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Old 06-13-2013, 11:51 AM   #1
dthogue
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Weight Loss Surgery

I am thinking about having Gastric Bypass surgery (recommended to me by my Doctor). I am looking for others who either had the surgery or are planning on having it. For thos who have had it done - are you glad you did? Did you have any complications? Any tips/advice? How much weight did you lose? Do you exercise daily?

For those thinkng about it or are in the pre-op stage - please share your experiences - what are you doing to prepare for surgery? Any tips or advice?

I filled out all the paperwork, I'm just waiting to hear if I have been accepted as a patient and to schedule my first appointment. I excited, but scared at the same time.

Would love to have a buddy or two (or lots) to go through this!

Tammy
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Old 06-13-2013, 12:39 PM   #2
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Tammy, strange that this post just caught my on the side ticker of WDWinfo.

I had WLS in December 2012. I had a sleeve gastrectomy, not the gastric bypass, so my experience will be a bit different. but the short answer is I would absolutely do it again!

Even though I know that the sleeve has an overall lower weight loss than gastric bypass, for me it was the right decision. I did not want to "re route my plumbing" as I like to say. That said, I have always known that my biggest food problem was not making the right choices (low fat, low sugar, lower carb) but limiting my quantities. Having the capacity of my stomach significantly reduced was exactly what I needed and frankly wished for for many years.

I did not have any complications. I had a filter inserted first, surgery that same morning & was home the next day. I did have one strange thing where the gas from the anesthesia made my skin kind of crinkly, but that cleared up within a day or so. The filter was because I have a blood-clotting condition. The filter was removed 4 weeks after my surgery.

Since the first time I went into the dr office (August 2012), I have lost 98lbs. I lost 20 lbs pre-surgery. I always walk the dog (for years) every morning but started adding first TV work outs (Wii, Bodies in Motion) in the fall pre-surgery and then since my surgery I have done the treadmill + floor exercises + dog walk 5 days a week (on weekends I just walk the dog, sometimes do Zumba if $ and time permit). I've gone from a size 24 to a 14 and possibly ready for a 12. (3X - Large)

It has made such a huge huge difference not just in my life, but in my family's as well. I am healthier and much more active. and so much more aware of my family's nutrition. I always aimed for balanced meals, low fat, etc but pay so much more attention to protein vs carbs, fruits & veggies vs heavy starches, desserts, drinks, etc.

I mostly hang out in the Trip Report forum, but feel free to PM me or find me online.

Here I am in 2011:

and here I am in the beginning of May this year:
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Old 06-13-2013, 01:16 PM   #3
ChristineNic
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Go for it! Follow your doctor's directions and improve your life.

I had a gastric band (Realize Band) placed in October 2011. At my biggest, I was wearing a tight women's 22 jeans. Right now, I am wearing a pair of size 8 jeans and I could probably go down to a size 6. (I wore a size 12 in high school and never thought I would get that small again.)

Prior to surgery, my BMI was in the "morbidly obese" category. Currently, I am 5 lbs away from a BMI in the "normal" category. Before surgery, if I dropped something on the floor while seated, I literally couldn't bend over my tummy to pick it up. This month, I am working on a 30 day ab challenge and last night I did 60 full sit ups, 30 crunches, 30 leg lifts and a 120 second plank. I also recently discovered that the visible bump on my calf and thigh were actual muscles that are no longer cammoflauged by flab.

My energy level has increased. My confidence has increased. I am happier and healthier. My only regret is that didn't pursue WLS surgery sooner. I wasted so many years feeling defeated by my weight - both physically and mentally.

One caveat - WLS is not a cure all. You need to be ready and willing to change your life and learn new habits. My doctor compared having any WLS to having power steering in a car - you are still in control and you still decide the direction you want to go in; the procedure will make it easier for you to get there. You have to make good choices and the surgery will help by allowing you to finally feel satisfied by a healthy portion of food.

Good luck. If you have any questions that I can answer, feel free to PM me.
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Old 06-13-2013, 02:09 PM   #4
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Another good suggestion is to find out what the "diet" requirements are going to be. How much food you are allowed at any one time, what volume of liquids you can consume, how often will you need to eat, what foods are absolutely forbidden etc. And then follow those "rules" for six weeks. If you find you can follow the rules for six weeks then you know you will be a success with your surgery.

Bands can be popped, sleeves can be stretched, food can be consumed. Those with the greatest success were those that could follow the rules.

Take lots of notes and ask lots of questions and good luck with whichever decision you make.
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Old 06-13-2013, 02:22 PM   #5
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My mom's cousin had the bypass- she was always diabetic and was hoping to decrease her symptoms with the surgery. Long story short, she has now gone the other direction where her blood sugar dips dangerously low. I don't know if you are diabetic or not, and I know a lot of diabetic people have had success with the surgery, I just wanted you to know how it affected my mom's cousin.
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Old 06-28-2013, 09:59 PM   #6
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I had gastric bypass in August of 2011. It was the best thing I ever did!! It was not easy at first...meaning drinking liquids and staying away from so many foods. When I first got home from the hospital I was like why did I do this?? Those feelings went away..especially when I started losing weight. I did not have any complications, but I know other people have..the doctors always say each person is different. I have lost close to 90 pounds. I went from a 26/28 to a size 10/12!! You for sure have to be committed to changing your habits, because 2 years out now..I can eat anything...and the weight is creeping up. I decided to do Weight Watchers to keep myself on track. I have many pictures still on the wall of my old self...I am glad...reminds me of who I do not want to be again!! One thing that my doctor said...I believe it is true...go to a support group!! I go there...and to Weight Watchers..you cannot do it alone!! Ask me anything you want..good luck and let us know how you are doing!

Jill
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Old 07-02-2013, 02:58 PM   #7
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310+ pounds lost so far

My wife and I both had Vertical Sleeve Gastronomies in April/May 2012. We can say nothing but great things about the surgery and the results. We did not look at the bypass as an option as it seemed too invasive and the complications seemed too drastic for the minimal improvement of results long term over the results that are documented from the VSG.
We have no complications from the surgery. One thing you have to keep in mind is that during the first few months the most important thing to provide your body is the protein that it needs to heal and satisfy the needs of your muscles. Also drinking water is both hard to do, as you are limited as to how fast you can drink, but it is critical to drink 60+ oz of water ever day.
The one thing I can say is that exercise was definitely a HUGE helper for us in our journey, and we could have never met our goals without it.

Feel free to PM me if you have any questions, both the wife and I are very excited about what this has done for us and the new lease on life it has provided and would love to answer any questions or provide any additional information you would need.
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Old 07-19-2013, 04:23 PM   #8
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Thumbs up

Basically, my story as the same as Moira222...I had the Sleeve on August 23, 2011. In the spirit of disclosure, I did have a leak and had to go in for emergency surgery the next day. After that...no problems...no cholesterol meds, my sugar has normalized, my aches and pains have been lessened. I now have energy and self confidence that I didn't have before. I would absolutely do it again!

Before: http://www.flickr.com/photos/4942477...n/photostream/

After: http://www.flickr.com/photos/4942477...n/photostream/

(Sorry, couldn't get my pics inserted)
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Old 07-22-2013, 06:59 AM   #9
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Roux-N-Y Gastric Bypass person here, April 2011...starting weight of 337, current weight of 150!! I've gone from really needing to move up to a size 30/32 to a true Medium/size 10.

Why did I choose RNY over sleeve gastrectomy?? For me, I was fat my entire life..literally, since childhood and fell into the super morbidly obese catagory by the time I had surgery. I felt based on my own research and my Dr. agreed that a procedure with both restriction and malabsorption would give me the best chance of losing the weight and keeping it off. That doesn't mean that it's the only way to go however. I had no complications at all other than a little nausea at first, easily treated with Zofran and I would do it again in a heartbeat!!!!! Change that, I do have a couple of lingering complications...can't eat sugar except in small quantities. Sad but true, I'll only eat it when I'm at home because I have no idea how my body will react. Needless to say I don't eat it very often! I also still have high blood pressure..knew that going in that the surgery might not help that. Really though, it is much easier to control now and I'd rather be a thin person with high blood pressure! The surgery did correct my pre-diabetic condition almost instantly!

I am going to completely disagree with a previous poster on trying to follow a post surgical diet now to see if you'll be successful with surgery later. It is an almost guaranteed failure to even attempt to do so...a post surgical diet is meant to be used with a teeny tiny restricted stomach and you don't have one! Now, you could look up the type of foods recommended but that won't be much different than any standard diet plan and is not a predictor of success. Don't fall into the trap of "Oh if I just try harder this one more time I'll be successful" In theory you might be that one person who will be successful with a diet but lets face it, reality is when you have a LOT of weight to lose the odds of a diet working are slim to none. I'd guess everyone who has chimed in on this thread has been on many many diets.

Do some research on the different procedures and the pros/cons of each, ask your surgeon TONS of questions. Everyone's situation is different, you have to find the best fit for you.
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Old 07-22-2013, 07:01 AM   #10
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And PS, seriously ask any questions...any at all!!!!!
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Old 07-22-2013, 07:03 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RickFreeze View Post
My wife and I both had Vertical Sleeve Gastronomies in April/May 2012. We can say nothing but great things about the surgery and the results. We did not look at the bypass as an option as it seemed too invasive and the complications seemed too drastic for the minimal improvement of results long term over the results that are documented from the VSG.
We have no complications from the surgery. One thing you have to keep in mind is that during the first few months the most important thing to provide your body is the protein that it needs to heal and satisfy the needs of your muscles. Also drinking water is both hard to do, as you are limited as to how fast you can drink, but it is critical to drink 60+ oz of water ever day.
The one thing I can say is that exercise was definitely a HUGE helper for us in our journey, and we could have never met our goals without it.

Feel free to PM me if you have any questions, both the wife and I are very excited about what this has done for us and the new lease on life it has provided and would love to answer any questions or provide any additional information you would need.

Congratulations to you & your wife!!! Some days I feel like the first thing I think of in the AM is protein and the last thing before I fall asleep is protein!!
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Old 07-22-2013, 07:05 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by californiadopeyfreak View Post
I had gastric bypass in August of 2011. It was the best thing I ever did!! It was not easy at first...meaning drinking liquids and staying away from so many foods. When I first got home from the hospital I was like why did I do this?? Those feelings went away..especially when I started losing weight. I did not have any complications, but I know other people have..the doctors always say each person is different. I have lost close to 90 pounds. I went from a 26/28 to a size 10/12!! You for sure have to be committed to changing your habits, because 2 years out now..I can eat anything...and the weight is creeping up. I decided to do Weight Watchers to keep myself on track. I have many pictures still on the wall of my old self...I am glad...reminds me of who I do not want to be again!! One thing that my doctor said...I believe it is true...go to a support group!! I go there...and to Weight Watchers..you cannot do it alone!! Ask me anything you want..good luck and let us know how you are doing!

Jill
Totally agree with the support group!!! Once you get past being a newly surgical patient and settle into real life and able to eat like a real life person it is HARD to maintain. In fact I find maintaining the hardest thing ever...I'm seeing a therapist and that has helped.
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Old 08-10-2013, 06:37 AM   #13
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I had the gastric sleeve 6 days ago. At this point I still would do it again. The hospital stay was the worst for me, however; I'm a nurse and they make crappy patients!
One of my friends is having bypass at the end of the month. Bypass just wasn't for me because of all reasons pp mentioned.
I started at the end of April at 326 lbs, day of surgery I weighted 290.
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Old 08-10-2013, 07:14 AM   #14
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I had Rou-en-y Gastric Bypass April 17, 2012 and I have never been happier! If someone would have told me 15 years ago I would have had this I would have laughed.

My story starts when I had my son 12 years ago. When I got pregnant with him all these issues that lay dormant in me came out...high blood pressure, sleep apnea, possible diabetes. I gained weight with him and it never came off no matter how much I tried to lose it. I was sick almost every day for years in the am. I never knew why. Turns out it was my blood sugar off the charts.

Then I got pregnant with my daughter in February 2010 and my doctor told me I had to really watch myself. She made me rest and not going anywhere but my blood pressure still had hit the roof. They took my daughter by emergency Csection two weeks early.

My husband's friend at work had it done in June 2011. He did fantastic. My husband suggested it to me. He knew how unhappy and miserable I was. I had tried to lose through diets, everything but the high blood pressure and getting sick every morning was still there. I couldn't move. I was in my early 30's and knew I couldn't live this way.

So after begging and begging, I gave in to my husband. I thought he was crazy. But I went for it. My insurance prereq's were to have a BMI of 40 or above and a history of obesity. I had it. In fact, my BMI was a 40.4. Before I left the surgeon's office, I scheduled a date. I didn't think I would do it. But in the end I did.

I went from a size 24/26 at 259 lbs to a size 4 at 142 lbs. I am healthy as can be. No high blood pressure, no diabetes, I have yet to get sick in the morning since the day of my surgery! I'm rocking out clothes I haven't worn in 15 years, my energy level is excellent and I can chase after my almost 3 year old like no tomorrow!

And I have yet to have any bad side effects. Does my stomach tell me when I"m done? Sure it does! Do I listen? Absolutely! Have I cheated and not listened? Absolutely and I've paid for it! But it was the best leap of faith I have ever taken in my life.

We leave for Disney today. I am beyond excited that we can go down and I know I won't be exhausted for this trip. This trip is my treat for the over a year of lifestyle changes I gave myself.

I love the song "If Today Was Your Last Day" by Nickelback...their lyrics say it all....

My best friend gave me the best advice
He said each day's a gift and not a given right
Leave no stone unturned, leave your fears behind
And try to take the path less traveled by
That first step you take is the longest stride

If today was your last day
And tomorrow was too late
Could you say goodbye to yesterday?
Would you live each moment like your last?
Leave old pictures in the past
Donate every dime you have?
If today was your last day

Against the grain should be a way of life
What's worth the prize is always worth the fight
Every second counts 'cause there's no second try
So live like you'll never live it twice
Don't take the free ride in your own life
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Old 08-16-2013, 07:52 AM   #15
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Ok I I'm now 11 days post op and for the most part I feel as if I have never had surgery! My one frustration is I'm sick of liquids and ready for some real food! I mean I can have yogurt and cream soups but I want real food! I am seeing my surgeon on Tuesday and am anticipating him advancing my diet!
I also will get weighed then and see how much I've lost since surgery as I refuse to own a scale at home!
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