Hard Recovery but Worth It! - Kirkland, WA

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I lost 140lb and was left with a big squishy sack...

I lost 140lb and was left with a big squishy sack of skin hanging off my stomach both below and above the bellybutton. I opted for an anchor-cut tummy tuck, which removes a vertical wedge of skin in addition to the bottom part. I couldn't stand up straight for 2 weeks, and needed round the clock help for that entire time. It was painful, and I had to go to physical therapy a few months later to get back my abdominal strength.

I won't sugarcoat it, for me the recovery was absolute hell. I had bleeding complications, lots of swelling, my bellybutton split open, and my drains stayed in for 5 weeks. There was a bit of lipo done, and holy cow did that sting! The lipo'd areas felt like they'd been stung by hornets and would 'zing' as the nerves grew back.

With all of that said, I would do it again in a heartbeat. It was worth every second of pain and inconvenience. I lost 4" off my waist and almost 3 pounds of skin from my stomach. I went down a pant size, and my stomach doesn't 'clap' every time I run up or down stairs! No more spanx. I am confident about dating and being naked.

I am now 8 months post-op. I do have some permanent numbness on my stomach, right along both incisions. It doesn't bother me though. My pubic area was lifted so I have to uh, be more vigilant about hair removal since it grows higher up now.

I have some hyperpigmentation (permanent discoloration) that runs in two stripes on my waist, it looks like a shadow from a bulge. But my belly is perfectly flat. Bellybutton isn't perfect because it split open and had to heal back closed. But it's good enough for me!!!

My tips:
-Have people there to help you for 2 weeks. Maybe you'll bounce back sooner, but at least have the option.
-Toilet seat raiser. Get a cheap one off amazon. It will make things much easier.
-Wedge pillows, or even better, sleep in a recliner.
-stool softeners. use them religiously. constipation is not fun.
-get a huge waterbottle with a very long straw. Will help you stay hydrated without needing to refill so often
-put crystal lite or some other low-cal flavoring in your water. Decreases nausea and will help you drink more.
-eat protein protein protein!!!
-put your scale in storage, don't weigh yourself. I gained 12 pounds right after surgery, all swelling. It took about 2 weeks to resolve.

FYI I am 5'9 and weigh about 160-165 lb, both in before and after pics.

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