Tummy Tuck Covered by Provincial Health - Regina, SK

I just wanted to start a thread about my...

I just wanted to start a thread about my expeirence with provincial health system covering plastic surgeries.
I live in Saskatchewan. In Dec 2011 I had a vertical sleeve done in Tijuana Mexico and have gone from 321.6 down to 168.9 pounds (at my very lowest). Right around the 2 year mark I started to slightly regain some weight and now I am steady at 178.6 pounds. Total weight loss of 143 lbs.

I was living in Saskatoon and approx in March/April of 2013 I asked my family doctor about having Sk Health cover ay pastic surgeries to help with excess skin. She sent the referral but at that time the Saskatoon health region was not accepting new patients for these procedures.

In September of 2013 I moved a bit south west to Swift Current. In October I asked my family Dr to refer me to the Regina Health Region for the same procedures. She sent off the referral and we played the waiting game.

On Feburary 5th 2014 I had my first inital consultation with Dr. Souf in Regina, Saskatchewan. His office was great, very clean and his receptionists were very friendly. He was very direct and to the point. I asked him about the different procedures that Sk Health would cover, and he said that they would only cover an abdominal plasty and no breast surgeries at all. He said that he would take pictures and send them into a review board and we would go from there. There was no point in talking about procedures, recovery or anything until we had an answer from the review board and that could take anywhere from 4-8 weeks to hear back. He was very reassuring that the pictures he took would not contain my face and he did a very quick examination of my abdomen and sent me on my way.

Feburary 25th 2014. I received a call from Dr. Souf's office saying that my tummy tuck was approved and I could come back in to sign consent forms :)

March 5th 2014. I drove back to Regina to see Dr Souf. I was very excited about looking into my options. He was very pleasent and direct again. He went through procedures, recovery, wait times and everything. This is what I learned.
He will do a straight incision from hip to hip and pull down the loose skin and take it away. There will also be an incision around my new belly button.
I can stay one night and travel home if there are no complications. He will let my family doctor do my follow up if she is comfortable with it to reduce travel and expenses. Complication rates are very low and nothing I was not already aware of from doing basic research. (i will update with pictures once I take them) I was concerned about the excess skin around my hips and flanks and tightening those areas so he suggested doing an anchor tummy tuck as well, which is an incision from my breast bone down the center of my tummy to the belly button. He said the choice was mine and we would be willing to do that as well however that scar is not one you can hide and I needed to be aware of that. The last thing that he was VERY direct about was that he would not preform the surgery if I was a smoker. Which I am.... He would go as far as preforming a niccotine test before surgery to prove that I could quit smoking. I have worked my butt off to get this far so I threw my smokes in the garbage in front of him to prove my committment to this surgery. I asked him about the wait time for surgery and he said it was 3-4 weeks. That answer I was not expecting!!!! He brought me back to the reception where I signed papers and off I went.
Because of my schedule, I asked the receptionist to put me on the list for June/July and 3-4 weeks was just not sufficient time to prepare.

Now I will research the difference between the anchor tummy tuck and the regular ole tummy tuck and play the waiting game!!!
I will take pictures of my before for everyone and update when the time gets closer to the surgery date!

Oh and also... My cost so far... is two tanks of fuel to get to Regina and back and the surgery will be 100% covered other than transportation costs :)

Got the phone call!!!

Last week I finally got the phone call from the surgeon's office.
My surgery is booked for June 9th 2014.

From talking to the scheduler this is what I understand:
I am booked in for surgery for 1:30pm so I need to be checked in by noon. No liquids or foods after midnight the night before. My surgery will last about 2 1/2 hours, I will recover for 3-4 hours and then be sent home. I can choose to spend the night in the recovery center however it is not required because I am from out of town. They will have an intake nurse contact me closer to the date to go over medical details.

I will upload some before pictures tonight and keep you all updated over the next 35 days as I go :)


I think I have been successful at quitting smoking too.
From my research, as long as I am nicotine free for 21 days it will be out of my system.
I am not smoking day to day, however I am having 2-3 over the span of a week. I think as long as I dont touch any after May 19th, I should be good to go for the surgery.

Not too shabby for a half a pack a day kind of girl :)

Before pictures

In some of the pictures you can very much see my hips bones, so you know that it is not all fat. With the picture of me lying down, you can visibly see my loose skin falling down to the sides and no belly button. My height is 5'9 1/2 and current weight is 182 lbs. May 5th 2014.


Surgery went great.
I checked in at about 11:30.
I did the standard pre-op with 3 nurses. They gave me 2 T3's and an antacid before hand - that was new. Saw my Dr. And he marked me up. We talked about doing the vertical scar one more time and he really did not want to go ahead with it. He played around and drew and said he could lower my incision to prevent dog ears and raise my vagina skin up and stressed that I didn't need the extra scaring! My hubby and I decided against it and let him do what he thought was best. I went in, got my IV, the anethatist was phenomenal! And under I went at approx 1:30.
I woke up just as the wheeled me into recovery at 3:45. Pain was very manageable. I spoke to the nurses for about 15 minutes before they brought the old man in. We spoke for a bit, he left, the nurses gave me some juice, more T3's, stood me up, got me dressed, walked me over to a recliner and did my check out. At about 4:30 we got discharged.
We drove straight over to the drug store, filled my Rx and grabbed some crackers and headed home. The 2 1/2 drive was ok. I didnt sleep, just stayed up and talked to my hubby! Got home, cleaned up a bit and went straight to sleep. They didnt have any adult gravol so I was taking children's which means i didnt sleep much last night. Over all everything has been great. Not too much pain, I take 2 T3's every 5 hours, im up walking - almost fully erected already, drinking lots of water!
I went to my family dr today, she says everything looks great. My drains are super annoying and that is the only real tender part. Im sure one will be out within a few days and the other by a week! Words to the wise.... Dont take the compression garment off! I did twice and almost passed out both times. Once at the dr to get the bandages off and once at home to try to clean up and sneak a peak. Not worth it yet!
Tomorrow is my first day home by myself - im a little nervous but plan to rest lots.
All I can really say so for is that I have hips bones!!!! But my new belly button looks weird lol.
So far - completely worth it!
Sorry if this is random and all over the place, just took my bed time drugs :) will update again in a few days.

3 days post op

Not to much to report today.
I am walking up right already. Pain in so minimal, Ive only taken 3 T3's today. My drains started producing clearer fluids. All in all... good results.
My hubby changed my dressings last night so I kind of got a good look, not too shabby!
I can bathe on Saturday so I will take some more picture with no garment on and post those :)

I have had one small issue. I think that because of my previous weight loss surgery and having a tiny tummy, Im having problems with this stupid compression garment. Its tight around my mid sections which presses on my stomach and makes me feel full all the time, so I dot think I am eating enough which is making me weak and having low energy levels. But I cant take it off.. So I am going to try to boost my energy levels with more sugary foods and drinks vs just lots of water and my normal diet.
See how that goes!

I will update again on Sat :)

First Shower - 5 days post op

Finally got a good look at everything with the bandages off. Im very indifferent. Im sure it will start to look better as time goes on. My hubby took the photos so they arent the best quality. Everything is the same for pain. Less and less each day. My drains are each doing between 25cc and 45cc so they arent ready to come out yet. Hopefully by Tuesday when I see the dr again. I asled her to write to the surgeon to ask to see how long I wear my compression garment for and how to deal with the belly button badages.
Dr Souf

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