I’ve started a GoFundMe account to help raise funds for my top surgery in November 2015. I also decided to come out on Facebook (to a selected list of friends) and I’ve been overwhelmed by all the support I’ve received. I also can’t thank everyone who donated and dropped me a supportive message enough.
Thanks to you, the road ahead may not be as hard as I thought after all 🙂
As mentioned earlier, I have booked my top surgery aka chest reconstruction surgery for November 2015. I had my first surgical consult on the 2nd of April 2015, with Dr. Tim Hewitt in Subiaco.
I arrived at his clinic not knowing what to really expect. All I knew was that the consultation was gonna cost me $220 so I had a list of all my questions and concerns that I needed answers to, ready to get my money’s worth.
My impression of Dr. Hewitt is that he has a very straight forward personality – it’s straight down to business (which is a trait I like) and is very respectful. I didn’t have to ask him many questions as he answered most of my questions when he started explaining about which procedure he can do for me.
Here’s a list of my questions/concerns and the answers to it:
Which surgical procedure/technique would be done for me?
For the official records, the procedure is called a bilateral breast reduction. This technique involves various incisions to remove the excess breast tissue and preserve the nipple and areola while reshaping the breast. Incisions will be made around the areola, the inframammary fold (the fold under the breast) and a two to three inch vertical incision connecting the two.
As I do not have large breasts, Dr. Hewitt recommended that I commenced hormone therapy as soon as possible to help reduce the size so he wouldn’t have to make as many incisions to remove the breast tissue. The best case scenario would be that he only has to make the incisions around the areola so that would result in no obvious scarring.
Do I have to be on Testosterone to qualify for surgery?
While it was recommended, I did not have to be on hormones to qualify for surgery. A letter from a psychiatrist may be needed closer to the surgical date though.
How long would it take to heal?
It could take up to 6 weeks to completely heal, but it is usually around 2 to 4 weeks.
What about after surgery care?
I will be prescribed painkillers and antibiotics after surgery. While the healing process is around 2 to 4 weeks, it is strongly recommended that I avoid all vigorous sports/activities for the first 6 weeks. I am also advised to avoid carrying anything heavier than a loaf of bread during the first 3 weeks.
Will I retain nipple sensation?
As I have small breasts, Dr. Hewitt is pretty confident that I will retain 100% sensation in my nipples after surgery. It is usually people with very large breasts who lose nipple sensation after surgery as it would involve the nipple being removed before being grafted back on the chest.
It is the skin around the nipple that provides about 80% of the nipple sensation so if that area is generally left untouched during surgery, the chances of retaining sensation is pretty high.
How much will the procedure cost?
This is probably my main question – I wanted to know if it was indeed possible for me to have that amount of money for the procedure. The costs are as below:
Dr. Hewitt’s Surgical Fee – $5000
Anaesthetic Fee – $1670 (approx)
Hospital Theatre Excess Fee – $500
Total: $7170 (approx)
As I have private health insurance, I only had to pay the excess on my policy which is $500. If I didn’t have insurance, the hospital fees could cost up to $5000.
While I need at least $7000 for my surgery, I am only looking to raise $2500 to help with surgical cost and other bills while I am recuperating from surgery. It would be great if I reach my goal and even better if I exceed it.
I appreciate all the help I’ve received and I can’t wait to truly be free in a body that matches how I feel inside. If you would like to donate to my top surgery fund, please visit my GoFundMe account.
PS. If you’re in Australia and would like to donate the amount to me directly to avoid GoFundMe fees, please contact me via Facebook or send me an email 🙂
Dr. Tim Hewitt
(08) 9388 9222
Suite 317/25 McCourt St Subiaco WA 6008