Melina89

excess skin and surgery to remove?

34 posts in this topic

Hello everyone,

 

I am looking for some advice. I had my surgery 5/20/14. Start weight 351lbs. Now 170lbs. My goal is 150lbs but I am happy with the 170lbs. I have a lot of excess skin including upper arms, stomach, thighs, calf's, butt area, and lower back. I am thinking of having plastic surgery to have the excess skin removed. Mainly my arms and stomach due to infections.

My question's are

1. how long after surgery should the skin be removed?

2. What kind of outcome should I expect? Scars? and how bad?

3. What are the chances of surgery covering any portion of it?

4. Or how much did you have to pay?

5. are you happy with the results?

6. How long did you need to be off of work?

 

Thank you in advance for any advice :) 

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On 10/3/2016 at 4:36 PM, Melina89 said:

Hello everyone,

 

I am looking for some advice. I had my surgery 5/20/14. Start weight 351lbs. Now 170lbs. My goal is 150lbs but I am happy with the 170lbs. I have a lot of excess skin including upper arms, stomach, thighs, calf's, butt area, and lower back. I am thinking of having plastic surgery to have the excess skin removed. Mainly my arms and stomach due to infections.

My question's are

1. how long after surgery should the skin be removed?

2. What kind of outcome should I expect? Scars? and how bad?

3. What are the chances of surgery covering any portion of it?

4. Or how much did you have to pay?

5. are you happy with the results?

6. How long did you need to be off of work?

 

Thank you in advance for any advice :) 

I'd like to know this too.

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Get a consult with 2-3 plastic surgeons and ask all these questions of him/her to get the most accurate answers for your particular situation. 

For me:

1. how long after surgery should the skin be removed?  1 year for the first round

2. What kind of outcome should I expect? Scars? and how bad?  Every skin is different. My abd didn;t scar much, my arms scarred a lot. Hence, lots of tattoo to cover up

3. What are the chances of surgery covering any portion of it? All cash for me

4. Or how much did you have to pay? $19K for all of it

5. are you happy with the results? Hell yes! Though, not everyone gets this good of results, and 11 yeas later, age still catches up.

6. How long did you need to be off of work? I had complications, working as a nurse, 3 months for the lower body lift. When I did my arms, just 2 weeks as I wasn't lifting anything at my job thenHpim0489.jpg

Right Arm Tattoo.jpg

belt back.JPG

Clickin, Cheesehead, LeeC and 2 others like this

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UPDATE

I had gone ahead and met with a plastic surgeon to see if I could get some of these questions answered. The surgeon was really nice. He spent about 30-40 minutes with me in the room for the assessment of the areas I wanted worked on and answering my questions.

1. how long after surgery should the skin be removed? surgeon said 1 year or more at the weight you want to be on is best

2. What kind of outcome should I expect? Scars? and how bad? Scars are expected with any surgery. Healing is different with everyone and taking care of yourself and the scars with help with the healing process.

3. What are the chances of surgery covering any portion of it? He said some may be covered depending on how much documentation I have and my providers support. He said a personal letter from your provider would help. If not covered he said $5000 for legs, $5000 for arms, and $6000 for stomach (including upper and lower as well as having to move the belly button)

6. How long did you need to be off of work? for arms and legs usually 2 weeks. abdomen is more like 3 weeks.

Well I went through the process. I submitted all the office visits over the last 2.5 years documenting infections and problems with the extra skin. I had both of the doctors I have had (had to switch clinics a year ago due to insurance) write a letter regarding everything starting with surgery (I had some really great and supportive docs). It took about a month to hear back. They APPROVED the arms and legs YAY. but denied the abdomen. The doctors office said they would do an appeal. A week later we heard back and it was APPROVED as well. YAY again. I can't believe it. I am beyond shocked and excited. I have decided to go through the surgeries. The arms and legs will be done together. The abdomen will be done in about 3 months (recommended waiting 3 months between the two surgeries to allow time for healing). My first surgery is scheduled for February 2nd. I will be off work for about 2 weeks depending on how recovery goes. I will try to post before and after pictures if there are people who are interested and let you know how they go. Thank you for those who answered my questions.

Snippets, Minfit, tkk54915 and 4 others like this

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Hi, thanks for all the information, super helpful. What kind of insurance coverage do you have HMO or PPO? Who is your carrier? Thanks in advance for your time. 

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5 minutes ago, Ruby-red said:

Hi, thanks for all the information, super helpful. What kind of insurance coverage do you have HMO or PPO? Who is your carrier? Thanks in advance for your time. 

Preferred one. PPO

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Fantastic!!! So excited for you.

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On 1/13/2017 at 11:55 PM, Melina89 said:

UPDATE

I had gone ahead and met with a plastic surgeon to see if I could get some of these questions answered. The surgeon was really nice. He spent about 30-40 minutes with me in the room for the assessment of the areas I wanted worked on and answering my questions.

1. how long after surgery should the skin be removed? surgeon said 1 year or more at the weight you want to be on is best

2. What kind of outcome should I expect? Scars? and how bad? Scars are expected with any surgery. Healing is different with everyone and taking care of yourself and the scars with help with the healing process.

3. What are the chances of surgery covering any portion of it? He said some may be covered depending on how much documentation I have and my providers support. He said a personal letter from your provider would help. If not covered he said $5000 for legs, $5000 for arms, and $6000 for stomach (including upper and lower as well as having to move the belly button)

6. How long did you need to be off of work? for arms and legs usually 2 weeks. abdomen is more like 3 weeks.

Well I went through the process. I submitted all the office visits over the last 2.5 years documenting infections and problems with the extra skin. I had both of the doctors I have had (had to switch clinics a year ago due to insurance) write a letter regarding everything starting with surgery (I had some really great and supportive docs). It took about a month to hear back. They APPROVED the arms and legs YAY. but denied the abdomen. The doctors office said they would do an appeal. A week later we heard back and it was APPROVED as well. YAY again. I can't believe it. I am beyond shocked and excited. I have decided to go through the surgeries. The arms and legs will be done together. The abdomen will be done in about 3 months (recommended waiting 3 months between the two surgeries to allow time for healing). My first surgery is scheduled for February 2nd. I will be off work for about 2 weeks depending on how recovery goes. I will try to post before and after pictures if there are people who are interested and let you know how they go. Thank you for those who answered my questions.

This is amazing. Lots of plastic surgeon practices will not work with insurance -- mine did not. Please tell us who this doctor is so that other's have a place to start with a practice that is willing to assist. I hope that you get everything you hope for!!

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4 hours ago, My Bariatric Life said:

This is amazing. Lots of plastic surgeon practices will not work with insurance -- mine did not. Please tell us who this doctor is so that other's have a place to start with a practice that is willing to assist. I hope that you get everything you hope for!!

I went to Dr. Choudry in maple grove Minnesota. He was really nice. Explained all the options. I told him what I wanted and he gave me the recommendations. Explained their process for getting things submitted to insurance. Very informative. He spent a lot of time with me. Explaining everything and answering questions. 

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You have a VERY nice figure! Who was your plastic surgeon? 

 

On 12/30/2016 at 11:05 AM, lealphachienne said:

Get a consult with 2-3 plastic surgeons and ask all these questions of him/her to get the most accurate answers for your particular situation. 

For me:

1. how long after surgery should the skin be removed?  1 year for the first round

2. What kind of outcome should I expect? Scars? and how bad?  Every skin is different. My abd didn;t scar much, my arms scarred a lot. Hence, lots of tattoo to cover up

3. What are the chances of surgery covering any portion of it? All cash for me

4. Or how much did you have to pay? $19K for all of it

5. are you happy with the results? Hell yes! Though, not everyone gets this good of results, and 11 yeas later, age still catches up.

6. How long did you need to be off of work? I had complications, working as a nurse, 3 months for the lower body lift. When I did my arms, just 2 weeks as I wasn't lifting anything at my job thenHpim0489.jpg

Right Arm Tattoo.jpg

belt back.JPG

 

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2 hours ago, Melina89 said:

I went to Dr. Choudry in maple grove Minnesota. He was really nice. Explained all the options. I told him what I wanted and he gave me the recommendations. Explained their process for getting things submitted to insurance. Very informative. He spent a lot of time with me. Explaining everything and answering questions. 

Wonderful to hear! I look forward to seeing your results!!

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Just gotta say, it's so weird to me that they approved the arms and legs and denied the abdomen. In my mind, it would seem like there would be more infections and such in the ab area. But I'm not a doc or insurance company. :)

Good luck and I'm so glad you got approved. My surgery is 02/27--full abdominoplasty with lipo, tightening the ab muscles, etc. I have to pay on my own since my employer has specifically excluded coverage from our insurance policy, even if it's medically necessary. (One could argue mine isn't "medically" necessary, since I really haven't had any issues other than it being in the way, PITA to shop for pants, etc.) My cost will be about 7,000.00 and it's done on an outpatient basis.

 

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On ‎1‎/‎16‎/‎2017 at 1:51 PM, CTGirl74 said:

Just gotta say, it's so weird to me that they approved the arms and legs and denied the abdomen. In my mind, it would seem like there would be more infections and such in the ab area. But I'm not a doc or insurance company. :)

Good luck and I'm so glad you got approved. My surgery is 02/27--full abdominoplasty with lipo, tightening the ab muscles, etc. I have to pay on my own since my employer has specifically excluded coverage from our insurance policy, even if it's medically necessary. (One could argue mine isn't "medically" necessary, since I really haven't had any issues other than it being in the way, PITA to shop for pants, etc.) My cost will be about 7,000.00 and it's done on an outpatient basis.

 

I found it strange too as most of my infections were in the abdominal area. The person I spoke to at the clinic said that they are seeing a lot more approvals for arms and legs. I am not sure what else they had submitted to get the abd approved i'm just glad it did :)

 

Good luck with your surgery. That is a good price for everything you are having done. My surgeon said that without insurance coverage it would be $5-6000 for just the abd.

 

Hope you will share your results with us too. I am planning on posting before and after pictures once all is done.

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Insurance would not cover mine;  or rather....at this current point in time they would not cover.  Had I more official documentation on the rashes I got it very very likely would have been.  But with my high deducible it wasn't really worth fighting, imo.   Abdominoplasty (no muscle repair) was 6800 up here on the Range  (northern MN) which I paid out of pocket.

I was still considered obese when I had this done; despite losing 200lbs but the doctor was perfectly willing and fine doing this even though I wasn't at goal weight considered where I started and where I was.  Likewise I was not under the impression I'd have a bikini bod after.  15lbs of skin was removed from my abdomen.  I'm still a bit squishy and 'chunky' I guess you could say but again, I did not do this at ideal weight.  I am so very very very thrilled I did it regardless. 

Can read more of my journey and plastic surgery pictures in my thread: 

 

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22 hours ago, Melina89 said:

Hope you will share your results with us too. I am planning on posting before and after pictures once all is done.

Yes I plan to! 

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Before pictures. Surgery is tomorrow. I will post after pictures some time next week. 

IMG_8239.JPG

IMG_8241.JPG

IMG_8243.JPG

IMG_8245.JPG

Edited by Melina89
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Good luck!!

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Good luck!

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On Wednesday, February 01, 2017 at 8:59 PM, Melina89 said:

Before pictures. Surgery is tomorrow. I will post after pictures some time next week. 

IMG_8239.JPG

IMG_8241.JPG

IMG_8243.JPG

IMG_8245.JPG

Just seeing how you are feeling

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19 hours ago, chriss said:

Just seeing how you are feeling

Surgery went well. It took me a while to wake from anesthesia and I had a lot of pain while waking up. They had to try a couple of different meds to find the ones that worked. They kept me overnight. Cause the iv pain meds were the only ones helping with the pain. Surgery was Thursday and I got discharged Friday afternoon once I was off iv. They told me the first 24 hours would be the worst and they were right. I have pain, swelling, drains on my legs. It has gotten better. And hopefully continue to get better as the weekend goes by. I am completely wrapped up so not sure what it looks like underneath. Once I am better I will try to post after pics and once I have healed a lot more with final result. Wish me luck the pain goes away and the healing and recovery go quick. 

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congrats on your surgery. hope you are recovering and feeling better.

i did my stomach and then breasts.  best thing i ever did.  scars are so worth it and I feel good about me.  Getting dressed is a pleasure and I don't hide behind large sweatshirts and jeans anymore.

I am in Europe so while insurance did cover some costs, i ended up paying about 10,000 euros myself for three different surgeries.  that includes next week's surgery which will remove dog ears created by breast reduction and inner thigh lift.

i wish I had never had all the problems which led to my gaining and losing large amounts of weight various times in my life... which then led to decision to have gastric bypass.  I wish I had not had to have several surgeries to correct a lifetime of bad living.  but, I am grateful it is possible.  even at my age.

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On 6-2-2017 at 11:16 AM, shmooshy said:

i wish I had never had all the problems which led to my gaining and losing large amounts of weight various times in my life... which then led to decision to have gastric bypass.  I wish I had not had to have several surgeries to correct a lifetime of bad living.  but, I am grateful it is possible.  even at my age.

I'm still pre-op, but I so agree with you on this. 

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It has been a week since my surgery. The first few days were the worse/best because of the pain/pain meds. Slept most of the time and rested. Doing a lot better now. Just down to Tylenol once in a while for pain. Now the itching has started. Have my 1 week follow up tomorrow, hopefully to get the drains from my legs removed. Wish me luck. Next week hopefully the tape and staples will be removed. 

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If you need something to read while you recover, here is my recovery story http://www.mybariatriclife.org/recovering-from-my-body-lift-with-dr-joseph-capella/ I had body lift, arm lift, breast lift, and inner thigh lift. All of me! Happy healing to you!

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So i started off at 234 piunds im down to 160 by excercising and eating better. No gastro bypass or sleeve. Just want healthier life. I want surgery for tummy tuck an doc said he would have to do all way around and that he cld remove my birth defect i was born with innthe process. Well insurance wont cover it because they state it is not medically necessary. I am at the appeal state. Any advice. I get sore in my defect and my belly button. I also now have pain in my bottom and my birth defect from weight loss. Im at. A loss all this work and i feel im at stand still. The doctor said that no matter amount of excercise i wont get my excess skin gone without surgery. What do i do, i feel that this will cause my depression to come back and  will fall back into old habits. anyone have answers.

 

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