Joanne, aged 28, from Staffordshire, was always happy with her figure. But when she was 20 she gave birth to her son and put on four stone, and despite exercising to lose weight, she was left with a lot of loose skin around her tummy area.
“All of my friends would go out wearing figure-hugging outfits, but I couldn’t do that as I was so self-conscious about my tummy. I would wear baggy clothes, sometimes much bigger that my actual size to cover myself up.”
Joanne was so self-conscious about her body that she felt too embarrassed to even undress in front of her boyfriend: “I was very down about how my body looked, I had no confidence whatsoever. I tried to make a joke out of it, calling it my ‘jelly belly’, but it still really hurt inside when I looked at myself in the mirror.”
Her boyfriend wasn’t worried about Joanne’s ‘jelly belly’ and proposed to her in 2007: “I was absolutely delighted and decided this would be my chance to have cosmetic surgery and get rid of my stomach for good – as I wanted to look fabulous in my wedding dress.”
Joanne began to research abdominoplasty and visited her GP, who told her that the procedure wouldn’t be available to her on the NHS. Undeterred, Joanne looked into private operations and following researching on the internet, came across Mrs CC Kat, a Consultant Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeon at Spire Parkway hospital and booked a consultation.
As Joanne had quite a small frame, Mrs CC Kat recommended a tummy tuck and liposuction to her waist to make it more defined and give her a balanced look.
“I was determined to undergo whatever surgery it took, and Mrs CC Kat made me feel so at ease that I knew I was going to look great in my dream wedding dress.”
Joanne had surgery in June 2008, which she found quite a traumatic experience: “The operation was major surgery for me and having two procedures in one go meant I was left with lots of bandages around my waist. But looking back I would have gone through that a million times over to get the figure I now have. The liposuction really defined my waist and I dropped from a size 14 to a size 10.”
“I feel so much better about myself now, my confidence is back. Cosmetic surgery was something I’d wanted to do for the past eight years, so I knew it was going to make me feel happier about my appearance. I now have the confidence to undress in front of my husband and to wear clothes that actually fit me and are figure-hugging. I recently went body-boarding and wore a tight-fitting wetsuit, something I would have never done before. My little boy now says to me, ‘look at your new belly, mummy’ and it feels like I’ve been given a new lease of life.”