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Posted By: NOMO OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 04:07 PM
Just a question for the women – I will be having a hysterectomy in March and was considering getting a tummy tuck at the same time. I have already spoken with a Plastic surgeon – he was recommended to me by my gynecologist. He is board certified and has exemplary credentials. I am just wondering how many women has had both procedures or one of the procedures and was it worth it?

I know the hysterectomy is my only option, my periods are very debilitating and I do not want any more children. My uterus is so enlarged with fibroids, it is if I am in my 4th month of pregnancy. I just want to never have a period every again, my quality of life would definitely improve.

My main question concern the tummy tuck. It is considered major surgery and is quite painful. I have tried diet and exercise to reduce my tummy, doing cardio and crunchers, leg ups, sit ups etc every day for the last three years. My rolls would not disappear. Per the doctor, it is because of my three pregnancies, the skin is all stretched out and no amount of exercise will make it smaller.
Originally posted by NOMO:
I am just wondering how many women has had both procedures or one of the procedures and was it worth it?

I am sorry you are in so much pain with the uterus and such - I can relate as 2 years ago I had ovarian cysts and one as big as a grapefruit removed...

The tummy tuck: My 2 Cents, take it or leave it: [Smile] I have had 3 children as well. I have gotten as thin as a rail and still had that flabby tummy of stretched skin hanging there as a reminder. Some of us are blessed with that, some peoples skin just goes back in place. I am dieting once again (no longer thin as a rail [Smile] and when I reach my goal weight and maintain it for a while, not only am I getting a TUMMY TUCK, I am also getting lasers to see if they can't get the road map of stretch marks off my tummy. I'm also considering lifting the boobs as well, as gravity, babies and breastfeeding brought them down waaay before they should have [Smile] ...

That is me. I'm doing it for me, I've been planning it ever since I had child number one, but wanted to wait until I was done having kids. I see no reason why I should not have the body I used to look at in the mirror and smile and say (WOW GIRLIE you've got it going on [Smile] ... and I shall again!!!!

Go for it, you deserve it!
Posted By: NOMO Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 05:11 PM
Thanks, TOHM, I feel the same way. I am in my 40s and gravity and three babies have taken their toll. I did consider the boob job, but now am backing out. I only want to go under the knife once, if I can help it. With breast augmentation, there is a great chance that you will have to have surgery again after a few years. I balked at this, I will leave the breast area alone.

I am a great coward when it comes to surgery, if I was not getting the hysterectomy, I would have never considered getting a tummy tuck.
Posted By: SidneyT Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 05:26 PM
I had a tummy tuck about 5 years ago and I only have good things to say about it. Yes, it really hurts for quite a while but the results are worth it.

As for stretch marks, a lot of the time when you get a tummy tuck they cut off so much skin that you wouldn't need laser treatments, of course this depends on how high up on your stomach the stretch marks are.

I just had my second baby 1 year ago, and (thankfully) my stomach pretty much snapped back to where it was supposed to. If you have any questions I'd be happy to answer them.
Posted By: NOMO Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 05:32 PM
Thanks for responding Shelmath. Just a few questions-did your stomach get as flat as you thought it should? Did you also have liposuction on the hips and back area as well? How long did your swelling last, and how long was it before you could wear jeans etc.

As you can tell, I have a lot of questions. I would not want to bombard you too much, so I will just start with those [Eek!]
Posted By: GirlGardener Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 05:49 PM
Wow Nomo,
I am going to watch this thread to read your responses. I am in the same boat with fibroids, need a hysterectomy and want that tummy tuck too!

Did your gynocologist say that you could have both procedures done at the same time? I have not asked yet bacause I am putting the surgery off for awhile until I can be off work for the needed time.

Maybe we could do a group surgery outing and make it a girls weekend out! [Wink]
Posted By: SidneyT Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/29/04 06:03 AM

My stomach was actually even flatter than I could have ever imagined....and boy was it tight (it was @ 3-4 weeks before I could even stand up straight...aside from the pain factor, it was so tight it felt like the stitches might rip apart if I did).

The swelling lasted a long time....they say you won't see final results for a few months and that is true. They had me wear a binder to help with the swelling, so that prevented me from wearing jeans or anything form-fitting for @6-8 weeks....BUT I made the mistake of going back to work way too soon...and I believe this prolonged my swelling/recovery even more. So I would definately suggest following their instructions for best results!

I did not get lipo on the hips and back area at the time of my tummy tuck...but I did go back later and get that done because things were just too out of proportion. I would highly recommend getting that done at the same time. I always was a little ticked-off that my surgeon didn't recommend that, because it definately seems necessary.
Posted By: mineownself Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/29/04 06:17 AM
I'm totally unqualified to have an opinion, never having had children. I used to be against the idea of most plastic surgeries in general. But I've seen what 3 pregnancies can do to the skin in that area, and on some people it just stays that way. If I were in your situation, I'd almost certainly get it at the same time as the other surgery since I had to go under the knife anyway.

I guess I consider it about the same as a friend of mine who had breast reduction. They were big enough to always be getting in the way, and the support they needed during exercise made interfered with her motivation to exercise. With something like that that exercise and diet can't change, I think it's worth considering the fact that you will very likely be living with it for another 50 years -- do you want it getting in your way all that time?

Just my $.02...
Posted By: marriedandlonely* Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/29/04 06:25 AM
I had the hysterectomy 2+ years ago. I too had fibroids..the size of a honeydew melon [Eek!] They thought it was the size of a volleyball before surgery. I was told I was the size of a 4 mo. pregnancy.

I'm glad I had it done...never thought of a tummy tuck though...darn it! I don't know, that would be a lot but better than doing it twice..which for me wouldn't happen. (maybe if I have to get ovaries out someday I'll think about that one [Wink] )
I didn't have insurance for the surgery so I guess "cosmetic" stuff was not an option anyway.
Posted By: NOMO Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/29/04 06:41 AM

Thanks for the answers. Part of the cost estimate was for garments – I guess similar to the binders you are talking about. When you said you went back to work too early, how early was it? Since I am having a hysterectomy, I will have a six week sick leave. Is that enough time? When were you able to work out again, from everything I have read on the internet, they suggest working out the abdominal muscles to help healing faster. I can’t imagine trying to do sit ups when trying to recover.

Did you stay in the hospital overnight? What about your sex life, how long before you would even consider having sex? Did you have a mini tummy tuck or a full tummy tuck. I have heard of the pubis swelling after the tummy tuck, did that happen to you. Did you drop a couple of dress sizes after the surgery due to the inches lost off your waist?

I told you I had a lot of questions. Thanks for hanging in there with me, you are really helping me [Big Grin]
Posted By: NOMO Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/29/04 06:48 AM

I felt the same way about plastic surgery as you did. I felt I could live with the body God gave me, and keep it in the best possible shape through a healthy diet and exercise program. When I considered getting a boob job also, I researched the procedure and determined that I am so careful about my diet, why would I want to insert a foreign substance into my chest. My breasts are small and not perfect, but they are mine.

Thanks for your support. Most of my friends are against the surgery, you don’t need it, you look fine they tell me.
Posted By: NOMO Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/29/04 06:58 AM

Wow, you had the same problems as I am currently having with fibroids. Did you notice a substantial change after the hysterectomy – did you have a partial or full hysterectomy. I am leaving my ovaries in, so would not have to have hormone replacement therapy. I am hoping to avoid some of the effects of the surgery that I have heard about, such as dry skin, lower sex drive etc. Can you speak to any of that? How long did it take you to recover from the surgery? Did you stomach seem smaller after the surgery, since the mass of fibroids were removed with the hysterectomy? Did your fibroids press upon your bladder pre surgery? Were your bladder symptoms relieved post surgery?
Posted By: marriedandlonely* Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 07:46 PM
I kept the ovaries because, like you, I didn't want to go through HR. I read a lot about that and just didn't want to go there. Plus, they aren't broke [Smile]

Sex drive...hard to say. A lot happened in my life at the time I had the surgery. It was less than 2 months after d-day, diagnosed with the fibroids (spent a week and a half thinking it may be cancerous and huge), and then after the surgery I was going to counseling and then on anti-depression meds. Doc said no sex for 6 weeks...but we cheated [Big Grin] I would say sex drive is the same.

The tummy did go down a lot after the swelling went away. It was great. I now have a tummy again and I'm not sure why. I've heard the fibroids can grow again on the ovaries...I hope not for me. I wasn't sure if it was the meds but I am off the meds now and it's still there.

As for the bladder thing. I happened to mention to my doc the week before that maybe it would quit pushin on my bladder and a lot of questions after that. I figured having the blob (my kids named it the alien) gone would fix that. Doc said not. So, after a barrage of questions and tests, I had a bladder suspension during the surgery. That was worth it! But, I had to stay longer in the hospital (3 nights total) because of it. But, I could cough and sneeze and not have to cross my legs! [Smile]

You are waiting until March...I couldn't wait until my surgery-once I found out it was in there I just wanted it gone. And I think it grew much faster that before d-day because of the stress...but I'm not sure.

Hope this helps. You are wise to ask a lot of questions.

Oh, one thing I regret is having my appendix out. Doc said I didn't need it, we're there anyway, don't want to have to do it in an emergency blah blah blah. I wish I hadn't agreed to that. Not because I'm having any problems but it wasn't broke and we took it out and threw it away. Now what if I need it? [Big Grin]
Posted By: me&him Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 08:03 PM
All I have to say to this, is you go girl.
I too have that dreaded extra tummy skin, that no matter how hard i work out, cannot not get to go away. I also have stretch marks. I hate my tummy, and can't wear those little bikinis anymore because of it. I think some day I would really like to get that fixed, as well as a nice little boob job. [Smile] Good luck on yours.
Posted By: SidneyT Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 08:05 PM
Those are really great questions, NOMO.
I returned back to work after only @ 1 1/2 weeks...WAY too soon. I can imagine that the 6 weeks you have will be more than ample...of course I don't have the experience with the added hysterectomy.

It seems like I started working out again after several weeks...I just stuck to walking and light weights. I can't remember exactly what the rule was on ab work, but it seems like I had absolutely no desire to do anything that even resembled a sit up or crunch for a very long time. Your Dr. will tell you how long to wait.

I had it at an out-patient surgery center, so I left later that same day. Really important to have lots of good help...someone that can help around the house and with the kids as well as someone who is not grossed-out by blood (dressing changes and drainage tubes).

I was divorced at the time, so sex was not an issue. Again, your Dr. will tell you how long to wait. I had the full tummy tuck, and my Dr. pulled up the pubis as part of the surgery, because that part gets stretched out a lot during pregnancy, too. (I think I had some swelling here, as well, but it went away fast).

I didn't really drop any dress sizes that I noticed, I just had a cleaner, more sleek fit to the clothes I had (I was normal weight and only had a stretched stomach from one pregnancy at the time, so the results were only really noticable sans clothing). Of course, the more a person has to "tuck", the more drastic the changes will be appearance-wise and in clothing size.
Posted By: Nina too Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 08:46 PM
I wanted a tummy tuck at the same time too, but was told it was not done here. My gyno told me that a hysterectomy was major surgery on its own, and both together were too risky.

Go to a site called for great advice on hysterectomies. It's a forum board, and has a lot of information.

You can expect a three month recovery period from a hysterectomy. Your wound should be healed by six weeks, but you really won't have a lot of energy for longer. So you may need more than 6 weeks off work, or when you do go back, do it in a gradual way.

Love and light,

Posted By: NOMO Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 09:28 PM
Married and Lonely,

Thanks for answering my questions so patiently. Wow, it does seem odd that they removed your appendix just because they were in there [Confused] ? That makes no sense. I will certainly ask my gynecologist about the bladder suspension thing. I am not incontinent, just go to the bathroom four or five times a night, every night [Eek!] . I tried the new drugs like detol (sp) but it did not work for me. I am heartened to hear that your stomach did decrease after the surgery, so you did not need a tummy tuck.

Thanks for your support. I believe I am going for it [Big Grin]



You have been so patient, thank you [Big Grin] . I just have a few more questions [Big Grin] :

What type of garments did you wear during recovery. I read on an internet site that I need to have extra large, full waisted cotton panties to accommodate the swelling and drainage tubes. How did you feel about anything on your trunk, especially waist bands and seams.

Did you have to sleep sitting up for a few days? Did you have an appetite? Were you restricted in what you could eat? How long before you were able to shower?

One last question – I promise [Eek!] , did you recommend having a professional nurse to take care of the bandages, drainage tubes for the first couple of days? Do you think it is worth the expense and expertise?
Posted By: NOMO Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/28/04 09:31 PM
Nina too,

Thank you for posting. Wow, I cannot believe this double procedure is banned in Australia – I believe that is where you are? I will certainly go to the web site you have recommended, thanks. There is quite a growing trend here to have more than one procedure done at a time to minimize costs and sick time. I will certainly do a lot more research on this based on what you have said.

Posted By: SidneyT Re: OT-Hysterectomy and Tummy Tuck - 01/29/04 04:47 PM
The garment I had was like a big waist binder. It was kind of heavy-duty elastic with velcro and I needed someone to help me put it on at first to make sure it was snug enough.

I don't think I even bothered with underwear the first few days, but later I ended up wearing big, loose panties (I wore my old pregnancy/post c-section underwear...they will get blood-stained from the incision and drainage tubes). I specifically remember not wanting to wear anything with a waist-band for a very long time (between the swelling, the garment and the incision). I wore old maternity shorts and later I wore waistless dresses to work.

The first week or two I did sleep propped up in a semi-sitting position (either in bed or on the couch)with tons of pillows around me. I think you can eat normally as soon as you have an appetite, but I remember living on saltines and Sprite for the first few days (I hate anesthesia and how it makes me feel). I remember they said I could take a shower right away, but it didn't seem right (pain and incision), so I waited a couple of days.

Finally, no, I didn't recommend hiring a professional nurse, just make sure you have someone there to help you out and who can tolerate blood without being grossed out...I had a friend help me and she was wonderful. You will need help with EVERYTHING at first...moving, sitting, standing, walking, bathroom, dressing changes, emptying drainage tubes, etc.
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