35 Y/O 5'3 135, Mommy of 2, Tummy Tuck, Muscle Repair & Hernia Repair! - Pittsburgh, PA

Hi there! I'm a mom of a 3 & 6 year old. I...

Hi there! I'm a mom of a 3 & 6 year old. I workout (try to workout) 6 days a week. I'm down to my pre-pregnancy weight, but that belly won't budge!!! My husband & I went to my first consult today in Pittsburgh, Pa. We both thought the Dr. was very kind & informative. She's double certified. She suggested a hernia repair, full tummy tuck, & some lipo to my flanks. I asked about my breasts & told me No they don't need done. So I kinda thought that was nice. I don't know? I AM SO SCARED!!! We both really liked her, do you guys think I should still see other surgeons? I'm looking for any advice! She mentioned a shot Exparel, I can get the shot at 2 of the surgical facilities, but 1 facility won't let her bring it in (and unfortunately that's the facility that might work with hubby's schedule). Did it help? She says it helps alleviate the pain for 72 hours. I didn't get to see to many of her TT's but she does do a nice low incision, quilted stitching & 2 drains. If a decide to do this I could be getting this done next month!! which might be best because I'm worrier, lol! I'm looking for any advice & any support through this!! Thank you so much in advance!!!

I'm scheduled!!

I am officially having FTT, MR, hernia repair & lipo to my flanks!! It's scheduled Feb 18, almost a month away!! This is probably better because I'm a worrier, lol. I hope everyone is doing well. Best wishes to all!!

Posting the dreaded before pics

Just some stats on me

I'm 5'3" 135 pounds. Measurements
Waist 28"
Belly button 29" (flexed) 31" relaxed
Butt 36"
Hips 37"
Thighs 19.5" (both)
Saddle bag area 22" (both)
Breasts a saggy 34 D lol!!
I don't know if I should add lipo
to my saddle bag area or not?

Muscle Repair Question

For those of you who have had muscle repair, did your PS use permanent stitches or long acting dissolving stitches? My PS said she uses long lasting dissolving stitches, bc after so long it's just the scar tissue that holds the muscle together. I like this because I worry about being irritated or allergic to the permanent stitches. I don't like this because I'm SO worried about something happening, tearing & my muscle repair being ruined. Yes, I over think things. So I'm wondering what has everyone had done & how do you feel & how are you holding up?

3 more weeks!!!

Just 3 more weeks until my TT with hernia repair, MR & lipo to the flanks. It's eem so far away & yet it seems like it's coming up so fast. I've been debating about maybe adding lipo to my outer thighs. My pre-op is next week so I'll ask her what she thinks. I'm slowly gathering my post-op care items & greatly appreciate the lists that many other members on here have posted!! Thank you!! I'm maintaing my workout routine & wondering how long it'll be before I'll be back at it post op.


Why do all my long reviews not post?!!

What brand do you use?

Does brand matter? What brand Arnica tablets/ Arnica cream do you use? What brand Bromelian do you use? Which compression garment is your favorite? I actually get 3 from my surgeon. Ok, just thought I'd ask, I just want to get the good stuff! Lol!!!

Pre-Op appt & 2 weeks to go!!

I had my pre-op appointment & I'm so glad that I got to see the Dr. again. I'm confident in my surgeon & her staff. Dr. Wooten is very kind & takes time to really listen. She's also blunt & calls it as she sees it. She told me I might not have an innie belly button. She reminded me how extensive my umbilical hernia was & said she will try her best to make me a cute belly button, but anything is better than what I have now. Also I have a very wide muscle separation & she bluntly said I will be in a lot a pain. Lol. Hey it's better than sugar coating it, in my opinion. My incision should be pretty low, I will have 2 drains & they showed my husband how to care for them. I've got my scripts to get filled, they gave me Arnica tablets to take & I still need to get a few more things. Other than I think I'm ready. Pain is temporary. I need this for my body to be healthy! I can do this!!!!

Weight loss/ Toning up after TT?

I've been at plateau now with my weight since summer. I'm 5'3, 135. I was down to 131 but tried some cross fit & gained a little, maybe muscle mass. I'm curious if my tummy is my brick wall & once it's gone & healed if my weight loss will for back up. I don't want to lose a ton, maybe 10-15 pounds. And truly the number could stay the same if I could lose a few more inches & just tone up more. Anyone with experience have any advice?

One more day until surgery!!!

Got the call, surgery is scheduled for 10 am tomorrow!!! I haven't sat down once today, using up this nervous energy. Making meals (which is torture when only being allowed clear liquids for the last 2 days) & finishing up laundry & cleaning. My 3 year old was throw my up all day yesterday but is better today & it seems like nobody else is going to get the stomach bug (fingers crossed). Please say a prayer for me & send good vibes!!! I can't wait to be on the healing side of this!!! Thank you all for your support!! xoxo

The BIG day!!

I can't belive today is the day. Praying all goes well. I did ok this morning until I had to say goodbye to my kids. Ready for this all to be over!!

I'm home!!

Hey friends, I'm home!! Went into surgery at 10:30. My PS did not use a foley which I thought was great. Surgeon did not say much to my hubby, except I did well & woke up talking. Lol. I was really nauseated during recovery & in a good bit of pain, I can definitely feel that muscle repair!!!! They gave me Zofran & 2 Percocets. The nurses kept saying I was doing excellent (I got the Exparel shot) & the nurse said they see a huge difference in the patients that do get it. They brought a wheel chair over to wheel me to the bathroom but I used it like a walker & walk instead. Lol. It was tough getting in the car but the pain eased up & the ride home was fine. I have no appetite but ate some jello so I can take my muscle relaxer here in a bit. Just wanted to update before I get to sleepy. Thank you all so much for your thoughts & prayers, it means so much to me. Now onto recovery hoping it's short & sweet. A girl can dream right?!

Post Op Day 1

Yesterday I had a FTT, MR, Hernia Repair & lipo to the flanks. I'm definitely sore, trying to stay on top of it with the pain pills & muscle relaxer. My biggest problem is I can't seem to empty my bladder. I'm just peeing tiny amounts at a time. I hope this passes quickly. Finally ate some soup today. I'm walking around fine, but can't even begin to straighten up (which I know we're not supposed to this early anyway). My kids are having a hard time no being able to cuddle with mommy. All in all I'd say I'm doing pretty good.

Couple of photos

Here's a couple of photos, it's the best I can do at the moment.

Day 1 Post-Op

Just a couple more pics. Of course I can't tell much anything. Lol.

Sneak Peek

The nurse at my PS office called & asked that I take pictures of the incision & send to her, so I'll post them here too. Of course I'm swollen like beached whale & I feel like my belly button is almost non-existing. I'm peeing better today, so that a huge relief. Pain isn't as intense as it was yesterday & still there. Walked down 13 steps to sit with my kids while they ate breakfast. And I plan on just resting & listening to my body more. Please give me honest opinions about my pictures. Thanks!!!

Better Pictures

I forgot to take the yellow stuff off.

Day 3 Post Op

The pain has eased up a lot today. Moving around a lot easier & standing a bit straighter too. The main complaint today is the swelling & gas pain. I'm so swollen everywhere. I know it's super early & things can change a lot but I really hate my belly button it's to tiny, it's to low, it awful. I just can't see me liking it. My drains don't seem to be draining much I hope they're working. With all the swelling you'd thinknid have more to drainage. I also had to take care of my 3 & 6 year old all day, so I'm a bit grumpy, sorry.

Swollen Stats

Today is day 4 Post Op. I'm so swollen so I decided to take some measurements to see just how swollen I am.
Weight 133 -> 144 Up 11 pounds!!
Waist 28" -> 32"
Bellybutton 29" -> 34"
Butt 36" -> 39"
Hips 37" -> 41"
Thighs 19" -> 24" Up 5 inches?!!!
I can't wait for this swelling to down & see what my new figure is going to like. I'm pretty sure I'm getting stretch marks on my thighs!!! I'm drinking lots of water & not eating anything salty. I know I'm impatient, lol. I just feel hideous at the moment.

Day 5 Post Op Switching to Positive Thinking

My PS texted me to come in today so I could get one of my drains pulled. Yeah!!!! It burned when it was pulled out but then it was over. She said I'm heating well but I have a lot, a lot of swelling & my results will only get better with time. I have to admit I've been pretty down because you see some people on here & as soon as they come out of surgery you can see their great results. However, I'm switching to a positive mode & I guess it's just going to take me longer to see my great results. I know I've put in the work. The last 3 years I have worked out endlessly, I ran a 1/2 marathon, & I've cleaned up diet. I know I've something good under all that swelling. I also realized today that I have settle down & allow my body to rest. I have been doing way to much & I'm only 5 days post op. I thought my back was ready to just give out today. So I'm going to rest & keep a positive mind. Hope all is going well with my RS friends!!

Post Op Day 6 Feeling Lousy

Needing some support ladies. I'm having a horrible day. I can hardly walk today because of the pain in my lower back. I really thought I'd be off the pain meds & doing well by now (6 days po). I've been crying off & on all day this is a lot tougher than I thought it would be. I feel lousy, so disappointed in myself. I really want to be up moving. I think yesterday was to long being out & sitting up & I'm still paying for it. I also have a low grade fever which is adding to feeling lousy. Please tell me it gets better. I'm so glad I have you ladies.

7 days Post Op

Well I've made through my first week. My last 2 days were miserable but today was much better. I only have hubby home for 2 more days, so I need to start feeling better fast. He took a couple of pictures today so here they are.

Post Op Day 8 Turning Point

Today was my best day by far, I hope that this is my turning point. I only took 2 Percocet once & 2 Tylenol today for pain. Majority of the I could tolerate the discomfort. I got another shower today & did it by myself, I even shaved my legs, sitting down of course. My husband got a plastic folding chair & it is wonderful. It's surprising but true you need to sit in th shower, it's just to tough to stand that long. But today I defintiely felt a little independent. Tried to sit at the kitchen table with family for dinner but that killed my back. By night time my body just says your done & my back hurts the worst. Took some Percocet sitting in my recliner & hoping for a good nights sleep. Take care RS friends!!

Post Op Day 9 Drain Free

Today I got my 2nd drain pulled out yeah!!! So happy to be drain free!! Had another really good day. Walked pretty straight, ate at the kitchen table for all 3 meals. And most wonderful of all, I had a movie night with kids & we cuddled. Ahh, I needed those cuddles just as much as they did. Praying that each day continues to be better than the last.

Post Op Day 10 & 11

Post op day 10 was a bit of downer. I over did things on day 9 because I was feeling so good & day 10 I was so sore & not walking nearly as straight as I was the day before. So my kids went to their grandparents & I rested.
Post Op day 11 was much better! All the rest yesterday payed off & I was able to walk pretty well with minimal pain. I'm taking ibuprofen now (despite my PS say to wait until after 2 weeks surgery). I got to enjoy lots of snuggling & cuddles with my kids today because I'm trying to not over do things & get myself to where I'm aching all over. Trying to find that happy medium. Despite wanting to be back to normal, I realzie that resting is very important to this journey.

2 weeks Post Op

Well I'm 15 days post op today, I really wanted to post pics but haven't had a chance to take any. I'm not noticing any changes anyway. To be honest I get a little depressed every time I see my scar or belly button. I know things will get & change but it's hard to see that far ahead right now. On a good note I hardly have any pain. My back still gets really sore from walking hunched over but everyday I'm trying to walk taller.

17 Days Post Op Pics

Well I'm definitely feeling better & walking straighter. I'm not 100% upright yet, but trying. Having some trouble sleeping at night, I just can't get comfortable. Last night I tried the bed for the first time & I seem to be a little more swollen, I'm not sure why. My incision seems to be healing well, not sure I like that it's not straight. My bellybutton seems to be a hot mess. I'm packing it & using neosporin on it, but it's ugly!! I weighed myself today & I'm 134 so I've lost about 10 pounds of the fluids they pumped into me. My measurements are also starting to come back down, despite being SO swollen. I hate the swelling!! Lol! I hope all is well with my RS friends!!

3 weeks Post Op

I had a 3 week appt. today, everythimg seems to be healing fine. Might have a couple of dog eats, sigh, but they'll take care of those in the office. My bellybutton seems to be taking it's good old time trying to heal. I have yet to see my PS post op, only the RN. I have to say I feel about disappointed by this. She has replied to questions that I have texted her but she has not examined me nor seen me since surgery. I don't know what think of that. The RN gave me my 2nd stage garment today. It's by Marena, it's just like the one I got after surgery but no zipper on the side. I've been pleased with them. Im not going to post pics because I don't really think I looke different. Hopefully at 4 weeks I'll see something. The best part has been that I'm pain free & back to my everyday mommy duties & loving & playing with my kids. Still can't pick them up, but so much more cuddling!!! I love my life & I'm happy to be back at it, not 100% but enough to keep me happy!!!

3 week PO photos is it weird I can suck in my belly?

Just updating my photos. Is it weird that I can suck in my belly?

4 weeks Post Op - Feeling to Good

I'm exactly 1 month post op today!! Yeah! I feel great, which is both good & bad. Good because the pain the first couple of weeks is awful. Bad because I keep over doing it & then I get super sore & swollen. My swelling is still settling in my hips & thighs & above my belly button. Ugh, my bellybutton! It's finally starting to scab but now it's getting really small and the stretch marks around my BB not so much. I'm wearing paper tape on my scar at the moment because I hate seeing it and some ladies have used paper tape alone for scar treatment and have had great results. Don't know when I'll see my PS (or should I say her RN) again. So I guess I'm doing ok. I wish I could get back to exercising a little. Happy heating to all my RS friends!!!

Having a Moment :-(

I've been really down the past couple of days. I'll be 5 weeks on Wednesday. My bellybutton is getting so small, I think it'll close over. I have a couple of white sore spots on my right hip/incision, I think those are stitches spitting out. My incision on my left side is so dark & a wider than the right side. I physically feel great, I tire easily but can push through it. I called my PS office & will be seen Thursday. I don't feel like posting pics, sorry.

Here's pics of the bellybutton :-(

Here's are the pics to go with yesterday's rant. Everyday it's getting smaller. I just want to be done healing.

5 week PO Bellybutton Died

Actually saw my PS yesterday & other than my bellybutton has died everything is healing well. Yes, I'm disappointed but we both kind of expected this happen. I knew going in the my hernia was really bad & she might have trouble making me a belly button. She said it took her 3 tries. She's still optimistic though that the purple will fade to white & I'll have an indent no exactly an innie. She said I still have lots of swelling & my incision is healing really well. She said I'm a very good healer, I'd like to think that's because I was very fit before surgery. Despite knowing that I have lots of swelling I can't help but let my jeans not fitting get me down. Ugh, just ugh. Hope all my beautiful RS friends are doing well.

6 weeks PO Swelling! Food Belly?!

I'll be 6 weeks PO tomorrow that's hard to believe!! Before surgery in mind I expected to be looking much better than I actually do. Sigh! I haveno pain & walk straight (have for awhile). My bellybutton status, I think I'm just waiting until the end to make final decision. My concern at the moment is the swelling/food belly I get above my BB. I know the swelling is normal but does anyone else get a little rotund food belly after eating? I mentioned it to my PS last & she poked up there said yes I'm swollen, but no direct answer to the question. I'm posting pics let me know whatcha think. Im also posting my scar. Thanks girls!! Hope everyone is doing well!!!

Next step garment what to choose?

I'm currently in my second stage garment, it's by Merona (sp?) & I really do like it. In the next couple of weeks I start 12 hours on & 12 hours on & can move on to spanx style. I've tried on 3 differ garments at Walmart & didn't like any of them. I'm posting a pic of Leosina I'm thinking about, let me know what ya think.

Had to Share! First Flat Day!

Since I've been so down, I had to share these pics today. This is the flattest I've woke up!! My weight was 132 also instead of 138 that's it's been hovering around. Not sure what the change is but I'll gladly take it. I hope it stays down. Wish my hips were down but I now I'm worried it's not all swelling & that maybe it's from not exercising for so long too :-( Hopefully I can trim those back down too (should've lippoed). Lol. Anyway today is happy day for me!!! There's hope!!!!!!

Trying to load "First Flat Day" Pics

This site can drive you crazy sometimes!! Sigh!! Trying again.

Trying 2 more pics for "First Flat Day"

Yep. Annoying trying to post here!

10 weeks PO

Guess it's time for update despite nothing has changed. I started back with my exercise. I started Jillian Michales body Revolution last week, low weights & using modifications. No ab exercises. I started at 137 last week & today I'm 140?!! I haven't been 140 in years!! Pre-surgey I bounced between 133-135. My hips & thighs are huge. I wore a size 6 before surgery & barely can get my 8's on. I've read so many places that a big majority of swelling should be gone by 12 weeks. The hump above my BB is so disappointing. And I have to suck my belly in for it to be flat! I hope someone out here can help me find some answers. I've been so depressed about this. Thank you!!

3 months post op

Saw my PS last week. I texted her a pic of the swelling above my BB & she wanted to see me. Exam showed that everything the muscle repair is intact. Her take on it is my hernia was so bad that even though I had strong abs before surgery she doesn't think this part of my abs ever got worked. Her advice was to start ab exercises, increase the intensity of my workouts. As for my measurements being up & preop jeans not fitting, she told me to lose weight. Even though I'm relieved that my muscle repair is intact, this kinda stings. I wouldn't say I've gained weight. Yes I'm still up from surgery, 135 preop & 137/138 now. All my measurements are up but my hips & thighs are probably a good 1 1/2 to 2 inches bigger. I just want my clothes to fit!! I'm doing Jillian Michales DVD's and adding Barre core a couple times a week too. I'm having a shake for breakfast, fish & broccoli or salad for lunch & dinner is more flexible but heathy. Also she wasn't pleased with my scar & BB being so hard. So I have to go back next month & she might give me shot of Kenalog into my BB. Feeling discouraged but trying my best to get my body back. Hope all my real self friends are doing well!!
Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon

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