47 Years Old, No Kids, Smart Lipo of Chin (Submental), Abdomen, and Hips. Metairie, LA

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Ever since my late 20's when I began to gain...

Ever since my late 20's when I began to gain weight, I started getting this chin fat. I find it gross looking and embarrassing. I went for a consultation 10 years ago (age 37) and the doctor said come back in 5-10 years. I can't remember his exact reasoning at the time. I remember him saying I was too young, it wouldn't make much of a difference, I could lose weight and it would help, I'd never have a defined chin.

Well, I did lose weight, 40 POUNDS, then gained it back. It's now harder than ever before to lose weight and I try so hard but I'm having zero luck. I am just sick of being embarrassed and feeling ugly. I hate looking at myself in any photos except from the front, and in the last year or so even the front view is bad and I'm starting to see the fat and sag under my chin.

I consulted with three doctors and have decided on Dr. Mizgala. I liked all the doctors that I met with, and I think they all seemed talented and experienced, but Dr. Mizgala is the only one who didn't recommend slicing and dicing up other areas of my face (the other two docs combined recommend upper and lower blepharoplasty, eyebrow lift, fat transfer to cheeks). While I'm sure these areas could all use improvement, I'm not utterly embarrassed by them like I am my chin fat.

When I was nearing the end of my consultation, I blurted out "do you think we could do this area" and started rubbing my enormous gut. She said "show me." I was so freaking embarrassed, I hate my gross fat stomach. But I forced myself to stand up and lift up my sweater and compression undershirt that I always wear. She said she could do it!!

So the chin area is $1500, the body is $8800, with a $300 discount for doing both together.

I was worried my skin won't shrink back into place, and while that is a possibility, she feels confident that it will. I am supposed to wear the neck strap 24/7 the first week, then only at night the second week. I can take it off for a bit here or there to shower, walk the dogs, grocery shop, etc. The body compression I'm supposed to wear 24/7 for 6 weeks.

Supposedly there are NO activity restrictions. Sounds too good to be true, but that's what they're telling me. I have a trainer at the gym and told her I'd be out for one week for sure, and then I'd try to come back the week after. I am really trying to lose weight and I know I could technically use lipo for my entire body, but that's just craziness, not to mention massive amounts of money. I really feel that by getting these areas lipo'd, it will give me back the confidence I've been missing for years, and help motivate me to work harder and eat better. The other areas of my body are not AS resistant to diet and exercise, and anyhow, they are easier to cover up ;-)

About me: I'll be 48 in November. I'm 5'6", 160 lbs. No health issues other than hypothyroidism, for which I take 100 mcg of synthroid.

Oh, one other very cool yet WEIRD thing about this surgery, I will be AWAKE the whole time. I'll be taking a few drugs beforehand to help me relax. They said to bring headphones and my music to listen to while she performs the surgery. So weird, but I'm not squeamish, and I like the fact that I'll recover more quickly than I would with general anesthesia, not to mention a ton of lab work and tests were not required.

I can't drive home, though, so my hubby will be picking me up. He's supportive of me, but does feel like this is a crazy amount of money to spend. I do too, especially when I realize how $10K would make such a difference for so many peoples lives, and here I am using it to suck out my fat. I get depressed and feel silly and frivolous when I think about it too much. I'm trying to stay positive, because the other side of that coin is I get depressed looking at myself in the mirror or photos and don't even like my husband to touch me and feel my fat (even though he loves me and for some weird reason thinks I'm still sexy). I do believe this surgery will really improve our love life, too.

So tomorrow will be busy while I prepare and make sure I have all of my supplies, food, etc. Starting to get a little nervous.

Waiting for drugs to kick in!

Nervous! But I feel I'm in good hands. Just sitting here waiting. Got marked up and took my drugs.

Yesterday was a loooonnnnggg day

Lucky me! NOT! I am in the beginning stages of Menopause and haven't had a period since December 2. So I woke up at 5am on the day of my surgery to run to the restroom and UGH!!! It had started. Luckily it wasn't heavy yet, so I made it through my surgery on one tampon. I don't know WHAT we would have done if it was heavy...I don't want to think about it.

I arrived at 9 am. By 9:30 I was in my paper gown, at which point Dr. Mizgala came in and we discussed the plans for the day...she marked up my body and my before pics so there would be no misunderstandings. I signed the photos. Then took my drugs: antibiotic, valium, anti-nausea, and pain pills.

She and her assistant Christie first did my chin/neck area. First the doc used a needle with numbing medication. Next she put in the tumescent fluid which really plumped up the area, making it tight and numb. She then began the laser step, followed by the lipo suction cannula. It was painless except for the initial needle prick. I think we ended about noon, and I got up to go to the bathroom, drink some water, take another pain pill, and text friends about my progress while Dr. Mizgala and Christie ate quick lunches. They offered something to eat but I wasn't really hungry after my oatmeal and breakfast bar before my appointment.

Next began the very long process of my abdomen and hips (which I would personally call waist), and using all of the above techniques she worked her way around my body, section by section, while Christie assisted and kept notes on each task that was completed. I was awake the whole time, with my face covered by blue surgical paper, and although tired from the Valium and lack of sleep the night before, I just couldn't sleep. Those two were so funny, I loved listening to the banter and enjoyed our conversation, it helped keep us all from getting too bored. I was hard for me to talk though because of the chin strap and numbness limiting my jaw movement. We finished at 7PM! A very long day, and I know we were all tired.

So last evening was very bloody with a lot of drainage (4 drains) and leakage from one of the incisions. I wasn't expecting that and ended up dripping blood all over the floor when I tried to replace one of the pads that was soaked. I learned to keep a towel on the floor when pulling up the garment, and to hold the pads in place when I'm using the restroom. I love my hubby and I know he's trying his best to help, but he's really squeamish with the bloody fluid and just gets in my way a lot and we both keep getting irritable with each other. I'll be a lot better when the drainage stops and the drains are out.

Pain? Not much in the abs or back, although around the drains feels like it's burning if I bend too much forward. My chin area is another story, painful around the entire jaw line, chin and upper part of chin. I'm speaking a lot better, but still having a little trouble since it hurts when I open my mouth too wide.

New pics of chin and body (with compression garment on for now).

One more thing

I almost forgot, on much of my abdomen she added in the use of vaser lipo before moving to the smart (laser) lipo.

Puffy jaw line

I'm not really loving my chin lipo results. What do you think? Will the swelling go down or will I need a revision?

Waiting to heal

All weekend I kept track of the amount of fluids I emptied from my drains. Dr. Mizgala checked in through text messages several times per day to ask for the amounts and see how I was feeling. She was actually planning to drive to my house and take the drains out over the weekend if they slowed way down or stopped. I find that VERY cool of her. But they just kept draining and draining.

I refrained from taking the Vicodin yesterday so I could drive myself to the office and finally have the drains taken out. It hurt, but just for a second or two. She also gave me a new CG because the first one bunched up a lot around the zippers on the sides. This new one pulls up, I have no idea how she got it on me. She's a pro. It's sooooo tight it's insane. I'm going to attempt to take my first shower today and wash my hair, and I REALLY hope I can get this thing back on by myself...husband travels for work and is gone til Friday, and no family or close friends nearby. She used a lot of baby powder to help slide it on, so that's what I'll do too.

I just took my dogs for a 2 mile walk. It was good to get out and feel normal now that the drains are gone. I left my chin strap at home so I wouldn't look like a weirdo.

Chin update: I love love love the look of my chin. LOVE IT! I look at my profile in the mirror now and think I look pretty and not like a gross monster.

The skin is completely numb, and along the jaw line is very sore/tender. I also have weakness in the lower jaw and my speech sounds somewhat like when I get numbed for a dental procedure, although not quite as bad. It's a little difficult to open my mouth wide enough for food and to chew.

Abs and hips update: I don't know how I look because I haven't seen myself in a mirror without the CG on. We had it off in the office yesterday while she took the drains out, and I looked down at myself, and everything is just swollen and jiggly and bruised. I will take some pics later when I shower. Most of the skin is numb on the surface with itching underneath, and a bruised feeling under that.

In two days I go back to the office to have all of my stitches removed.

I did it!

I took a shower! My big fears were that all of the incision sites would be painful when the water touched them, and that I wouldn't be able to get the CG back on by myself. Neither of these was an issue though. I washed and styled my hair, also. I looked cute for about 1/2 hour, then my chin strap was finished drying and I had to put it back on. Sad.

So here are my first pics since surgery, which was four days ago. I don't look anywhere near as good as I'd imagined I would. I was definitely hoping for the bumps and bulges to be smoothed out, but I can still see them a bit. I also thought I would have more of a defined waist.

I will just try to stay positive. I know from reading a zillion other reviews on RS that it takes time for the swelling to go down, the skin to contract, the bruises to fade, etc. etc. i k is I can get a revision in a year if I want it. I know I can play a part in getting a better body, also, by getting back to the gym and my trainer ASAP, continuing to eat healthy, and cutting back on alcohol.

Gross news

First BM this morning. It's been exactly 6 days since the last one. I know this is gross, but I also know this is something everyone has problems with after their surgery, so I thought it was worth reporting.

Quick update

Just to say I woke up today to a noticeable difference in the pain level in both my jaw and abs. My tongue feels less weak also so I feel like I'm finally speaking more normally. The skin on my abs still feels pretty numb, but the skin under my chin is beginning to get some feeling back (and that feeling is soreness).

11 days post pics

As you can see, my results continue to improve for my abdomen. Swelling has gone down some since last time I posted photos. My skin is still numb, but the bruising has faded quite a bit. I am elated at how I look in clothes now, granted, it's with the compression garment on, but before the surgery there was no way to even compress all of my fat enough to wear a tight shirt. I've been wearing form-fitting shirts every day since the surgery and they look amazing. I'm very, very happy! (So is my husband, who keep stressing to me that he's always loved me and thought I was beautiful but now he just thinks I'm hot! Ha ha Ha)

I seem to have a little lump on my chin today. Don't know what that's about. Some random swelling I guess. I'm not worried about it because things seem to change day by day. I'm still wearing my chin strap at night.

I ordered a new compression garment that just arrived, so I'll post a pic of that later. I love the one I have now except for the fact that I get wedgies every time I bend over, which is a lot with four pets. The new one I ordered has boy shorts on it so I'm hoping it's just a little more comfortable for doing chores around the house and, starting next Tuesday, back to the gym with my trainer. I'm nervous about that but I think I should be ready.

Changed my surgery rating from "Not Sure" to "Worth It" today!!

My chin was already a "worth it" the day after it was done! And now I can honestly say, even if my abs never get any smaller or more defined than what they are now, I would be so pleased with my results. These two surgeries made a world of difference in the way I look, and I am regaining of my confidence that I lost years ago.

Compression garments

So I've decided I don't like my new Leonisa compression garments. They seem very well made but are just TOOOO tight and uncomfortable, and makes all kinds of weird dents in my skin and body. After following their guidelines for taking measurements and sizing, I got a LARGE in the "Slimming Braless Body Shaper in Boyshort," and because it was on sale, the "No Zip High Waist Cincher." Unless I shrink a lot, this money is wasted because they have to be returned in unworn condition. I wore them each one day so I could figure out if I really liked them. Maybe I'll try to sell them on eBay. Or *fingers crossed* I'll shrink a few inches more and they'll start fitting.

But I'm still looking for a boyshort version, so, duh, why didn't I just look on the Rainywear web site? Their "PHOENIX Firm Classic Mid Body Transition Shaper Brief" is the garment given to me by my doctor. It's thin, comfortable, with serious compression and no bulk, and very breathable. I just looked on the web site and they actually have a mid thigh version, so I'll order one of those today.

Worked out with my trainer twice this week

I asked her to keep the cardio portions low impact because it feels VERY uncomfortable when my skin on my abdomen moves around and jiggles. I can only describe it as numb on the surface, but raw on the other side, the inside, of the skin. She still managed to keep my heart rate up and got me sweating. She also had me doing a bunch of stretches which slowly moved the skin around, so it hurt but was bearable.

Saw Dr. Mizgala two days ago for a checkup. She gave me pieces of tape to cover all my incisions to help fade the scaring. I showed her how the one under my chin actually feels like a lump. She said let's recheck in three weeks and she can inject it with a ? steroid (I think that's what it was) ? shot if it's still there.

Other than that, nothing new to report. I'll take some new pics in one week, that will be 4 weeks post surgery. I'll have two more workouts under my belt by then, too.

$1500 chin

I am sitting here at the airport, bored, waiting for my husband's plane to land… it was delayed because of a huge storm. So here is a pic of my chin. I love it so much! I don't have to try to pull my hair forward anymore to cover it up.

Today is 5 weeks

Looking better. My skin in both areas (chin and abdomen) is still numb, still sensitive when I'm not wearing my compression garment under my clothes, and still burns underneath the skin. But its definitely improved from those first couple of weeks. My abdomen feels like its healing faster than the chin area, but I still avoid wearing tight pants whenever I can. Overall though, everything looking great and I'm happy. I know more healing and improvements are yet to come.

Two days before surgery vs. 5 weeks after

Metairie Plastic Surgeon

Dr. Mizgala is talented and experienced with great credentials. She really knows what she's doing and continues to impress me throughout the surgery and aftercare process. Both her and her staff are patient, thorough, and take the time to answer all of my questions.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
3 out of 5 stars Wait times
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