- HEALTH TRACKER
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Latest Surgery Support Comments
May 21, 2006: I can't believe I haven't updated since last November. I have been very busy! I'm doing well. I think I have put on a few pounds, 5 or so; but I don't want to gain any more. I know Dr. R. said that would happen, but I didn't want it to happen to me! I can see how easily a post-op could gain weight! I can eat pretty much anything, still smaller portions that before surgery, but more volume that I could eat immediately post-op. So I have to be careful and make sure I'm making good choices. I really need to post an updated picture. I don't really look any different than the last one I posted, so not sure what benefit it would be. LOL Just something new to look at for those who care to. ;-)
November 7, 2005: No real change this past month in my weight - holding at 143 lbs. Definitely in size 10!! That feels great. I did some winter clothes shopping for me, as I didn't have anything to wear. What a blast! I even wore a BELT to church yesterday! LOL I love it! I haven't worn a belt in more than a decade, at least. I'm in need of my B12 shot, and keep forgetting to get my prescription for that transferred to the local pharmacy here where we moved. So I'm going to do that right now...... I'll post updated pictures soon.
October 10, 2005: I've lost three more lbs this month and as of this morning am weighing in at 143 lbs. Shocking!! It's a very slow loss, but still - I'm losing. I'm now 5 lbs from ideal weight, it's looking like I'll make that. It's been a stressful month around here, and while I'm eating, perhaps I need to eat more. Not sure. I'm not keeping track of calories or anything at this point. I guess I should. I feel fine, but am due for my B12 shot, so I guess I'd better get that soon! Not much else to report, I'll post new pictures soon.
September 18, 2005: Well, hernia surgery went well. I'm all healed and doing fine. I lost 4 lbs during that process and am now at 146. I do bounce a bit between 146 and 148, but never higher. I have noticed more head-hunger lately, or at least I think that's what it is. I get hungry, and eat, can't eat much and I never feel satisfied. Odd feeling really. So I have found if I get busy with something, then I forget to eat, and am really hungry. *sigh* I'm not overeating, just dealing with not feeling satisfied when I do eat.
Other than that, not much happening! I'm going to wait until after the first of the year to talk to a plastic surgeon. I don't want any more surgery until summer 2006, so I'm going to wait a bit to get things going on that. I know my insurance will pay for a breast reduction, not 100% sure I have medical necessity for a tummy tuck - so perhaps I could get a reduced rate on that, if I do both at the same time. If they don't pay for the tummy tuck and it's quite a bit of money, I may have to wait a little longer to get any plastic surgery done. We'll see!!
August 15, 2005: Well, it looks like more surgery for me! About a week ago I started having some pains in my pouch/stomach area. I thought I ate something that was bothering me. When it continues, I thought perhaps I was getting an ulcer. The pains weren't always bad and would sometimes come and go. After about three days of pretty constant and ever growing pain, I decided to call Dr. Richardson's office to see about getting a prescription for the ulcer I was sure I had. When I described my symptoms, Patty wanted to know how far away I was, I assume to come right in. Being 1.5 hours away from their new office, she told me to come in the next afternoon.
I was in major pain by the time I got there and still thought it was an ulcer. Nope - internal hernia. While there isn't any real good conclusive tests to know that ahead of time, my symptoms apparently are classic for this type of hernia. Dr. Richardson wanted to do the surgery that day!!! YIKES!! I didn't go prepared for that at all - so he agreed for me to schedule it the following week, promising to go straight to the ER if I got any worse. Thankfully I made it through the weekend; actually the pain pretty much subsided (figures!). So today I called and chatted with Patty and told her the pain was gone, she told me that in no uncertain terms that I was to still have this surgery. It's very common for the pain to come and go, but this is still a serious condition and needs to be taken care of. So off I go in the AM for surgery to get it fixed.
Other GREAT news, I finally made the Century Club!! I've officially lost 100 lbs and am only 1 lb away from my personal goal. I could really stand to lose another 15 lbs to get to my "ideal weight", but I'm good with where I'm at and do not want to stress over a number on the scale. :-)
So there's my latest update. I'm now wearing size 10's in most things, or size L. I'll try to post some new pictures soon.
July 17, 2005: My 1 year post-op visit with Dr. Richardson went very well! ALL of my bloodwork came back normal. YAY! Dr. R. said I looked great and he went on to explain to me that most post-ops lose about 75-80% of their excess weight, regain and end up settling at about 60-70% of their excess weight lost. He said that puts most people about 30 lbs over where they would like to be - which is usually 'ideal body weight'. My goal is normal BMI, and I'm 2 lbs from that right now. Ideal body weight for my height is 138 lbs - I may or may not make that. Dr. R. said those folks that do are more obsessive about getting to that point - I am not. I'm healthy and a normal weight, that's the most important to me. ;-) Here I am, wearing my new size 10 capris!! :-D
July 11, 2005:WOW - it's been a long while since I've updated. I've continued to lose very slowly: 98 lbs gone! I'm only 3 lbs from my personal goal of a normal BMI! I go this Friday, July 15th, for my one year post-op visit with Dr. Richardson. I already had my blood work drawn, so we'll see what those results show as to how I'm really doing. No real problems or complications that I know of! I do sometimes have issues with foods - like yesterday, we went out to eat, and I got baked fish. I've had this same fish many times before (even at this same restaurant), without issues. Yesterday two bites and I'm running to the bathroom to get sick. No clue why yesterday was different. But that doesn't seem to happen too often anymore, so it's not a big deal really.
I'll post another update after my one year visit.April 23, 2005: I've lost another pound for a total of 88! I'm only losing about 3 lbs or so per month now. At least it's something. I've adjusted my personal goal to 149 lbs, which gets me a normal BMI. I'm also now wearing size 12's!!! Here I am in my new size 12 capris. :-D
April 10, 2005: Not much to report really. I've only lost 1 lb this month. Could it be I'm done losing? Possibly. I'm fine with that. After a tummy tuck, I'll lose a few more pounds, quite a few inches and probably drop at least one pant size. I'm cool with that. :-D I'm healthier, and that was my primary goal for the surgery. The fact that I wear a size 14 pants and size L top, and shop in the regular size section of the store, is merely a bonus. ;-) I feel great.
This week I will begin giving myself B12 shots at home. I had been going to the doctor's office, but in reality, going to the doctor's office every month, paying my 50% co-pay for each visit, would get very expensive, not to mention inconvenient, since I have to do this for the rest of my life. So I'm going to give myself the shots.
I ordered some protein shake samples from Vitalady. Some were okay, some not. I did like the Unjury vanilla I made with organic soymilk. Very smooth and tasty. None of that yucky aftertaste. I haven't made a final decision yet on which powder to order, I may order a few more samples to try first. I do believe that I need much more than the 50 grams of protein Dr. R. suggests. When I get in more, I feel better and my hair loss pretty much stops. If we post-ops don't absorb all of what we take in, then it stands to reason that I'm not absorbing all the protein either. If I only shoot for 50 grams, then I'm not actually getting 50 usable grams. Our bodies need more than that. Protein shakes are a predigested protein, so WLS patients will absorb more of it. It all makes perfect sense to me and since I know I feel better when I get in more protein, and Dr. R. said it won't hurt me to get in more protein - I'm going to get in more protein! I know that this past month, I did not drink protein shakes. I actually didn't even log my food at all this whole month. Bad, I know. But what happened - I only lost 1 lb. Mmmm?? Could there be a connection - I think so. Could I just be done losing - possibly. The only way to know is to start religously drinking protein shakes and log my food. I do need to increase my exercise and stay regular with that - which I admit, I have not been. So that too could be a major reason why I haven't lost more weight. So I'm at the point that if I want to reach the goal I set, I'm going to have to work for it. I just need to decide if I'm happy where I am - thankful for what I've lost, or if I really want to attain the goal I set. Stay tuned to learn my decision.....
March 11, 2005:I'm down 84 lbs and a total of 15 inches off my waist!!!! The scale is definitely going down much slower, but I seem to be averaging about 5 lbs per month - so not bad. But obviously the inches are still coming off. :-D I'm making sure to take my vitamins daily. I'm taking one chewable multivitamin daily and two Hair Skin and Nails supplements and two Calcium Citrates daily. My hair loss seems to have stopped since I increased my supplements. I thought I was going to go bald there for a while, but new hair is coming in. I do make sure I get in my protein, but it's not always easy. So I'm going to get some Isopure protein supplements today and start on those, in addition to my protein bars. Some days I just don't feel like eating much, so those are low protein days and that's not good. Ironically, I was reading on another WLS board that someone noticed a connection between low protein intake and depression. Mmmm?? I don't really feel depressed, but protein is brain food, so it makes sense that low protein intake might affect mood and energy too. So I'm going to increase my overall protein intake, as Dr. Richardson's office said it would not hurt me to do so.
Well, that's my update for this time. At this pace of 5 lbs per month, I'll make my goal weight by my 1 year anniversary! Only 19 more lbs to go! :-D
February 3, 2005: I got my 6 month lab results back today, and everything looked pretty good, except my ALT/AST (liver) were still high. They were down from before surgery, so that's good. We'll watch those. My zinc was borderline, so I'm adding that, and because I'm still losing hair, I'm also to increase my protein. The zinc and protein increase should stop my hair loss. Everything else looked really good!!
February 1, 2005: Well, 77 lbs gone! I hit a plateau right after Christmas and it didn't break until this past weekend! I just went to Dr. Richardson for my 6 month post-op checkup last Friday. Had my 6 month labs drawn yesterday. Hopefully those will come back okay.
I talked with a nutritionist from NewStart and read her my averages on my food intake and she said I was doing well, but my carbs were a little low. I'm going to keep them where they are for now.
December 28, 2004: I'm 6 months post-op and down 73 lbs!! I've lost over 50 inches over my whole body and I'm feeling awesome!! I'm wearing size 16 jeans and size L tops now. Quite an improvement over the 26 pants and 3x from before surgery! Here's a side-by-side comparison of my first 6 months:
November 22, 2004: I'm now down 61 lbs!! I've lost 10 inches in my waist alone!! Pretty awesome! Only 49 more lbs until I reach my goal. The weight is coming off a little slower, but still coming off. I'm not worried and feel great! I've got more energy than I've had in years and hubby and I have been stripping wallpaper, painting and general sprucing up on our house. I'm better able to keep up with my kiddos and housework. Life is good!
October 19, 2004: I'm down 54 lbs!!! I now weigh 196 from a starting weight of 250. Not too bad! Everything else is going very well. I go this Friday the 22nd, for my 3 month post-op check with Dr. Richardson. I plan to switch to B-12 shots, I'm a bit tired, so I think that will help me in that area. No other issues. Doing great! So, until next time..... :-)
September 18,2004: Life sure has been busy! I've been sick with asthmatic bronchitis, so haven't felt great. I'm down a total of 41 lbs. Not too bad. Most foods do okay for me, but lately my pouch has been getting a bit picky. Some times even water will make my pouch hurt, other times it doesn't. Chicken is the only thing that gives me trouble: if it's minced or shredded really fine, I can eat it. Otherwise,chances are it won't stay down. It's moist enough, just too dense or heavy or something.
August 28, 2004: I had my 1 month post-op visit this past Wednesday and was officially down 25 lbs!! I've since lost another 3 lbs, so am down 28 lbs in just a month. I am truly amazed and so thankful for this surgery. I've had no complications, issues or problems thus far. I'm doing amazingly well. I've noticed my clothes fitting better too. My 3x/26 clothes were snug before surgery, and now those are loose and the 2x/24 are fitting nicely. I have such a wide range of clothing in my closet that I won't have to buy anything for a bit, well, at least not for a couple weeks! LOL
August 11, 2004: My godness what a difference two weeks can make! Yesterday was my two week post-op anniversary, and I woke up down 20 pounds! This morning, I woke up down another 2 pounds!! That's 22 pounds in just two weeks! I'm truly amazed and in awe of what this surgery can do. I'm feeling fantastic! No problems at all and not one moment of regret that I had this surgery. I guess I've had the picture perfect recovery. Life is good!
I went yesterday and got my hair cut short! It's been long for many, many years, and I was ready for a change. My hair is very thick, and it's hot on the summer, and gets in my way, so I always end up putting i in a pony tail. Well, I decided enough was enough and cut it off! I like it!
July 2, 2004: Well, a lot has happened since I last posted. First, only 2 days, 1 hour and 7 minutes until my surgery!! I'm getting very excited! I bought a new summer robe and will get new slippers too, for my hospital stay and recovery time. I polished my nails and toes last night and started packing my bag.
Other big news: we're moving! We had thought we were going to buy land and custom build, but were having a hard time finding the type of land we wanted, that we could afford, that wasn't too far away. Mark happened upon a listing for an existing house and it's PERFECT! You can see it i the Our Farm link. They accepted our offer on the house, and now we're waiting to sell ours so we can move! We had a showing yesterday, and have noticed a lot of cars driving up the street and slowing or stopping to look and take down the realtor number. So hopefully it will sell quickly.
July 9, 2004: I had my pre-op consult with Dr. Richardson today. It went well. I weighed in at 250, so up 4 lbs from my last official weight in April 2004. Glad I'm having surgery!! I go next week for my pre-op testing and my surgery is officially July 27, 2004 at 8:30am!!
Tomorrow is Obesity Helps event here in St Louis, my hubby and I are both going!! I'm looking forward to it and to meeting some of the folks that post on the Missouri board.
July 7, 2004: WOW - what a difference a day makes. Dr. Richardson DID sign my papers yesterday. This morning, Sharonda faxed them to the benefit rep (Mark Wood), then he faxed them to his contact at Blue Cross-Blue Shield. This was probably around 10:30 or 11am. I went up, took a nap to get rid of a migraine, came down at 1pm to a message on my answering machine from Mark Wood asking me to call him. I'm APPROVED!! In a less than 2 hours, I got an approval!!!!! I'm seeing Dr. Richardson for my pre-op stuff this Friday and it looks like my surgery will be July 27th!!! I'm soooo excited.
July 6, 2004: Things sure do move fast with Dr. Richardson! Yesterday he got my info reviewed and signed and today Sharonda if faxing everything to the benefit rep at my hubby's work and the benefit rep will hand deliver it to Blue Cross tomorrow!!! YIIIPPEEE!! Progress!
So, since next week the plant is closed, it's possible that it might take a week or more to get an approval. I'm hoping This can get done by Friday of this week, which is two days away. I can pray that it does.
July 5, 2004: Sorry for the loooong time between updates. I've basically just been waiting and waiting..... NewStart is a very slow process, made even slower by Dr. Beretves having my files for nearly 4 weeks, and still hasn't reviewed them. Without his reviewing them and the letter being signed, nothing gets sent to my insurance. Soooo, today I decided to switch surgeons, I'm going with Dr. Richardson! I've heard wonderful things about him. His office is in Union, which is very close to me. I spoke with Patty at Dr. R.'s office, and she said Dr. R reviews and signs off on all files each week on Tuesday. So I called Chris at NewStart to see if she could get my info together for Dr. R. to sign them today! I won't know if that happened until probably tomorrow, but at the very least, it will be done next week!!! Next step is to have everything faxed to the benefit rep. for my hubby's work, who can push this through for an approval in about 2 days!! Finally, some progress! I had hoped to have surgery next week while Mark is off work; very unlikely that will happen. But, it may be within a couple weeks, which is okay. Mark has some personal days available, and daycare is lined up for the kiddos, so it will work out. I'll st again, once I have more news.
April 16, 2004: I had my stress today and passed!! Woo!Hoo!! I need to complete a new health/diet history, wait for the reports from primary doc, cardiologist and psychiatrist to send with the packet and then I wait! They told me through New Start it takes, on average, 2.5 MONTHS for everything to do their stuff and for me to get an approval or denial. Hopefully I'll have everything I need to send it with the packet by early next week. Then I wait.... I also found out at the seminar last night that Dr. Gaskin is NOT on my insurance, so I will have to go with Dr. Beretvas, also through New Start.
In the beginning.....I began researching WLS in June 2002. I actually submitted my information for insurance approval in 2002, through NewStart. I was denied, because the procedure code submitted was not overed by my insurance. WLS is covered, but at that time, not under that specific code. put things on hold. Had another major surgery in 2003. And am once again submitting my information through NewStart. This time my insurance is covering more codes for WLS. YAY! My BMI is higher and I have more co-mordities, so approval should not be a problem. I'm in the process now of getting a new info packet from NewStart (called them this morning) and getting my recent blood work from my doctor faxed to me, and getting a letter from my primary saying I'm fit for surgery. I need to call and get a psych consult and I'm on my way!! As my insurance company seems to take their sweet time with approvals, it could be 6 weeks AFTER they receive my info before I hear back. So I have no clue when I may have surgery.