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Old 04-28-2013, 11:10 AM   #1141
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MaryMary, if you are anything like most of us post-reconstructive-surgery folks, you might go through a period where you think this wasn't worth it... and recovery can be exhausting depending on the procedure / how long it takes to recover. But, I haven't heard many people say in the long run that they regret it. And we have a great way of forgetting just how painful and tough it was. Just wanted to share that, since I know that many people experience the worst right around where you are now. It'll be worth it!!
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Old 04-28-2013, 02:10 PM   #1142
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Thanks, Maryposa. I am starting to feel a bit better and see the doctor tomorrow. The first few days are really rough, though. How long before the swelling goes down? 3-4 weeks?
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Old 04-28-2013, 03:24 PM   #1143
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Thanks, Maryposa. I am starting to feel a bit better and see the doctor tomorrow. The first few days are really rough, though. How long before the swelling goes down? 3-4 weeks?
Depends, I was swollen on and off after my LBL for four months!! But my face... hmm... maybe 6-8 weeks if I remember right. Of course, that is swelling up/down not constant. And, not to the degree it was initially.
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Old 04-28-2013, 05:52 PM   #1144
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I agree - you just have to keep remembering that this will improve. I just kept thinking in two months I will feel so much better...and I always did.

PS: To everyone who wants to see my pictures - I am SO SORRY I haven't posted them yet. My life has been so hectic lately. I will get to it - I promise!!!!
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Old 04-30-2013, 09:49 AM   #1145
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I still swell some around my scars but I will be the first to tell you how worth it the pain and swelling are. I am looking into this fall having my thighs done. I really can't stand how bad they are with the skin and can't work off the sadle bags.
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Old 04-30-2013, 10:17 AM   #1146
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I have a question ladies--I am in a rural area and would have to go to the big city for surgery--which is 2 1/2 hours away--in order to find doctors who are probably experienced with these types of surgery--I am wondering if any of you have had to travel this far for surgery or if this is too far if complications arise and you have to return frequently? and if you are required to return frequently right after the surgery? I am just concerned about the logistics I guess? thanks for any info.
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:23 AM   #1147
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I am about an hour away from Boston. I went to the clinic at Mass General Hospital. It was worth. I had to go in for the preliminary meeting to meet the doctor (chief resident) and the head of plastic surgery that was overseeing it as well as the team and some students. Because I was getting an enormous discount via the clinic, they woukd use my pics if I let them to study as well as my case.

I then had to go back one more time for another visit where I gave them my decision and signed the release. The third visit was for the pre surgery exam and blood work. The fourth time was the surgery. i had to be there at 5:30 am and was released about 1 pm the next day. The two drains were removed before I was discharged. Then five days after the surgery I went in to have some of the sutures removed. I have to go back next Monday to have more sutures removed. Then I imagine there will be 1-2 more visits for follow up after that when they get the final picture with my hair washed and make up on.

If there was an emergency, the instructions were to call a number to their center but if life threatening, to go to the nearest emergency room. I haven't had any infections thankfully.
I had instructions for no heavy lifting. My daughter wouldn't let me lift a finger until today. She cooked and changed my dressings.

When I had the panniculectomy in 2006, the hospital was 2 hrs away, but was connected to the clinic in my town. The insurance covered it due to repeated skin infections. I had to go for two visits before the surgery and a final one after a period of time. I was able to go to my local clinic to have the 3 drains removed and the insurance paid for a home health care worker to visit my home about 3-4 times in the first two weeks.

Hope this helps
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Old 04-30-2013, 11:24 AM   #1148
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I had my face and neck lift on Wed last along with the upper lids. Right now it is all bruises but doesn't teally hurt. I get the sutures out on Monday. The two drains came out the day after the surgery. My DD has spoiled me with her cooking all my LC meals for me since I got back to her place. I will post some pics when I am presentable. So glad it is over. The anxierty leading up to it is like giving birth to a baby.
Way to go! I had a lower face lift, brow lift and neck lift and was back in my office in four days. I had it done the week before Christmas two years ago so it was cold outside. I wore cute little knit hats for couple of weeks as I could not fool with my hair due to the little incisions. My doc does not pump you full of fluids and I had very little swelling. I did not have anything done with my eyelids as they don't need anything yet. I think my jaw-line and neck were my favorite results.
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Old 04-30-2013, 12:45 PM   #1149
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Thanks MaryMary-that makes sense-about the emergency care--I am thinking about seeing a Dr. in Indy--I want to have the best outcome I can have-I am still searching the internet for a doctor who specializes in surgery after weight loss-still haven't found one so I am looking at other credentials hoping that will afford me the best outcome? It worries me that I am so old thinking about starting this whole process--I am 64 now and I want all the surgeries to make me look normal now!

It sounds like you are doing well and you have had great care thanks to a devoted daughter--best wishes to you for continued healing.
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Old 04-30-2013, 12:57 PM   #1150
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Thanks MaryMary-that makes sense-about the emergency care--I am thinking about seeing a Dr. in Indy--I want to have the best outcome I can have-I am still searching the internet for a doctor who specializes in surgery after weight loss-still haven't found one so I am looking at other credentials hoping that will afford me the best outcome? It worries me that I am so old thinking about starting this whole process--I am 64 now and I want all the surgeries to make me look normal now!
You are NOT old! I have a friend who had WLS same day as me and she was 68. She is now 73 and had facelift, tummy tuck, butt lift and breast lift and implants and she is gorgeous. Looks perfectly normal and not fake at all.

REGARDING CHOOSING SURGEON: Do you go to any WLS support group meetings in your area? That is one way to ask others who they have used for surgery after weight loss.

Good luck!
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Old 04-30-2013, 01:33 PM   #1151
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Thanks clmoore--I don't feel old but hate this body--I didn't have any surgery to lose the weight so no support groups-just decided to lose for my son's wedding--it took a good long while but I lost the majority of it-have put 20 pounds back on and am working to get that back off now! I really don't think there are any support groups for that in our little burg of a town anyway? I have never read of any in the paper... I am encouraged that your friend had so much done at that age-I am hoping to find the right doctor and start the process this fall--I need it all! and I want it all!

Thanks so much for your input- I so appreciate it.
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Old 04-30-2013, 01:43 PM   #1152
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Thanks clmoore--I don't feel old but hate this body--I didn't have any surgery to lose the weight so no support groups-just decided to lose for my son's wedding--it took a good long while but I lost the majority of it-have put 20 pounds back on and am working to get that back off now! I really don't think there are any support groups for that in our little burg of a town anyway? I have never read of any in the paper... I am encouraged that your friend had so much done at that age-I am hoping to find the right doctor and start the process this fall--I need it all! and I want it all!

Thanks so much for your input- I so appreciate it.
Congrats on losing the weight. It is a struggle to keep it all off whether we had WLS surgery or not.
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Old 04-30-2013, 02:15 PM   #1153
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Jeanne
Are there any big medical schools connected to one of the major hospitals? If so call the main number and ask the hospital for the clinic for plastic surgery. All along the way, ask if this is the clinic and if they discount the price of plastic surgeries through the clinic as opposed to going to the main office of plastic surgeons. You can check and double check the doctors associated with the clinic and the main hospital in Indy.

By the way, I am 65 yrs old this year and started my weightloss journey at age 52 when I was going through menopause. I was 58 when I had the panniculectomy (like a tummy tuck but goes toward the back and took of 6 lbs skin). It is never to old to go for it. I saved my money in my 401k at work where it earned a whole lot more in interest than in a CD at a bank. When I was ready, I could borrow against the 401k or withdraw it and pay taxes. There is no penalty when you are over 59-1/2 and if under, you can get it as a hardship withdrawal for unreimbursed meducal expenses. I did the loan route so I could put the money back into the account. I plan on working for at least another 5 years.

As far as time off from work, I am out a month. My ears are still oretty raw and I work in a call center with headsets. I couldn't use them even if I wanted to. At 65 I think I need more than 4 days to get my strength back.
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Old 04-30-2013, 06:03 PM   #1154
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I live about an hour from my doctor. I saw her a lot initially - as in the day after each procedure, then once a week, and then once every 2 weeks, then once a month. Currently I will se her again in June (so 3 months) and at that time we will make a date for (I think) one last tweak to everything she's done for me (maybe a bit of lipo at the top of my tummy and maybe a little work on the vajay-jay area...). I am sorry I don't always immediately post my thoughts on your questions. Let me see if I can give you an overview of answers...

I had swelling for a good month with each procedure, but it seems to be there one day then leave the next...
I have keloid tissue (it kind of overheals...), so my scars are much thicker and perhaps darker than many people's would be. I've been told they will fade - but I am still waiting. Even if they didn't, however, I look a lot better than I did, so I'll get used to it.

I always needed a good 2 to 3 weeks to start the healing process after my procedures. My arms took the longest overall, but my tummy tuck drains took wayyyy longer than expected (about 2.5 weeks I think). I did have a mild infection twice and, with my thigh lift, I had an area where pooled blood needed to be pressed out once or twice.

Healing always took time. It is a process and each day gets like 1% better. The first 3 to 5 days are hard...then it eases up. I had my thighs done in late December and at that time she "adjusted" my breast lift (reopened the bottom 6 - 8" and worked onthe projection, etc...). That area is still sore and may need a little attention in June.

I would still do eveything all over again. My results aren't anywhere near perfect. I am still jiggly and all that...but it is SO MUCH BETTER. Totally worth it!!!

That said, ladies, if you PM me your email I will send you my pics. I may post them here if Mary says they are okay to post (and if she helps me figure out how to do it...). I hope my stories and pics may help someone else decide what they might want to do - or not do.
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Old 04-30-2013, 07:11 PM   #1155
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clmoore--I totally agree it is hard getting the weight off and keeping it off no matter which route one takes getting there--I have people in my family that have gone the surgery route and they have had no results because they thought it was a miracle cure and they still continued to eat-it still takes major work to get the weight off--the surgery is just a tool! and then keeping it off--well--that is a life long struggle I know too well.

MaryMary--I will look into your suggestions--thank you so much for the ideas--I would have never known about asking... I appreciate knowing your age too--I am also looking at using my 401K--I figure it will never be enough to keep me comfortable in my retirement so I might as well use it to make me feel better about myself! I am thankful to know there are ladies out there my age doing this and succeeding...my 88 year old Mother thought I was crazy until I showed her my hanging stomach--she now understands why I need the surgery and what I have been dealing with! she is still afraid for me however! but now I can tell her about what you have all shared--thank you so much!
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Old 05-01-2013, 03:56 AM   #1156
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Jeanne, the clinic that I used was connected to Harvard University and Mass General. I couldn't have had for better service.

HotT...I don't know how to instruct you on add the pictures but you can send thru the comments for the LCF Board and they can attach them for you. I would think it is sort of like attaching them to an email. I would love to see the pics but don't know how.
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Old 05-01-2013, 04:02 AM   #1157
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One other thing, Keanne, is that make sure you are in the right mental attitutde. Ask yourself if this is a way of life change or do you think it is just a diet? It makes a big difference. If you think of what you're doing as a diet, chances are you will gain the weight back. Most doctors who have seen people keep the weight off are very compliant with the way they eat and don't go on and off it at will. Most times, doctors like to see you keep it off for at east a year.

I went thru a period in 2011 where I gained back a bunch of weight, enough so that it was pulling and hurting around my naval. It was an eye opener. I will always have to be vigilant with the eating plan I chose. It is a no matter what thing for me today.
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Old 05-01-2013, 07:14 AM   #1158
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MaryMary-totally understand the way of eating-I lost all my weight 7 years ago--it has been this year fighting this battle of the gain of 20 lbs and that I think has been due to the change in my synthroid which the doc decreased 4 times in the last year--I gained a few pounds with each decrease and I am really noticing how hard it is now to take the pounds off--I am not a person to exercise but this time I believe it is going to take some exercise to make the pounds vanish--it won't kill me to start walking--and I know it will help for the surgery too. thanks for all your input--I am thrilled with all the suggestions here!
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Old 05-07-2013, 03:08 AM   #1159
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I never had the weight loss surgery, just the pannicukectomy, and face/neck lift after I lost the weight and kept if off for at least a year.
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Old 05-07-2013, 03:20 AM   #1160
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I've never had weight loss surgery either. Just changed my eating habits and got more exercise into me!

I'm going for my panniculectomy and thigh surgery tomorrow morning!! Wish me luck girls!!
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Old 05-07-2013, 04:15 AM   #1161
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I've never had weight loss surgery either. Just changed my eating habits and got more exercise into me!

I'm going for my panniculectomy and thigh surgery tomorrow morning!! Wish me luck girls!!
You'll do great, Heidi!
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Old 05-07-2013, 06:40 AM   #1162
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Heidi you are in my prayers. You are smart to do it all at once.
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Old 05-07-2013, 08:04 AM   #1163
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Good luck Heidi, I am excited for you. In a short time you will be so glad you have had this done.
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Old 05-07-2013, 01:15 PM   #1164
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Good Luck Heidi--all your efforts will be rewarded tomorrow--keep us informed of your progress when you are able--you will be in my thoughts and prayers for a speedy recovery.
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Old 05-07-2013, 04:35 PM   #1165
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Heidi!!
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:08 PM   #1166
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Heidi, sending good healing vibes for you this week!
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Old 05-07-2013, 10:10 PM   #1167
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Good Luck Heidi!!!
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Old 05-09-2013, 10:03 AM   #1168
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Well I've finally made it through all 39 pages of this thread! And before I say anything else, I want to say you guys are amazing and really appreciate the way you've bared the gory details for the rest of our benefit.

I found this thread as a trying to figure out recovery time for different skin removals/lifts and after reading all that you guys have been through, I think I've got a pretty good idea of what is ahead of me.

I have only just recently reached the point in my weight loss journey where I feel comfortable talking to plastic surgeon about my options. I've already been told by my primary care physician that there's no way my insurance (Tri-care Prime through the military) will pay for skin removal. I do have the option of getting the surgery done at a reduced rate at a military hospital in Virginia but the waiting list could be upwards of a year or more. I think I'm going to try and get on the waiting list and spend the waiting period paying off debt and saving up and who knows, if I save up enough I might be able to just pay for it all out of pocket.

Just a little background, I had RNY gastric bypass (covered 100% by insurance) July 6, 2012. My official starting weight was 311 at 5'6 1/2'' but I was 317 before going through the pre-surgery diet. Since then, I've lost 126 lbs, weighing in at 185.0 this morning. I want to be at 179 by July 4th, which I should be able to manage. And I think between my body type and eventual skin removal, I should be able to get down to the 150s-160s.

I know I'm still out, time wise from getting skin removal but I'm hoping that by the time I get the money together, I'll be a good candidate. And I can't wait to get the amazing results you ladies have managed to achieve.
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Old 05-09-2013, 10:21 AM   #1169
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Well I've finally made it through all 39 pages of this thread! And before I say anything else, I want to say you guys are amazing and really appreciate the way you've bared the gory details for the rest of our benefit.

I found this thread as a trying to figure out recovery time for different skin removals/lifts and after reading all that you guys have been through, I think I've got a pretty good idea of what is ahead of me.

I have only just recently reached the point in my weight loss journey where I feel comfortable talking to plastic surgeon about my options. I've already been told by my primary care physician that there's no way my insurance (Tri-care Prime through the military) will pay for skin removal. I do have the option of getting the surgery done at a reduced rate at a military hospital in Virginia but the waiting list could be upwards of a year or more. I think I'm going to try and get on the waiting list and spend the waiting period paying off debt and saving up and who knows, if I save up enough I might be able to just pay for it all out of pocket.

Just a little background, I had RNY gastric bypass (covered 100% by insurance) July 6, 2012. My official starting weight was 311 at 5'6 1/2'' but I was 317 before going through the pre-surgery diet. Since then, I've lost 126 lbs, weighing in at 185.0 this morning. I want to be at 179 by July 4th, which I should be able to manage. And I think between my body type and eventual skin removal, I should be able to get down to the 150s-160s.

I know I'm still out, time wise from getting skin removal but I'm hoping that by the time I get the money together, I'll be a good candidate. And I can't wait to get the amazing results you ladies have managed to achieve.
Congratulations on your weight loss AND for reading this whole thread! I think you are very wise to wait another year as you are not even a year out from your WLS. I was two years out from my surgery when I started my cosmetic procedures. Your body changes both inside and out after WLS. You need to make sure all your vitamin levels are good and you have maintained your loss and leveled out before skin procedures... in my opinion.

Good luck!
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Old 05-09-2013, 12:54 PM   #1170
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Hi everyone! I'm at my parents recouping right now! Thanks for all the prayers and well-wishes! From what I can see it looks awesome! Can't wait to see it in another couple of weeks! Not too much pain more of a burning lol Worst part was waking up blech!! I guess it doesn't agree with me! I took before pics will take afters and post them in a few weeks. Will post more info when I get home as my mom's netbook sucks lol
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