Thursday, March 10, 2011

Laser Lipo - 5 Weeks Out


No, I'm not ready to show you pictures yet. Mostly because I forgot to take the camera with me to my follow-up appointment. I'll have to get a friend to take them for me. But also because I'm still not reveal-ready yet.

Last time I left you on this topic, I was just a couple of days out from the actual surgery. I can tell you that I stopped taking any pain medication (Tylenol) after day 4. I just didn't have a  need for it. Yes, I was still tender and sore, but it was never anything that was unbearable to me. And excessive use of Tylenol is bad for your liver (any drug is, but Tylenol has significant documentation).

Even after two weeks I could already see that my side muffintop was gone. That alone is great. But even today, at week 5, I'm still a bit swollen in the abs and still slightly tender. I'm a bit surprised by how long the tenderness is lasting, but not concerned. Again, it's bothersome, but not unbearable. 

The second biggest side effect is the osmotic-edema.
With the tumescent technique, there is always a certain amount of blood-tinged anesthetic solution which remains beneath the skin where the fat has been suctioned. This blood-tinged fluid causes bruising and the post-operative swelling known as "osmotic-edema". 
Basically the fluid that was left in your body and didn't get drained out needs to be reabsorbed and flushed via your lymphatic and circulatory systems. Until it's all reabsorbed, it sits there and creates firm lumps. The reason for using compression garments (which must be worn for several weeks) is to force the absorption of the blood-tinged anesthetic solution into the body's blood vessels. 

So I've had these lumps for weeks. When I went to my one month appointment the nurse said I needed to drink more water, massage the area, heat it with a heating pad, and come back for a Velashape treatment to help loosen those lumps for absorbtion.
VelaShape™ features the combination of Bi-Polar radiofrequency (RF), Infrared Light Energy, plus Vacuum and Mechanical Massage. The combination of these energies increases the metabolism of stored energy, increases lymphatic drainage and reduces or shrinks the size of the actual fat cells and fat chambers.
In this treatment the nurse took a paddle that vacuumed up and then treated the area. It was a bunch of quick thumps as she moved along my abdominal area. Because of my sensitivity, it was a bit uncomfortable. But it only took about 15 minutes and I was done. I was told to continue to drink a lot of water. This may be part of why it is taking a while for me - I'm not a big water drinker. It's a lot of effort for me to even remember to drink. 

I'll give you all another update in about another 6 weeks. By that time I should be flattening out and really seeing the results. My next follow-up, though is not until the six month mark.
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