Moving Forward to the Flat Side - Orlando, FL

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I have been lurking on this site for several...

I have been lurking on this site for several months now reading about people's experiences with tummy tucks, reviews on doctors in my area, and seeing before and after pictures. First and foremost, I want to say thank you to everyone that posts. It has been a wealth of firsthand information to ease my fears (and sometimes scare me back into reality of possible ps complications), educate me on procedures, how to pick a ps, etc. so THANK YOU to all those that share!

Prior to pregnancy, I was a consistent 135 lbs. I am 5'9'. I am an apple shape and have always had belly issues, even at my thinnest. At 33 I had twins and got huge during my pregnancy. My once minor belly issues became big belly issues that could no longer be easily camouflaged. One year after their birth I was congratulated on the next bun I had in the oven; so sweet, but I wasn't expecting.

When the twins were two, I started running half marathons. I was so fit, but the belly remained, jiggling all along my 13.1 miles. Clothes still didn't fit properly or were comfortable. My parents urged me to consider a tummy tuck. to boost my self-esteem and feel physically more comfortable. I said, "I'll think about it".

Fast forward 2 years... I purchased a heavy item and a sales girl ran over as I bent down to pick it up and said, "no, I got it. You're pregnant. No heavy lifting!" AACKK! I almost died of embarrassment and cried all the way home. That is when I told my family I decided to move forward with a tummy tuck.

So here I am after several months of lurking on this site....

I have had one consultation witha doctor in my area. It went great until I discovered he was not certified by the American Board of PS. Strange, as he has a practice in a well-known and respected hospital. When asked about not having certification, the reply was, "I am a candidate. It's not neccessary to be board certified to practice, but a *nice to have*." That sounds crazy and makes me uncomforatble, so I decided to choose a doctor that is certified.

I have a second consultation with a doctor in Orlando, Dr. Armando Soto. He has wonderful reviews on this site, so it wiull be nice to get a second opinion.

I also have another consultation on August 21 with another doctor. I don't know why it had to be schedule so far out, but it is what it is.

The pictures attached are those that were taken a few months after i went on hiatus from half marathons. I am a bit more jiggly now.

I look forward to going on this journey to the flat side with you all!

Consultation #2

I forgot to mention in my previous post that I weigh 154#. I was probably about 146# when that photo was taken.
I had a consultation with a second PS today. Quite a chunk of change more expensive than my first consult, but he has great credentials and great reviews. It was a very different consult than my first, so I'm digesting it all. There was no picture taking like the first and the discussion of the procedures and such seemed a little more vague (maybe in an attempt to not create false expectations). I was told i should lose 5# which is fine. He talked most of the time going from beginning to very end of the TT process. It was a bit overwhelming to take in.
I have a third consultation with another PS scheduled for next week that was recommended by a couple of my friends and my primary doctor. i also decided to schedule a consultation with one more based on a recommendation from a person I trust implicitly.
I hope to get this scheduled for October.
Finger crossed for a great doc and Oct appointment!
Good luck to all of you, too! And thank you to those that offered words of encouragement!

Yet Another Consultation...

I went to a third consultation last week. It is amazing how each PS can differ in technique and cost. I have been to 3 PS's and each have a different technique and the has varied from $6,600 on the low end, up to $11,600! I can't believe there would be a $5,000 variance between PS's... that's HUGE! I understand that there are reasons for the higher costs for one PS vs. another (experience, skill, demand, etc.), but I almost had to catch my breath when I saw the $11,600 price tag. I was not ready for such a large number. I thought the procedure wouldn't exceed $9,000. Remember, I'm getting a TT (probably with some lipo to the flanks).
Also, one doctor suggested I get an extended TT, where the other two never mentioned it. I thought extended TT's were usually reserved for those that lost a substantial amount of weight (i.e. gastric bypass patients).
All of this makes me question which of the three is actually making the best choice surgically for me?!? It's overwhelming and a scary.
I have one more (and last... for now) consultation with another doctor that came recommended to me. Fingers crossed that it will be under $11,600 and I really like him!
I'm ready to get the show on the road!!

Feeling Defeated

I went for my fourth and (likely) final consult with another PS that came to recommended.

Yet another consultation that was very different than the other three. Started with a nice convo about my goals and background. I thought his bedside manner was great. I never felt rushed and was comfortable asking any question that I had. He showed photos of before and after, TT info, etc. Then came photos of how he did the procedure... Literally. Very graphic photos of the surgery, the skin lifted and muscle wall shown, skin that was removed. He did warn me, but I didn't think it would be THAT graphic and real. It made me feel overwhelmed and slightly terrified. There are some things about this surgery that I would prefer to leave a mystery, like what I would look like cut open on the table. It really made me scared of the thought of the surgery itself.

Anyhow, he did an examination and suggested lipo on my flanks, back and on my upper abdomen. I do not want to do any lipo on the abdomen as I understand that you shouldn't in the same area you are doing a surgery. It seems he either didn't understand my choice or insisted, because he mentioned doing it twice after I mentioned not doing it.

Finally came the cost... $11,600. Again, I had to catch my breath. I really. Thought he would come in around $8500.

I just feel defeated by confusion, cost, a number of people seeing my ugliest bits and pieces, and finding faith that it will all work out.

Sorry I'm a downer... it was a bad day.

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