- Username: mscott
- Location: Brick, NJ, USA
- Member Since: 3/21/2007
- BMI: 53.7
- Surgery date scheduled
- Surgery Type: RNY (07/11/07)
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Post surgery nightmare on October 18, 2007 11:14 am
My surgery was 0n 7/11/07. It is now 10/17/07 and this is the first time i have been able to post since surgery. I had severe complicatins after surg. due to my breathing difficulties. My oxygen levels were so low that i became unresponsive/unconscious, so a bi-pap was placed on me to add positive pressure to fill my lungs. Evidently the force of the bi-pap over-inflated my lungs making them press against my new pouch. This caused a necrosis which resulted in 2 holes in my pouch. Meanwhile my oxy. levels were still so bad that i was put on a ventilator. I remained in a coma , ventilated, for 5 days. Since I was totally unresponsive, even to pain, they were about to do a brain scan, fearing brain damage, when i miraculously opened my eyes as a response to my husband's voice. I was kept on the ventilator for another week while given nutrition and medication intravenously. Finally the tube was removed and i could breathe and speak on my own. I needed an upper gi series to assess the workings of the pouch but i was unable to even sit up for the test so it had to wait for me to gain strength. I was not allowed to eat or even drink anything for a month-not even an ice chip. My mouth felt like a huge wad of dirty cotton.Eventually i learned to suck on a clean wash cloth dipped in ice water and then spit out the ice water. Soon after that i decide to try a "swish and spit" technique (like when you brush your teeth). This at least offered some relief.
[ Another problem was that when i awoke after the coma my right arm and hand were swollen to 3 times normal size and I was unable to lift my arm off the bed. So began daily physical therapy to sit, stand and the walk as well as occupational therapy for my arm. A neurological consult determined the arm and hand problem due to a pinched nerve acquired either during surgery or while intubated and comatose. His prognosis: It should go away in a week or up to three months. Therapy should help..]
Eventually they were able to do a gi test on a slightly slanted table and found a rather large hole in the pouch. My doc said the normal procedure would have been to go back into surgery to fix this but he did not think i would make it through another surgery. Fortunately there was another treatmnt available but rarely used as yet. My doc had read about it in med. journals but had never seen it done. He was able to find a gastroenterologist willing to perform the procedure. The procedure, called "fabric and glue was described to me by the gastro guy as"its like spackling a hole in a wall". They go in through an endocope and place a mesh type of fabric over the hole and then spackle over it with a special kind of glue. Healing is left to the body's own resources. I was given another gi series test to determine the stage of healing. This time i was able to be sat up for the test and so they were able to better visualize everything. The good news was that the healing was doing extremely well. The bad news was they saw another hole that was hidden on the first test due to the fact that i could not sit up at that time. So back again to have another "fabric and glue" and wait for it to heal. Meanwhile it is now 5 weeks since even a drop of water has passed down my throat.Finally i was moved from ICU to another floor and given clear liquids. Two days later I developed an infection(from a central line). I had a temp of 104. Eventually the line was removed, the infection and fever abated and i was on the road again. I finally came home on August 24, 6and a half weeks since surgery. I continued physical therapy at home, for legs and arm. My arm had improved alot but I had three almost non-working fingers on my right hand.I ate pureed foods, creamy soups and ice pops. I seemed to be doing ok but after about three weeks it seemed that i was eating less and less and getting nauseus more often with a few bouts of vomiting. I told my doc. He told me to have protein shakes, take iron and double my multi vit. I did so and seemed to get sicker and sicker. I thought that i must be eating too fast, or not chewing enough, or taking one bite too many. I threw up at least one meal a day for 10 days. Then I threw up 9 times after only having eaten acarnation breakfast. So back to the hospital via emergency. It was found that the opening between my pouch and intestine had somewhat closed up. An endoscopy was done and a balloonin procedure was done to stretch the opening. That was done on a Tuesday and I was sent home on Thursday. I was on clear liquids only. Well, i was back in the ER on Friday morning unable to even keep down water and with a 101 temp again.. They found the opening had closed up again and even tighter than the first time. This time NOTHING was even trickling through. They ballooned the opening again and also noted that there was a slight depression at the bottom of my pouch (where the glueing had been done) that they think was 'catching' some of the food before it could enter the intestine causing a slight ulcer which was at the root cause of the "closure". This also explained the temp: the food lying in the depression in the pouch rotted and caused infection.Any way they sent me home the following Tuesday with Intravenous nutrition (called TPN) to aid the healing power, intravenous nexium for the ulcer, intravenous antibiotic for the infection, intravenous multi-vits,etc. I had to learn to administer all of this to myself daily, as well as blood thinner injections into my stomach, 2x daily. Any other of my meds have to be crushed. Well...here we go again I developed a severe infection at the site of the centra pic line. They increased antibiotic regimen to no avail. Yesterday they finally had a nurse come in and remove the pic line. My arm which had become enormous is almost back to normal and the pain has reduced consiserably. My biggest problem now is i feel about as strong as a dishrag. I am also depressed and i question daily the wisdom of having had the wls. I read everything on the off forum almost every day. The reasons I havent posted are twofold: 1. My fingers are still numb and typing is difficult and 2. Because i didn't want to whine. I always get hope from all of your postings. I know this is terribly long but i guess i just need to tell my story. Now I think I'm gonna have a pity party cry....which i have rarely done and try hard to keep up beat. Well thanks for listening.........Love, Marguerite
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My journey , that has brought me to this spot today began sooo many yyears ago.
I learned as a litttle girl that i could find comfort with food. I found that if i was hurt or angry or frustrated or sad...food would always soothe those feelings. Food also became a great happy pill as well. In short....ALL my feelings were taken care of by food. Actually, Food, food, food and the weight that resulted became my coping mechanism for daily struggles, large or small. My weight, tho i hated it, became my best friend.And since you always want your best friend around you, food became the center of my life in many ways. Today I'm saying thank you to my weight for taking care of me , but i don't need you anymore. Tomorrow starts my new life with my new best friend in charge...and that friend is me.
I've done all the diets, too many and often to even bother to mention. The most success i had was in 2003=4, i lost 80 pounds doing optifast medically supervised liquid only diet. I felt great but still needed to lose 100 more pounds and before long the food/feelings demons returned and i gained back the full 80. Ive also done lots of therapy which helped me resolve many issues but the weight was one left untouched. I found a therapist a couple of months ago who specializes in women's weight issues and i think she has helped me alot, so far.
Before i began the optifast diet, my health would have been considered fair. In the last three years it has deteriorated alot. I have congestive heart failure, atrial fibrillation (heart arrythmia),COPD which includes asthma, chronic bronchitis and emphysema, Type 2 Diabetes, Sleep Apnea, Barrett's esophagus (pre-cancerous stage of reflux disease), arthritis in knees, chronic miniscus tearing in one knee, and fibromalgia. I take 18 prescription pills a day and use 3 inhalers daily. Suffice to say ...this sucks. I can't walk for more than than 50-60 feet without needing to stop to catch my breath. With all of my co-morbidities, i am very frighted at the prospect of surgery but am more frightened of having to continue on in the direction i am headed. I am sick to death of carrying this weight around. I cant sit comfortably, cant cross my legs, cant go to the theater or fly in a plane (seats too small), cant sit in a booth in a restaurant. How humiliating!!!! When i use a restroom i have to check out the size of the cubicle to see if there will be enough room for me to lean over and wipe my own A**. I am afraid to sit on chairs in other peoples homes for fear of breaking them, I cant go the beach and enjoy the wonderful ocean, i cant shop, i cant keep my house as clean as i would like, and the list goes on and on and on. I feel much better having stated all this. I am really angry at what this fat is doing to me and i am saying STOP RIGHT HERE AND NOW!!
I was working as a school speech therapist until March when i had to take a disability leave due to congestive heart failure. While on leave, the school district decided to not renew my contract for next year due to excessive absences over the last 3 years. At first i was very upset but then realized that i was relieved and now after surgery i can make myself and my health the main priority without the stress of working every day. So, as usual, God knows best and things are exactly the way they should be.
Tomorrow is my BIG DAY. A part of me is still struggling with saying goodbye to the old but I AM LOOKING FORWARD TO THE NEW ME ! I know i will need lots of support and am thankful for the off forum. I will post again as soon as i can after the surgery.