dance wii game and man did that hurt. Plus, I have some deep stitches that are working their way out. Ouch!! Doc said these can take 2-3 months to work out or dissolve. I think it's just a reminder my body went through a lot and to take better care of myself!
Just over 3 months update!
I can't believe how fast time flies! I feel AMAZING and love how I look. Do I like every little thing? No - I still have stretch marks, which I don't even mind as they are now a POSITIVE reminder of the beautiful lives I created! My daughter was even happy I still have some "tiger stripes" which she likes to look at when I tell stories of when she was born. Love her! The kids have adjusted well to my surgery - since they were older (11 and 13) we felt it was better be upfront. I told them it was something I thought of for a long time and even though I love my body, I wanted to make myself feel better trying on clothes and feel more confident in my skin so I can notice all the hard work I do with diet and exercise! I didn't want them to feel they needed to have surgery to be confident and with my daughter, that we can look good in all shapes and sizes.
As for how I feel - my energy levels are back. I started taking B12 and will get a B12 shot next week if my levels are still on the low side (Thanks NewDrVathFan2015!) I have had no additional back or neck pain. In some ways, It has improved - I think because I now have better posture and tighter abs to hold me in better alignment. What a bonus! I still get swollen in my belly, especially my lower pooch which gets rock hard at times. BUT, I have gone down from (drumroll, please!) a size 8-10 presurgery to a SIZE 4! Can you believe it!?!?! I finally feel skinny and what I had before was just loose skin, NOT fat as I tried all these crazy diets. I love to work out now as I can actually SEE my progress! I want to do abs and work on my shape. My legs and butt have even gotten more defined and the cellulite is going away because I LOVE to be at the gym! I definately pay more attention to what I eat now too as I bloat very easy! I just got back from an LA vacation and man did that hurt my tummy. Swelling still makes it ache, but it's nothing intolerable and a good reminder to clean up my diet!
I still have one area on each breast where the stitches have not dissolved but they are less painful now too. Otherwise, I am healing wonderfully. I do feel a bit self conscious rocking a bikini as I worried about the scar on my back. It is covered but always worry about it showing. I am thinking of getting a tattoo cover up as I have an awful tattoo I got when I was 18 and hate it so want to do a coverup anyways! Any recommendations for a good tattoo artist in Denver? lol I have gone to the gym to hot yoga with just a sports bra and it feels so much better then to have sticky clothes. And it makes me feel so confident to see my muscles working!
As for other things, after reading another review, I have also decided to get my incontinence fixed. I was at the gym yesterday and literally peed my pants when I started running. :( I had to throw away my underwear. :( How embarrassing! I thought it was just what happens after a baby (both my mom and grandma were incontinent so clearly genetic!). But, thanks to another reviewer, I have a consult set up with Dr. Aguirre soon to get it fixed. I guess there is also something to do to make it feel tighter during sex. (sorry if TMI!) My poor husband is already over the moon - I can't imagine fixing that too! haha He makes me keep the lights on now. hehe But, what a confidence booster to feel sexy. It is funny how you still "feel" back in your old body and haven't quite owned it - for example, I will reach down to "tuck in" my belly into my pants when sitting like I used to and realize I have no belly to tuck in! I am still numb in the middle and down by my hips, but it is nothing bothersome. I am so happy I went bigger as well. For awhile, I thought I went too big, esp trying on bras at Target. But now VS DD's fit wonderful and am in a 34DD. The only thing I dislike is they are farther apart then I would like but feel this is nitpicky. In a VS push up, they go together ok and are still softening up so expect it will get better with time! I love trying on clothes now and look amazing in most everything except all the baggy styles that are out now. lol I even started using stitch fix and got some things from there!
The only thing I would recommend is to really ask about revision policies. My sister also had a mommy makeover in ND with Dr. Honeycutt. We look very similar and some say she is my twin! My doctor told me when I talked about her that if she looked like me - she absolutely needed a lift and to not let anyone talk her out of it. She didn't get one and the doc totally botched her boobs! She had no negative reviews and did her homework but things still went wrong and her doc was terrible to her! She is a full size difference but the doctor wants her to pay for a revision even though it was the DOCTOR'S fault. When I talked to Dr. Vath about some of the things she had done, he said it was very out of date. He is clearly up in the know about the latest procedures, treatments, post surgery things and uses evidence based practices to guide his work! She has decided to save up and get the revision with Dr. Vath! Be well everyone! XOXO
1 year update
I always hated to read reviews and then not get the full picture. I am past my one year update. I feel better than ever and so excited I chose to do this for myself. It was a rocky ride but all in all, I feel amazing! It really does take a full year to heal though, so expect that. Just up until a month or two ago, I would have sharp pains sometimes and my boobs would feel SO heavy. I guess it was just some nerves that were irritated, which has since gone away. I do have some numbness around my hips and stomach and less sensitivity in my nipples. I'm a little bummed about the nips. The scars around my body are lighter, but still pretty noticeable and hope to still get my tattoo cover up, as I hate worrying about it at the pool. But, they are significantly lighter and the boob ones are not bad at all. I did have an increase in stretch marks, particularly on the bottom of my breasts. That is mostly due to an unexpected pregnancy that ended after 5 weeks. :( My boobs blew up quickly, which is how I knew I was preggo. I was only about 9 mo post op, so that didn't help. Everything else went back to "normal" though outside of my heart and head that are still healing. The boobs are soft and squishy. I don't have any issues when I exercise (I do stay away from hard core chest work). The biggest issues is finding clothes that look good and am still experimenting w/ what looks good on my body. I used to wear loose clothes, went super tight for awhile there, and am now finding a good middle ground. I've noticed other girls can be a bit nasty sometimes, but I got that before, so not a whole lot of difference really, some are just more vocal now. :( But, I also get compliments on my clothes and my jewelry, or even my hair, (from both guys and girls) which is strange because my face is exactly the same! lol Also, people are just nicer to me in general, which is kinda sad really! I did go bigger than most, and had one family member comment on why I chose to go bigger. My thought is, I had my version of beautiful. I had many tell me to go smaller, but I'm glad I stayed true to what I wanted, not someone else's version of me. I feel almost like they are my tattoos, or other body mod. I did it for me! My biggest regret is not doing it sooner. I have so much more confidence, am so much healthier and active, and generally view the world in a different way. I do have days where I feel "fat". Which is weird, but I worry about going back to "before" and do pay much more attention to whether that extra doughnut is really calling my name and an bad weekend eating stares me right in the face with bloating. I'm also a little overly obsessed about worrying about my boobs sagging again, and wear a bra almost all the time. It does get addicting, esp getting older, I look at what else I can "change". But for now, overall I am happy and just enjoying life. I have started to be less vocal about getting them done. I had a coworker notice and say something to me and I chose to tell her (I wasn't working there before), and really, it was just because I suck at lying so prepare beforehand what you might say so you can say what you want rather than as a reaction! The relationship went sour and she ended up getting fired. All of a sudden, I had supervisors asking me where I got my surgery as they wanted recommendations. It is super embarrassing that people there know, esp management. But, that is the whole picture - good and bad. Mostly good! My sis went to him too and is looking at getting a revision in the future. I highly recommend him. He was attentive, kind, and professional all the way. I will post pics from my phone as I don't have them on my computer! I hope my reviews help and you find your own success!