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I'm suffering because of vanity 😫

It's more than that, really, but that's what it boils down to.

I had surgery for gynecomastia yesterday morning. And more. The office talked me into getting additional lipo since gynecomastia surgery already involves that.

I developed asymmetrical breast tissue growth suddenly in the fall of 2020. It was most likely induced by a drug I took (cimetidine/Tagamet) to control my mast cell activation syndrome. However, I told my dad when I made the decision to do this and he said he is happy for me and he wishes he had had it done 30-40 years ago...! I didn't even realize he has this condition.

The left breast was close to twice the size of the right, primarily breast tissue and not fatty tissue. I had to have a mammogram and an ultrasound when it suddenly appeared to make sure it wasn't inflammatory breast cancer.

So anyway, here I am now, wearing two very tight compression garments (medical Spanx, basically) and feeling like I have the worst sunburn of my life.

I am 5'11" and I weighed in at 167 yesterday morning when I arrived at the surgeon's office.

They were really surprised that they were able to suck TWO LITERS of fat out of me, and today I weigh 176 from all the swelling my body is doing to cope with the trauma.

Posting here because why not.

If anyone has questions about gynecomastia surgery or liposuction, feel free to ask.

by Anonymousreply 56March 26, 2023 1:37 AM

Reddit has good support subs for gyno

by Anonymousreply 1March 11, 2023 1:18 AM

R1 It was very uncomfortable. My left boob felt heavy and it woild go through periods of a throbbing soreness and aching. It took me a few years but I decided it had to go.

by Anonymousreply 2March 11, 2023 1:19 AM

Why don't you talk more about your menstruation OP? Everybody [bold]loves[/bold] that topic on Datalounge.

by Anonymousreply 3March 11, 2023 1:38 AM

Sorry, OP. This sounds painful and unpleasant.

by Anonymousreply 4March 11, 2023 1:40 AM

Don't be so hard on yourself, OP. IMO, doctors understate to their patients how long / painful recovery will be. It's not "vain" for a man to not want womanly breasts. If anything starts feeling infected, especially on a Friday, get in there for a follow-up appointment. (You don't want to be suffering or in the ER over a weekend.)

Take care of yourself and feel free to post in this thread.

by Anonymousreply 5March 11, 2023 2:40 AM

Sorry you've had to go through this,OP. I do hope you recover fast. 🐱my cat Barney sends you love too!

by Anonymousreply 6March 11, 2023 3:01 AM

You do sound like you are suffering terribly. I’m sorry. Miserable time for you and I hope you get to feeling better soon.

by Anonymousreply 7March 11, 2023 3:05 AM

Today is day four. Less pain, lots more itchiness. I've lost about five pounds of water weight.

What a strange adventure.

by Anonymousreply 8March 12, 2023 2:18 PM

OP, I had the same condition and a mastectomy to fix it. But I had lived with the one boob thing for maybe 18 months. This was when I was twenty, in 1980. Always very self-conscious when tricking with someone. And at the tender age of twenty, I was very self conscious as it was anyways. This just made it worse.

The area around my left nipple where the surgeon had made an incision was numb for years. Five years in, I accepted that it could be a permanent numbness. But I was wrong about that. It went away appx three years later.

by Anonymousreply 9March 12, 2023 6:03 PM

My surgery was last Thursday at 7am, so it's now five full days post-op...wow, this has been rough in a lot of ways.

I knew it would be unpleasant, but not exactly like this. I was really dumb in that I invested a lot of time researching gynecomastia surgery, but I didn't read much about liposuction surgery.

I'm sure it was a form of denial. The surgeon's assistant 'upsold' the lipo and I bit. I'm sure that's relativelg common.

The gyno surgery recovery is almost an afterthought because—this should not be a surprise, but it caught me unawares—the lipo surgery was really fucking traumatic to my body.

I am packed into compression garments that I will have to wear for six weeks at least. The doctor put me in a medium one and then decided it was too small so she gave me a small one to take home and change into. I obviously have to change between the two. I ordered another small via Amazon but it will take days to get here.

I'm wearing the medium one and I feel like my body has spread out to fill up all the extra space, although thanks to waking up in absolutely drenched clothes and bedding, I have finally lost a lot of fluid weight and now am a couple of pounds heavier than what I weighed before the surgery.

I woke up with one of the worst (non-cluster, anyway) headaches of my life, in the front of my head. It felt like my skull was being crushed. After Tylenol and coffee and changing out of my wet clothes, I feel better.

My left breast has a sharp pain sometimes depending how I move, which concerns me. It also seems more swollen than the right side, which worries me. My left breast was close to twice the size of the right to begin with, which was the primary reason I had the surgery in the first place. Is it going to regrow? Or what is happening?

I am so dizzy/lightheaded this morning and I feel like there is pressure on my brain. I have no idea why that might be.

I'm also very sad, actually feeling full-on depressed. I worry I made a poor decision. I am looking down and feeling a kind of body dysmorphia, so strangely. The whole point of this was to remove breasts that I felt do not belong to my male body and now I feel like I have abused my body.

This is all so weird.

I am documenting all this here for my own record and in case it is ever helpful to anyone.

by Anonymousreply 10March 14, 2023 10:47 AM

Sorry, OP! This all sounds traumatic and scary, but one day you will look back on this, healed and healthy. Rest and take care. Find something good to watch, an old movie or something, and drink some nice tea. Tea is healing.

by Anonymousreply 11March 14, 2023 10:58 AM

You had the tits removed. Darn, you were so close to becoming a Reddit Sissy.

Offsite Link
by Anonymousreply 12March 14, 2023 11:41 AM

Middle of the night update no one asked for or cares about.

Saw my surgeon for my one-week follow up today. She said everything looks perfect, I am healing perfectly so far and everything that is happening is normal. I told her I feel like I paid someone to butcher my body and I am really having a hard time dealing with it psychologically and she was very kind and understanding and told me that liposuction is "a really hard surgery with a very long and difficult recovery," and she assured me everything that's happening is as expected and she promised I will be very happy when the swelling settles—in three to six months.

It's my fault, and I know it. I considered the gynecomastia surgery for several years before I decided to do it.

I was 'upsold' the liposuction by the surgeon's assistant. It was discounted because I have this bizarre health issue called mast cell activation syndrome that makes me physically allergic to exercise, and she said the doctor said since I would be put under anyway for the breast reduction, she could do this and balance out the proportions of my upper body for something that would make me a lot more confident. I bit.

I am kind of obsessive about medical shit because I've had so many major health complications and this is the only time in my life I made assumptions and did something on a whim.

I'm going to have to call this my poorly considered mid-life crisis.

Since gynecomastia surgery involves liposuction to remove fatty tissue from the breasts, I assumed the recovery would be the same everywhere. So wrong.

The abdominal surgery aftermath is so disturbing to me. It feels disgusting in a way I can't really describe. The only way I can describe it is that it feels like a five-pound Italian cheese has been sewn into my lower abdomen and is just trapped there as a solid block. This is the swelling that will take months to go down. It is painful, like a bruise, but the really awful part is how dense and heavy and solid it is, and in the shower the sensation is nauseating because it's partially numb and partially not.

Aesthetically, with my shirt on, my torso looks *so much better.* I'm also being challenged psychologically to look down and see a totally flat chest. It feels alien to me. But the swelling of my lower abdomen is so pronounced that it sticks out under my shirt like a baby bump. It is so fucking weird.

I have to wear a crotchless medical-grade version of a Spamx bodysuit for five more weeks, 24 hours a day. This obviously adds to the discomfort, especially when sleeping. And I have to sleep at at least a 30-degree angle, again, for six weeks.

Supposedly, I will continue to swell until the three-week mark and then it'll gradually decrease, noticeably by six weeks and then much more noticeably by three months, rounding off between six months and a year. I cannot believe I didn't research the fuck out of this. Liposuction is a very traumatic surgery physically, and results take a very long time to show.

I'm writing this mostly for personal therapy to process what I've chosen to do to my body, and so others who may have some levels of curiosity will have a reference because I weirdly have not found any other detailed testimonials of this experience online.

by Anonymousreply 13March 16, 2023 7:43 AM

OP, I hope you’re feeling at least a tiny bit better every day.

Even if people here on DL are not posting asking for more info, I suspect others are wondering—like I am—what you’re going through and how you’re managing. So keep posting.

I also wanted to say that you shouldn’t beat yourself up for how/when you’ve made these decisions to have surgery.

The reality is there’s no such thing as a perfect decision; you weigh the pros and cons but, no matter what doctors/consultants tell you, an awful lot you want to know in advance cannot be known.

How much pain and discomfort will I feel? How long will the pain last? How successful will the procedure be? Even knowledgeable doctors are only making educated guesses.

My point is I think you’re brave to have decided to take action. Try to be gentle with yourself now as your body (and your emotions) experience so many changes. I’m sure most of us here—except for the most intractable bitches—wish you an ever-speedier recovery. ♥️

by Anonymousreply 14March 16, 2023 8:29 AM

People also find me vain and arrogant. My moobies are not the problem. It's deeper than that.

by Anonymousreply 15March 16, 2023 8:36 AM

Moobies, moobies, moobies! Who needs 'em?

by Anonymousreply 16March 16, 2023 8:50 AM

R14 Thank you. ❤️ That is all very sweet and kind and I appreciate it.

I will keep posting updates because of the reasons I mentioned above, personal documentation and putting this out into the Web for others to come across. One thing about Data Lounge is that it is very well indexed online and so I feel like posting this stuff here will make it discoverable to people who may be considering doing the same.

I am going to be happy about the gynecomastia surgery in the long run as long as there are no medical complications, no doubt about it. Looking in the mirror, I see the chest of a guy and not small, differently sized breasts that do not belong on my body. It's such a good feeling, even though it feels really, really bizarre to have hacked off body parts.

I have to say that this experience has made me feel so much more empathetic with transgender people. Because I am not transgender, and yet I am a man who randomly sprouted small but protruding breasts and it was just fucking w-r-o-n-g and I had to get rid of them since doing that is an option medically. I just had to. It was *not* a body part that matches my psyche. So I can totally relate now to people who feel that way about their body parts. I just happen not to be transgender and to have lived most of my life in a body that did fit before morphing parts that didn't fit.

Anyway. So that part already feels like it was not a bad decision.

The liposuction...I don't know, man.

If there were some way to describe how *disgusting* the feeling of this block of inflammation in my abdomen feels, I would. It's heavy, it's solid, it doesn't move, it feels weirdly cold and half numb, it protrudes both inward and outward. It is without a doubt the strangest and grossest physical feeling I have ever experienced in my lifetime.

It's also very tight feeling, like I bent forward and had my stomach stapled together. So when I am sitting or lying down, it feels like I have a five-pound mass pressing into my lower abdomen, but then when I stand up, it feels like I am about to tear open my stomach because it's been tightened.

Because of the denseness and the semi-sensation, I just have this obsessive feeling that it's not healthy and not living tissue. The doctor assured me it is entirely normal, and a nurse examined me after the doctor and said it's completely normal and expected and so I have to take them at their word.

ChatGPT is one thing, but to consider how medical science like this has developed over time *really* freaks me out.

by Anonymousreply 17March 16, 2023 8:53 AM

r3 Men get gynecomastia too.

by Anonymousreply 18March 16, 2023 9:09 AM

R18 only men get gynecomastia, don't they? 🤔

[quote] Gynecomastia is an abnormal enlargement of the male breast, but the histopathologic abnormalities could theoretically be present in female breasts as well.

Theoretically...

I ignored R3 because they clearly didn't understand what gynecomastia is or that the OP is implicitly male.

by Anonymousreply 19March 16, 2023 9:13 AM

Thanks for sharing your experience, OP. Please keep us posted and try to get some rest.

by Anonymousreply 20March 16, 2023 9:55 AM

OP, you will feel better very soon. Have you seen any videos of liposuctions? They basically violently stab you after they fill you up with a kind of solvent so no wonder you are in pain. I never had any liposuction but talking from the experience to have a c-secfion: one week is absolute hell and when you think it never gets better it, it does. Slowly. Please keep us updated and get well!

by Anonymousreply 21March 16, 2023 10:08 AM

I'd never heard of mast cell activation syndrome. It sounds awful.

by Anonymousreply 22March 16, 2023 10:13 AM

Thank you, R21.

A friend of mine had an unexpected C-section this summer and she was stunned when I first saw her after she had the baby. There was something off about her and she told me she was totally preoccupied with the trauma of the surgery and it was distracting her from the baby and she felt guilty about that. She said she will absolutely never give birth again and it was the most brutal and disturbing experience she can imagine to be cut open while awake and lose so much blood.

by Anonymousreply 23March 16, 2023 10:16 AM

R22 It's surreal, I guess, although I have had time for it to become just normal life to me. I take three antihistamines and an antileukotriene every day and I get monthly shots of a biologic drug that plugs up my allergic receptors and altogether, I am pretty functional. It took a looong time to figure out what the fuck was happening to me, though. I could have died from countless anaphylactic episodes but, hey, still here. And my immunologist did clear me for the anesthesia and the surgery.

I'm lucky in a way. Mast cell activation syndrome and mastocytosis have entirely different causes but they manifest in the same ways with the same symptoms, except that people who have mastocytosis live absolute nightmare lives a lot of the time. The diseases are grouped together, but some people who have mastocytosis are allergic to almost all foods and have to get IV nutrition or feeding tubes.

I had Lyme disease for years before it was diagnosed and treated and I ended up with MCAS. Now it's known that long-term infections can aggravate the immune system until it goes haywire and develops MCAS. It's basically an overactive immune system, but unlike an autoimmune disease, it's specifically the mast cells that go crazy.

Offsite Link
by Anonymousreply 24March 16, 2023 10:26 AM

OP, maybe you should see a therapist. Seriously. My mom went into a deep depression after some elective surgery. She was upsold, as you were. She wasn't prepared for how long it would take to heal. There seemed to be no follow-up. In reality, a short, comforting phone call from him would have made her feel better. Sounds like you have a nicer doctor, though. My mom's doctor was like a car salesman.

by Anonymousreply 25March 16, 2023 8:38 PM

I am scared of anesthesisia.

by Anonymousreply 26March 16, 2023 9:40 PM

Today's addition to disturb those of you who know nothing about the effects of liposuction.

The left side of my chest, the side that was larger, must have had a lot of liposuctioning because it is now hard and leathery. And it will remain this way for up to three to six months because that is the effect of lipo.

But it's much worse. My lower abdomen and my left flank have bubbled out and turned hard and leathery/plasticine. The texture is hard to describe, but it is like hard rubber. It doesn't move but it is pliable. I haven't looked at it but it literally pokes out from my lower belly and the left side of my body. It is alarming. It is disfiguring. When I saw my surgeon this week, she assured me it is totally normal; the fluids inside the body drain downward and collect around the waist. After a week or so, the fluid that has not dissipated on its own turns SOLID in large bulges, and slowly, over the course of three to six MONTHS, the lymph system draws the solids away and the hard swellings soften and disappear.

It's so disturbing. I have to go back to work next week and I'm going to have protrusions sticking out from my stomach and left flank for months.

I've now looked this up and found descriptions of this on a lot of websites, but not a single photo of this fucking weird phenomenon. I can't believe they don't tell you "a lot of people are visibly disfigured for up to six months, but after that, it looks great."

by Anonymousreply 27March 18, 2023 1:28 AM

Thank you for describing this. Lipo always seemed like a little cheat to be jealous of. Who knew it was so brutal? Be kind to yourself, though. Vanity plagues all of us. It’s why the world is filled with retail!

by Anonymousreply 28March 18, 2023 1:57 AM

R28 It's not a quick fix AT ALL. And it's not a weight loss method. It just rearranges fat placement to change proportions and contours. They're not supposed to do it on people who have a lot of weight fluctuations, actually.

by Anonymousreply 29March 18, 2023 2:22 AM

Two days from being two weeks out from the surgery.

I am itching to an INSANE degree.

My chest remained very flat through the first week. A few days ago, it began to swell—especially the left side—and now my breasts are very swollen, extremely itchy and very tender.

But it's the iching of my stomach that is *killing* me right now. Oh my God.

My skin is also still burning like I have a pretty severe sunburn.

I am trying to view all of this as 'what fascinating things the human body does to recover from trauma!' but the truth is, I would probably do the gyno surgery again and I would definitely not do the abdominal liposuction again. I can't believe I made such a cavalier decision and thought it wouldn't be a big deal. As it turns out, liposuction is "a very traumatic invasive surgery."

by Anonymousreply 30March 21, 2023 10:08 PM

Relax, hun.

Don't get your bitch-tits in a twist!

by Anonymousreply 31March 21, 2023 10:10 PM

I'm waiting for OP to mention his puny cocklet.

by Anonymousreply 32March 21, 2023 10:14 PM

Something about a grown man saying he got a Mastectomy is just so odd. If trannys call it chest surgery and top surgery than so can you, OP.

by Anonymousreply 33March 21, 2023 10:19 PM

R33 It's called gynecomastia surgery, or male breast reduction. Not a mastectomy.

You can laugh. Just remember what kind of person karma is. :) Certain medications and illnesses can cause this. Good luck to you. I hope you never have to go through it.

Offsite Link
by Anonymousreply 34March 21, 2023 10:24 PM

Op 2 yrs ago I had 7 hr surgery on my torso and button. It involved plastic surgery without liposuction. I spent 5 days in the hospital. During the first night of my stay an attending overnight nurse let the strong IV painkillers I was being given run out. I was to be given them every 4 hrs. At the 5th hour I was writhing in my bed screaming in intense pain after nearly breaking the call button to alert the nurse. She was very non caring and slow to help. I begged her to hurry with my painkillers and told her I was being tortured and I was begging God to help me while she was in the room. After I was put back on my IV medicine, the next morning I alerted my doctor and my plastic surgeon what transpired the night before. They were very concerned and reported her to the hospital. A head nurse came and listened to my story assuring me she wouldn’t be allowed to repeat her negligence to me or anyone else again. I spent 6 months at home recovering. Given Norco then Tramadol for pain. Compression tanks and underwear for 1 year. I’m fully recovered now.

by Anonymousreply 35March 21, 2023 10:46 PM

^^Torso and butt

by Anonymousreply 36March 21, 2023 10:47 PM

Mary O. P. "Big Tits No MO" Richards,

We can excuse the false or misplaced notion of "vanity" as being the impetus behind not wanting to look like a chub who finally lost the bowling ball on one side of his (we're assuming here) chest but kept the fat surrounding it. Who wants to look like terrain with a crater with glop around it?

by Anonymousreply 37March 21, 2023 11:00 PM

After nearly 1 year recovery I tracked down that negligent nurse on fb and told her I hope she burns in hell for making me suffer so she could have an easier night on my floor.

by Anonymousreply 38March 21, 2023 11:04 PM

[quote] gynecomastia

We know what it is. The Seacow has bitch tits.

by Anonymousreply 39March 22, 2023 12:00 AM

^^ How this post migrated here from the "Klangerine may be indicted yet" thread, I have no idea. ^^

by Anonymousreply 40March 22, 2023 12:55 AM

Is op A man or woman

by Anonymousreply 41March 22, 2023 1:03 AM

That's been answered R41

by Anonymousreply 42March 22, 2023 1:05 AM

Sending you all the good vibes, OP. Hope you are well. Your medical journey is fascinating, please keep us updated as you recuperate.

by Anonymousreply 43March 22, 2023 1:20 AM

Hey, OP?

How about having them suck out the fat part of your head that thinks posting emojis is something that adds, rather than subtracts, from everything you say intend to convince us of whatever.

by Anonymousreply 44March 22, 2023 1:21 AM

The fuck are you even talking about?

by Anonymousreply 45March 22, 2023 1:23 AM

I'm having really bad pain on top of my abdomen tonight. It's becoming more severe. I'm getting freaked out that it could be an infection.

by Anonymousreply 46March 22, 2023 2:17 AM

Oh God, R46. I'm just sorry that you're suffering like this. Dealing with physical pain and the mental part of what you are going through sounds very hard. Being up in the middle of the night dealing with this, must be hard too.

by Anonymousreply 47March 22, 2023 3:08 AM

Thank you for your compassion, R47.

The pain in my abdomen was *so* bad last night but I eventually fell asleep, and it's much better this morning.

Until last night, I had completely avoided looking at any part of my torso because of fear of what I would see. I had to look last night to make sure I don't have a major infection taking root in my belly. I was shocked to see that I am not nearly as bruised as I imagined (as I feel—my whole torso feels severely sunburned and/or bruised, and especially my abdomen), and there is no discoloration or discharge where the pain is.

I can't imagine what the cause of the pain is; however, I have read that severe itching especially and also some pain is normal two weeks out as the nerves that were damaged re-awake and begin to repair themselves. The itching is the feeling of nerves reactivating and resetting themselves, which I have to say is quite an interesting thought that does make me think of the human body in terms of some kind of meat robot.

The itching is insanely uncomfortable but I know it will pass.

The abdominal pain last night was a 6-7/10, and that's considering cluster headaches and the worst toothache of my life to be a 10, so that's pretty agonizing pain. It scared me, and based on what I read while panicking, the two week mark is when itching discomfort and some tenderness may become slightly heightened, but pain is supposed to diminish significantly at this point. Tomorrow will be the two-week mark from the day of the surgery.

I'm still in awe of some aspects of this experience:

1. I didn't put a huge amount of thought or research into the liposuction, and that is entirely uncharacteristic for me. It really makes me question my judgment and my behavior pattern. I've never gone into anything so poorly informed in my life. That makes me think this was some kind of midlife-crisis decision made subconsciously and overriding my typical risk-avoidance personality.

2. I don't know how liposuction is *such* a common procedure—I believe it is the most common cosmetic surgery—and it doesn't have a reputation for the longtime, extraordinarily uncomfortable recovery. Three or six months for disfiguring swelling to go away, three months for hardened flesh to soften, severe pain, severe itching, disrupted sleep for months. I have never heard any of this discussed. That seems so strange since I have heard a lot about the horrific trauma and recovery of deep-plane facelifts. Two doctors now have told me that abdominal liposuction is an invasive and 'very traumatic' surgery with one of the most challenging and uncomfortable and prolonged recovery periods. How is this not common knowledge? Crazy to me.

There was a bizarre woman at my job for 10 years who seemed to have had multiple personalities or something, and she certainly lied a lot. She randomly told me in confidence (and I quickly found out she told many others in confidence—they told me; I didn't breathe a word) that she was going to have liposuction over a weekend. She was very heavy and had diabetes. She came in on Monday and acted completely normal (for her); she took no time off and seemed to be in no pain, and she asked if I could notice the lipo. All of my coworkers agreed she was crazy and didn't have liposuction because she had zero downtime, and I knew she was off kilter but could not imagine why anyone would lie about that of all things, and so I assumed she did have it done. But now I know she didn't because this is no fukkin joke. So bizarre.

by Anonymousreply 48March 22, 2023 10:15 AM

I never imagined lipo to be such an horrendous ordeal either, OP. I'm fascinated by your experience. I'm sorry that you're in so much pain though.

I have always assumed certain celebrities get routine liposuction, but after reading what you've been through I seriously wonder how they are able to handle it. No wonder Madonna is loopy, she must be dosed up to the gills on pain meds to deal with her botched surgeries of late.

by Anonymousreply 49March 22, 2023 10:55 AM

YES, R49. I hadn't thought about that, but yes, definitely Madonna.

I had thought about Kim Kardashian, though. There's no way that she has not had lipo around her abdomen and probably her arms to appear thinner and maintain enormous 'curves.'

It now makes sense to me how 'sculpted' people with extreme curves are, because I used to imagine liposuction as a gentle procedure that slightly alters the contours of a body, and I've now learned it is an absolutely brutal, barbaric and extreme operation that vacuums huge amounts of tissue out of the body all in one go. I had such a completely different idea of what it is and how it works than the the reality. I don't know, I guess I never would have imagined that MDs would be allowed to much less would want to do anything so violent and traumatic to a body.

by Anonymousreply 50March 22, 2023 11:01 AM

Those Kardashian gals must have a high pain threshold - all that lipo and all that BBC. You're right though, when you really think about it, it is totally barbaric. This might sound really silly, but do they show you the fat they've sucked out? I think I'd want to see it. I get a strange kick out of that sort of stuff. I wanted to keep the wisdom tooth I had extracted last year, but I was too embarrassed to ask. My little twink dentist seemed slightly shocked I asked to see it.

by Anonymousreply 51March 22, 2023 11:07 AM

I'll also acknowledge that this has been a shock in part because of a weird combination of knowledge and ignorance.

I worked as a health writer for the first decade of my career, and I continued doing some freelance health/medical writing for many years afterward. I also have had a really complicated medical history due to a variety of issues. Altogether, I have a much better-than-average understanding of a lot of facets of medical science and practice. I can generally speak doctorspeak and doctors usually are surprised and seem to respect me more when I understand things they wouldn't expect a patient to understand.

BUT I only know what I know. I know certain things. I know basical medical practice, I understand how blood and imaging labs work and I understand all common and some obscure labwork, I understand a lot about neuroscience and immunology because of personal experiences and an innate curiosity. But I do not have a comprehensive medical education, I don't know much about how most organs actually function, and I have learned that I knew nothing at all about some of the surreal things that the body can do to heal itself.

Itching being a symptom of nerves reengaging makes perfect sense to me and I find that interesting.

Asymmetrical, seemingly random swelling in such large areas, and those swollen areas turning rigid? Entirely new to me. I had zero knowledge that a body would do such a thing. I still can't make sense of exactly why this rigidity happens or exactly how the body resolves it. The mystery of it makes it scary to me.

That said, I do understand what signs of surgical site infection look like and I was a little heartened not to see any signs of that when I looked last night, but I am still freaked out by the intensity of the pain in my abdomen coming two weeks after the surgery.

It's curious that having partial knowledge may be more alarming than having little to no knowledge. I have certain expectations of what 'should' happen, and the body has done some things beyond my imagination or comprehension, and those things feel like red flags because they don't fall within my scope of understanding.

by Anonymousreply 52March 22, 2023 11:15 AM

R51 No, they don't show you the fat. You can google it and see containers of it if you're curious.

They did tell me, both the nurse and the surgeon, that they sucked two liters of fat out of me, and they told me to imagine a two-liter soda bottle to visualize how much that is.

That was one thing that raised concern for me: The doctor—who is very experienced, has very high patient ratings, and who splits her time between private practice and doing reconstructive surgery at the VA hospital in DC—told me she was really, really surprised that I had that much fat available to suction out.

I would have expected a surgeon who does this routinely would be able to assess upon physical examination how much to expect to come out, and so her surprise surprised me, and it made me wonder if she may have been overzealous in removing it.

But I think I did/do have a high proportion of body fat on a slighter-than-average frame, and being tall and small-boned (literally, my bones are quite thin and delicate compared with most men), I think, makes me look skinnier than I really am. Because of my exercise sensitivity, walking is the primary exercise I get, and otherwise I have been more or less sedentary for a decade since I became very ill, and that's a lot of time to slowly acquire body fat, I guess.

My breasts—which were the ENTIRE point of this whole endeavor—were swollen from glandual tissue/unusually high amounts of breast tissue for a man, but I think they also had unusually high amounts of fatty tissue for a man, as well. I wonder how much of the two liters of fat came from my chest vs my waist.

by Anonymousreply 53March 22, 2023 11:23 AM

Journaling time.

Two weeks and two days post-surgery.

Tuesday was insanely uncomfortable—new swelling, unbearable itching and excruciating stabbing/searing pain in my abdomen when I went to bed that kept me up for hours. I really thought that I might regret not going to the ER.

I woke up feeling almost fine on Wednesday after only a few hours of sleep, aside from sunburn-like sensation all over my torso.

My surgeon saw me on Thursday. She said I am healing very well, and she said the sudden random swelling and sudden sharp, severe pains are completely normal and could continue to happen sporadically for up to three months or possibly longer.

She said after the three-week mark, I should get lymphatic drainage massage twice a week for a while to bring down the swelling.

And come back in two months.

I have been feeling totally fine since Wednesday, three days ago, other than that sunburned feeling and itching that comes and goes.

Tylenol doesn't help much with any pain associated with this, strangely. It usually stops my headaches.

by Anonymousreply 54March 25, 2023 3:16 PM

[quote]Tylenol doesn't help much with any pain associated with this, strangely. It usually stops my headaches.

Tylenol isn't an anti-inflammatory, which ibuprofen and aspirin are.

by Anonymousreply 55March 25, 2023 7:10 PM

R55 I can't take any NSAIDs because of my mast cell activation syndrome. They cause anaphylaxis.

by Anonymousreply 56March 26, 2023 1:37 AM
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