I was always a "big" girl and what I mean by big...
I was always a "big" girl and what I mean by big is that I wasn't the same size as most girls my age but I wasn't obese (maybe like 20 lbs overweight). I was fine with that. The problem began when I was in high school and gained a lot more weight after being in a relationship with someone that really didn't care about his weight. After the relationship ended I started to work out and I lost the weight that I had gained and was content with that. But after graduation I felt like what I had lost wasn't enough, so me and my sister got on the most popular weight loss program at the time, Weight Watchers. When I first started the program I was 162 lbs and I went down to 130 lbs in three months. Got off the program because I hit my target weight and felt like I could continue doing what they taught us by myself (this was in June of 2011). I maintained my weight for about a year or so but started to slowly gain lb by lb. I ended up at my highest weight somewhere in the low 200's. Since 2013 I've been gaining and losing weight from diet and exercise. Losing weight has been harder than it was when I lost weight right after high school. In addition to the struggle, I've always had big breast and with the weight gain over the years by breast has grown even bigger as well, which also made it very hard to exercise (36DDD/F). Recently, I scheduled a breast reduction surgery, which will be 4/17/17. I figured this would be the best time to get a little extra work done while under the knife, so I decided to get lipo to help kick start my healthy journey. My patient coordinator stated that with breast reductions, by Florida state law, they weren't allowed to take out more than 1000 cc's at the same time as the breast reduction. So they scheduled my liposuction surgery a week later on 4/24/17.
I told them that i wanted my belly, flanks, and inner thighs done but during my pre-op consultation I want to see about my arms being done as well.
Pre-Operative appointment/NEW SURGERY DATE!
So today I had my first face appointment with my PS (pre-operative). Before I checked in to my appointment I got a call around 2pm (appointment was at 3pm) from one of the nurses in my PS's office, stating that there will be a change in the order of my surgeries. Like I had mentioned in my first review, my original date for my BREAST REDUCTION was tomorrow 4/18/17 and my LIPOSUCTION would be the following Monday, 4/24/17. She stated that the doctor wanted to switch the two procedures because the areas that I wanted treated with lipo would be hard to treat post breast reduction (he'd have to flip me over on my belly which isn't good for my breast). Which makes A LOT of sense, I just wished I was told in advance not the day before.
ANYWAY! My original appointment with my PS was for 3pm but because he was running a little late I didn't see him until around 4ish. My first impression of him was bad! He didn't greet me with a "Hello" or a handshake, not even a smile. First thing he asked me was what I wanted done. I told him, my abdomen, flanks, inner thigh and arms. He asked if I wanted the back done too. I was like well if you think that's best, sure (I really didn't care). He stated that having all that done at one time would be too much!! He stated that he'd take a little from my inner thighs and he'd do my abdomen. He stated that if I were to only get my abdomen done it'd look "ugly" (his exact words, which I think was a poor use of words/insensitive when there is a woman standing in front of him with no shirt on, but maybe I'm just being too sensitive). So he says he'd only be able to do abdomen, bra rolls, flanks, and inner thigh in one setting. The arms would have to be done another time (which we later decided would be with my breast reduction, YAY!!). The whole appointment the doctor seemed to be in a rush which really put me on edge, the appointment took less than 10 mins. Even though I had a really bad first impression of Dr. Nees at the end of the appointment I did feel a lot better than when I first went in. The whole nursing staff was really nice to me! They reassured me that I was in very good hands and that Dr. Nees was the best surgeon they had! The nurse that was taking my before pictures, blood pressure, weight etc. really helped calm me down. She stated that my doctor was highly demanded and very hard to get because everyone requests him. Dr. Nees flashed me a little smile at the end, which really made feel at ease as well. So all in all, I'm really excited about my surgery for tomorrow. They scheduled it for 1pm.
About surgery day, and Day 1 Post Op
So I had my surgery last night. Was supposed to be 1pm but wasn't seen until about 6ish, because my PS's first patient was late and it through everything off. They hydrated me with an IV before going back. My PS marked me up telling me all that places that he'll be lipoing (said I'd be losing about 10-20 lbs). I waited another hour or so while they cleaned the operating room. A nurse gave me a little of the anaesthesia before I went back (it burned like hell). Another nurse wheeled me back to the operating room. The last thing I remember is laying on the bed and soon as the anaesthesiologist started putting the rest of the medication in me she said my vision would get a little blurry. I just said screw it and just closed me eyes. OH FORGOT TO MENTION, I was given general anaesthesia, if that wasn't obvious yet! After waking up from my surgery, I remember being in so much discomfort and felt like I had to pee so bad. I started to squirm and they told me to stay still BUT I DIDN'T LISTEN! lol The nurse took out my catheter and it felt sooooo disgusting! She also told me that the PS took out 4000 ccs of fat!! I know WOW! All he was able to do at the time was my lower/upper abdomen, flanks, inner thighs, and I believe my bra rolls. He said he'd do my back along with my arms with my breast reduction. Last night I was very nauseous when I got back to the hotel and when I finally peed it burned soooo bad because of the catheter. I felt like crap, so I went straight to bed. I went to bed at around 12 am and slept alright but I just woke up very 2-3 hours. Woke up today at 6 something this morning.
So today is Day 1 Post-Op. I got a call from PS's office. She asked a few questions about my current state (i.e. did i pee, eat, any draining, etc.) and stated that I should be elevating me legs will laying down, and that I should walk around for like 15-17 mins and taking deep breaths as I walk. Eat heavy meals with my pain medication. Speaking of medication, PS prescribed me Oxycodone for pain, promethazine for pain, motion sickness, nausea, and vomiting, diazepam for anxiety, muscle spasms, and seizures (which I don't take), and cephalexin is an antibiotic. I was supposed to do post op appointment this Thursday but I wanted to go in today because there was a problem with the date of my Breast Reduction because it was too close to the day I have to fly back to CA. PS wanted to see how I was doing today to know whether or not to push my surgery from Monday to this Friday. Anyway, I seen my doctor today. He didn't really say much, other than that everything looks good. I tried to get a few pictures of my stomach for you guys but they didn't have any mirrors in the room. The nurse that assisted me took my blood pressure, temperature and weighted me. Everything was fine, she told me before I got on scale that not to worry because people usually gain a few pounds after their surgery. When I got on scale I was at the exact weight I was the day of my surgery. She was really surprised. Told me people usually gain like 20 lbs. That made me feel very good. Well other than that I've just been sleeping a lot. I feel good. Not in much pain everything is numb, only pain i get is when I get in and out of bed. I get to take my first post op shower tonight, I'm really excited about that! I will try to take more pictures of my body without the garment tonight when I get out of shower. Food wise, I've been hungry but haven't wanted to eat regular meals. When I got back to hotel last night I only ate an apple sauce and drank a small water and Gatorade (which I should've ate more). Today I ate a big breakfast (scrambled eggs, two sausage links, a slice of french toast) and have been snacking on fruit (had banana for lunch and watermelon and a few chips for dinner).
Day 2 Post Op/Shower
These were taken after my shower this morning. I was supposed to take a shower last night but I was too tired. So I took it first thing in the morning. I'm surprised, there is no bruising!!
Weekend after surgery/ low blood levels
Hey beauties! So I was supposed to have my breast reduction and the rest of my back and arms lipo'ed last Saturday 4/22/17. When I got to the surgery center they took my blood to check my hemoglobin levels because it was low at my pre op appointment. Normal range is 11.5-15.2. Mine was 10.2 on 4/20 (Thursday) and 9.2 on 4/22 (Saturday). It had went down very low in just two days. So they had to cancel my breast reduction with lipo out of risk of bleeding out. They told me my levels dropping was normal after having surgery but it going THAT low was unsafe. They told me to get rest and take vitamins to boost the levels up faster. Recommended vitamins C and B12, and iron. I shoulda known something was wrong because I was very tired and weak these past couple days. The nurse told that was a sign. She told me I had dark rings under my eyes and I was pale in the face. I would nod off and fall asleep within mins. So lady's be aware that if you're having these symptoms SEE A DOCTOR!! If your blood levels drop too low you'll need a blood transfusion!! I've been taking the vitamins since then so as of today my levels went up to 9.9 (still too low but good to know it's going up) from 9.2. Other than that the pain is little if any. I'm actually off my pain pills as of today. Showering is the highlight of my day because it's the only time I can take this darn garment off. The garment is sooooo uncomfortable but necessary!! I tried to be slick and take my time in the shower the other day and I regretted it when it was time to put it back on. I felt so faint. I believe it was the Friday night after the surgery that I actually threw up after getting the garment on. I started to swell up immediately after taking it off so putting it back on was a struggle! And FYI when putting the garment on make sure you are sitting/laying down! I'll try to continue to keep you ladies updated as much as possible.
1 Week Post Op!!
Feeling a lot better! Taking no medication other than an occasional Tylenol. Sleeping surprisingly has gotten worse. It's harder to get comfortable because I'm slowly starting to get the feeling back in my sides ("love handles") so I get a little tingling sensation/sharp pain every now and again. Also as you can see bruising has started, it started around day 4 or 5, I'm not too sure. My garment where the zipper is has really made it hell on my right side. It has left marks on my sides and I believe causes a lot of the sharp pains now. Can't think of anything else. If any questions just leave them in the comments!
Weeks 3 & 4
So weeks 3 and 4 have been a lot better. The main problem is the hardness in my stomach and the itching!!! The hardness started around week 2 or 3 and itching began couple of days ago. The hardness gets worse when I go without my garment for along time. My skin in my lower abdomen area (where most of the fat was removed) has retracted SIGNIFICANTLY! I love how it looks now because it doesn't sag and cover my pubic area. Another problem that has really bugged me recently is the darkening of my skin in my stomach. As you could see I'm pretty "yellowish" and in my stomach area is has gotten a dark brown/grayish color. I've read Q&As on here about this discoloration and the doctors basically said it's from the bruising/bleeding and that it could last up to a year (or longer) >:(. Other than that I seem to be healing just fine. It's still pretty early in the healing process so I don't want to state whether or not the procedure was worth it. So far I look better in clothes than I used to and that's all I really expected from the procedure. I just hope some of these lumps and bumps from the hardness/swelling don't become permanent.
Any questions? Ask away.
Hit my 1 Month Mark!!!
A lot of the swelling has went down! Lower belly surrounding my belly button is really all that swells now. Itching is still a problem but I deal with it. One thing that I haven't mentioned before but really has been bugging me, is that my PS stitched my incision areas closed and the stitches are starting to stick out of my skin. The incisions are right there were my panties/pants meet so when I walk they rub up against the stitches and yank at them. This causes a highly irritating tingling burning sensation, its like if some one is pulling a single strand of hair out of your skin. I'm not sure if the stitches are dissolvable or absorbable or what because my PS never mentioned putting them in or taking them out. I finally get to see my primary care physician on Wednesday (a month after surgery was the earliest I could see her smh), hopefully she could help me with this problem.
OTHER THAN THAT, EVEN THOUGH IT'S STILL PRETTY EARLY I'VE SEEN ENOUGH PROGRESS TO SAY THAT I REALLY THINK THE SURGERY WAS WORTH IT! (they say anywhere between 3-6 months is when you'll see your final results)
HAVE ANY QUESTIONS JUST ASK! :)
2 Month PO
18 Jun 2017
2 months post
So today marks 2 months post op. I was going to post pics of how I look now but I took them and compared them to my 1 month mark and the pics look literally the same. So physically, I look the same. My belly/love handles haven't gone down any more (well anything that is noticeable). My belly is less hard though. It is more "squishy" and not so rock hard. On my left side between my love handle and belly button it's kinda hard and directly under my belly button is semi hard. I must also mention that both my month 1 and month 2 pictures were taken at night after a long day. I have also noticed that when I first wake up in the morning that my belly does look a lot flatter vs at night BUT I do sleep on my stomach so that doesn't really say much.
One last thing, I spoke with my primary physician about my stitches and she was really no help. She was like that they look fine and that they don't look infected and that my body will pretty much do away with them on it's own. WELL! I didn't have the patience for that so I did a bad thing (wouldn't recommend ANYBODY to do the same) but I tugged and twisted on them and pulled them out myself. Anyway, that's all for now. I don't think I'll post a 3rd month update unless there has been a really big change physically. If I don't post anymore updates, just want to thank those that have read about my journey and left great comments. THANK YOU ALL!
And of course, if any questions...Just ask. :)