Updated: Mar 19
I truly love the city of Miami. As some locals would say ” 3-0-5- Till I die”, cheesy but i’m full of Miami pride and hashtag any “Miamism” (i don’t care if thats not a word) that I can! One thing i’ve noticed are the amazing cosmetic and reconstructive doctors that work here! I’ve seen some amazing work, i’m not talking the crazy to of the norm things. I mean the ” Wow you look so refreshed, what did you do?”, when they can’t tell what you did but do see how great you are carrying yourself, then you know it was a job well done! Those are my favorite kinds of cosmetic advantages! So that brings me to a new segment, that I hope to feature as much as possible, “Knife Styles“! This is just another helpful source of information for those who have ever thought about any cosmetic augmentation, and want to read about REAL STORIES.
On our first ever [Knife Styles] we have, LIZ DIKINSON, who under went “Breast Reconstructive Surgery” earlier this year. We asked her a few questions, read her story below…
Doctor: Dr.Victor Beraja
Location: Beraja Medical Institute, Address: 2550 S Douglas Rd, Coral Gables, FL 33134
Why did you choose Breast Reduction surgery? How long had you been considering a breast reduction?
Is it weird to say that Breast Reduction surgery chose me? All joke aside, I had known since I was fairly young (maybe 13 or 14) that I was most likely going to undergo breast reduction surgery at some point in my life. My mom had done it and judging by how, in the ninth grade, I was already more endowed than all of the other girls in class, I figured it would happen sooner or later. What I didn’t know then is how unhappy the size of my breasts would eventually make me or how painful having large breast actually became, which was the major factor in actually going through with it. I’m 5’1″ with strong thighs and hips but an otherwise small frame and at the time I decided on surgery, I was sporting a 36DD. Honestly, I constantly looked like I was 20 lbs heavier than I actually was — all because my breasts were too big for my frame.
What were your thoughts/experiences leading up to the surgery?
I was pretty much terrified. Like many people, I went online before I even went in for a consultation with any surgeon just so I could prepare and know what questions I should be asking. I found all sorts of stories and experiences and while some of them were scary, doing the research prepared me for what I should expect and talk about with my surgeon on the first consultation. One of the most important things to remember is that choosing a surgeon is like choosing a partner — seriously! If you guys don’t see eye to eye completely on every step of the process, and he doesn’t make you feel secure with every choice and answers every single one of your questions, move along to the next one. Luckily, my surgeon and I were a perfect match and that’s what eased my fears.
Thoughts/experiences the day of?
I didn’t sleep the night before, honestly, so waking up for the 6:30 AM check-in was a breeze. The surgery was long — like, four-and-a-half hours long — but it felt like 20 minutes to me (of course). My surgeon used no drains (thank GOD) but I was bandaged up pretty well and everything was kept in place with a surgical bra. I was able to go home the same day after most of the anesthesia wore off about an hour after the surgery was over…and then the real work began.
Thoughts/experiences during recovery?
One of the best things that I did was really force myself to rest. The first night was better than expected – the second night was actually the most restless. My fiancee exiled himself from the bedroom and I had the bed to myself for the first week and a half so the pillows were abundant and I slept more or less sitting up (but very comfortably). They sent me home with a good dose of antibiotics and painkillers that I took as needed. Showering was a very slow and exhausting process – undressing and redressing, especially. I had help to wash my hair and such since you shouldn’t lift your arms for the first three to four weeks or so. Otherwise, I slept a lot and did very little since even sitting in the living room to entertain visitors would exhaust every bit of energy I had. I think resting is the real key to a successful recovery. A very big part of your body is healing – the best thing you can do is listen to it. And get your Netflix cue ready: you’re going to need it. :)
Thoughts/experiences a few months after?
As the weeks passed, I started feeling and looking better. The swelling really starts going down after week two and even more after the stitches are removed and/or dissolve (I had both types). After 8 months I can honestly say it is the best thing I have ever done for myself. I don’t run away screaming from tank tops or strapless dresses and shopping for bathing suits is FINALLY an enjoyable experience and not complete torture. It has helped me feel more confident and even helped me be seen differently in my own career. I never realized that breasts that didn’t fit my frame were actually aging me and making me look heavier!
If you could have done this surgery sooner, would you? What age?
I would have done it ages ago! When I was younger, I don’t think I knew what my options were. Someone told me it was possible that insurance covered medically necessary breast reductions, and when I visited my surgeon and had our initial consultation he mentioned I may very well be a candidate so that’s how we approached it.
On a scale from 1-10, how satisfied are you with your results?
11. Honestly. It is the best thing I have ever done for myself. I went from a 36DD to a 34C. It has positively affected every aspect of my life. I’m in less physical pain, I can workout easier, I don’t run away screaming from tank tops or strapless dresses and shopping for bathing suits is FINALLY an enjoyable experience and not complete torture. It has helped me feel more confident and even helped me be seen differently in my own career. I never realized that breasts that didn’t fit my frame were actually aging me and making me look heavier!
Any advice to those ladies considering this surgery?
Do your research. A million times over: do your research. Take time off and bounce back into life at your own pace. Also, do not settle for a doctor just because “you can afford them”. This is major surgery and regardless of your reasons – medical or cosmetic – this IS cosmetic in the end. You want them to be the right size and look the right way once they’re healed. Again, the right doctor will ease all of your fears, answer all of your questions, and not make you feel at all pressured. If you are paying out of pocket, don’t cut corners or go with the least expensive surgeon if he’s not the right surgeon for YOU. I’ve heard of so many stories of botched surgeries or having to undergo a second surgery because the first one didn’t go “as expected”.
Meet Liz Dikinson:
Name: Liz Dikinson
NICKNAME(s): My name is short enough — any nickname would be ridiculous!
Sign: Capricorn, through and through!
Home Town: Miami, FL
Current City: Miami, FL
Ethnicity: Cuban American
Occupation: Stage & film actress / photographer
Color: Black. I own too much of it.
Candy: Chocolate. MILK chocolate.
Go to Outfit: Jeans and a simple tee always works.
I feel my sexiest _____.
After a good work out, a shower, and a blow out.
My Perfect Date includes_____.
A home cooked meal in PJ’s, wine, and a movie or a board game.
Describe your WORST DATE:
He invited me to dinner at the food court at Dolphin Mall in Miami. We talked about all of the things we do NOT have in common. Walked silently to the parking lot and went our separate ways to find our cars. End of (brutal) story.
In my past life I lived in the ______.
1960’s. Aside from the rampant misogyny, everything from the era calls me home.
If I could spend the day with anyone (living/deceased), who would it be?
Taylor Swift. I think I’d have either the best or the worst time ever, and a story to go with it for a lifetime.
My life would be nothing without?
My friends. They all keep me sane.
Thank you, Liz, for sharing your brave story about the process in undergoing such a surgery, with a wonderful reward at the end!
We truly hope this has inspired anyone dealing with the same problems. It’s never too late. Visit your doctor today!
Liz & Caro