Having reduced my weight by 10 stone, I twice went abroad for body contouring surgery to the breasts, tummy and arms, which left me extremely unsatisfied with the results. I then proceeded to have multiple consultations with surgeons in the UK, none of whom filled me with much confidence.
1st December 2015
My first consultation with Marc Pacifico. At this appointment, my husband and I asked many questions and all were answered in detail and included us being shown pictures. He gave me a thorough examination and detailed what he thought would be best. Within the first few minutes, I felt at ease with him. My husband and I kept smiling at each other, as things seemed to be going very well. We left the clinic without any pressure to book, so that we could talk further. When we stepped outside, I smiled at my husband and stated that I think I’ve found my surgeon and he wholeheartedly agreed!
The following day, I received a surprise and very pleasant phone call from Mr Pacifico. He told me that he was calling to see how we felt about how things had gone. My exact words were ‘almost perfect, to make it perfect could I please call him Marc, as it’s less of a mouthful?’ He laughed, agreed and I asked to proceed with the surgery.
9th March 2016
OK, so here we go. Surgery number one consisted of a revision to my surgery abroad. Implant replacement, breast lift and arm lift. As you can see from the pictures, drastic difference with Marc’s results. He had proceeded with cautionary measures and not only met my expectations, but exceeded them. This was one of the most painful surgeries and an extremely difficult recovery, due to wearing arm compression garments and limitations to movement. I had several wound breakdowns on the breast and arms. Whilst this was very distressing, Marc and his team enabled me to cope with this, as they are always available, 24/7. Only a couple of days post-op, whilst at home, I made a call to the Nuffield hospital, as it was out of hours. I awaited a return call from them, and surprisingly received a calm, patient and very caring phone call from Marc himself. Throughout
this and all following procedures, any level of anxiety or uncertainty was always calmed and soothed by Marc’s expert handling of the situation. At this point, I should mention that we live approximately 2 hours drive away, adding yet another challenge regarding follow up appointments and additional consults in respect of the wound breakdowns. Thanks to the support from the clinic, my family and friends, I survived.
28th September 2016
Round two! Now this, as it turns out, was the easiest of all the ops. This one was to lift the skin to reduce the slack on my back, also known as a bra line lift. I was up and out of bed and moving virtually unassisted within a couple of hours. When Marc did his usual post-op visit to the room, he could see how well I was doing and, this time, pain-free and agreed that I could return home. Recovery was a piece of cake, no wound breakdown at all, enabling me to get ready for the next surgery.
18th January 2017
So, now for the big one! Lower body lift, including thigh lift.
As I had already had the tummy tuck done abroad and been left with dog ears and uneven scars, Marc proposed that he do a 270 degree incision, to encompass the unsightly scars and dog ears from the original tummy tuck. However, the rear section of the incision would incorporate a buttock lift, inclusive of a purse string technique to the buttock tissue. This enabled me to have some projection without implants or fat transfer. The thigh lift was an incision from the groin to just above the knee. Without a shadow of a doubt, this was the most difficult, lengthy recovery. From 24 hours bed rest post-op, to the sheer simple act of dressing and getting into a vehicle to travel home. Due to the stitches and the swelling, it proved virtually impossible to move. However, I did and got home safely.
As with other surgeries, this was not without post-op wound issues. One of the first and most common problems is fluid building up behind the scar, to which the body’s reaction is to find the weakest area to expel it from (the incision). This happened on the back of my right hip and opened to approximately 5cm diameter, which required daily visits from the district nurses to pack it. I also had an opening on the right thigh, not as big or deep, but still took several weeks to close. So, I must say that I also received great support from my GP and district nurses during all of my recoveries.
Now it must seem to you that I talk about this in a calm and controlled way. This has only been achieved by living through, experiencing and surviving the potential emotional rollercoaster, due to the immense level of support given by Marc and his amazing team. Although, let’s not forget the immense level of patience shown, albeit behind the gritted teeth, of my loving husband. I am still working on showing the appropriate amount of gratitude on a daily basis.
27th September 2017
As Marc is a perfectionist and, after several post-op consults discussing results, we agreed that I would have multiple revisions to bring everything to a level of near perfection. This would include:
- a minor scar revision to the left breast
- an additional piece to be extracted from each rear section of the hips
- a scar revision of the previous opening on the right hip
- to extend the incision from the top of the thigh into the front of the groin and behind under the buttocks
- to extend the bottom of the thigh incision to just below the knee
Recovery was far easier than the previous surgery, although not without post-op problems. These consisted of a small opening on the left hip and minor wound breakdowns on the knee area.
As with every single step of all the surgeries, I have kept a photographic log of all positive and negative images. This has enabled me to supply Marc, upon his request, pictures for him to assess and advise. This was extremely helpful considering the geographical obstacles.
To summarise, Marc always insisted on multiple follow-up appointments after each procedure, and continually kept in touch as things went along, never feeling restricted on the amount of time he had for me. In point, on more than one occasion, Marc called me without me asking. These were as a result of my contacting the Nuffield hospital, as it was out of hours. On one occasion, he even called me from a conference abroad, an award ceremony (where he picked up a well-deserved award for his clinic) and, if that wasn’t enough, he even called me when on his family holiday!
The best piece of advice I could give anybody considering cosmetic procedures would be to do as much research as possible, sit down with Marc, explain everything that you want to achieve and then listen to his advice. I am eternally grateful that I chose Marc and his team to help me through this journey. I truly believe that I would not be anywhere near as happy as I am today, having gone through so very much, had I not walked into his clinic that day.
The central piece of the tattoo covers the remainder of the unsightly tummy tuck scar left behind from the surgery abroad!
To bookend this story and to give you a true persective, here is me before any cosmetic body contouring surgeries.