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Weight Loss Surgery Saved My Life

Weight loss surgery (WLS)  is a very personal decision.  It was a decision that I made that definitely saved my life.  There are many misconceptions out there good and bad.  I can tell you first hand that it is not the "magic pill" everyone wishes they had to control their weight.  It is not the "cure all" of life's problems.  Definitely, it is not the "easy way out".  After surgery, you still have to watch what you eat by monitoring your protein intake, your calorie intake, and you water intake.  Living after weight loss surgery is probably the strictest diet you've ever been on because it's a life-long process. Your odds of success are really no better than any other diet out there. Did you know that after 5 years, 50% of the people who have had weight loss surgery usually gain 50% or more of their weight back? Did you know that your opportunity to lose your most weight is in the first two years following surgery and then it's up to you to do it the old-fashioned way?

My journey prior to surgery began in February 2011.  I had decided to have the sleeve procedure done. This is also known as the VSG or Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy. Twice before, I had attempted to have it done and both times would find excuses that would allow me to stop the process.  Something happened to me at the start of 2011 and I can't quite pin point what it was to make me do it this time, and really, the why, doesn't matter.  My insurance company made me jump through hoops as well as my surgeon. I had to have six months of physician monitoring, weight management classes, nutrition classes, and even visited a psychologist.  During this process, I ended up firing my regular physician, and found a new one that was on board with my wishes 100 percent.  As I reflect back on my journey, I can tell you I had many opportunities to throw the towel in again.  I am so glad I didn't.

My surgeon told me that I'd regret having the surgery at least three times.  Right after surgery, a month after surgery, and about six months after surgery.  I never did.

Right after surgery, I was just thankful to be alive.  My biggest fear was dying on the operating table and when I realized I had woke up, I was just thankful to have a heart beat.  I didn't have much pain either, which surprised me.  A month after surgery, I was feeling a little cooped up from being on medical leave but regrets? No way! Finally, at six months- I must not have because I was too busy living and loving life!

If you're considering weight loss surgery and have any questions, I'd be happy to share with you what I know from the patient prospective.  I am not a physician and certainly encourage you to discuss having WLS with your physician as well. You may email me here or join the forums here and post your question under "Ask Poochy"


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