After doing tons of research and after reading...
After doing tons of research and after reading everyone's stories, I feel comfortable sharing my own plastic surgery journey. This is something that I have wanted to do for a long time. After 3 kids 15, 12, and 10; a year of breast feeding each took a serious toll on my once tight stomach, perky breast body. After years of talking about a lift and a tummy tuck I had 3 consultations did research on all three (their credentials, certifications, medical issues i.e malpractice lawsuits, basically did my homework. While I liked all three of them it was a toss up between doctor number 2 and 3. Both were great; Excellent bedside manner; which means A LOT to me. Both took their time, thoroughly explained what to expect, recovery time, post op care, etc, and treated me in such a professional way. In the end I chose doctor number 3. Yes his price was a little cheaper, but one of the deciding factors to me was the post op pain management (experal) that wasn’t through the roof expensive. Another factor was suture removal. About 18 years ago I fell in glass table and cut my arm pretty bad. I had about 50 stitches (maybe more). The problem was when the stitches came out, I had significant scaring. Now what I did learn was that arm and leg injuries that require stitches heal the worse. And while I know there will be scaring with the tummy tuck and breast life, I didn’t want to take the chance with the stitches and have my stomach end up looking like or worse than my arm. Lastly, I felt in my heart of hearts that doctor number 3 was the one for me. You know how you get that feeling, that gut feeling.
Anyway, my surgery is scheduled for July 2nd and I can’t wait! By the way, if there is anyone in this forum from NJ I would love to chat with you. Since I will be coming home after the surgery I am interested in Private Nursing Care for a day or so. If you know of an agency please let me know.
OH yeah, I had my first mammogram today. Whew! Thank goodness for the foam padding.
Thanks to all of you on this site, your stories have been not only informative, but some entertaining?. What we have here is great support system.
I will keep you guys posted as much as I can. Let the countdown begin. Talk to you soon!
The countdown has begun
today I woke up and said to my husband, 30 more days!!!! My surgery us scheduled for July 2nd. I'm patiently waiting...can't wait!
I also got the nerve to take some pictures and post them.. Oh boy , here
health check 1&2
Got a few things done in the past several days. This past Thursday I went and had my first mammo. Ouch. Thank goodness for the foam padding. Can't imagine the feeling without it. Saturday i went and had an EKG. Results should be in by Friday. My neurologist had me do some blood work to ensure that my med levels are where they should be, and they are. Oh yeah I didn't mention it but I'm an epileptic. Yep at 35 starting having seizures. No history, nothing. Just out of the clear blue. I can say now that with the two meds I'm taking my seizures Are well controlled. My neuro is aware of my surgery and has given me the ok, my PS is ok as long as my neuro has give me clearance. Good to go!
Results are back
Called the ps, ekg is fine. Mammo Came back normal. Yeaaa
Went to Modells spring store for my son to get him some Nike shirts and as we leaving I see a$10.00 rack of men's pjs. I hmmm these will probably be more comfortable than some of the women's phs ice seen. Whoa, men's New balance pj pants. Ten dollars...can't pas up that deal, I bought a few. A few size large. These should work well and be comfortable especially when all the swelling ore " swell hell" happens.
Sorry for all the typos in the earlier post. I sometimse hate auto correct.
Preop on Tuesday
Ok so as I continue to "stalk" this site, I'm excited yet nervous. My pre op is on Tuesday, can't wait. I have slowly began gathering supplies. Thanks to everyone who has posted their list on RS. I think I have most of what I need, I did order an abdominal board, let's see how that works. I tried several rent a centers and Aaron rents in my area for a lift recliner, but they are not in stock. I chuckled to myself, thinking there must be a lot of people getting surgery that must need the chair. So for now I'm going to get a wedge pillow to help prop myself up.
Omg, I've been on a chocolate binge lately. Maybe it's my nerves I don't know, since it's hard for me to control it the best I can do for now is to make sure I drink my 80ounces of water, eat my veggies and lean meats, and chocolate.
Pre Op today
So here we are, my pre op is today, well this after noon. I have a list of questions, not that many, but I do have a list. I have on the panties he told me to wear to make sure we are on the same page in regards to where the scar will be. I definitely want to make sure that my
nipples Wil be placed correctly. Not to high, not to low.
If anyone has done questions that they thought of after leaving their pre op appointment let me know. I'm sure I'll forget to ask something even though I have a list.
I look some pictures this morning. I can't wait to be on the flat side. I'm tired of looking pregnant. Ugh.
I'll keep you posted on how the pre op went.
Insomnia or Nerves or both
It's 1 o'clock in the morning and I'm on here typing which means I Can't SLEEP. I'm trying not to think too much about my surgery coming up, but I think that's impossible at this point. The hospital called today, just to get some basic information: weight, any allergies, problems with anesthesia, etc. they will call me on Tuesday to let me know what time to come in on Wednesday, can't wait.
To get my mind off things I've decided to hook up with my gf in Delaware and go get some girl time along with a few spa treatments...mani, pedi, etc.
Ok, time to try to get some sleep.
I made it to the flat side
2 Jul 2014
Day of treatment
Hi Ladies I made it!!!!
I'm trying to type this post before I fall back to sleep. I'm home, in my recliner, watching tv which is about to start watching me. I remember asking the nurses tons of question..like how long have you been a nurse, same goes for he anesthesiologist , asked him a hundred question. Lol
Just like last night. I was still calm, not too nervous. I think once I mentally prepared myself to go into this with realistic Expectations I would be fine. I know there will probably no true beach bod this summer which I'm ok with.: especially all the stories of swell hell, ugh
Ok off to all a land, oh btw, I have no pain In. (For now)
my. Stomach...the exparel is working, not sure how my belly will feel once this wears off in three day
My breast...is a little sore, for now but tolerable.
I did have to pee(ordered the épzpee) but since my order didn't get in time, hubby had to go out and buy a regular oil funnel. That was hilarious watching me spread my legs wide enough to pee in that thing...LOLLLL
my throat is extremely dry, and I am really making a conscious effort to not cough, but I can't help it. Now that's painful, omgoodness. I'm sucking on some Hall s hopefully that will help.
I walked around twice already so I should blue good to until around 11. Hmmm what else
If I think of of anything else I'll be sure to you guys posted. Nite
AS you can see from the previous post, I had typos all over. That was the medicine typing. Lol
So I've moved from the recliner to the bed. The recliner was too low for me to get in and out of. So far so good, no nausea, but I lost my voice from the info tracheal tube they put in my throat. and my throat is verrryyyyy dry. So I'm Still sucking on Halls .
The good...my daughter made me breakfast (eggs and one piece of toast) I was able to eat that and a little lunch with no problems. I'm keeping it light, drinking the Kellogg's protein shakes and water. My drains are filling as they should. I went ahead and took a stool softer, that should help when it's for me to have a bm.
I was up and moving around to keep the blood circulating very few hours.
The bad....omg I had/have to cough, I have a tickle in my throat that won't go away. That ish hurts like HELL. I found it eased the pain of the cough a bit if i pushed down a little on my stomach when I coughed, but don't get it twisted it still hurts.omggggg
Using the bathroom.... Need help pulling pants down and someone to hold the funnel while I pee. Ugh
Please if you're going to do this make sure you have a strong support system in place. You're going to need it. Both of my daughters were up with me helping me to the bathroom at 4am. Thank you god for such a caring family. Where was hubby. He was knocked out. Taking me to surgery had him drained mentally. He was nervous . However he waited on me hand and foot when I got home. Until next time Ciao!!!
Add to you list
So many of you have shared the items that you've purchased to help you with your postop recovery. My favorite thing, it the backscratchers with an extendable arm I bought my kids for Xmas as a stocking stuffer. They love to have their backs scratched so I found these cute ones. Anyway, my garment is a little itchy my legs my back itch as well and this thing has become one of my new best friends. If you can add this to your list I strongly suggest you do so
Hey guys. Hope everyone had a good forth of July. I'm doing ok on 3rd post op day. I'm really swollen on the right side of my abdomen. It feels very weird when I touch it, but I spoke to my ps this morning and he said that's normal. My drains are ok, ugh they get on nerves other than that they are Draining fine.
Going to the bathroom has been much easier, I think I know have it down to a science with the funnel and all.
My breast are fine, a little tender but very tolerable. I haven't been in too much pain. I think I stretched to far yesterday so I'm still feeling that pain but it's manageable. I still take the oxy that I was prescribed but honestly my pain isn't bad. Wait the pain from the tt and bl isn't bad, but omg let me tel you the back pain is a killer. So be prepared for that pain. Right now I'm sitting on a step stool, hunched over some typing this and man does this feel better than the bed.
I get to shower today, YES. I'm waiting for hubby to get home so he can help me. Ps said to wash the garment today, thank goodness. I can stay out of it for an hour or so, but be sure to put it back on before the swelling starts.
Not that I'm funky, but I don't like going days without washing, sponge baths just aren't enough for me.
Not that Hungry today, I tried a kelloggs to go shake but couldn't finish it. I think that's it for.
So I was able to take a shower....yaayyy. my ps rooks me to make sure I had someone around when I took off the garment just in case I got light headed. Threw the garment in the washer, Took off my bandages except the ones by the drains, put on a long necklace and clipped the drains to the necklace so they accidental fall while I was in the shower. Stepped in...the water felt so good. I did keep my back to the water the whole time just in case. Didn't staynin that long maybe ten minutes then felt tired so I got it. Another great investment..the towel wrap from Target. The one that Velcros in the front. Took a peek at myself, very pleased at what I saw.
Reapplied the bandages with the help of my mom, threw the garment back on, omg that was a chore. There is no way that one person can put that garment by themselves.
Pain is still minimal. Breast feel fine stomach is tight, very tight but nothing one oxy pill can't make go away. Still not to hungry, had a smoothie and a few bites of a hoagie from subway. Oh yea, still hunched over but walking much better.
Had a good night sleep last night, other than the nagging pain I have in my lower back from being hunched over. 6am went down for coffee decided to have some Smooth Move tea instead. 12pm, the tea worked. I had previously been taking the stools softness to no avail..the tea did the trick.
Until next time!
Post Op visit today
So here we are 6 days po and for the most part I'm doing fine. Still no pain near the incision nor around the breast, but I am feeling a nagging pain where the drains are. Boy do I hope I get them out today. Last night I was soooo swollen that it was painful to keep my cg on, so I took it off. I will discuss that today with my ps. I did take a shower this morning, a short one, changed my dressing, emptied my drains which have been putting out less than 15 ml on the left and about 5 on the right. As i looked in my bag of items purchased for this surgery I chuckled,I don't use a quarter of the things purchased. That's not to say that you shouldn't buy the items that others have suggested, just buy in moderation.
Make sure you drink plenty of fluids, I went for a whole and didn't drink anything and I could tell the difference from when I drank constantly and when I didn't. As of now I'm. sitting outside enjoying the breeze, the dog, my mom and the kids. Mentally I'm good, as I said before I went into this with realistic expectations, knowing full well that I won't get to wear that two piece until December without the major seeking. And if not then that's ok also. I'll give you guys an update once I get back from my post op visit today.
Okay so I went to y first po visit. My ps says I'm healing great. Oh yeah guess what I got both drains out!!!!!!!woohoo. I was expecting it to be painful, his nurse was pressing down on my stomach, I'm gripping the arms of the chair and bam they were out. No pain. Funny thing was as he was pulling, he kept pulling and pulling, kinda like you see the clowns pull the handkerchief out of nose continuously. That what's it was like.
Moving on....so the drains are out, the scar is healing. The tape is still on my breast and tt scar. The ps says these will eventually fall off. Make sure to pat and keep them dry after you get out the shower.
My stomach is realllllly itchy!!!! I have been using the Arnica gel, it's very calming and soothing to the skin. To prevent the cg digging into my skin, I used either pampers or maxi pads on the side where the zippers and hooks are... Less painful. If anyone has other suggestions as to help ease the pain of the cg please let me know.
Return to Work
So after a nice relaxing weekend, I decided to go back to work today. I got up a little early just to be sure I had time to throughly put myself back together after my shower(change dressing, put on cg, moisturizer my body so I won't be too itchy, ashy, etc).
Gathered my protein filled breakfast and lunch and off I went.
The early morning was fine, minimal swelling, drank my fluids, etc. by noon my nipples were killing me. For some reason I feel like I felt when i was breast feeding. Nipples on pins and needles, feeling like my milk is about to start flowing. Ugh. Added some tissue inside my sports bra and I was fine. Then the swelling came.....ohh boy.. My stomach was hard, hips swelling. So I decided to stand at my desk for a while rather than sit. That seemed to help a bit. Needless to say by the end of the day I was really swollen, omg. I couldn't wait to get home. I did come out of my cg for an hour, I needed a breather.
I'm sure tomorrow will be the same, swelling, etc, I'll keep you posted.
Oh by the way, I was walking tall today at work. Not hunched over at all until I came home and laid down and tried to get back up. Geez
Tried to get grown
I know I'm a little late, but just had to share my story...so last Thursday after a long day at work I decided to treat myself to a mani pedi. As swollen as I was, I had the nerve to take off my garment before I left work and go to the salon. Figuring, oh I'll only be there for a while, I should be fine. NOT. I could barely get out of the pedi chair. Needless to say I had to ask for help after getting my manicure. More swollen, in pain. Omg. I say all that to say, do as your doctor says and keep the damn garment on. Lol
Is it me or is anyone scared to stretch. Normally in the morning when I wake up, I have a habit of stretching. Man......how painful, or is really? Maybe I'm scared I'm going to pop a stitch.
I've been sleeping good lately, sometimes the garment bothers me especially when I try unsuccessfully to sleep on my side. I do still have to keep my knees propped under two pillow. It feels better than my legs being flat. Getting in and on the bed is much easier, I have a small step stool beside my bed and just step up on the bed. Getting out of the bed is easier also. What makes it easier for me is to roll on my side to the edge of the bed, pull my legs up like a fetal position and roll out of the bed. Makes getting out of bed a breeze.
3 week po
So tomorrow will be 3 weeks since my surgery. Time flies. Here are some updated pictures.
Still swollen and still have a ways to go. But that's to be expected.
I haven't been on the scale lately. With all the swelling I just choose not to. Yesterday was a much better day at work. I really didn't start to swell until on my way home. it still takes me a few minutes to get in and out the car. Taking it easy so I don't pull anything. Still very sore on the right side.
Right vs left. The scar under my right breast isn't as smooth as they left. The scar on the right side of my tt is definitely not as smooth and is very tender to the touch. Anyone else experiencing this? Everyone have a good day.
4 Week Post Op appointment
So today is my four week post op appointment. I think I look great, healing nicely, but I still have slight burning where my incision is. The left side of my body is showing favoritism...healing better than the right. The left breast incision is already smooth. The line is super thin. The left side of my incision is also flatter than the right. The right breast scar is wide and not smooth. The right side of my tummy incision also is 1.sore 2.not smooth at all, and 3. hurts someone's depeding I the way I move.
I have been sleeping with the garment on and an ab board.
Lastly, it seems like my bb is taking forever to heal.
Okay I'll keep you guys posted.
What did he say?
So I went to my four week po visit earlier this week. So here's what he said. I'm healing great, I'm still very much swollen on my right side stomach. He told me I have to rub it, twenty minutes two or three times a day, circular motions of course. My belly button still isn't closed, damnnnnn. Hopefully when I see him in four more weeks it will be. He told me that I can ditch the garment! Yea!!! He did suggest that I wear the garment during the day if I would like and ditch it at night. Seems backwards to me, but so far he has not led me astray. He wants me to try to sleep on my sides , get back to normal but it so much more comfortable to still sleep on my back. I can resume working out, slowly... No weights for a few more weeks. I think that's it, ohhhh no here's the kicker ladies.... My scars will look WORSE before they look better. He said month two I will see a change but after that my scars will look and feel much better. I'm glad he told me that because I'm sure I would have been going crazy. It's so funny how the body heals. When he told me that I thought about those people with black eyes, how the eye gets black, blue,purple, then it heals. Maybe I said the healing color of the eyes wrong, if so oops. So that sums it up ladies. Chat with you soon.
10 Sep 2014
2 months post
Thank goodness my ps told me my scars would look the worse in month 2, while my tummy tuck scar is flattening out it still looks a little dark maybe purplish. These past two weeks have been crazy, my breast are tender to the touch especially the left one. He pain is near the outside of the breast. A few days it was not to the touch, not sure what that's all about but I'm going to see my ps tomorrow. Also, my stomach is swollen and hard. From under my belly button all the way down to my mound. This just came from out of nowhere, maybe this is part of the healing process. I did start working out but there is no way in hell I can do a normal crunch. The only. Crunch I can do is the reverse one. But what I did fine out is that I do much better doing ab exercises when I'm standing working out. Can't do planks either, my stomach is just not ready. Well that's it for now, happy healing everyone.
Been a long time
18 Dec 2014
5 months post
It's been a really long time, I haven't had much time to post. I decided to post a few new pictures so you can see my progress. A few things, one I hate my belly button. Actually I think it's up too high. So to make it look alittle better I decided to go and get it pierced. Ouch. Even pierced I still don't like it. My scars are healing nicely. My left breast is still larger than the right. Not to thrilled with that. If I lift up my right arm and look on the bottom part of my breast it looks like there is a ripple there. I'll post a picture of that next. I do think my stomach could be flatter or tighter but as my husband and I were talking we both agreed that we don't want it looking too artificial if I were to get a revision. I'm a meaty 5'2 girl and Im not sure if I want to chance it. I have been working out with a trainer and My muscles are extremely tight. I'm going to give it a few more months to see if my stomach gets flatter, hopefully. I'll keep you guys posted. other than that ladies not much else to say. Wishing everyone happy healing and happy holidays!!!
So a year has passed. I can say it's been an experience. Am I pleased, yes. Could I be flatter..probably...Could my breast be perkier...probably, Will I go for a revision...No. My scars have healed nicely..crazy thing is my scars on the left side of my body healed much better than the right side. Go figure!
Overall I got what I was told by the doctor and what I expected. Hubby did have to remind me a few times that my stomach will not look like someone who was a size two who had a tummy tuck. I say that to say If you read and look and compare constantly it will probably drive you crazy and once I stopped doing that I fell more in love with my tummy tuck ands breast lift outcome. Thank you all for sharing your journeys and listening to mine. To those who are contemplating surgery, do your research, don't be afraid to speak up and tell your ps what you want. Here are my before and after pictures.