Dr. Daluvoy came very highly recommended by my surgeon. Actually, my surgeon was getting ready to leave her practice and I was her last surgery prior to her leaving, and so we were in a rush and I was a little nervous, but she said she had the perfect plastic surgeon for me who was Dr. Daluvoy.
So initially, when I spoke with my surgeon about what my options were, it was around just having the double mastectomy and leaving at that, or I could go through the process of reconstruction, which I decided to do. I was very nervous about the procedure, had never been to a plastic surgeon before, had never really considered having plastic surgery because that just wasn’t anything I had ever really thought about.
However, when we started the weigh the options after the mastectomy, I said, “Okay, I will go in and I will talk with Specialists in Plastic Surgery to see how I feel about it once I speak with them.” Came in on that first day and all of my questions were answered. I mean, it was an awesome experience.
When I came in for the initial consultation, Dr. Daluvoy took his time, he explained the procedures, he answered all of my questions. Actually on that day, I brought my sister with me because I was very nervous, needed somebody else to kind of take it all in. He explained all of her questions, and she works in the healthcare field, so she had a notebook full of questions, and he answered all of her questions. He was patient. He was very approachable, didn’t seem rushed. His demeanor was very welcoming, and so it made me feel very relaxed with him that by the time I left the office, I was truly ready to proceed with it.
I think the hardest part of the journey was not the physical, it was more the emotional, and really dealing with the change of your body and having your breast removed is an emotional time for women because you’re like, “That’s a part of your femininity.” And so Dr. Daluvoy made me feel very comfortable, talked about how I would look after the procedure, ensured me that he would make it look great for me, which he did. So that was the hardest part. The easiest part was actually the recovery. It was much easier than I thought. I did the exercises, I followed the instructions, and I healed very well. So I think the physical part was easy, the emotional part was hard.
I think the thing that surprised me the most about this entire experience was how easy it was, and I don’t take it lightly because going through the challenges of having breast cancer, and having the surgeries, and going through the emotional rollercoasters and all of that. But with all of that being said, it was much easier than I anticipated because in the beginning you anticipate this is going to be so hard, it’s going to be so difficult. I don’t want to go through the surgeries. But through it all, I think it was surprising to me how well it went. I didn’t have any setbacks.
As I mentioned earlier. I actually had two procedures with Dr. Daluvoy, and I had never considered having a tummy tuck. I work out, but I’ve always had the little pooch. And so because Dr. Daluvoy made me feel so comfortable when we were discussing my initial procedure, I really thought long and hard about it, and I decided that if I wanted to go through the surgery getting the double mastectomy and the reconstruction, I would also go ahead with an additional surgery of getting a tummy tuck and having it all done at the same time because I wanted to do something for me. After all of the stress I had been through with the breast cancer journey, I felt like I needed to do something for myself, and I’m very pleased with that. That procedure went well, no setbacks. So I can’t say enough about Dr. Daluvoy and his professionalism and how pleased I am with both procedures.
Yes, I would say really talk it through with your family to ensure that if you’re considering breast reconstruction, if you’re not sure if you want to do implants or if you want to do, whatever the choices that your surgeon will give to you, really ask questions. I found when I came here, the specialist in plastic surgery that they asked me, “Do you have questions? Are you sure? Are you concerned about anything?” Asked me about recovery time. Ask me about long-term, and having implants in, I decided to go with breast implants. I’ve been very happy with it. Ask about nipple tattooing, things like that. So just really ask the questions, do your research, and make sure it is a decision that you talk through with your family and your surgeon, and that you are ready for it when you decide that this is what you really want to do. But I have no regrets about the choices I made for either procedure.
So in relation to the recovery from my tummy tuck, I didn’t have concerns. Well, I was a little discouraged because my drains didn’t come out as soon as I wanted them to, but it was only a couple days over the weekend. I wanted them to come out, I think on a Thursday or Friday, and they actually came out on that Monday. And so just that was, I don’t consider it a setback. It was really Dr. Daluvoy doing his due diligence to make sure it came out at the proper time. And I definitely appreciate that because he’s very concerned with patient care and making sure that you’re not just taking them out because the patient wants them out, but because it is time for them to come out. And so other than that, the pain was actually not too bad. It was bearable. Went into my compression garment, actually wore that as instructed, and I didn’t have any concerns, any setbacks or anything. So I think it went smooth other than the initial drains being in a little longer. I think the procedure and the recovery went great for me.
In addition to the recovery from the tummy tuck, the scarring, that was a concern that I had because I have keloid skin. The scar is very minimal, and Dr. Daluvoy hit it dead on the head. I have tried on millions of bikinis, and you cannot see the scarring. You cannot see the scar. So it is minimal scarring, and it’s a perfect bikini cut.
If I had to sum up my experience with specialists in plastic surgery in three words, I would say, professional, awesome, and experienced.