Aviv Ben-Meir, M.D. My first meeting with Dr. Ben-Meir was in February, 2007. My first impression was that he was a kind, self-confident surgeon. He answered my questions, did not rush me and when leaving the office, stated to me that he would take good care of me. After surgery, I saw him twice before leaving the hospital. Every precaution was taken to ensure an uneventful surgery..to reduce complications which could occur. He emphasized aftercare, made certain I understood everything and was ALWAYS VERY PLEASANT! A+ for surgical competence and bedside manner. I would recommend him to anyone contemplating RNY or lapband surgery. rnrnOver all, I felt they have a very good structured program, however since I wound up having to go self pay, I think was a bit of a wrench in the \"normal works\". There were times that I felt my case specialist took too long in addressing my calls, following up on my appeal, and at times almost seemed like she had no clue who I was. I understand there are hundreds of people that come and go through their doors, but let's face it, we want and need to feel that they know about \"my case and my medical history\".rnrnThe PAT went flawlessly as did the group meeting with the dietician. They provided detailed printed materials needed for Pre and Post-op, addressed risks of the surgery and even though you left overwhelmed, you left with a confidence.rnrnWhen I asked the cost of the total package to have this surgery, I was told $4,000 for the surgeon, $15,450 for the hospital which was all inclusive, and a bill for anesthesia approx. $2,000-$4,000 and would be discounted if paid immediately. If any problems were to happen, of course there would be additional charges. 6 weeks after my surgery, bills started rolling in above and beyond those quoted to me, bills for various doctors, and then the mother load of a bill came in for $9,850 ABOVE AND BEYOND WHAT I ALREADY PAID! I feel I was grossly misinformed! Now I have to figure out how to come up with $10,000! I am very upset about all of this!rnrnUPDATE 12-12-07 rnrnGREAT NEWS! They screwed up in sending the request for coverage to my insurance. This was for the charges I paid for PRIOR TO SURGERY. Thank goodness.......I now can get on with my life and the holidays without the worry of how I was going to cough up another $10,000.rn
Congrats, Teresa, on
I was reading some
of your blog & see
that you have a good
handle on that
I wish you all the
best as you make new
milestones & healthy
Ah, I wanted to post
on your surgery
page, and I see you
already have some
great comments! I
am glad you are now
on the Loser's
Bench. You save a
spot for me, because
I will be there
before you know it.
I am THRILLED you
are doing well. I
am praying for your
and hope all
continues to go as
well for you. God
bless. . .and lotsa
The day finally arrived that I could progress to pureed foods!I was so excited that I completely forgot that you have to stop drinking at least 15 minutes to a half hour PRIOR to eating your meal.OOPS!So breakfast consisted of my coffee enriched with Unjury chocolate protein supplement and my applesauce laced with my crushed pills.
Ok, no harm done.Lunch, let’s see, ok ~ decided to boil one egg.Put the egg, 2 tablespoons light mayo and 1 tablespoon mustard and one /2 tsp vinegar in my “Bullet” and viola, deviled pureed egg salad.Next I moved on and pureed a small package of tuna (in the pouch, packed in water) with 2 tablespoons of light mayo, dash S&P and you could add a bit of relish or pickle juice, but I did not this time, now I have pureed tuna salad.
Had one tablespoon of egg salad and one tablespoon of tuna salad and ½ cup of pureed chicken rice soup.Everything went down nicely and stayed down.
Dinner consisted of 1 ounce pureed Lean Cosine turkey with gray & stuffing, 2 tablespoons of runny mashed potatoes mixed with the and ½ cup puree fresh cooked carrots.DEVINE.Again, all went down well and stayed down.
I am very pleased so far at the progress and must admit; I eat VERY SLOW and take very small bites.I certainly do not want to have any problems.SO far I feel quite full and have no desire to eat more than what I should be eating at this stage.TG
The good news???The scale is starting to finally decline.With gaining weight from the surgery, I was a bit dismayed, but kept in the back of my mind that eventually weight would start to melt off.
Wow, cottage cheese and fresh pineapple, YUM-O.That was breakfast!Had the tuna & egg salad with a light yogurt for lunch.Tonight I am going to try another lean Cuisine, chicken I think, with whole wheat pasta.
Let me go back a week to the day of surgery.We arrived at the hospital at ; my scheduled time was They sent me to admitting, and had to wait ½ hour before they finally called me.They took my BIPAP machine to ensure it was “up to their standards”, and proceeded to check me in.Then I was told to have a seat until they called me.At , they instructed me to undress, put all my belonging in a bag and pointed to “my” gurney.They took blood (had to run some blood tests due to my having been on Optifast for 2 weeks).My husband was then called to say his goodbyes-let me re-phrase, see you later and was then wheeled into a holding area for surgery.As I wear glasses, my husband was instructed to take them.Great, now not only am I nervous, but I cannot see a darned thing!
My assigned anesthetist greeted me, ran through my history and proceeded to put in the IV for surgery. I was scheduled for , however my surgeon was to eat after his first surgery which was , so by the time he actually arrived to see me before surgery, it was 10 minutes until .Well, by this time, I have now been literally sobbing due to anxiety.I felt foolish. I was sure of my decision, but the longer I waited, the more I sobbed.Finally they offered me a shot to calm me down a bit, which certainly helped.Nurses also took the time to console and assure me all would be fine.One nurse had undergone the same surgery I was having. She looked wonderful!
Next thing I knew, they were wheeling me down the hall into the surgery room and like a swarm of bees, they were all over me getting me prepped.One thing I did notice before sailing off into la-la land, they were all males!Well, we lose all dignity when we are hospitalized and thank goodness I did not have much time to think about it!lol
What seemed like 3 minutes, not 3 hours, I was awake and aware I came through the surgery.I was vaguely aware of my husband telling it was around , I was in ICU, and he was going home to take care of our fur-babies.
Finally being cognitive enough, I asked why I was in ICU instead of on the bariatric floor.The pulmonary doctor on the surgical team placed me there due to breathing problems and low blood pressure.
Now that the anesthesia wore off, my only thought was I have to get up and walk.In ICU, try to get someone to get you up to walk!Finally early in the a.m., after asking everyone I could, they got me up to walk 5 steps from the bed to the closet and back.
The next morning at I was taken for x-rays which cleared me for fluids. Whew!Great no leaks!Good job Dr. Ben-Mier!!Then came my medications which were crushed and in applesauce.Talk about NASTY.At this point however, with a sip of water, it was something to wet my scorching, dry mouth!
By that afternoon, I was taken to the bariatric floor.There I was able to walk up and down the hall and meet some other patients.
I was amazed at how hard it was to get the fluids down.Talk about being full, almost just the sight of them made me bloat!
I was released on Wednesday, feeling pretty good.My doctor warned me to expect gas and that I may not even be aware that it is happening and to be prepared that it will be accompanied with liquid.TG I put a hospital pad under myself prior to going to bed.Woke me up at and without looking, I knew I needed to head for the shower.Now why couldn’t this have happened while in the hospital????
Other than the severe gas (100 trips to the bathroom at least) and the bloating, my only real problem is the swelling in my legs and feet.I had this condition prior to surgery, but twice as bad now.I fortunately had a pair of compression stockings which I struggled to get on and they seem to help.
Every day that passes, it gets a bit easier to get the required liquids down.The proteins vary from day to day, but all in all, I am please with my progress.
Now to the important fact….I had gained 10 pounds from the surgery!That sucked!But it was explained that with the gas and the fluids, this is common and not to worry.So I am trying not too.
My follow-up visit is scheduled for November 14th.By then, I hope for significant weight loss.Until then, walk, sip, sip, walk, sip!
Here it is Sunday and tomorrow I begin my new life! I must be at the hospital by 9 a.m. and surgery is scheduled for 11 a.m. I must admit that I am quite anxious and nervous, but I have have been keeping busy by spending my time reading and posting on the OH board and OFF. Well, that is in between visits to the "powder room"!
I have met so many wonderful OH and OFF members that are so wonderful, I just cannot put it into words. The support received and the great tips on the do's and don'ts are inestimable . I am fortunate to have found this group to share my thoughts, fears, anxities, and a joke or two.
I am packed and think I have everything...even 3 tubes of chapstick! Don't want to run out
I will miss my hubby and 3 fur babies, but I am sure they will all be glad to see me when I get back home.
Well off the the again!!!!!
Well here it is, I have been on the liquid diet now for 10 days and for me, it really was not all that bad. Honestly, there were times that my husband's meals looked MUCH better and SMELLED better than mine. BUT, I bit the bullet and did not stray. After all it is for my own health and should not be sabotaging myself, right?
Been keeping myself busy with reading the OH boards, posting a joke or two, offering some laughter, and having my bathroom remodeled for when I come home from the hospital. What a nightmare! That's another story!
I am getting a bit nervous, I must admit. I have corresponded with several wonderful OH members which have helped considerably. Have not heard from my angel, I know she has been up to ears being busy, but hopefully she will be there when she is needed.
So I am counting down the days, getting my bag packed for the hospital, and making sure to continue my breathing exercises (although I am not sure there is any improvement-can't seem to get to a better reading than when I started).
To all of you having surgery on October 15th, I'll be thinking about you and best of luck!
I was doing fine with my liquid diet (Optifast) until I tried adding diet root beer to the mix (suggested by the Dietician). I placed it in my Bullet (small blender), turned it on and it exploded all over me and my kitchen! Ok, you can stop laughing now! I should have known better with the carbonation, but NO! So needless to say and hour later after I cleaned the kitchen, floor, walls, cabinets, ceiling, stove, blender, me, AND THE CAT, I finally sat down and drank my diet soda and ate a SF pudding. Now I know more than likely I should not have eaten it, but I checked the calories and much less than the Optifast. I was only given the exact amount per day, so I had no extra and of course you KNOW I was a bit hungry...... What an ordeal!
As far as the bars go, like eating sawdust with some honey, nuts and oats, and sawdust with artificial peanut butter!