33 Years Old, 3 Kids, a Terrible Appendix Scar, and Im Finally Going to Do It! - Rockville, MD

It's the night before I go into surgery. I am...

It's the night before I go into surgery. I am so scared. I'm really excited and I'm just praying that my stomach will look anything close to some of his other patients. I've had a terrible appendix scar which has always made my stomach asymetrical and it's been uncomfortable since I can remember. However, the pregnancies and stretched skin have done a number on me. I just want the rolls gone, the skin tight, a flat tummy and to go to the beach proud this summer! Pray for me snip snip tomorrow! Yikes

Getting Home-Day 1

I'm going to put some pics up here when I'm feeling a little better of at least the before look. Dr Tattelbaum was wonderful this morning and sweet. I feel very confident in the work he did today even though I have yet to see it. I saw a peak of my scar as I was adjusting my drain after using the bathroom. I think it will look good as time goes by. I really have enjoyed reading people's experience to prepare for my own so I'm going to try my best to account for everything that happens for all of those out there that worry and need to be prepared like myself.
I was extremely!!! scared this morning of the pain I would have and the recovery process before going under the anesthesia this morning. It was great though that one minute I was on the operating table and the next I was waking up. I was in pain and sore waking up yes. Immediately I knew, well i'm going to have to figure out the best way to move my body for awhile now without hurting myself. I live an hour away from the surgery center but for those of you worried about the after car ride I'll tell you it was fine. I mostly slept the entire trip which was wonderful. I've had to slowly baby step myself out of a laying position to getting around the room and bathroom. Initially, I was really concerned about the pain but honestly it's manageable once you get situated in your bed/recliner. I haven't had a hard time walking either. I can't wait to see my belly but the doctor did recommend keeping the binder on so I will. Right now, I'm drinking gatorade as he recommended and ice water which seems to be going down fine. I don't feel sick either. I think during recovery I'm just going to have to do my best to adjust and to generally being uncomfortable. I'm so happy I'm here day 1 and that I did this for myself. It's not going to be too bad.

Day 2- So far

Well, I stayed on top of my meds but I did wake up at 2 am in excruciating pain trying to get up. It was just because I think everything was out of my system and I'm guessing the pain was probably from swelling tightness too. Once I got to go to the bathroom and take more meds I was able to sleep another 4 hours or so which I thought was great. I woke up again the same way but realistically it's not all that bad considering. I feel happy and comfortable sitting on my couch now. I can't wait too see my belly!

The before pics

You can't really tell in these pictures but I have stretch marks up and down above my belly and goooey gooey extra fat and skin. And that terrible terrible deforming appendix scar ughhh

Day 3

So, yesterday was really hard to get around my upper abdomen was killing me because of the muscle tightening Dr. T. did. I'm really happy he did it though because after I've recovered I can get myself ripped I bet. Also, last night I slept until about 5 am which was good and I immediately took my meds was up by 8 and feeling ok. It is so hard to walk, yes, but I've managed to scoot myself around. I am drinking my ice water around the clock. Yeah, I do feel bloated and I'm experiencing what I think are some gas pains although I took that colace last night. Dr. T and his staff have been wonderful checking up on me and I feel like this whole ordeal is going over smoothly. My fiance went out and bought some new surgical tape this morning so I could change my dressings. He washed my hair and helped me clean myself up. I finally brushed my hair and put some eyeliner on. I feel a little more human today. I'm going to attach a quick shot of my tummy before we redressed it. I think it's going to look awesome.

Day 4-Morning

I woke up getting up easier than the previous two days. I can't really remember at what point through the night I took some meds though so that could be it but I felt chipper. I decided to adjust my dressings because they have been a pain and my drain sight has been the grossest. There's leakage and blood around there. Anyway a lot of that tape on the incision was falling off and some was crusted so I just took it off. I reapplied my bandages. I really hope I can get this drain out on Tuesday since it's not putting out too much. Overall, I'd say I'm feeling really great today. I love my belly so far. Haven't peeked at the belly button. I ordered like 10 bathing suits yesterday lol. I think the scar will be barely anything. All of Dr. T's other patient's scars have looked great and I haven't seen anything abnormal yet. So yay! Happy healing everyone. Can't wait to get the drain out and switch to spanks. Here's some pics. OH and ps. question- of course my vag area looks majorly swollen. How long did this look take to eventually not be so dramatic for ya'll?

Day 5

Today was sunny and beautiful. Woke up in some pain like usual but I've been getting up happily most of these days drinking my water and a cup of coffee. I haven't had to "stay on top of my meds" today as the last couple days. I washed my binder and attached some maxi pads as bandages to my incision and realized I felt the swelling came on real fast and hard so I needed to get the binder on real quick as soon as it was done washing. My little belly button bandage thing fell off but i didn't look at it yet, I just put a band aid over it. I noticed stretch marks around my belly button but you know what I'm not upset. My stomach is sooooo tight. It feels so amazing. I feel a million times different. I've had rolls and ugly ugly loose skin for what feels like forever now. I can't wait for the swelling to go down since I know it's hard to fit into my clothes right now but there was this form fitting dress that I bought last year which I put on today. I was horrified in how I looked in it over the summer because of my rolls and appendix scar. Besides the bandages underneath now, it looks awesome. I'm so so thrilled that I've done this for myself. It makes me want to encourage those of you that hold back because of fear of the pain or whatever it is that makes you apprehensive. Seriously, this whole experiencing feels like it is changing my life. :) I can't wait to keep healing. I can't wait to go to the gym. I can't wait for every day. Oh, and my daughter has been a great helper over the weekend which was a huge deal since she's been a little bit of a bratty teen lately. Everybody is pitching in for momma right now! :)

Day 8

Yesterday, I went for my first checkup and was lucky enough to get that terrible drain taken out!!!! So, of course, I had my first shower since the procedure which felt like I was in a momentary paradise. Also, I was cleared to put spanx on and they have been 100 % more comfortable. Of note, yesterday was the first day I left my home. The day before I was left alone with the kids after school which was chaotic and almost impossible because I'm really not getting around (bending, standing up straight, etc.) well. (My three year old is of course jumping in and out of the bath, food is getting thrown around, he's pooping his pants) GOOD Lord!!! Enough said. Anyway, yesterday while we went to the check up there was a world market close by and great shopping. So, I attempted to stroll my broken little butt around to buy up some fun stuff. This is how it went, so you can be prepared about your stamina levels after this type of surgery. I was able to lean on the cart and wheel myself through many isles but at a certain point I knew I couldn't keep going so I sat on their chairs and took about a 10 minute break. My fiance had gone to the Microcenter nearby so I had to text him to help me finish up and check out. I'm a tough girl (runner, prior army) just letting ya'll know the surgery and body recovery process exhausts you. It was great to get out but for anyone that needs to I urge you to have some support with you because I have no idea what I would have done without help. I've never felt helpless like this lol. Anyway, Dr. T said the swelling will continue to get worse over the next weeks 6-12. It's a process. My scar and my belly button look great though. My scar on the left side still looks really tethered but it's my stomach is all majorly swollen above it so I have no idea what to expect. Dr. T said he wasn't concerned and everything is going very well. I can not be more pleased and overjoyed that I chose his practice. Throughout every step of the process they have been prompt, efficient, professional, comforting, and just fabulous. Dr. T has all of my confidence in the world. He really is 5 star!
Some notes that I also thought might help people preparing their diet or expectations after surgery also: I'm not a nutritionist but this so far has been how my diet has been structured. I want my body to heal and at the same time mitigate if at all the tremendous swelling. For breakfast I still have my cup of coffee and a protein shake. I like to have an orange a day. I have unlimited amounts of ice water. I eat one activia yogurt and 3 or 4 low sodium ritz crackers with peanut butter if I am still hungry. I have been interchanging dry cheerios with the peanut butter crackers also depending on the day. For snacks, I like making a little cup of the dry cheerios, a yogurt, apple ,banana, hard boiled eggs and these snacks are kind of like my small meals throughout the day. If I feel like I need a significant dinner I've ate grilled chicken with rice and whatever favorite dipping sauce I want. (I like saracha/ asian zing/ whatever) I've also ate salmon for variety. Also, asparagus, broccoli, and steamed carrots for veggies. When I came home from the hospital I was swollen up an additional 7 pounds. I weigh myself mostly just to check the swelling and the last two days I've stayed the same. So, I think this helps. I'm mostly trying to focus on staying high on protein low on sodium. If anyone here has any of their own secrets please let me know!!! Posting my pic from yesterday of my belly! I hope to take belly pics soon of my belly in new underwear. It's just so hard to change out of the compression garments omg lol.

Ok so Day 9!

Not too much to update. I feel good. my tummy looks huge and bloated but it's going to be great soon enough! I have periods throughout the day were I'm hunched over and then moments when I can straighten out comfortably. I'm pretty fortunate that I'm on disability leave from work so I get to gradually recover and the kids haven't been too crazy. Posting pics of the progress!

Just three weeks

Ok. So reading other's reviews on here got me scared about back pain, misery, etc. I can say it hasn't been that bad but one thing. When I got my period last week I felt the swelling was so much worse!!! I did feel much much more miserable. I think it was a pretty good time scheduling wise though. I think it is something people should definitely think about when picking a surgery date. Anyways, I'm experiencing the pain of the swelling and updating my pics of the belly. The marks on my stomach are from my binder after waking up over night. I still like wearing it most of the time when I don't have to be out. I think it's more convenient than some of my spanks getups lol. I think my scar is going to be barely noticeable a year from now. I am very pleased with my belly button also.
Washington DC Plastic Surgeon

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
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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