I am a 47 year old mother of 2 (13, 11). I’m 5’6” and my weight fluctuates between 155 and 160. I’ve never gained or lost any significant amount of weight (except for during pregnancy) and have been +/- 10 lbs of 150 most of my adult life. I have always been active between running, bootcamp and yoga but I was never happy with my belly. Unlike most women here wanting their pre-pregnancy body back, I didn’t have such a wish. Even before having kids, I didn’t have any curves and my waist was always the same size as my hips. No matter how much I dieted or exercised (running 40 miles per week training for marathons), I manage to keep my weight in the 150s, carrying most of the weight in the middle. Of course this got worse with pregnancies and age. I used to stand in front of a mirror and fantasize about removing the excess fat/stretchmarked skin from my belly with the touch of my hand – who knew that this is not a fantasy but something that is actually possible? I didn’t know about tummy tucks at the time as plastic surgery was never on my radar. I don’t even know how I came across the idea of a tummy tuck and how I stumbled onto this wonderful website but once I started looking into it, there was no going back. I knew I was going to do this. That was back in February of 2016.
I started to research surgeons in the Bay Area and came across a few that I considered, with one in particular because he performs drainless procedure. I feared drains because it seemed in so many reviews that the drains are the worst part of the recovery. I made an appointment with the one doctor but because he was on vacation for most of the summer, my appointment was scheduled for the end of July. Well, that was too far out. I found Dr. Afshin Parhiscar randomly through a review on this site and started researching him. I liked the results I saw in the reviews. His belly buttons all look natural and his patients all seem to have more curves and defined waist than the patients of some other surgeons. I also liked what they had to say about him. Even though he uses drains, I decided to meet with him.
I spoke to Melinda who is probably the most likeable person I’ve ever met. She just makes you feel so comfortable and talks to you like you are her BFF. She got me in to see Dr. P the next day. Dr. Parhiscar is not what I expected as he is not your typical hotshot arrogant plastic surgeon. Instead, he has a calming yet confident presence. He listened , examined me thoughtfully and answered all my questions. By the end of the first meeting, I knew he was going to be my surgeon. Against my usual judgement, I did not meet with any other surgeons and canceled the appointment that I had with the one. I do not have any regrets. I am thrilled with my entire experience and my results.
Originally, I wanted a full TT with MR, lipo to flank, back and arms and fat transfer to my butt. He also threw in lipo to bra tail (just under the arms). After reading about recoveries for both TT and BBL, I chickened out and removed the fat transfer and instead opted for the chin lipo for the same cost. I didn’t know how I would recover from the tummy tuck on my back and preserve the fat cells on my butt.
I scheduled my procedure for October 14, 2016 to accommodate work projects. I checked in at the surgery center (located next to his office and in a large medical campus) at 7 am for the 8:30 surgery. The staff at the surgery center were great and took such good care of me. After I was situated in the pre-op room, Dr. P came in to make the markings. He asked me if I wanted some fat transfer to my hips since I asked for a defined waist. He must have known that he could not get curves out of my straight torso without intervention. I told him that I trust him to do what he thinks is best and I will pay the extra for the fat transfer. He told me that he wasn’t going to charge me anything because it was not about the money but getting me the best results. Can you believe that? After reading on this site about the greediness of a lot of plastic surgery practices, I couldn’t believe I was so fortunate to have found such a great surgeon! The surgery took 4 ½ hours and I was in recovery until 3 pm. My husband and sister came to take me home. It was a rainy day so the 30 minute drive took over an hour. I don’t remember much of it as I slept most of the way.
I didn’t get Exparel but the pain was not as bad as I had expected. Once I got situated into my chair at home (I bought a leather zero gravity chair on craigslist a few months earlier), I was quite comfortable and the regular dose of percoset helped to keep the pain at bay most of the time. Coughing, like everyone writes, is the worst enemy – the pain is real and has brought me to tears many times. Getting up and around the first two days were tough and I did use the walker that I borrowed from a PT friend but after 2 days I found the walker to be more cumbersome than helpful. I didn’t get a toilet seat riser but had no problem sitting down on the toilet and thanks to the bidet on our toilet, I didn’t need any help cleaning myself.
I diligently took stool softener and exlax from day 1 and I had my first BM on PO day 2. It was not difficult or painful, quite uneventful actually and I’ve had regular daily BM since.
After day 4, I was walking around okay, able to shower by myself and get in and out of the chair on my own. I stopped taking percoset around day 5 and switched to extra strength tylenol, except at night to help me sleep.
I think my recovery has been really smooth and easy with no surprise or complications. I was able to sleep fairly well at night in my chair from day 1 and I didn’t have any issues or todos with my incision or bb. Dr. P’s no-fuss, hands off, less is more approach fits with my philosophy.
On POD 7, I got my drains removed (they were not draining much after day 4 but I waited for the 2nd Postop appt to get them removed). Honestly, the drains didn’t bother me at all. They were just there, easy to empty and I hardly felt them. On POD 7 I also replaced the original surgical tape with new steri strips on my incision. I’ve done nothing to the bb except to flake off the dried glue and rinse during showers and both the incision and bb are healing beautifully. My belly button is perfect. It is cuter than the original and looks completely natural. Dr. P pointed out during the consult that my bb is not perfectly centered - nature made a booboo. The new bb is positioned perfectly in the center! The incision is also low and is easily covered by a small bikini and I see no signs of a dog ear. There are some marks around the incision from my skin’s reacting to the medical tape but they are also healing well.
I returned to work this week after 2 weeks off and I have to say that it has not been easy although each day is better than the last. I am happy to get out of the house and be productive but by the afternoon, I am wiped out and uncomfortable, squirming in my chair because my lower back is so sore. 3 weeks off would have been wiser…
I have been fortunate to have a strong support system. My husband has been amazing and has taken great care of me, even sleeping on the couch the first couple of nights so that he can be near me in case I needed anything. My sisters stopped by every day the first week, bringing groceries and feeding my family. I couldn’t have done this without them.
Overall, even though I am still swollen as expected, I am extremely pleased with my results and would do it again in a heartbeat. I wholeheartedly recommend Dr. Parhiscar to anyone. If you’re looking for a down-to-earth yet confident and gifted plastic surgeon in the Bay Area who delivers exceptional results, do yourself a favor and schedule an appointment with Dr. Parhiscar. You won’t regret it.
I will post pics soon