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Newbie in Louisville - Dr. Shina?

on 4/8/09 8:22 pm - Louisville, KY
Hi everyone!  I have a consultation later this month with Dr. Shina.  I actually met with him about 4 years ago when I first tried to get gastric bypass surgery.  My insurance company gave me the run around at that time and I ended up doing a doctor-supervised diet (meds and low carb diet) instead.  I lost 82 pounds and then gained over 100 back!

Now I'm having this surgery even though my insurance won't pay for it.  I'm going to have to come up with $20,000 myself to have what I consider live-saving surgery done.  I think my life is worth $20,000 -- after all, most of us would pay $20,000 for a car, right?  Isn't a person worth more than a car?  I think so.

If any of you have any information about Dr. Shina or just general advice about the surgery, I'd really appreciate hearing from you.   Is there anything you wish you knew before your surgery that you didn't? 

Thank you in advance for any information you can share.
on 4/9/09 5:23 am - KY
Welcome to the board. Nice to have you here!!! I'm Dr. Allen patient!!! But I know there are a few on here that will chime in cause they are Dr. Shina's patient!
Good Luck on your journey...
and yes... YOUR WORTH IT!!!! $20,000 and all!!!
on 4/9/09 7:59 am - Elizabethtown, KY
Welcome!  I have met Dr. Shina through one of the support group meetings at Norton's.  Several folks on here have used him & I'm sure will give you some good info.  I just wanted to put in a "plug" for my surgeon, Dr. David Geller.  His office is in the same building as Shina's @ Norton's Pavillion.  He  recently posted on here that he is now offering lap band surgery for private pay patients(those who don't have insurance or whose insurance won't cover) for $12,000.   I don't know if your heart is set on Dr. Shina,but to save $8,000  Dr. Geller would be worth calling.  He's an excellent doctor!  Just a thought!   Best of luck to you --- and YES, it's definitely worth the money!



on 4/9/09 10:35 am - Louisville, KY
Thank you for the information on Dr. Geller.  I have heard good things about him, but I am not having the lap band --I will be having the RNY procedure.  I haven't found any other surgeons in our area who charge less than $20K for the surgery I'll be having.
on 4/12/09 7:21 pm, edited 8/2/10 3:27 pm - Louisville, KY
Cindy P.
on 4/12/09 8:30 pm

I have had my surgery and my consults all done at Suburban Hospital in Louisville - he has offices in both Indiana and Louisville.  I don't know about the "center of excellence" you are referring to, but I considered my care to be excellent in every way. 

David Geller, MD
on 4/16/09 11:02 pm, edited 4/17/09 12:44 pm - Louisville, KY
 I do perform the laparoscopic gastric bypass and our self-pay rates are less than $20,000. This includes preop psych and nutrition evaluations and the surgery related charges, including anesthesia, hospital and surgeons fees. These are performed at Suburban hospital which is an ASMBS-COE (Center of Excellence). 

Please visit the website or 

David Geller, MD
Bariatric Surgeons of Kentuckiana
3999 Dutchmans Lane, 1E
Louisville, KY 40207
(502) 893-7151, fax 893-7020

on 4/17/09 3:55 pm - Louisville, KY
Thanks for the information. Dr. Geller.  I did not know that you were offering that rate.  I have already spoken to someone in your office and look forward to meeting with you in the near future. 
on 4/9/09 9:28 am - KY
Hi Leanne-
I just had my surgery a week ago and with Dr. Shina. I personally like him a lot. BUT, some people are more comfortable with another.  He is not for everyone.  Just like I am not for everyone- nor are you.  My family (mom and hubby) both felt comfortable with him and to me that is important.
Everytime I went to see him he was willing to give me time to answer questions. yes he is sometimes busy, yes it can be hectic, but we all have days like that-- doctor's included.
I like his very encompassing approach to surgery. We have to do many tests and labs, but it is worth it to know that your surgeon KNOWS you are ok for this proceedure. I had been frustrated with my pulmonologist and the ladies here on the boards were sooooo supportive and talked me down off my own personal cliff....thanks again! Then as I was recovering I saw many different people and home health has come to my house at his perscription.
   I would be more than willing to answer any questions you may have that is specific.  Just send me a pm and I will write back.

Good luck and have fun on the journey
Tracy B.
on 4/9/09 4:47 pm - Flaherty, KY
Hi Leanne!

Congratulations on making a wonderful decision to have surgery. It is truly an amazing opportunity in my eyes.
And yes, your life is worth saving for the mere fee of $20,000! That 100 times over!!

Dr. Shina is my surgeon as well and I have nothing but good things to say about him. If you want a no nonsense approach then he is your man. If you need your hand held and you need coaxing then run away & dont look back because hes not the one! He is straightforward, to the point and DIRECT! His staff is wonderful and will help you in any way possible. Holly & Jamie are the best you'll find in my book.

I wish you luck in your journey. Its gonna be a wild ride!


on 4/10/09 4:31 am - Louisville, KY

Good Luck with your surgery.  All the decisions and surgery clearance can be nerve-wracking. 

I had RNY with Dr. Shina on 2/13/09.  I have only good things to say about him as my surgeon.  He is totally to the point.  I just like his style.  I follow the instructions the best that I am able.  I haven't had one complication so far.  I am right at two months and down 55 lbs since my highest weight.  What is that worth?????   Priceless.

Hope you have a very happy Easter weekend,
Becky in Kentucky

on 4/11/09 6:48 am - KY
    Hi I'm am Dr.Shina's patient... Holly, Dr Shina's office manager, told me that he is an acquired taste.. and you know what that is a very true statement. I have had problems with  Dr. Shina, but its more his bedside manner is not a hand holder and I'm a panic person and need hand holding!! He is blunt, and to the point..
  But I picked him because he was the best I knew of at the time, but I have a doctor crush on Dr tanner now!! lol no offense to Dr Shina.. I don't think you will be disappointed... Like i said he is an acquired taste... He also does self pay on the band for 12000 or something like that??
  Good luck!!!!!

  First 80.5 pounds lost with 3cc's in a 14 ccband now at 7cc's in 14cc band

Michelle F.
on 4/12/09 8:03 pm
Here is what I have to say about my RNY surgery.  My journey has had its' share of complications and issues but: 

8 1/2 months ago, I weighed 300 pounds. 

*I had Plantar fasciitis so bad I could not walk the one block from the parking lot to my office.  I could not go anywhere with my family that included walking.  I even had to ride in the little cart when I went to Walmart or Kroger. 

*I had IBS so bad that I never wanted to go any where or do anything, because I had to be home near my bathroom.

*I did not like to go anywhere like a restaurant or a movie theater because I could not fit in the seats.

*I was suffering from incontinence and had to wear depends pads

*I was only 41 years old and I lived like an 80 year old women due to my obesity.

*I was too big for the clothes in the "Large Size" stores and had to order my clothes online.

*I was a prisoner in my own body.

Now, just 8 1/2 months after my surgery,  I am down to 188 pounds.

*My  Plantar fasciitis is virtually gone.  I can walk anywhere I want. In fact, I walk two miles outside most weekdays and I go to the gym on weekends.

*My IBS is gone.  I no longer have "episodes" that keep me housebound.  In fact, the only time I have  problems in this area is when I  "cheat" and eat foods that don't agree with me.

*I can go to the movies and sit in booths at restaurants.

*I no longer need to wear depends pads.

*I turned 42 years old today and I feel better than I did in my 20s and 30s.

*I can buy clothes at Walmart and at normal stores.  I no longer need to shop by cataloge!.

*I am no longer a prisoner!

How much money is all this worth to me?  PRICELESS!!.

All I have to say about Dr. Shina is that he saved my life. 

Cindy P.
on 4/12/09 8:28 pm
I'm hearing you and I agree totally!  I couldn't breathe when standing or walking anymore - I had almost everything wrong with me that you had (except the foot problem) - I had/have severe arthritis of the knee and bad back, etc.  Depression was horrible, even with meds.  I believe Dr. Shina is the most skilled, most experienced doctor in Louisville and a friend recommended him highly to me after his surgery.  We weighed over 500 lbs. and is now at his goal weight.  As my friend said to me, he isn't known for his bedside manner, but he really does care for his patients and wants everything to be done exactly right.  He won't take risks that are unnecessary and he will always give you a chance to back out at the last minute.  I have had no problems with his bedside manner personally.  Everything has been professional and I have no complaints.  

I am so glad I chose Dr. Shina for my RNY!