My first medical tourism to Medan
It took me 6 months of searching before I finally made up my mind to go for it – thigh liposuction. I read all I could find on the net, spoke to people who have gone through the same surgery and consulted a few doctors who performed liposuction here locally. Unfortunately, none of the local doctors I have consulted could give me the confidence of a good outcome and all offered Vaser Lipo, which does not come with good reviews. Perhaps there is a lack of such expertise here in my country. Finally after much searching, I came across Dr. Arthur Tjandra who performs liposuction out of his private clinic in Medan. Apart from the good reviews that are published by his clients, I watched most of his works on YouTube – a picture paints a thousand words. Another important factor was, he uses the safest method of liposuction (awake tumescent liposuction) which he explained the benefits in detail on his website. These are all the combination of reasons why I chose Dr. Arthur.
I took the early morning flight into Medan a day before the surgery to give myself a bit more time to settle down. The door-to-door transport service I opted for took a load off my mind especially when it was my first time into Indonesia. The driver was there to pick me up at the airport as soon as I stepped out from the arrival hall. On the way to Dr. Arthur’s clinic, he even stopped at a nearby supermarket for me to get some snacks and fruits. The ride was comfortable and took approximately 1.5hr due to the heavy traffic.
Dr. Arthur’s clinic look impressive and prominent amidst its surroundings of low-rise shops and houses. I was greeted by Dr. Arthur’s housekeeper who brought me to my room located on the second floor of the clinic. The entire place was impeccably clean and well furnished. There was nothing lacking in terms of amenities. Your travelling needs would be some light clothing, probably a laptop and maybe your favourite book. Free wifi is available at the clinic. One need not worry about the food as daily orders were taken. There was no lack of choice and the food tasted reasonably good.
On the morning of the day of surgery, I was greeted by the bubbly and friendly Dr. Arthur’s nurse, Yusma. She took my measurements and gave me some antibiotics to take before the surgery. I then changed into the appropriate attire followed by an hour of consultation with Dr. Arthur. He went through explaining the risks & complications associated with liposuction, the procedure itself, what I would expect post surgery, etc. He was thorough, honest, assuring and friendly. After the consultation, I went for a light lunch back in my room (the clinic has a huge kitchen). Waited for 2 hours before the phone rang. I sprang up from my bed knowing that the moment has come – it’s either flee or fight I can still choose. Yusma said to meet in the procedure room located on the ground floor.
Dr. Arthur injected painkillers – about 4-5 syringes through the plug on my left hand. The next 30 minutes was important. Dr. Arthur marked both my thighs & hips and pointed out the trouble areas and how they will be resolved after the surgery. With honesty, he advised me to be realistic with the results not to compare myself with others unrealistically. For best results, I have opted for the three dimensional liposuction, covering all 7 areas of my thighs, hips and knees. Photos were taken before the surgery and I cannot emphasize how crucial these will become for one to appreciate the good results after that - a before and after comparison. After applying iodine all over my thighs, the surgery commenced.
Upon the first prick on my left thigh, I went to sleep. I understand that some of the patients were fully awake throughout the surgery. But I was truly glad that I wasn’t. The next 3 hours of the surgery, I was drifting in and out of consciousness. I could hardly remember much in detail except that I was told to stand up at one point with liposuction done standing up! I could feel the pressure from the repeated movements of the cannula. Painful? Yes, on some parts of the area. But Yusma’s pair of hands, which held mine throughout the surgery, brought some relief to me. She was truly a wonderful nurse. There were instances where I chatted with Dr. Arthur and made a few jokes.
Finally, it was all over and I stood up standing in front of the mirror, my thighs were bruised but that didn’t bother me as Dr. Arthur pointed it out to me before the surgery. What drew my attention was seeing myself with a new pair of shapely thighs, tapered nicely with the saddlebacks gone which gave my buttocks a lift. My thighs did not become skinny but definitely more toned and what pleases me was those thigh muscles were finally showing and the fats around my knees were gone! In total 2.4 litres of fat were removed. Due to my age at risk of loose skin, Dr. Arthur advised not to remove too much fats. Kudos, Dr. Arthur! He brought out the best in me. I knew he worked so hard as I saw he was drenched with sweat after the surgery. The entire liposuction was “handmade” with no machines involved. It is the gold standard for all liposuction surgery. The discomfort and pain was really worth it.
I put on my compression garment immediately after the surgery. Putting on the garment can be a chore and therefore it is advisable to get one with zip. I bought mine from DesignVeronique. The drainage from the tiny incisions stopped after 3 days. I could not sleep well only on the first night. The pain after surgery was bearable; just like what many described it similar to intensive muscle soreness. A couple of painkillers will do the job. It is also advisable to walk post surgery.
Each morning at the clinic, Yusma would give me a massage followed by wound dressing. I loved the massage most while others have complained of the pain. I felt good because the soreness lessened after every massage.
On the third day of my stay at the clinic, I went to do some shopping at the nearest shopping centre. Dr. Arthur’s clinic offer free shopping trips for his clients. By then, my thighs were already swelling and I felt fat again. But I knew that this is only temporary. I can’t wait to see the good results by the 6th month to be realistic. All in all, my first medical tour ended with much success and all thanks to Dr. Arthur and his team.
Will I be back again? I will leave that to my next chapter.