Hi guys and gals! I'm no stranger to plastic...
Hi guys and gals! I'm no stranger to plastic surgery as I have had surgery in the past. I had breast augmentation in 2007 and had saline implants prior to having my two children. I now have a 5 year old and a 6 month old and I'll be completely honest! I absolutely adore my kids but I loath what pregnancy has done to my body. I have severe recti diastasis that is at least 10 cm vertically and 3-4cm horizontally. I have no stretch marks and minimal skin to stretch. I just have a bulge and a belly button that produces (looks like I have 3 nipples Lol) Im looking into medical tourism to get the most bang for my buck.
I'm hoping to go to the Dominican republic and possibly Cuba. I have been in correspondence with a few drs in DR and a Cuban medical representative in Canada.
Looking forward to sharing my journey with you all! Including my new tummy and breast augmentation
Dr Mallol in the DR
I just sent a deposit to dr. Mallol in DR.
There is a 15% tax with the rate when you deposit through surgicoordinator. Good thing about the deposit process is that its done through PayPal. So no bank walk ins... You have the transaction recorded on your PayPal account and on your banking online account.
I'm deciding on whether on not I want to replace my saline implants. My son is refusing wean (yes I am breast feeding) and I will have to stop if I plan on lifting or plumping anything up. But I have no intention of doing so if he's not ready.
I need to take a pic with me flexing so you guys can see the bulge at the center of my abdomin. See minimal skin! I could live with that... But my tummy has grown from a 25 inch to a 31 inch from diastasis.
I land may 2nd and im scheduled for may 3rd.
I've been purchasing things for my trip! I have to pack lightly due to my scheduled tt. I've had a c section in the past so I have some experience with sore abdominals.
I'm only bringing a carry on and I'm more than likely going to opt for while chair service on the way home.
I'm loathing the connecting flight back to canada. But I'm prepped! I have my pain meds locked and ready to go. I'm gonna purchase some gravol as well.
Looking into purchasing some compression garments but I'm not sure of what faja or 3 panel abdomenal binders are suitable.
The reason for my surgery
Internal organs pushing the stretched muscle. Can't wait for the return of my glorious abs! As u can see, I'm pretty lean and I exercise. But no matter what I do, after eating I get an instant pooch. Look damn near 4 months pregnant. My 6 year old tells me I look pregnant all the time. Kids are devilishy brutally honest.
Gotta love em!
I was browsing on various procedures on google when I stumbled upon Real Self. I'm no newbie to plastic surgery. I had Breast Augmentation in 2007 and these puppies have been through hell and back with breast feeding and the stretch and pull of 2 pregnancies. Now I have a case of Diastasis which is a fancy word for separated muscles post child birth that can be attributed to the ever growing girth of my ballooning abdomen. Thank you polyhydroamnios! Love the offspring, but damn you tummy! I've got a case of a serious outtie and a pooch that is somewhat flat before I eat, but transforms into a four month gestation belly after I consume...mini particles of food. Cute aint it? Imagine working out rigorously and reaching your goal weight, nope image being super toned and at optimum fitness level, lean like some grain feed poultry and *gasp* right between what you believe are abs is a ridiculous space that tents when you move from a laying position or when you flex. Gosh I'm so over you recti diastasis. <br /><br />So I've decided to seek talents across the atlantic. Found a former island by the name of Hispanola and made contact with the staff of Emmanuel Mallol Cotes. Who I've managed to stalk his patients on here endlessly and even referred a girlfriend's girlfriend to test out his work, and I must say that I am utterly pleased.<br /><br />Only issue I have, is the communication. Like these people who answer his whatsapp and emails are thee absolute worst. But I've heard great reviews otherwise. Looking forward to sharing my journey with you which is in less than 50 days.
Sea Lily Recovery House
So I got my confirmation for my RH. I chose Sea Lily. I like the reviews and the pictures. There are not a lot, but the pictures sold me. I hear the food is super good! Anyone who knows me knows that I love a good meal. So +++
One of my bffs is coming down with me. We're both getting a well deserved mommy makeover on the same day (high 5).
I'm getting liposculpture as well as some new breast implants. I found my implant card from 2007. I currently have 325cc saline filled implants. I'm a large c small d. But I have saggin skin *breast feeding yippie* and I'm looking to have a breast lift. Can we say "backless for the summer"??? That's body goals! No bra... nipples out loll hoping I can trade my 325 for 350 or 400cc gummies. Not too big! I can't deal with larger breast as i train regularly and i dont like restrictions. They are heavy and ache the back and look bad after years of wear and tear.
I'm just bringing a carry on for my trip. I always travel like that. The way home i may check my bag if it's too difficult.
I also called my airline and requested wheelchair service. I have also chosen my seats for my return home. I am a window seat kinda girl. But on my way home I'm choosing the isle and I'll be in the priority seating of the cabin so I can be brought on first and get access to the bathrooms.
What else? Oh yes I bought an additional faja a few sports bras. I have a bunch of medical sterile supplies like gloves, hand sanitizers, sterile gauze, saline and some of the many things on the list sent to my email.
Just posting some wish pis for my breast revision and tt.
Visualization is key!
30 more days
I have one more month before my surgery. I've continued working out as I am a firm believer of fitness and it's benefits. Two things that really have me anxious over us post operative pain and the fact that I've got to sit out for 6 weeks and not lift any weights. I've stopped taking multivitamins and the other medications and possible herbal teas that's are suggested prior to surgery. *sigh* other than that I am awaiting my faja to arrive this week and a money belt I've purchased.
I've been reading that I need to buy a tourist card prior to landing as it cuts down the time through customs. I'm hearing conflicting information regarding whether or not it is valid for 30 days or a year. So I'm more than likely to buy it a few days before I leave.
Some pre operative recommendations as per mallol assistant.
I have strep throat
Thanks to the kiddies. I'm stuck in bed miserable and on antibiotics. Can't swallow a damn thing and the tylenol is thee worst. I need the smooth capsules!
Thank goodness for penicillin and old school remedies! I've been miserable for the last week due to my acquired strep throat and I lost all interest in eating foods and swallowing any vitamins. Yes I've been very miserable because I haven't had the strength to go work out or the energy to clean my home. But I can finally say that I'm feeling a little more like myself today. I almost was beginning to think that the medication wasn't working lol. I started mixing some horrible things together just to feel better. I was chopping ginger, garlic, lemon juice, honey and cayenne pepper together with some warm water and just chugging it down. Grossest thing ever! I gagged and heaved every single time and it made my tummy absolutely bubble. After two times of self torture I decided to just stop! I settle with maybe 1/3 of the ingredients and drank lemon juice and honey with warm water. I have been doing it morning and night. My ear no longer hurts and the chills are gone. I've been able to swallow food and drinks and I'm no longer lethargic. I don't wish strep throat on anyone! It's horrible and contageous! So folks please wash your hands religiously and keep hand sanitizers on deck at all times and if you have something please stay home so you don't get others sick.
I was able to work out today which made me very happy. It's one of things that lift my spirits when I am down or stressed. Looking forward my surgery date is getting super close and now I'm thinking about when I'm going to withdraw my money from the bank and where i plan on storing it and stupid ass US customs :eek:. Unfortunately no flights are direct from Canada to sdq except Air Transat which flies seasonally. If I had have known about their seasonal option I would have bypassed the US layover and called it a day. Only issue with those smaller companies is that they don't have regular flights and maybe fly out once a week. So if u miss it or have to stay longer your pretty much on your ass until the next flight (which can be the following weekend) or yout just say f it and book with another company and layover anyway. I've been through that before when westjet was in its infany lol. Although I had an amazing time stuck where I was stuck I can't do that no more lol.
Holy smokes batman!
The days are dwendling down and I'm starting to get a little nervous. It's the idea of pain that has me anxious and the stupid scar. I look at my tummy everyday like I can't wait to put this all behind me, i have bathing suits i havent worn yet because of this non sense. Looking forward to having a new belly button and wearing fitted dresses again without having to suck my gut in anymore.
Mallols assistant sent me a list of possible drugs used for pain post surgery as well antibiotics at my request. I'm bringing some dilaudid with me just in case. Although it makes me groggy I'm bringing it for the way back home and some gravol along side of it and stool softeners. You gotta take them before bed and let them work their magic. Straining is super painful after abdominal surgery. I'm having flash backs of my c section recovery right now *tears*
I'm also going to purchase a sweat suit. Something about sun dresses and compression socks on a plane scream eww lol.
I just remembered I have an IUD... my head began scrambling with the email stating that one must stop birth control prior to surgery. I had questions and so I asked and yippie I don't have to remove it. It's the estrogen based birth control that is the problem. Basically, estrogen increases your chances of bloodclots. Which increases even more after having a surgery. But thankfully that isn't the type of bc that I'm currently on.
Hope u guys are doing well!
Less than 2 weeks
I have butterflies guys omg lol
Just printed out my tourist card and requested the usd from my bank. It's really on!
Went to the gym today and I'm actually dreading the 6 weeks off with no weight lifting. I finally lift my former weights pre pregnancy and the idea of having to sit out again is killing me. See exercise has been my gateway out of post pregnancy depression. It's a natural medicine that leaves me feeling great. So I'm scared. Can't even lie. Feel like I'll have to start all over again :-(. But mannnnnnnn it will be worth it.... no more diastasis and new bewbs. I've already made plans to debut them this summer lol.
Hope you all are well!
Please go away lol
My abs are behind there. Wait and see
Iron in a bottle
I don't care for meat much these days. So I look for other sources.
6 more days. I was more nervous last week to be totally honest. I had my money converted to USD this morning. The conversion rate stinks! I lost 1.5 grand converting from CAD to USD. Lady at the counter told me last week would have been a better time to change my money over. You can't predict these things unfortunately.
I'm feeling good otherwise. My bff who is coming with me isn't feeling too well at the moment. Like dog sick feeling thee absolute worst. We're both crossing our fingers and praying for her swift recovery.
Landed in DR
Ok so far so good. Reminds me a lot like other caribbean countries I've been too. Beautiful place with beautiful people.
I'm trying to be as detailed as possible.
Print your tourist card before landing it's valid for a year. It costs ten dollars and it on the DR website.
When u get to the airport and are in immigration go in the left line. The one that says Dominican residents as u don't need to line up in the visitors line.
I met another sx buddy in the airport we exchanged whatsapp contacts. She was super supportive and not shy to tall about her experience. My bff is on her way she got delayed but I saved a bed beside me In our room.
Sea Lily Recovery
Cute place I'm sharing a room with another girl. Recovery house is clean and neat, staff is accommodating and kind. You sign some liability papers for post operative care. My translators name was Neka. She's super cute and very nice.
My drivers name is Nene is doesn't speak much English. He's patient and doesn't drive crazy.
I landed after 2pm and the RH allowed me to shower before driving to Mallols office. They helped sort out what I needed for sx and put it aside.
I'm getting hungry now. Cant eat before my labs. I'm on my way there now.
Clinic and post op
The anesthesiologists name? is dr. Almonte supported by another staff member named Billy they all introduced themselves. The anaesthesiologist was supportive and exceptionally professional. He had small talk with me asked if i play sports or work out and he flexed his arm. Can't lie that made me feel good! He kept my gown on me right until it was time to disrobe and when he put the spinal block (epidural.. Billy held me in place and helped arch my back). I still had on my hospital gown (5 stars *****). Almonte held my hand majority of the surgery while I was awake. He asked if I felt pain and would give more if needed. I believe this is what they call a twilight surgery. You're not out cold at all but you do go in and? out of your sleep. Dr. Almonte told me that I'll sleep when they roll me over and he was right.
I have no recollection of my tummy tuck. But I saw it just before they wrapped it and it looks good.
I had a catheter put in without evening knowing. One minute I was talking to the anaesthesiologist and mallol and then looked down to see my legs spread wide eagle. The OR nurse didn't even let me know (1 Star * for her).
I'll write more later
Sea Lily RH
Maribelle hands down is the best. Shes sweet considerate listens and even though she doesn't speak much English you can totally understand what she is saying. She is attentive and good spirited.
Food is great! I love food so that is priority when staying at any spot. I've had burritos, veggie omelettes, shrimp pasta,. Great beverages and water on demand.
The place is clean and well kept. I'm sharing a room with my friend and another girl from the US. I recieved a blood thinner but it wasn't covered under my package so I had to pay out of pocket. But better safe than sorry.
I also ended up having a blood transfusion. My hbg dropped to 7.8 and let me tell you I could seriously feel it. I sat up and I went dizzy immediately. I was also extremely thirsty and could never get enough water ---that hypovolemia guys look it up. My bff was there and she helped so I didn't I fall on the ground. I shouldn't have gotten up alone it was way too soon. But thank goodness nothing happened.
The nurses at the clinic probably poured out 1200 ml out of my vacuum suction. Ended up infusing 2L of blood ran me $230usd. Ill never forget my blood type after that experience. Nurse Paris is an older nurse and absolutely gorgeous and really listens and is very clean with her approach to care. I had another nurse who I wish to forget. She was too eager and made plenty mistakes. I had to literally teach her how to correctly take care of me. Someone like her is the reason why people leave dr with infections. Do not and I repeat do not let any of them touch you without cleaning their hands either with soap and water or alcohol hand sanitizer. do not let them touch door knobs with gloves and then touch your open wounds or hemovac and make sure they use alcohol wipes on tubing and ports before they insert any needle into any IV port. Like be an arse about it! Bring gloves to the clinic and make sure that they use them. I wanted to rip her face off I swear to the heavens.
Post op day 1
**Im posting after the fact buy just giving you guys an idea of my experience
My iv was blocked due to sleeping position. So I didn't get my 1000ml in the night and I was dehydrated. Nothing overtly serious I still had fluid in my body from the surgery. I figured it out in the middle of the night and repositioned it. Something about the cool fluid going through my veins feels good.
My hemovac or drainage tube is full and I just need the nurse to change it so there isn't any back flow. I wonder how they are going to measure it in the recovery house?
My tummy tuck hardly hurts feels like I did a thousand sit ups. My back where he liposuctioned hurts the most. When I lift my body that's where I get the most discomfort. I feel better laying down and a bit elevated. Tummy tucks with muscle repair feel like those work out waist trainers. I hate those things I always rip them off at night. Another doctor I spoke with back home recommended wearing a waist trainer daily before surgery because the binding is similar to what it feels like. She was absolutely right! I think I'm going to take the dilauded or oxycodone I brought from back home and let's not forget my stool softener.
Breakfast at the clinic was ok.. it was soup with no solids. Another nurse brought me water and told me to sip slow. I was so hungry I finished the tea and soup super quick. I'm gonna feel it in my bowels later on.
Last thing I had mucous in throat that was dry due to drinking anything for the last 24 hours. So bring halls or candy to suck on.
Real Tea on Mallol's Clinic staff
Real Tea about Mallol's clinic
No arm bands to identify patients. Which means patients can be easily mixed up, procedures can be missed or wrong procedure on wrong body parts.
No hand sanitizer in ANY room or desks or outside rooms (which means that they may touch you and go and touch someone else).
No hand soap in rooms.. not even the bathroom. I accidentally walked into the men's washroom it was filthy. Women's bathroom not so much. But still no hand soap in the washroom.
Nurses attempt to stick needles without gloves or washing hands prior
Unorganized staff and no call times
Multiple patients = long waits. You walk in and the Secretary doesnt greet or acknowledge you.
Clinic looks clean and is clean in terms of well kept and spotlessness. But the staff do not follow hygiene protocols nor are any in place so that clinic is infested with germs
No antibacterial wipes in rooms to wipe desks
You spend more time with nurses than you do with your surgeon which is common anywhere that you go. But it is essential that they practice appropriate hand hygiene as it is the first defense against infection.
I brought hand sanitizer and gloves. I provided it for all nurses entering the room. If they need to put anything in your iv i would suggest alcohol wipes. I used hand sanitizer and paper towel while at the clinic because I forgot my alcohol wipes at the recovery house. Make them use hand sanitizer after they leave your room too. Wipe down your bed rails and food tables with santizion wipes. Dont let them touch the door knobs with gloves and then come and touch you. Like I mentioned before the rooms are clean but the nurses are not. They would do things like grab my vomit basin empty my urine bag in it empty it in the toilet and rinse it out... But with what? Bring the basin back to the room I was in and try to rest it on my table. Then they would try to touch me after. All of things are not ok. I was very angry when they put my urine bag on the floor. I had to instruct them to clip the bag on the side of the bed. One time the catheter disconnected from the bag and she attempted to just reinsert it. I said," absolutely not! I need a new bag! You will not put that unsterile tube and reattach it to me." Guys ... This is how people get bladder infections!
Mallol on the other hand is very hygienic. He followed appropriate hygiene protocol everytime. He brings an alcohol spray bottle with him.
Post op pics
Almost 4 weeks post op.
Incisions are healing well. I still have some stitches polking out. My body is beginning to expel the ones that won't absorb. There aren't any more scabs on my body. I've been using scar away and im gonna buy some merderma especially for my tummy tuck scar. Its sooooo long. Kinda depressing and im hoping it doesn't darken.
My partner massages me 4 times a week. The back lipo burns. You can't even tap my back without me feeling pain. At least the numbness is going away. I didn't get a bbl. That's my natural booty! Hehe But I find with swelling of my abdomen in the day that I can't stand straight and my booty tucks. Almost disappears lol. So it's not as big as im used to. I've sat and thought ... Damn I should've taken the free bbl lol. But even Dr Mallol said I didn't need one. But it's hard to look back there with my posture tucked in. They say it takes time for your posture to readjust so you get the curve back in your spine.
I've been going out and running errands. I got my nails painted etc today. So yes a little by little I see improvement in daily activities.
I don't know if I mentioned... I had a hugeeeee hernia in the center of my abdomen. That my ab separation wasn't really that bad. But in fact the hernia was about 10-15cm in length vertically and extended horizontally 5 cm. When u pressed it you would literally hear a squish sound. Under my muscles would touch I could actually make them connect with no issue. I went to dr up here in Canada and they dismissed it as being diastasis. One said it was a hernia... I even went to a hernia specialist who thought it was too small to operate on when I was 5 months post pregnancy. But dr Mallol told me himself it was quite huge after opening my stomach up. He pushed it back in and did muscular plication. I eat food now and my stomach stays flat. No issues! Im still swollen so my inches aren't all the way down. But im happy with the change minus the scar.
Can't wait to hit up the gym.
5 weeks post op tomorrow
I'm feeling 80% normal. I actually whipped my hair while dancing with my kids today lol. I've been so stiff the last little while, I can move my hips in a full circle? but it's not "my normal" yet. I've been able to lay on my stomach briefly for my massages. I've even woken up to find myself in the fetal position or semi prone (half on my stomach). My boobs looks great! I still can't believe they're on my body. I had a friend who didn't know I had surgery ask me what the hell did I do? She was in awe... Said I look phenomenal. I honestly feel phenomenal! I'm looking at my old belly pictures and I don't regret making this decision! I've put on dresses that I've retired and cried over having to give up because of my tummy. The change is unbelievable! Its a huge sacrifice... The time lost and the pain experienced. I've lost weeks with my youngest child (not even a year yet). Not being able to pick them up and run to their aid quickly and it's brought forth a different kind of relationship. Its hard... Being that I'm type A and Ive had to sit back and literally let other people do things for me. Even up to this point I won't pick up anything too heavy.
Next week is a new week.... I'll be clear to work out again. I've been wearing my faja only in the day and taking it off at night. My lower back is still numb although I itch a tonn after a shower. I lower the water temp to not dry out my skin and lotion my skin immediately. Scar is flat and thin... Its tender though. I keep micropore take on it and leave it on for a few days before changing it again. I'll have to look into putting sunblock on my scar. Its gonna be a hot summer! Gotta protect it from sun damage.
Hope you all are well!