50 yr old full tummy tuck with MR, lipo to inner thighs and flanks after 3 csections

So far so good! dr.mentz is amazing at what he...

So far so good! dr.mentz is amazing at what he does and His staff has been top notch!
He listened to my goals, his staff is very attentive and was available for me whenever I had any questions. Dr. Mentz is triple board certified and uses exparel and drain less tummy tuck. Which I find to be a great experience so far. I would recommend him to anyone seeking a tummy tuck here in Houston.

Day 5

A little swelling and woke up stiff, but felt overall good, more energized. Showered walked around the house for a few minutes, now resting! Still love my results! Can't wait til,I'm 8, 10, 12 weeks out!

Day 7 new CG!

So yesterday at my 1st follow up I got a new CG. No zipper or eye hooks just wriggle on...right?! Anyway, got it on took a bit of patience so I wouldn't twist or bend. But so much more comfortable!
I also drove today and took a little stroll...key word stroll at an outside shopping center to get out in the sun. My stroll was super slow and for a short time all said I was out for maybe 40 min. So far so good not much swelling or tightness. Not really too tired either. But I've been pretty much doing nothing for the last 7 days!

Day 8 tried bikini on

Day 8 po! Slept well. Have a little swelling not uncomfortable. And I think my Lipo is finally stopped leaking. Starting bio oil on tummy legs. Staying away from incision and bb.
If this is day 8, can't wait for 6 weeks!

2 weeks po(day13)

It's 2 weeks po visit today! 13 days PO!
I feel great! I have very minimal swelling, no more pain, just uncomfortable feeling mostly from the Lipo areas.
Walking straight, I usually start out stuff when I wake up but as soon as I get moving its better.
I am driving, have been since day 8. Doing light cleaning around the house, grow shopping, light bags. Walking more or elliptical slow waking because of rain can't go outside.
I haven't really had any issues and I'm very thankful for that and I know that's not the norm
Will update after docs spot today and be more specific at what I'm doing to help my recovery!

my TT experience so far!

so, today, 2 weeks post Tummy Tuck with Muscle Repair from breast to down to incision basically, lipo to flanks, inner thighs, axilla bra fat, and some on the hips(a bonus). I though I would write a more detailed account of my experience to see if it will be of help to anyone out there! If not, its great to archive!
first a little about me. I will be 50 on the 16th of this month, just a few days away! Im married with 3 wonderful adult kids. I am a petite 4'11", weighing in at 116. I had 3 c-sections and kids weighed anywhere from 7-8.5 lbs.
I started this journey when it was a thought probably 5-10 years ago. I have always been an avid workout person. I trained with a trainer doing HIIT bootcamps for quite a few years, ran 4 half marathons, paddle board, hiking!

i did alot of research over the years. I interviewed with 3 very capable and prestigious docs here in Houston. all of them top docs on Realself and top docs of Houston.

I decided to go with Dr. Mentz for a few different reasons. One was that he is triple board certified and one of Houstons top Docs. He uses Exparel which I was looking for. He also does Progressive Tension Sutures and drainless TT. So He met all of my criteria. What sealed the deal was when I went in for my consult I originally went in to look into non invasive measures with his other staff. While I was there, they suggested I see Dr. Mentz and they squeezed me in since I was already in the office. Everyone single person I dealt with was patient, kind and listened to my concerns. I met with Dr. Mentz and he immediately made me feel comfortable, heard and spent time to really understand what my goals were. I booked my surgery later that day, and I have not once second guessed my decision.

One thing I will say, is that this is a big procedure. You should be in your best healthy state. I would encourage anyone wanting to do this be physically and mentally fit before hand.
At the time of my booking, I was already 5 lbs within my ideal body weight for my height and age. My BMI was 23. which is ideal. I do not smoke, I only drink an occasional glass of wine, eat clean 90% of the time and run and bootcamp 6 days a week.

You should also be sure you have at least 1 if not more encouraging support people walking with you throughout this journey.

So here are things I did that I truly believe helped my recovery thus far. Outside of choosing an outstanding surgeon who uses the best techniques.
I started 2 weeks prior cutting out sodium from my diet, running every day even after bootcamp to ensure my lungs were at their healthiest. and my legs and arms were strong to compensate for not being able to use my abs.

My surgeon provided me with Vitamedica recovery vitamins started 2 weeks prior and 2 weeks post. Arnica and Bromelain as well. I also only drank water with lemon for 2 weeks prior and continueing to do so throughout. I may have an occasional glass of wine here or there.(but wine will make you swell, actually any alcohol)

Post operatively, I followed my surgeons instructions to the "T". I know alot of people will take whats online and tweak their care a bit. I figured I paid alot to have a professional in this field, the least I should do is follow his advice.

I was given marena CG post op, which I wear 24/7 except for showering. I was given antibiotics, blood thinner, anti viral for stress, sleeping aid if needed and stool softener all by my PS office. I was told to sleep elevated for the first few weeks, eat low sodium to minimize my activity to being up every 2 hours or to use the bathroom and to walk around for at least 10 min during that time. To eat a high lean protein diet low in sodium and lots of fluids, mostly water.

we already owned a power recliner and adjustable bed. However, being short, even with a step stool getting in and out of the bed the first week and half was just to difficult so I pretty much slept in the recliner. If you don't have one and can rent one, I would suggest it. Otherwise you could use a pillow wedge.
So, I stayed one night in the surgery center's private recovery room. I was home 24 hours after my surgery. Surgery started at 8:30am on Thursday 3/31 and I was home by 8am friday 4/1.
I was kind of nice to be there overnight as I had a catheter and didnt need to worry about getting up and down to use the restroom. Day 2 was kind of a blur. there was pain, but very tolerable and easily controlled with the meds. Day 3, I was cleared to shower. My husband and I, yes, you will need help and should for safety, had me sit on a shower stool and showered. it felt fabulous, my hubby even washed my hair.
When I first saw my belly I could not believe how good and flat it looked! I am so happy. my only thought was how much will I swell? mostly because I read so much about that.

Day 3 or 4, I had my first BM. It was actually not that bad, but I had been taking the stool softener and drinking a ton of water. So I was relieved that went so well. since then I have not had any issues.

I had a nurse visit(complimentary service) come out and checked my incisions, my temp, bp and changed my dressings and showed my husband and myself how to get in and out of the CG. days 4 and 5 about the same. on day 5 another visit from the nurse.

by day 5 I was walking around comfortably and standing pretty much straight. My PS said to stay hunched the first 3 days and adjust as I felt comfortable.
Week one PO. Was great and even with that outing I didnt feel much exhaustion and was able to change out my CG to a more comfortable Marena.

I have been eating small frequent meals as I get full faster, which alot of people had said that was common.

now at week 2, I feel terrific! I have not dealt with any major swelling. I have some swelling, but it is very minimal. I attribute that to my PS and his technique mostly and the large amounts of water.

The only real issues, if you can really call them that, is that the lipo areas are very sensitive and tender. they actually hurt more than the actual TT.

Moving around at first and getting up and down to use the restroom in the beginning is a challenge, but definitely doable.

All in all, I have had a very uneventful and good recovery.
So I want to encourage others, you could easily have a good recovery with no complications and no swell hell.
What I've learned from this experience and being on this website is that everyone is different, we do not know everyones physical and mental history prior to surgery. What their PS are like, etc.
So please take that into consideration, ask alot of questions to your plastic surgeon, choose someone because of their credentials, not the cost, if you can.

i know reading alot of posts on here, Im not the average person on here. My experience and recovery is not typical. However, if you prepare yourself, give yourself realistic expectations, follow your PS instructions, you could very well have a great experience and recovery!

Good luck to those that have gone before and those that will go after!
I hope this helps, even if its just one person.

Add'l tips

Here are a few more things I forgot!

The first 5 days, take your pain meds on schedule, even if you think you don't need them. Staying ahead of pain is always better than trying to chase it away!

Do not over do it, even if you feel great, especially with the exparel since its long lasting. Your body needs rest to heal!

Do listen to your body, if it seems off or your gut is saying go to the ER, GO!! There have been a few on this site that did just that and I'm sure if they ignored it it could've been disastrous!
Do let others help you! You cannot do it all!
Prepare low or no sodium meals in advance. I did and that was a big help.
Put everything together on a nightstand next to your recliner/bed. Including cough drops, tissues, hair ties, makeup wipes. Etc. that helped my hubby a lot!
Turn off cell phone to sleep. They can call your caregiver for updates, you need your rest.
Get child care and pet care in place in advance.

19 days po, 1 day shy of 3weeks

3weeks!!!!! Only 3 more and it's 6 weeks. It's actually gone by quick!
This is a quick update, I'll write more tomorrow!
I'm feeling good, very little swelling w activity and heading to the gym for elliptical only.

3 weeks! 21 days post op!

3 weeks today! It has been a good journey so far! Some uncomfortable moments, mostly Lipo areas. No real pain.
I am enjoying being able to do more walking/elliptical. I don't experience that much swelling with activity just some tummy tightness. Lipo on the inner thighs are awesome! I love the results no more thigh rubbing. The back, flanks and bra area is just long healing.
I do notice some swelling, but I expect that at 3 weeks. Not swell hell, but swelling compared to a few days po.
I am getting another lymphatic massage today which will hopefully help w residual swelling.
Here is a recent new bikini pic! Notice some swelling in the tummy area! But still so happy with results and I know a few more weeks it will be even better!

26 days po(2 days shy of 4 weeks)

26 days po, Thursday will be 4 weeks po!
So far it's been a good recovery. Haven't been posting much as really I don't have much to post, which is great! Just healing as I should. Following PS instructions!
I'm off all meds, take an occasional ibuprofen, mostly for low back pain from Lipo spot! Lipo still healing still numb but starting to flatten out.
The prineo tape came off my bb. It's still healing but looks pretty good! Just amazed its flat around it! Been walking a little more briskly and started light weights for arms and shoulders.
We did have sex a day ago so very close to 4 weeks. It was great, however, we were careful! I just don't see how you could not engage your abs! But we managed and I didn't feel like I did any damage or anything!
I'm excited to hit the 4 week mark, then 2 more weeks to 6 weeks!
I'm staying at 7.5 lbs down, so I know there's still a little swelling! Can't wait to get back to bootcamp!
I've been out to dinner and events w friends. Usually by the end if the night I'm a bit sore if I've sat for too long, I don't notice much swelling. Do get some tightness, but sitting for too long makes my whole body stiff.
I am pretty much back to daily life with no real issues!
My first work project is the first week of June, so I still have some time to recover!
Looking forward to summer trips and wishing everyone a healthy healing!

Posted new bikini pic! Love that I'll be able to wear a string bikini, who knew!

5 weeks this week, 33 days post op

It's hard to believe I'm so close to 6 weeks! Thought I'd never get there!
Everything is pretty much the same! Doing well, sleeping well, amped up my walking and light weights! Still waiting for the rest of my prineo tape over incision to fall off, but Ps will take it off next week if not! Bb is healing as expected. Have a little swelling lower tummy near incision, that's to be expected too!
Been wearing my skinny jeans which are loose and I'll need to be new ones, but I will wait another few weeks!
Moving around just fine and I'm hoping I get the ok to wean off the CG at my 6 week po visit next week! Hoping I'll get it off soon as I know it's a matter of days before this Houston weather heats up!
I get the occasional pins and needles feeling, not at all uncomfortable, just weird feeling!
So no new news is good news!
Just taking it one day at a time and grateful for the smallest of moves ahead!
Here are some 5 week pics! Pretty much the same! Not complaining though, still love my results!

35 days po

New dress for an event down to a size 2 from 6!

6 week update

This week is 6 weeks! I just can't believe it's been 6 weeks!!!
Had my po appt yesterday! My PS was very pleased and thought I look more like 12 weeks! He said I was well ahead of the healing curve and i look and am healing better than most patients he's had.
I was cleared for all activities, running, weights, exercise, sex... He did say hold off on ab exercises another 4 weeks then start slowly!
He also suggested waiting for 3 month mark for wave runners, water skiing!
I'm wear a smaller size CG for another few weeks weaning off over that time. He felt that most of my swelling is pretty much dissolved, and another 3-4 weeks and I'll probably only have minimal w activity. I also started scar therapy.
I'm down 2 dress sizes, 7.5 lbs.
I return in 3 months(August) for follow up and before/after photos!
Hoping to get some ab definition by then! I'm noticing some definition without any exercise so fingers crossed it'll be even better!

What I gained in knowledge over the last 6 weeks!
Although I had a very good, uneventful recovery, it is a long and tough recovery!
Be prepared mentally for the downtime, the inability to do what you did pre surgery! And be ok with it!
Don't overdo it the first time you feel better, learn to rest!
A positive attitude can make a huge difference in recovery!
Be physically prepared. Your best physical shape makes a huge difference!
Listen to your PS!

I hope anyone reading this has a successful surgery, healthy recovery and acknowledges the small victories in this long journey!

8 week op update!

8 weeks!! I can't believe it! But it's finally 8 weeks!
My recovery has been fairly, dare I say, pretty good!! Well, it really has been a good experience, FOR ME!
At 8 weeks, I am pretty much back to regular and normal activity! I have been running/walking since week 6 when I got the OK from my PS. I am up to 3.5 miles. I have been lifting and almost back to the amount pre surgery, still only doing plank for abs, PS said hold of on abs til week 12. However, just with what i am doing, getting some ab definition, very little but, heck it's way better than presx! So I'll take it! No swelling after workouts.

I haven't had any issues with incision, seromas etc, so thankful for that!
I had my last lymphatic massage last week. But I did go to my regular massage therapist(cleared w PS). And it was fabulous to get a full body. No pain, problems, etc.
I have some occasional twinges of muscle and or nerves firing back to life, annoying more than anything. I still have numbness around incision and flanks where lipo was done. But the rest of my belly is getting normal feeling.
I have lost a total of 8.5 lbs(they took off 8 of skin, lipo fat). I went into surgery close to ideal weight,and 23.6 bmi. I am at 22.0 bmi. My PS said he doesn't anticipate me being able to drop anymore than 1-3 lbs of weight and be healthy, but I should continue to tone up, especially in the abs.
I am down 2 dress sizes, and down 2 pant sizes. I have bought new jeans, and dresses and shorts, almost everything I own is too loose, imcluding skinny jeans.

My swelling at this point is very minimal if at all. I only wear my CG to run or if I am going to be doing anything strenuous. Sleeping without CG, on my side, belly back. I wake up flat and no more body aches, it's a wonderful feeling!
I have gone out to dinner without the CG and sat for quite a few hours eating and having some wine, no swelling, a little tight and feel like I need to stretch but jeans stay loose and I feel great!
I am able to stretch, I don't over do that though.
My incision is healing nicely. Been doing skinmedica scar therapy for about 2 weeks. It's flat and thin!
I would recommend this surgery to anyone who is in good mental and physical shape. I would suggest being at your best weight possible for the best outcome possible. Be prepared for a long road of recovery, even if it's a good one. There are still a lot of limitations for quite a long time.
Have ample support system. Find and use a CERTIFIED plastic surgeon that has excellent patient reviews, review their work.
Understand that it takes time for most people to see final results, that this is a major surgery and your body needs to be able to handle all that that requires.
Overall I am super pleased with my results and my experience!
Continue with a positive attitude and try to find even the smallest bit of improvement in the process.
Think progress, not perfection. None of us will be perfect, but we can be a better version of who we are!

10 weeks po

It's 10 weeks po this week! I have been completely back to the normal everyday routine for a few weeks at least, although it seems longer than that! My incision is healing well, I used the skinmedica scar treatment and bio oil. I like the bio oil because I can use it everywhere and it really helps keep my skin moisturized. I have been back to normal activities including running about 3 miles, just shy of pre surgery. I am starting back at boot camp slowly this week, I'll see how that goes. Sleeping in any position really and quite comfortably. Went on a beach trip, 3 hours on a plane and a few hours in a car, no issues with swelling or mobility. I have been completely off the CG now for about 3 weeks, love it! It does take some getting used to. I had my first full day at work(I'm an events coordinator, so I was on my feet for about 10-12 hours 2 days in a row, moving large items around. I didn't have any issue with swelling, just super wiped out by the end of the day. Which was great, because I slept really well. (Insomnia plagues me even pre surgery). I have had my energy back really around week 4. Still eating pretty healthily, still only at 8 lbs down. But I'm happy with that as I was within 5 lbs of my ideal weight. I am down 2-3 dress sizes and jeans sizes. I've been able to wear just about everything and it's nice to not have the belly rolls. I did have lips on my flanks, inner thighs and bra fat.m those are mostly completely healed. So here are a few things I've found interesting at 10 weeks out! Still have some numbness and burning sensation at lips spots, especially flanks. Occasionally when I twist or move a certain way I feel a pulling in the abs region, sure it's cause how tight they make you. That's really the only negatives I have this far out! My swelling is completely dissolved even with a full day's activities. I do still get a tigh abdomen, like a did a million sit ups occasionally with too much activity. I am absolutely loving my results and the process was great, a little long, but overall at this stage I am so happy I finally did it, just wish I would've sooner! I hope everyone is moving forward and finding even the slightest difference as a victory!

Week13 update

Week 13-Haven't been on much! I have been traveling and just plain busy!

At week 13 I am doing extremely well. I have been, over the last couple of weeks, very busy. I just got back from a week long hiking, camping trip in Colorado. First of all, it was beautiful! Secondly, I didn't even remember I had a TT. For the most part, I'm completely healed and have no real after effects. We hiked most days about 6-10 miles, I had no swelling, no tummy achiness, can't say that for my legs or back from carrying a backpack! But it felt great to not be thinking about or really feeling it. All of my lipo spots are done having numbness or tingly feeling.
My scar is healing rather nicely. Pretty thin and flat and some areas are white/silver other areas still very light pink. It just takes time.
Belly button is coming along. Not totally in love with it, but heck I can actually see it, so that's an important event.
I have been doing boot camp and some ab exercises, taking slowly and not as many reps as before. It's a process, the whole ab thing.
My doc said I was cleared at week 12 for pretty much everything, so I'm working my way back to presx. I am seeing muscle definition in the ab area just from being active and actively engaging those muscles with other exercises.
I was also told at 3 months post, what I look like will most likely be the end result. So I'm incredibly happy with where I am and my results. Just got to make sure to keep the rest of me toned up.
So, with all that said here's so general advice. Specific needs for surgery are addressed numerous times on here.
Research and find the best PS you can afford. With excellent credentials, excellent reviews, board certified in plastic surgery, has done numerous tummy tucks, look at his before and afters. Ask lots of questions, a good doc will not mind.

1. Be as physically and mentally fit....this is a long physical and emotional journey to recovery...put your best foot forward.
2. Plan to have adequate help in the beginning, the first few days to a week.
3. Pre plan meals if you can, or have someone who will cook what you need...think LOW SODIUM, HIGH PROTEIN!!
4. Drinks LOTS OF WATER!
5. Keep moving after the first couple days, but don't over do it even if you feel fantastic, it could bite you in the butt!
6. If in doubt call your DOC or go to the ER, can't tell you how many near misses I've read on here.
7. Remember...PROGRESS NOT PERFECTION!! If you're looking to have the perfect body with no stretch marks, cellulite, a possible little juggle here or there, you will be disappointed.
8. Keep a POSITIVE attitude. I know it's hard when things don't go as planned or setbacks arise, but try to find the good or you will consume yourself with the negative!
9. Ease back into normal life, exercise, social activities. The swelling can last a while. I did not experience long lasting or significant swelling, so I was very fortunate, but I know others were not.
10. Enjoy the new you! The new clothes, the new looks, the new you!

I know and understand not everyone had an easy recovery. Don't want to mi I one that. Just remember we all start at a different place. Some of us older or younger, more kids, less kids. Very fit, not so much. Healthy habits and kind of healthy habits. Good health and maybe not so great of health. At ideal weight or jump starting to ideal weight, remember this isYOUR journey! You need to find what's best for you. Listen to your Doc, follow his care plan. He knows you and what you need.
My journey to recovery was quite,dare I say easy. And I would definitely do it all over again to have the tummy I had always wished I had.
Stay positive and good luck on your recoveries!

17 weeks post TT w/MR

It's been 17 weeks!! It's been a busy summer so far! I've enjoyed my new body in a bikini all summer! Ive had my adult kids(that don't know I had TT) tell me a look amazing! My 22 year old daughter said I look better than most 20somethungs! Hubby of course is over the moon!

I'm pretty much back to normal everyday activities. Bootcamp 3 days a week, running when it's not over 100degrees out! Eating mostly healthy outside of vacation.
I originally lost about 8.5lbs. Still at 8.5 lb loss, not really losing anymore, but not trying either. Doing an work, not as intense as before but some. I can really feel the aches if using my abs day after an ab routine. Not painful just that good soreness.
I'm down from a size 4/6 to a 0/2(depending on designer)
Went from a 28"waist jeans to a 26" comfortably.
Went from s/m tips to xsmall. Still fit great and not too tight!
Most days I dint have any remnants of surgery unless I'm reminded by the scar I see.
Absolutely glad I made the decision, just wished I would've in my 30-40's and not my 50's
Good luck and keep your eye on the prize!

Some before and afters

Here are some before and afters.....pre surgery and 17 weeks
Day one and a few days
And a few weeks in between

20 weeks PO (5months)!!!

Went to my 5 month po visit with my PS! I cannot say enough great things about him and his staff as well as his amazing skills! I know using him has given me amazing results!
At 5 months I am pretty well back to everything including ab work! I am completely healed per doc so cleared for just about everything!
I'm almost back to pre surgery workouts! Yay!! No problems with pain or swelling!
My due back at the PS in 6 more months for follow up!
So I'm just going to be enjoying my new me and keeping up with the workouts and healthy eating!
Good luck Realselfers!
Houston Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Mentz is a fantastic surgeon. He listened to what my goals were and not only did he help me achieve them, he made suggestions to better enhance them. His staff has been top notch. With home nurse care complimentary, roses when I go out of surgery to just being very attentive. The whole experience so far is fantastic!

Was this review helpful? {{ voteCountOthers + ' other' + (voteCountOthers == 1 ? '' : 's') }} found this helpful