Excited and Nervous for Implant Removal and Smart Lipo for Abdomen. San Diego, CA

First of all thank you to all the ladies out there...

First of all thank you to all the ladies out there who have been explaining their experience out there on their implant removal process. I have been reading all of your experiences and feeling all sorts of emotions, excited, nervous, scared, fearful, and hopeful. I think you have been going through the same and it is a relief to know I'm not alone as my husband and mom who I have told of course are supportive but don't understand like all of you do! So, my story is very similar to many of yours. I am 46 now and I got my implants back when I was 28 just before I was going to get married and before children. I thought at the time it would make things much better and I guess for a while it did. I began on this journey because I had two uneven breasts. my left one pointed down and the other was just fine. I guess I was likely a B to B+ cup. My goal wasn't necessarily to go bigger, it was to look more symmetrical. I went to the Dr. to see what he could do to lift the left one and he brought up the fact that I would look much better with bigger breasts because of my height and adding them in with a lift on the left would make me look much more symmetrical. I wasn't sure but decided it would look good and just went for it (nervously and hopeful). My soon to be husband thought I was ridiculous and didn't want any part of it. I should've listened to him! Anyways, I went through with the procedure and got 330 to 350CC's of Saline implants put under the muscle. They were put in through my armpit and I had a scar under my breast on left side with what i think was a lollipop lift. I remember waking up from the surgery already feeling it was a mistake because I felt like an elephant was sitting on my chest. so much pressure. I remember them telling me just breathe but i already felt super anxious because of the pressure. I iced them a bunch but my breasts never did do a great job of dropping. About 2 years later and after moving to San Diego from north Calif. I went and saw another breast surgeon in La Jolla who told me I had capsule contracture and that he could fix it so they could relax ( as they were definitely pointy, squeezed looking and high). So, I went through that with a much better relaxed looking breast. that was in about year 2000. In 2001 I had a baby and at end of 2002 another. I managed fine with pregnancy and breast fed for the first couple of months with both but also supplemented with formula too as I didn't produce as much milk as I should. Then, in 2006 I got divorced. A year later I was in another serious relationship and am married to him now. Going back to the boobs story- In 2010 I had my implants replaced with Mentor Smooth round moderate Saline 360cc's replaced because they were 12 years old and I thought I needed them replaced sooner than later so I just did it so I could get the inevitable surgery out of the way. At the time, I was considering having them completely removed and I wish I would've followed through with that. However, my boyfriend (who is now my husband) didn't like that idea at the time and I just didn't have the confidence to tell him and myself what I really wanted to do (he used to joke that he would just get a penis minimalization then-! ha ha). I understand that would've been a possible big change in my appearance and I was too scared to pull the trigger. After seeing all of your pics I realize it really isn't that big of a change and I should've done it... ugg..! So... more of my story and the health effects: Along the way I have had fibercystic breasts and lumps. My breast doc has kept a close eye on me and had me MRI'd yearly practically. I have had 2-3 lumps surgically removed. I think 2 on my left and 1 on my right. All have come out as scar tissue, benign tissue lumps. So, with that being a continuing series my doc and I have decided to just wait out further lumps after careful following and let them come and go because more surgery for my poor breasts isn't good. Even my doc said there shouldn't be any hurry to get my implants out so again, I just have been living with them against everything my body has been telling me. As far as my health goes I literally have had so many of the signs and symptoms of breast implant illness that I am fed up and want them out!!! about 6 years ago I got diagnosed by a doctor with Reynauds because of my always cold feet and hands and poor circulation. I got diagnosed with spondalytis arthritis 3 years ago and have been on sulfasalazine to minimize my joint pain and canker sores of the mouth and conjunctive itis of my eyes. the sulfasalazine (along with ibuprofen) has done a great job at making all those stay at bay. My neck and shoulder muscles are like a vice and tight. My neck xray shows fusing together of my cervical spine in 3 spots. I recently finished physcial therapy for my neck range of motion and it helped quite a bit. I think that is probably due to the extra weight of the boobs??? My general doc is very thorough and without my knowing she ran all sorts of blood tests and let me know I am positive for the MTHfr gene mutation. After reading all the info. on this site I realize that I should have never got implants with that gene mutation because of the risks it has for auto immune disease! ugg. I have had several Goiters on my thyroid as well and because of that and all my symptoms I have additionally been put on naturethroid because we believe I'm hyperthyroid? needless to say I have so many issues going on and if they are related to these implants, I want the dang things out!!! I have also been told by her that my adrenals are exhausted so I have been taking supplements (Adapten all) to try and restore my adrenals but I feel it is an uphill battle. Anything to make my life and body feel better would be awesome. I'm honestly very hopeful and excited I will see a turn around in my health once these things are out. I've always told my docs that something happened to me when I was 30. I literally had a change in my body. Insomnia hit me like a brick wall and all sorts of joint pain and fatigue started happening after that. Along that line, I have always been a very dedicated and active person, working out daily but I can tell you it isn't easy sometimes with all the issues I have. I bike, run, walk or swim depending on what I feel like on a daily basis and I know it's supposed to help with arthritis to keep active so I just do it, no matter what my body is telling me. I will say arthiritis and immune disease does run in my family so I'm not sure if it's just the implants that have caused this problem but at this point I'm hopeful because this is something I can change! I started reading about implant illness and found this site and am now convinced I will be so much better off with these out of my body. I met with three surgeons and ended up picking the same office (the father retired so now his son is working with me) i had my capsule contracture and replacement done with. I chose them mainly because of my comfort with the office, and price. However, I am kind of having second thoughts now (since I have already paid!) because I had my pre-op appointment and some of my questions for him have left me uneasy. I talked to him about my fears of the implants making me ill and explained to him all that I have been going through and of course he doesn't believe in it. He feels it is all a bunch of hype and he says that it in fact has been researched thoroughly and it was proven false and thats why silicon is back on the market now for womens implants. ugg.... although I don't have silicone implants I fully believe these implants are responsible for some of my issues. At the end of the day, I guess I don't care what he believes as long as he does what I need and I'm informed and take care of myself. I told him I want the capsules removed and I also asked him about drains. He said he doesn't use drains usually, and his clients do well. He said I shouldn't need them. I'm find with that again, as long as it doesn't result in something bad for me. He told me he would take out any parts of my capsule that don't look right or are calcified etc.... but if it looks soft he won't bother taking it out. He said it can be risky and attached with a lot of vascularity and cause a lot of bleeding if he removes parts of it (I'm guessing because its under the muscle?). He assured me I would be okay and thats where we left it. I've been second guessing this since I left and am feeling very nervous. Especially after reading that if I want a full recovery all of it has to be removed. :-(. I just don't know what to do.... I called the nurse who has helped me there and told her my concerns and told her I want her to tell him I have been thinking about it and I want the whole capsule removed (en bloc) and she said she would talk with him and get back to me. She told me while looking at my chart that it states implant removal, and capsulectomy (which is good but that isn't completely what he told me). She called me back but just told me to call her and so I did and she already left for the weekend. So, I'm left with a cliffhanger... ack... So my question for all of you out there is, will I be okay with him leaving in part of my capsule if it doesn't look calcified? Or should i cancel and find a surgeon who 100% says he will get all of it? I'm feeling pressured for time as we are going on a family vacation June 19th and I need to be healed. I did talk with one other surgeons office here in San Diego on Friday and they are booked out until 1st week of May. I could wait until then but it is closing in on my vacation and I just want these out! I'd love to stick with my April 7th date but am nervous if he doesn't get the whole capsule out and am so ready to do that in 10 days...! Do you think it's maybe not a big as deal since I don't have silicone??? But what about all the issues I've had with my health? ackk... feeling so nervous and unsettled on what to do... any advice you can give me would be good. Anyone out there with part of their capsule not removed who had saline? how are you doing? are there things you can do to make it dissolve inside you or does it dissolve if not reactive?

update on surgery

Well, I got good news this morning, my doc will do the full capsulectomy and understands I want absolutely nothing left of it! He did add more money to the cost by $1350 but I'm definitely okay with paying it as it's 100% worth it to me. That peace of mind knowing it will be completely out is worth the extra $! The nurse said it will add more time because he will have to cauterize as he goes. I'm so relieved to know it's going to be done right for me the first time! :-) Still scared but anxious to have it over with. 10 more days to go!

Less than 24 hours away! I will be free!!!

I'm excited, nervous and anxious! Tomorrow morning is my surgery. I just got the call with my check in time, so let the hourly countdown begin!! Additionally, I had asked the nurse to let me know what happened with my capsules when my implants were replaced in 2010. The doc just called me and let me know that my capsules From my previous implants (1999) remained and they had just cut into the capsules in 2010 (capsulotomy- I think) and replaced the implants. He said that is typically the way it's done (when there is no contracture). I wanted to know because if the new ones were placed in a new pocket and the old capsules were in an old pocket, I wanted them to try and remove all capsules from all pockets tomorrow. He said since it's the same original capsule that my implants are currently in so no problem, he will remove the entire thing tomorrow- so no capsule of any kind will be left in me. Even though I'm not excited to hear I have an old capsule in me that got reused I'm happy to know it can all come out in one fell swoop and he doesn't have to search old pockets. He said any and all capsule he sees in there he will remove. This of course makes me happy. He plans on doing it enbloc. If for any reason he can't he will make sure there is none left In me. With that, im feeling confident and very happy with Dr. Jeffrey Umansky and his understanding of my concerns and willingness to remove it all! I'm pretty excited and hopeful this will turn around so many of the health issues I have experienced over the last 16 years. In total I've had implants for 18. Ready to be free of the fake bags! A little scared with what I will be left with, but ready for it however it ends up being. I know Dr. Jeffrey will make the best of what I have as they have a lot of skilled work in their history. I will post as soon as I can once I'm all done! Put positive thoughts my way and bless you all who are going through this. Xoxo

They are out!!!I did it!!!

I did it, they are out!!! Sore as all heck. Surgery was 5 hours and my doc took them out En-bloc. 2 drains. So happy to have them out. Trying to manage pain...Percocet is my friend right now. Do you think ice will help with pain? My husband is taking such good care of me so feeling blessed?? and many thanks to all of you for the encouragement. I was quite nervous. Obviously to early to tell but it appears I'm not completely flat so fingers crossed for that! Honestly I think my abdomen is more sore than my breasts. Doing both of these at once was crazy but didn't want to ever want another procedure again! I will post the pics of of my breasts as soon as possible. Just moving right now is a bit tough. I will post a pic of the removed En-bloc implants now. So glad these are out! Those look like some thick capsules. Yuck! So grateful to all of you and your advice, love and support. It has meant so much to me????????

my post op

It was a bit rough getting to my post op this morning at 8:30 after getting home yesterday at 4:30pm! But, thanks to my hubby we got there! Doc says everything is looking good. took out the gauze from my bra and put on fresh steri strips. They let me look in the mirror, which I wasn't expecting to get a peak this early. I am pleasently surprised, it could be swelling more than anything but hopefully some of it is here to stay. I am of course flatter but not completely. Probably thanks to the extra weight I have on me right now! They in fact look a little square at the moment but he told me that is typical and they will round out and fill in with time. He said within a month they will be more settled in. so... fluff fairy commence! :-) He is leaving the drains in until next Thursday as there is still quite a bit of collecting going on (naturally, it's only been 20 hours!) The best news is that he said I could go on ibuprofen around the clock now. Yay! no more lame percocet (it doesn't make me feel good). So, I haven't had one of those since 4am and happy for it and I think it's finally out of my system and stopped making me dizzy. All is good and I'm feeling sore and very happy. No more surgeries for me!! He said he didn't find anything else in there that concerned him to remove or send to pathology. -good news. He said the left one came out fairly simply enbloc and the right one was more problematic and he had to take it a lot slower. He said he was glad he had booked the surgery room for the amount of time he did. I am quite impressed with my doc and definitely recommend him to other San Diego explanting people, he really did everything I hoped for! As far as my abdomen lipo goes he said it will remain puffy for another month but that he took out quite a bit! I'm hoping that hump above my cesearean scar will go away with that being done. It's always been such an indent and I figured it would be so much more obvious now with my smaller breasts so thought best to take care of it while I was under. Glad I did, I will post pictures soon as I can (perhaps tomorrow). He said I can shower if I want but I think i will wait until tomorrow!

Essential oils?

Once my wounds are closed in about 7-10 days I'm thinking about using essential oils to help me detox and heal. Do any of you out there have any wisdom to impart to me on what I should use and how much and do I rub it directly on my skin or do I dilute it with caster or jojoba oil first or do I ingest it?? I'm clueless on how to use them. Just trying to strategize on how to heal the best possible way... Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Xoxo

2nd day post op. Almost 48 hours out of Surgery

I am doing better than I was but definitely extremely sore!!! I'm off painkillers because they make me feel too dizzy and nauseous so Advil it is! Thank goodness doc approved it yesterday. I have been taking Arnica 3xs a day since surgery but bruising is definitely happening. These compression garments are killing me. Ouch!!! Remind me again why I have to wear them???The bottom band of my bra is so painful. Not sure if bruises are ifrom lipo or the capsulectomy but it hurts :( . The bruises are on my upper flanks and ribs and upper abdomen... Sorry but I'm Just whining to you all as I'm feeling a bit sorry for myself and in pain. If I could jump out of my body right now I would but, just going to have to sit through this. Ugg... :( my back aches horribly too, it must be because of sleeping sitting up and lounging propped up too. I'm thinking I'm at the height of the discomfort being 2 days in and hoping it gets better very soon. I did manage a shower with my husbands assistance this morning and it does feel nice to be clean and smelling good.i should've taken pics but didn't want my hubby to ask what I was doing because he doesn't know I'm posting pics (our secret). He knows I'm on a forum because I've discussed it with him but that's about it. Hopefully I can post some picstomorrow. My drains have slowed back and moved from bright red blood to more like dark yellowish now. He is not having to empty them as often which is good! All signs are pointing to I'm getting better I just wish I felt it! :( Thanks for listening to me whine...xoxo!

Question for you docs or well informed people on this

So... Ive been trying to put this out of my mind as there really is nothing I can do about this now. But... Here is my concern/question. I had asked my doc morning of surgery if he would send my capsules or any tissue he takes out in addition to pathology and he said only if he sees something strange or concerning he wouldn't be sending the capsules. He said he doesn't send capsules to pathology usually unless something warrants it. At post op appt. I asked him if he saw anything suspect or removed any extra tissue besides my capsule and he said no he didn't. I do have pics of what the enbloc capsules looked like and I do have the cleaned off implants in my possession (I'm sure my capsules went out in the bio hazard waste the day of my surgery). He said it didn't need to go to pathology so he didnt send it. My question is do you think this is normal/common for capsulectomies and should I be concerned that it wasn't sent to pathology? I had smooth round saline implants that were still intact according to doc. Capsules had been in me 17 years through 2 implants. I got my saline smooth implants (1998) replaced in 2010 and same capsules were used (I had no idea about capsules until recently).... So just curious what docs out there think and if I should be concerned or just not worry about it? Was pathology the only way I could find out what toxins were In them that could've been causing my autoimmune symptoms? Or is there something I can still do or find out about what was possibly wrong with them by sending my cleaned off implants somewhere?

A picture of breasts 3 days post op

Well here they are in all their surgical loveliness obviously quite a ways to go before they are healed and they need to drop down quite a bit and stop looking so Square as the doc says this will change (since they are compressed so tight right now) within the first month so I am hoping they will round out and settle and the fluff fairy will come to my house too! However with all that said even if they remain the same I am happy because the implants are gone and out of me! I'm so happy to be rid of them -over the moon!!!

1 week post op

I had my 1 week post op today and am excited to say I got my drains out!! Woohoo!! My husband and I are both excited about that one- ha! I was getting little itchy blisters around them where the tubes layed on my skin so definitely time to go! I also got my stitches out for the drains and a couple of spots lower where cesarean scar was and my belly button for the laser lipo of abdomen. You will see in my pics most of my bruising is yellowing up now except for my flank (still very sore). My compression garments are making my skin in the pictures look funny but oh well! Doing all this at once has been a bit tough but now a week out I'm glad I did. Definitely not an easy road though. Still exhausted! My belly is still swollen quite a bit and I think may even be larger than it originally was but doc says that will change significantly over the next month since Im still very swollen. I hope swelling doesn't go down much On my new small breasts though! :-|. yikes! I also hope they start to look more natural as they sure aren't cute from the side view. I would love the fluff fairy to come around and put some fluff up top ( and take it away from my abdomen). I go back to dr. In 3 weeks. I'm told to keep wearing Steri strips for another week and surgical bra. For my abdomen I need to wear compression garment for another month. I will post more photos again soon. Best to all of you! Xoxo!

12 days post explant!

Here are some updates pics. 12 days post explant. I think they have been changing shape a bit. Becoming a little more round and of course less bruised ????! Curious to know if you all see any change? All I can say is I'm so happy I finally have what I wanted 18 years ago... Symmetry . Why did I have to go the long route to get here? Ha! Excited for what lays ahead and good health and feeling great. I think I finally turned the corner yesterday on my fatigue. Yippee!!!

Three weeks post op

Three weeks post op. I'm a bit reluctant to post this picture because I don't like it so much but For the sake of helping others I will do it! Today's the first day I took off all my tapes and in writing my scars heal without them for now. I feel like my nipples look huge but hopefully they will look a lot more normal once the scarring is faded. :-( they definitely were in a relaxed state as I had just rubbed some coconut oil on the incisions. I'm doing pretty good with my energy and getting back to my normal routine also haven't begun working out yet. I did take a couple of short walks however. It's definitely busy enough at my house with three kids and all of their three schools and activities so for now that is my workout! I still do have some times of the tea and have stopped to lay on the couch or take a nap just get through the day. I am starting to do a couple of things for detox. I think my hands and feet are staying warmer and my memory has improved! My back and shoulders and neck are doing much better than they were with the implants. I still am suffering from insomnia and some joint pains in my feet and fingers. I'm hoping in time and detoxing even those will get better! Have a great day call and happy healing ;)

Lighting I think is a little better in this one

Lighting I think is a little better in this one

Question on burning

Hi Gals, I just want to ask you if any of you are having or did have burning pain around your nipples as you healed? I'm 3 weeks and 5 days out and it seems more pronounced now. Ugg! Granted I've been doing a lot more including side sleeping etc...Any suggestions on what I can put on them to make it go away? Or when did yours stop? This sensation I think is newer for me or I hadn't noticed it before now (maybe because everything else was sore I couldn't feel that too?) . I never had burning sensation before surgery.

4 weeks and 2 days post op

I think swelling has come down in both my breasts and my abdomen from the lipo! Excited about my abdomen looking more flat, finally! I don't know if there will be more decreases in the swelling but I m happy where I am at now. scars fading is up next! I go for my 1 month follow up Monday and my doc is going to give me some scar treatment stuff so excited to start that and hoping it keeps my keloiding tendencies at bay! I am still riding a roller coaster of balancing my energy with overdoing it and still having reserves! I've been back at walking daily (did 2 miles today on the coast overlooking the beach-love!!) and did a 6 mile bike ride earlier this week so slowly getting back into it. Trying to take it easy is hard! Do you think I could swim if I wanted to now? Is the motion of rotating my arms okay above my head? I will ask doc that tomorrow too but wanted to know if you any did that after this procedure and how soon? On another long winded note, I went to a naturopath this week to help me heal and he muscle tested my supplements and told me which ones to leave behind and sold me some new ones. It's hard not to feel like it's all a hoax... His vitamin B made me feel awful (bad headache and lethargy), I'm going back on mine which is pure encapsulations methylated B, I still think it's better than his because it doesn't make me feel awful! He also told me not to take my fish oil (again pure encapsulations) but instead skate oil (gel fishy capsules) and not my vitamin D which was a liquid capsule and take his which is in a capsule that is powder.so confusing to know what is truly better for me. Never heard of his brands and I know of pure encapsulations and think it's superior...told me to stop all dairy, and sugar, and starches to heal. I'm sure that is good advice but not easy to do. Tough stuff! I'm just going to focus on veggies, fruits and complex carbs and of course no alcohol and no to little sugar. We will see how it goes. I've already been doing that for the most part but need to be a bit stricter with myself. Yikes! Haha! Hope you all are doing well with your healing. I love reading your updates. Xoxo!

9 1/2 weeks post op

I am feeling pretty good and have all my energy back from the surgery. I have been working on several different detox methods to try and improve things overall and I believe I am having some success! I did an electro lymphatic therapy along with a colonic and A footbath last week and I think that made a difference! I will likely do one more in another week. I don't have any aches from the surgery anymore although it's funny I still get a little bit of surgery pains here and there from where my stitches were. I guess that's proof its still healing! We are leaving on our big trip to Europe next week and I'm happy to know I am at this point. I have been either walking to miles a day or riding my bike for 10+ miles and recently have started to do a run/walk! I hope you all are out there having good results. If there is anything I have learned that it's definitely not immediate it takes some time day by day we will get there! Xoxo
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon

I'm only six hours postop but I am extremely happy with Dr. Jeffrey Umansky, he was very sweet and caring and definitely listen to my concerns and acted on them. I really appreciate the fact that he was willing to do the en bloc capsulectomy. his nurse in the operating room is very caring and so was his anesthesiologist. The warming blanket made me nice and warm. His anesthesiologist nummed up my hand area first with the smallest needle, i barely felt it! no bruise from it today either- which hasn't been my experience with past IV's. Then he put in the IV which I didn't feel at all! He told me my throat may be sore from the breathing tube, but it's not at all, the guy has skills :-)! They asked me what music I wanted in the surgical suite and I told them Bob Marley and they played it for me as I drifted off, thinking of the islands. All of these small things added up and I felt I was in good hands and was able to relax because of it! In the end, I think he was a great choice for my explant. I'm now adding on to my review since I've had my post op appt. Again, I highly recommend Dr. Jeffrey Umansky. He really listened to what my concerns were and agreed to remove my implants en bloc with drains. He also gave me back my implants per my request. He understood that I was concerned about my health from the implants and wanted to remove them for me to make sure none of them or the capsule were left behind and I can't tell you how much I appreciated that! The only thing that I'm a bit disappointed about is he didn't send my capsules to pathology. His reasoning is because they looked fine and he said he doesn't usually send capsules. I wouldve liked that to happen no matter what, but not much I can about it now. If you are going to have to go into surgery, this is the kind of doc and team you want there with you!

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
4 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
4 out of 5 stars Wait times
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