I've had to wait for an entire year for my breasts...
I've had to wait for an entire year for my breasts to be replaced. I did a lot a research and praying and was lead to Dr. Theresa Wang and Dr. Sam Shih. I've been nothing but pleased from start to finish. Their office staff (Christy and Daisy) are just as awesome as are they. When I explained that I wanted to be reconstructed before my sister's wedding, Dr. Wang and Dr. Shih said I would be cutting it really close with an end of May surgery date. However, they found me a data at Kennestone for May 11th. The day of surgery, I had a great team in surgery which took 13 hrs over all. Apparently, I decided I was Sade with a touch of Beyonce after I work up in the recovery room. After I got to my room, I because alert enough to take a look. I had breasts again!!!! OMG!!! And they are awesome!!! I'm crying now as I write this because I'm so happy.
Let me explain my journey. When I found out I had breast cancer and that it was aggressive, there was no hesitation that I would remove my breasts. However at that time I had Kaiser, and the surgeon I went to was pretty adamant that I would be happier with implants. I didn't want implants because I knew my body created scar tissue and the chance of me rejecting or encapsulating the implant was high. He then tried to convince me to get the Lattisimus dorsi flap or the Pedicled Tram Flap. Neither of which I wanted because they both involved the removal of critical muscles that a mother of a 3 year old needs. When I explained that I wanted the DIEP, he told me that I only had enough fat for a B cup which was smaller than I wanted. I was a J cup after kids and DDD before. I wanted a C or D, preferably a D because of my body style. I knew that he wasn't the surgeon for me, but he was all my insurance would approve. He then refused to do the immediate reconstruction on the day of surgery, so I woke up feeling less than whole.
But God knows what he was doing and several months after chemo and radiation (that I had no idea I was going to need, I started a new job that gave me new insurance with Blue Cross Blue Shield. I had an HMO plan and the same plastic surgeon was in network. But I prayed and went to a consultation with Dr. Wang and Dr. Shih. They examined me and said despite my previous abdominal surgery, I could get the DIEP and I had enough stomach fat for a D cup!!! HOORAY!!!! AMEN!!!!! I couldn't believe it and on top of it, they told me they could get me approved through my insurance. I had no doubts that this would go through because I knew that the Father had his hands all over this.
About 2 weeks later, I got a call from Christy saying that had a date for me on May 11th. Wow, that was quick. Fast forward to my hospital room and my new tatas! When I finally got a look at them, I couldn't believe how beautiful the sutures were. Then Dr. Shih came in and told me how Dr. Wang had to do a lot of work because I had large amounts of scar tissue. He said most surgeons would have closed me right back up but she didn't. She worked her way through everything and together they created some amazing breasts that drop perfectly! I don't have nipples yet because I want 3D tattoos done by the Myers team. I'm not surprised that she worked through it, because I prayed over every person in that operating room and over all instruments they used.
For me to have not one complaint about anything is another miracle. I've never stayed in a hospital and not had a complaint about some level of my care. Being doctor's kid, I can usually find something that wasn't done right. Kennestone Hospital (50 miles from my home) was the most beautiful hospital. Their staff was soooo amazing on every level. Not one person I came in contact with was anything but kind, happy, personable and efficient. They kept my pain to a minimum all while making me smile. Even the food was good! I wish this hospital was close to my home. I love the staff at Kennestone!
I'm so very happy and blessed to have found them. Thank you Father for healing me and putting me with the right medical staff at each level of my healing.
Please feel free to ask me any questions you like. I will answer anything and I hope to help anyone going through what I am.
This the total bill: hospital, surgeons, anesthesiologist, medicine, operating room, etc.,. This is what was billed to my insurance. So please don't see this cost and think they are too expensive. What they bill and is actually settled is something way different.
I'm adding a few more pics of the sutures. I use hibi cleanse daily as I shower, but only in the areas where there are sutures.
Bi Lateral DIEP Flap Recontruction II
So I'm now 4 months out and things are great. I'm all healed on the outside but i think there still some healing on the inside. I couldn't be more pleased. I have a revision coming up and I'm excited for that. I'm glad I had Dr. Wang and Dr. Shih. I would recommend them to anyone. I'll post more pics after my revision.