This sharepost is part of a series about total body contouring plastic surgery that My Bariatric Life underwent following massive weight loss.
This trio of images show me before, then 4-months after a tummy tuck, and 6-weeks after an upper/lower body lift and inner thigh lift.
My hours spent in the hospital recovery room were pleasant. I was fully conscious and talking with the nurses, who were feeding me turkey and applesauce. It was not at all like when I awoke in the recovery room after my tummy tuck, barely conscious and in terrible pain.
I had been through nearly 7-hours of surgery. Every appendage on my body was incised and stitched and my torso was incised and stitched in several places. There were more than 400 stitches in all and I felt good. The only pain that I had was that my tail bone was on fire! This presumably was owing to my butt lift, which stretched the skin tight on my tail bone.
The nurse slipped a donut under my buttocks to relieve the pressure off my tailbone. It did not seem to help. The pain was bad. Add to that, I could not tolerate the pain killers. Even with Zofran, an antiemetic drug, I felt very nauseous from any of the narcotics the nurses tried on me.
I was transferred to a care center where I would spend the next four nights until I was able to care for myself on my own. After that, I would spend the next 10 nights alone at a hotel. At the care center I refused any further narcotics. I was feeling so fine that I went online to blog about my surgery.
But at 2am I was struck with intense pain in my upper abdomen. This was not even an area that was operated on, but the body reacts in odd ways to trauma. It felt as though there was a pulling from the incised area in my lower torso, and the pain crept across my abdomen. When I touched the area I cried out. I cried on and off from 2am to 6am. Without the use of my arms I was unable to even wipe my tear-soaked hair from my face and neck. I questioned why I had let myself become incapacitated like this, and that made me cry even more as I lay there unable to move.
Later that day, my surgeon prescribed a non-narcotic pain reliever for me. It helped to take the edge off but was not strong enough for deep pain management. So I had another rough night in the care center.
After that second night, my surgeon removed my bandages from my arms and thighs, and the binder and surgical bra from my torso. The nurse removed my catheter and an aide gave me a shower. I felt like a new woman and I was up and walking, albeit hunched over. I had some minimal pain at the incision sites but truly after that second night I was pain-free.
Across the next two days I gained my stability and mobility. I was still hunched over owing to how tight my surgeon pulled my body lift, but I was able to take care of myself. So I was released from the care center and spent the remainder of my two weeks of recovery in a nearby hotel, alone, so that I could be near my surgeon if any acute issues arose.
Nothing serious happened across the next ten days of recovery. My surgeon pulled my two sets of drains, one at one-week post op and the other at two-weeks post op. He was happy with how good my incisions looked and that everything went so well.
I flew home at the very end of October. I’d been gone for more than a month. And as luck would have it, I had a complication my first night home.
Living life well-fed,
My Bariatric Life
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Published On: December 15, 2013