*Please see my separate review for breast...
*Please see my separate review for breast Explant*
I've never been able to roll out of bed and look great, but with a little bit of mascara & lip color, I could go anywhere. That is, until this last year. Brought out the pro makeup and brushes and spent at least 20 mins carefully applying makeup to look "natural". 10 years before I had Botox for frown lines ($500 area) and last year about $3,000 of Sculptra in my cheek area. Decided it was time. Living in CA and now TX, the conversation is ongoing with plenty of feedback on surgeons, etc. I prioritized my wants & need and concluded that no matter how good the surgeon was, without the required post-op care, the outcome will be compromised. I based this on my BA & lift experience in 1992. Performed by the best PS in Dallas with my sister acting as the surgical nurse & my after care. I fully expected to recuperate for a week and fly back to CA. Instead, I had to stay in Dallas 3 weeks because of a massive hematoma, slow healing of internal sutures and reaction to anesthesia (twice).
I work in the legal field and seeing flowery descriptions for medical procedures make me cringe. [eg, "You'll experience a bit of discomfort" which really translates into "It will hurt like bloody hell, but we say that you will bolt!"]. I managed to sift through the info and base my decision on:
1) LOCATION: (a) any US State Department warnings? (b) distance, and (c) ease of access. Does not matter how great a PS is if they're in a city that is difficult to get to and known for not being safe.
2) SURGEON & All other Health Professionals: (a) How respected is the surgeon among his peers; (b) prior patients; and (c) and who will be in the operating room with him/her? Are they of the same caliber? 3) MEDICAL FACILITY: In the event of an emergency is it equipped? Can they take care of it there or would I be transported? 4) POST-OP CARE: Personally I know I turn into a total space cadet after any procedure, including dental, so having an advocate there making ALL the arrangements was absolutely necessary.
I chose Dr. Guillermo Koellicker in San Miguel Allende, MX because all of the above were met. He uses Pat Marino (FaceLiftMexico) to handle all the patient planning details so his focus remains on the medicine. His English is perfect; however, the hospital staff is not fluent and he prefers English speaking patients go through FaceLiftMexico. Talking to Ms Marino for several months, it became evident that her years of owning a travel agency gave her the insight and skills to know exactly what was necessary to make this process go smoothly.
Honestly, how many doctors offer this as a service?
Dr Koellicker is about the medicine and FaceLiftMexico is about patient care.
Attached are my array of photos!
Out with HS Friends on Saturday
Knowing these women & men since 7th grade, I was waiting for a comment....none beyond how I had the "post vacation" glow and NO ONE noticed my drop from DD to B/C. That's exactly the way it should be! No one wants to look like they're the first to had "work done"!
ITCHING & SWELLING ON CHEEKS
First full week back at work - just 8hrs/day but doing meeting/presentations, then lunches. Never realized how much "face movement" was involved! By Friday, the sides of my face felt like the internal stitches were being strained and itching like crazy. Placing gel packs seemed to help but the lack of feeling made me nervous that I could potentially freeze and damage the areas that I brought out the band used post surgery. Wore last night and the swelling has receded. Almost as though the tissue needed a little support to take the strain off! I know it's important for blood to circulate to aid healing, so I'm careful that it's not tight, just snug!
I did have a great moment last week----washing my hands in the office ladies room-with the horrific fluorescent lighting-and the reflection was a flashback to 15 years ago. Was it worth it? Hell, yes. No pain or really discomfort; pampered aftercare and no major, financial hit. $6900. Saved by packing my lunches, skipping Starbucks, staying out of Macy's AND doing my own hair. Frankly, no salon charges covered it!
6-1/2 Weeks Almost Feel Guilty Everything Has Gone So Well
Reading other reviews from women who has suffered through post-op complications, I almost feel guilty reporting how well I'm progressing. 6-1/2 weeks post op swelling has subsided, still numb from temple to mid-face but feeling is returning slowly. Using silicone strips overnight and scar gel during day. I noticed my hair is regrowing over the stitch line and hidden well. Remove my makeup as soon as I get home and use eye makeup remover to cleanse incisions & follow with facial toner.
Applying moisturizer using fingertips was tricky and painful until I found using a foundation brush worked so much better.
At 60, the change is significant yet natural enough that not one person has thought I had a facelift - just had a vacation glow.
I do wish everyone else well, stay patient and pamper yourself.
6-1/2 Incision Healing - Houston Doctors
At my annual physical last Thursday, my Internist checked my incision sites and indicated they were healing well! They do appear redder in these pics - just cleaned!
INCISION - HEALING PROGRESS
The incisions appeared so low below my hairline - Dr Koelliker pointed out my hair was shaved! A pic of my hairline growing back, covering the incisions. My Internist indicated they are healing well and continue to use scar cream.
YouTube Video of my experience
Getting Impatient for Incision Site to Disappear!
I'm getting claustrophobic always wearing my hair down! Houston heat requires hair up in a ponytail but at the 7 week point, the incisions are screamers even within hairline! The body's healing cycle, or my body's healing speed is so slow. Just need to learn how to do a cool, low bun in the interim!!
Posting photos from surgery date to now.
Incision healing progression. Again, my Houston Internist indicates all incisions look good.
INCISION UPDATE-Sept 25th
It does get obsessive watching the healing progress! Silicone strips work best-tried Mederma cream for a couple days and they just looked redder. Both left and right side-with strips.
2 Months - Face has not fallen as naysayers predicted.
Posted on my "explant" review about my hilarious MDVIP Internist. Yesterday was the tests review. We're the same age, known each other 16 years with almost exact 60 yr old health reports. She kept comparing our faces & finally said, "I've been so resistant about facial surgery but you look so good." And, the incisions are healing well. She pointed out that there is a wide distance from Wound Care and Scar Prevention and how she cannot believe people who remark about an appendectomy scar. "Like, what kind of sutures did you use?" Well, like I just saved your life, wound is healing without sepsis - don't want a scar, gotta work on it yourself!