Edmonton - Weight Wise

on 4/18/08 11:52 am - Canada
Hello Everyone ... I'm new here and I am looking for any information available to me. I got my doctor's referral to the Weight Wise program about a year ago. I just received my letter for the orientation at the Royal Alec hospital. I'd like to hear from anyone who has been through the program regarding what steps are next after the two hour orientation. It's been a year since my initial referral to the program and I'm wondering how much longer the process takes from orientation to the actual surgical procedure. Up to this point it has been difficult getting information on the program - perhaps after the orientation this will change. Denise
on 4/21/08 11:29 am - Canada
Hi Denise, I waited alittle over a year to get in the clinic and have been going since Sept 2006. I really can't remeber to much about the 1st appointment. I have a surgery date of May 20th and that is because I postponed my first date which should have been tomorrow. (April 22nd) I will tell you, follow everything they tell you and track all your food. Don't miss any appointments and lose weight. You do need to show that you can lose if not maintain for the time you are at the clinic. You will see a dietican around every 6 weeks and she will want to see your food records etc. You will need to buy a pedometer and get up to 10,000 steps a day. Everyone is really nice there. Don't be discouarged about waiting close to another year, you will be a step a head of alot of people and your foot in the door! Good luck! Tammy
on 4/22/08 9:45 am - Canada
Thanks Tammy, Do you remember what goes on at the orientation? I want to be prepared. I saw my doctor today and she told me none of her patients have followed through the process - they have all given up because of the long wait. Not me - what have I got to lose except for about 120 pounds. Have you heard what happens after the weight loss - does Alberta Health Care pay for any surgery needed to remove excess skin?? I'd love to keep in touch and see how you are doing - I live in Spruce Grove and my e-mail is denger012567@yahoo.ca
on 5/18/08 5:35 pm - Canada
Hi Denise, I'm new to this website, although I've checked it out once in a while. Did you go to the orientation? If so, you probably have all the information you are looking for. They have really changed the program. I've was referred to the program a year and 7 months ago. My orientation was on April 30th. In case you haven't had your orientation yet, it's just about an hour to an hour and a half of information on how the program has changed. At the end, you are asked to fill in a form to either commit to following through or not. They tell you that you will get another phone call in about 2 weeks for an intake. I got the phone call about the next step on Thursday - my next appointment is at the beginning of June - I forget which day exactly. My understanding is that it will be an appointment with a nurse, and from there the decision will be made as to what I need to do to stay in the program. It's my understanding that from there, they may or may not put you into the surgery stream - even if they do it can still be a really long wait. I'd be interested in hearing more about your progress through the system.
on 5/21/08 1:33 pm - Canada
Hi Ruth, I think we were at the same orientation meeting. I too was at the April 30 orientation. I've also been contacted for my first appointment which is scheduled for June 4. What a coincidence!! Good luck - let me know how things go for you. Denise
on 5/18/08 5:44 pm - Canada
I just posted a reply but it didn't appear anywhere, so this is a test ...
on 1/5/09 1:05 am - Canada
Hi is anyone further along? I have gone for the orientation, and have my first scheduled appointment in a few weeks. I am in it for the long haul. When I was ready to give up last year I heard a CBC program and the director of the weight wise program came one and said that what people are waiting for is the all round support from dietitians, nurses, counseling etc. which will ultimately help you keep the weight off.

What I want to know is...has anyone made it through and is scheduled for surgery? or completed surgery in Edmonton clinic? I am prepared to go the distance...wish I knew how long that was. The kicker is that I may not be a candidate...after all this time they still cannot tell me. Perhaps it is a waiting game...

One other question...was anyone on more than one waiting list? A woman I know had it done in Medicine hat and seems happy and didn't have to go through all the counselor, modules etc...I am wondering if I should be on a waiting list somewhere else in case I am not "approved"

New Leaf
on 1/5/09 2:39 pm - Canada
I have heard that some people have gone to DR. Nohr in Medicine hat as they were denied here. I don't think it hurts to be on all the waiting lists possible.

my wait time was 1 year into the clinic and 1 1/2 till surgery, granted the 1 1 /2 flew by  because I was in the swing of things every month with all the support I received. I meet with the internist, dietitian, surgeon, went to 2 course on eating after surgery. The support is so worth the wait. the weight didn't come on over night so take your time. Also they team helps decide what surgery is best for you, the band, bypass and now they are preforming the sleeve. The post op care has been awsome!! Good luck on your journey and what ever you find best for you!!


on 1/24/09 1:29 pm - Stony Plain, Canada
I have been in the program since late 2007.  From the time of the first appointment to surgery is usually about a year but trust me it flys by.  However for me it has a been a bit longer due to some unforseen complications.  I was originally schedule to get the band done and after doing the pre-op tests it was discovered that I had a hernia.  So after that I had to wait to get a second test done to find out how bad it was.  All this has added on to the time ive had to wait.  I have decided to go forward with the gastric bypass as the band is no longer an option.  I was scheduled to be one of the first to recieve the gastric bypass with the robot on Dec 4th however a  few days before I broke my foot and have had to reschedule.  Things are back on track and im now just waiting for a new surgery date.

The program is wonderful and I am thankful for all the support.  It is well worth the wait and I feel like it has prepared me in ways I never thought possible.  It has helped me with more than just weight loss.  I think through the whole process I have meet the whole team and each part of it will better prepare you for what is to come.  At first I just wanted to rush through and have the surgery but now im glad I have waited and gone through the steps. 

It is very much a waiting game but it is a journey worth pursuing.  I wish you the best on your upcoming appointments.
on 4/23/09 11:09 am - Canada
Hi everyone Im new here as well I had Vertical Banding Gastroplasty in 2000 in Cardston,AB. At the time a Dr Hollingsworth did my surgury. I found the surgury was very painful when you woke up and try to walk. I had staples from just under my breasts to my belly button.  I thought I just wanted to die. But after a few days it got easier. My first month I lost 30lbs. After 3 years ii lost around 125lbs I felt great and looked great. NOW 2009 I have gained about 60lbs back and wished I did more research or talked to more doctors or nutritionist on how to eat healther. If I knew what I did now back than I would have never gotten this surgury. I am for ever puking my guts out because a peice of meat is stuck, or a vegetable that has abit of skin wont digest. So what happens I puke and yup the rest of my meal comes up with it.  A new habit I have picked up is to eat chips/cheezies because they dissolve and you can eat till you mentally think you are full. Bad habit.  Im so ill all the time, no energy black circles around my eyes, and worst of all 60lbs heavier.  All that pain and hard work down the drain. I want to get my surgury reversed so I can eat all the healthy food in moderation and get healthy again. I just hope you really think about the surgury hard. I have a scar i look at in the mirror everyday that reminds me of the procedure. We all are heavy because we eat crap, if you have good will power to stay away from junk food good for you. This surgury is not magic, you can still put junk food in your mouth and yes the weight will come back. My friend who also had the procedure done a few months after me is now anorexic, she looks aweful. Please I just wanna be a friend to you all and just to really tell you think twice even five times before you go through this. You have any questions I will try to answer them for you..
Take Care
on 6/7/13 4:13 am
on 8/10/09 2:05 pm - Edmonton, Canada
I was referred about 6 months ago to weight wise. I am attending my first class today. I am going to the one in North Edmonton. I don't know much about the program. But I know I have to do something to get this weight off. I started going to the gym, but my knee hurts so bad somedays. So I either don't go, or beat myself up for only going to half hour or 45 minutes. I have been heavy since I was 16 years old, so I hope this works nothing else has. I got pneumonia last year and am now at the heaviest I have ever been at and it scares me to death.
on 4/23/10 4:02 pm - Canada
Hello my name is Ivan i was at a weight wise clinic in North Edmonton on April23/10 were you there as well. if so thanks for tghe advise on this web site and I hope to chat with you again, best of luck in your weight reduction, if you're interseted in chatting e-mail at iromkes@hotmail.com, have a great day
on 10/4/09 5:35 pm


I also waited a year to get to the orentation date. Since then I've had 2 seperate blocks of appointments with the satff at the Clinic. One the first visit I met with the Nurse, pshycologist  and the OT group. On the second I met again with the Nurse and Dietition and this time the Surgeon. In between appointment I have been doing the required modules.

I also wanted to say that when you start seeing Weight Wise team at the clinic that there is no guarentee of having surgery. They will ask you what your thoughts on having surgery are but again there is no guarentee you will ever have surgery. They push life style change. You have many tools given to you by this team, that must be followed. You will have to a daily start food journel, chart your exercise, steps per day. Your emotions and progress. It really makes you look at your daily routines in a different light.

I wish you success in this journey Denise. Knowing that you are never alone in this battle against obessity makes it a little easier to fight.

on 10/13/09 2:40 pm - Edmonton, Cayman Islands
Hi there, I am a proud member of the Weight Wise success stories... but getting to where I am today has been quite a journey... but a journey well worth it.  I was referred to the program in 2005 but waited for two years before I got in... apparently my letter from my doctor was lost.  I finally got into the program and attended my first appointment on July 17, 2007.  I was in the program and experienced ups and downs but finally buckled down on October 20, 2008.  That was the date that I weighed in and realized that everything that I had lost over the course of the last year and three months had been gained back plus a pound.  I was 501 pounds.  On October 20, 2008  I met with my surgeon and found out that there was no medical reason that I could not have the surgery.  My biggest obstacle was going to be the weight that I was carrying presurgery.  From that appointment to December 15, 2008 I lost a total of 46 pounds and showed the program that I was very serious about losing this weight.   I was scheduled for surgery for January 27, 2009.  I was about to embark on this next phase of my life.

In early January I received a telephone call from the program advising that they had a cancellation and asked me if I wanted to bump up my surgery to a date the following week.  i jumped at the opportunity.  I completed the pre-admission work on Janaury 12, 2009 and had the first of two surgeries on Tuesday, January 13, 2009 (the second surgery was on January 14, 2009).  The procedure that I had was the Roux en Y.  Needless to say, I had some complications - I had a leak that could not be located exactly.  My doctor went in the second time to see if he could locate the leak.  He could not find it and so it was decided that we would let the leak heal itself naturally.  Making that choice meant that I would not be able to eat or drink anything while the leak healed.  Unfortunately... I didn't think that it would take 76 days to heal... but that was the case.  No food or fluid for 76 days.  It certainly helps you change your relationship with food. 

Needless to say, after all that time in the hospital... and there were times when I thought that I would go stark raving mad, I came out of the hospital and have lost 150 pounds.   I am on my way to my goal and will lose 100 more pounds before I am done.  The decision that I made to have the surgery was the best decision that I ever made.  Not a single regrret.

Make sure that you follow everything that you are told... keep your journal and change your relationship with food.  Remember that this surgery is a tool... a tool to be used in conjunction with good eating habits and exercise.  The three combined will help you to lose weight and reach your goal. 

If I can help you with anything, please do not hesitate to email me.  I can be reached at marty.enokson@gov.ab.ca.

on 11/11/09 11:38 pm
Thanks you for sharing your story. It's nice to hear that you have been successful. I have only been in the clinic since July and I am due back for my second round of appoinements later this month. I am struggling big time but hearing stories like your make me want to fight even harder. I wish you continued success in your journey, I know it's a long bumpy road but each day is a day closer to a smaller you.
on 11/12/09 2:10 pm - Canada
RNY on 05/23/12

I have been meaning to drop you line after reading your recent postings.

It's nice to see that there is at least one other former "fiver" on the list.  I think that we probably have a slightly difference perspective on the world being super morbidly obsese.  Not to take anything away from other folks on this list.

I was just curious to know.  When you were in the hospital for those 76 days, did you lose 150 in the hospital or did you lose it between your surgery and just recently.  I am just trying to grasp the concept around losing that much mass over such a short period of time.  You would think that you were beaten to death on "Biggest Loser" to attain that kind of loss.

Also, what was your rationale for going with the RNY bypass over the sleeve?  From my readings, it is preferred to start with the VSG and then move to the RNY, if needed.  Was the clinic not offering the sleeve at the time?  That's can't be becuase the first one was done in Nov 2008 in the pilot project.  Anyway, just curious.

Anyway, it's good that you're here.  I look forward to hearing from you.

-- Xcalibur
on 11/12/09 2:35 pm - Edmonton, Cayman Islands
Hey there Xcalibur...

My loss in the hospital was about 60 pounds or so.  I lost 40 pre surgery and the rest has been post hospital stay.  I have now started my slow down but I have been in the gym now for the last 8 weeks doing 45 minutes of cardio (recumbant bike) and then 1 1/2 to 2 hours of weight training.  I have muscles on my body that I didn't know should have muscles on them.  I have never felt as wonderful as I feel right now in my life. 

All told, I have lost about 160 pounds now and that is in one year.  The journey started on October 20, 2008 and one year later I was down 160. 

When I met with Dr. Birch in December, the sleeve was not offered to me.  Dr. Birch talked with me about the lap band and the RNY.  His recommendation to me, based on the amount of weight that I wanted to lose  - half of where I was at - was that I have the RNY.  Yes there could be complications, but it would allow me the best opporunity to lose 250 pounds.  I did more research and decided that I had nothing to lose.   If I didn't lose the weight then I was going convinced that I was going to die by the time I was 50.  I wasn't ready to give up... I have a whole lot of living that I still have to do.  And now I can do it.  LIFE IS GREAT!

What I do know is this... I don't ever want to be a member of the 500 club ever again.  I am on my way... and if I can help one person be motivated to make a change... then I have done something positive,

Please keep in touch Xcalibur.  I would love to know about your progress and I will keep you posted on mine.

cheers for now,

on 11/15/09 9:19 am, edited 11/15/09 9:19 am - Canada
RNY on 05/23/12

Thanks for the additional information.  I'm glad to hear that you're doing so well, particularly with the exercise.  If you don't mind me asking, where do you work out?  I am thinking that I am on the other side, I need to kick up my workouts.  So, I am contemplating finding a partner, if I can manage it.

-- Xcalibur
on 11/17/09 9:19 am - Edmonton, Cayman Islands
Hey there Xcalibur,

I work out at the Londonderry Leisure Centre in East Edmonton.  I like it there.  I feel relatively comfortable in the gym there.  There are not as many juice monkeys and close minded individuals there.  Don't get me wrong... there are some there, but its not like going to a World Health Club where you are made to feel totally uncomfortable.   I like the atmosphere and I can do my workout in relative comfort.