From Frumpy to Curvaceous! Thank you Dr. Q!!, September 7, 2010, 11:00 pm
Here's my story ....
I have lost and gained (and lost and gained) the same 20, 30, 40 pounds many, many times throughout my life. Truly, I know the yo-yo thing really well! And, with the births of two children over 33 and 26 years ago, this all left me with a stretched, fatty abdomen, not to mention excess skin on my face, joules, and almost two double chins! All of this was not going away by diet and exercise; believe me, I had tried. So, about ten years ago, at age 46, I went to a doctor in San Diego who only recommended liposuction for my abdomen, as he felt my skin would bounce back, so an abdominoplasty wouldn’t be necessary. Boy, was he wrong, and so for the last ten years I hated my stomach even more than the previous 20 years! Just abdominal liposuction left me with saggy, hanging, wrinkly skin and a deformed belly button ... one that couldn’t even be seen due a layer of skin that hung over it ... just plain ugly!! Additionally, I had a square, box-like figure with no waistline to speak of for most of my life.
Choosing Dr. Q ...
This year, following the strong recommendation of three friends, I went to see Dr. Quiroz (aka Dr. Q) who practices in Tijuana, Mexico. Yes, we’ve all heard the media stories about traveling in Mexico these days, but with his excellent credentials, his caring and patient personality, and my friends’ recommendations, I realized it was finally time to get my abdomen fixed the right way! (I really think my friends were just tired of me complaining about my stomach, especially when they knew Dr. Q could really fix it for me; there was no doubt in their minds.) I also decided it was time for a face lift – nothing too, too extreme, I just something more natural … a “freshen up” facelift, as Dr. Q termed it. :)
Dr. Quiroz’s credentials, well you can check out his website at www.cosmedclinic.com and read his complete bio, but I was hooked on this doctor who has been in practice for more than 22 years, is licensed in both Mexico and the United States, lives in Coronado (near San Diego and my home), speaks fluent English, studied in both Mexico City and Irvine, California, started his practice in Orange County (near Los Angeles), chooses to practice in Tijuana (less than 5 minutes from the border), and provides free consultations with estimates that are extremely discounted from those in the United States.
Once I made my decision to go ahead with Dr. Quiroz’s recommendation for abdominoplasty, forehead lift, and face and neck lift surgeries, I worked through his wonderful, caring, English speaking staff to schedule my appointment and learn what was necessary pre- and post-surgery. I found his staff to be friendly, very informative, and easy to understand. (It’s still such a joy to see all their smiles when I come for follow on appts. ) When I expressed concern over not knowing who would take care of me once I got home, the office manager Joyce told me about the post-surgery after care that is available, which eased my mind. (By the way, I chose to stay with Irene Sanchez, who is just an angel! She picks you up and takes you to your appointments, cooks for you whatever you want as long as it is healthy :), gives you your meds at all hours, helps you bathe and wash your hair, helps you get in and out of bed ... I could go on and on, truly an angel when you need one the most!)
The big day ...
Finally, the actual surgery day arrived. Yes, I was a bit nervous, but I believe I would have experienced this same nervousness with any surgery, elective or medically necessary. I was not afraid at all about going to Mexico; that was the least of my worries. Patricia picked me up at the designated location on the U.S. side of the border and within minutes we arrived at Dr. Q’s office. After a short prep, discussion, and picture taking with Dr. Q, the nurse gave me “the pill” to take the edge off my nervousness. Shortly afterward I met the anesthesiologist and once he began ... well, yes, you guessed it; I was out like a light. I think I finally really woke up around midnight ... I had slept all the way through the almost 7 hour surgery and then some! Since you are required to spend the first night at the facility, it was extremely reassuring to awake to Dr. Q’s nurse by my side, monitoring the equipment that continually checked my blood pressure and applied compression to both my legs throughout the night. Joyce did tell me in the morning that she came in to check on me several times throughout the evening and wiggled my toes, but I just groaned softly and immediately went back to sleep ... too funny! In the morning, after a light breakfast and a checkup with Dr. Q, I left the facility around 10am and headed to the aftercare facility with Irene Sanchez, where she took care of me for the rest of the week.
My fabulous results!
It’s been 8 weeks since my surgery; I’ve dropped two dress sizes and have the flattest stomach ever! I even have a waistline and thinner hips! (yes, I think Q threw in a little extra!) Much of the excess skin on my face which caused skin folds when I smiled is gone and my forehead lift looks very natural. The “11s” between my eyebrows are gone, however, I still have a few crows around my eyes, but I want them there so that my age is still recognizable. My neck and chin also look fabulous! No more double chin – a nice 90 degree angle from my chin to neck! Even the V lines on my chest are softened. I get compliments almost every day from folks I know ... They tell me I look great! They can’t really figure it out, and they say things like, boy did you lose weight, your hair looks great (I’m letting it grow a bit and added highlights). Some tell me my skin looks great and want to know what skin products I’m using. :)Others have even noticed that I have a figure ... it’s really been fun! :)
My advice ….
• Definitely check out Dr. Quiroz and Cosmed Clinic! The entire staff is wonderful and caring, and you will find the office modern, comfortable, and clean.
• Check out the www.cosmedclinic.com website …. It’s very informative and thorough; I think they have just about everything covered.
• At your consultation and pre-op, just tell Dr. Q what you don’t like about your body and let him make recommendations. Trust him; he is an artist at body sculpting! I have a waist now for the first time in 56 years!
• Do comparisons; however, you will find his estimates to be extremely reasonable.
• Don’t be afraid to travel to his office in Mexico and check out the free shuttle service for patients … there’s a whole page on his website on traveling to his office, shuttles, taxis, directions if you do drive, what documentation you need to cross the border, etc. …. It’s very informative.
• Do your homework and follow the instructions for pre- and post-surgery. I didn’t bruise or swell much, which I can contribute to the excellent instructions I was given, Irene’s after care, and lots of ice, rest, healthy eating, and vitamins (with Arnica Montana and Bromelian).
• Depending on your surgery, do plan to stay at any one of the after care facilities for at least 3 days, even if you live in San Diego …. Those are the most critical days and it is so reassuring to be cared for by someone who knows what you are going through, and to also be with others who might be going through the same or similar surgery. I met some lovely ladies at Irene’s during my stay who were from Georgia, New York, and New Jersey. We developed a bond and still stay in touch about our recoveries.