9/2/07: It is has been a tough year, after all the surgeries in 2006, a heart scare in Aug 2006 and 9 CT-Scans in the fall 06 and winter 2007. The doctors thought I MIGHT have pancreatic cancer--which sent me into a frenzy--including BAD eating habits--which netted a WEIGHT Gain of about 60-70 lbs (yuk!). My weight is back to around 430 or so (ughhh!!) It has been difficult to get back on track. The good news, now, is that they have diagnosed me NOT having cancer. The doctors don't know what the spot was on my CT-Scans; I have one more scheduled in Oct 07. Now, I need to concentrate back on my weight. It has been difficult in so
Weight Loss Survey ResponsesClick Here To View
Computers & Internet - Enjoy surfing, e-support groups, eventually webpage design
Family & Friends - Mi famigila es importante/friends too!
Musical Performance - Enjoy Broadway shows
Board Games & Puzzles - Like to play w/ friends & family--board games & trivia
Movies - Comedy, drama
Music - A little bit of everything (except hard rock)
Radio & Television - TV: Y&R, GL, Trading Spaces, Friends
Cruises - I've taken over 15 around the world to date!
Click here to see interests of other ObesityHelp members.
Surgeon: Robert Cooney M.D.
many ways--I am still NOT healed from all the surgeries in 2006,
which has left my abdomen open in 3 spots--which are still oozing from the hernia repair and skin removal and NOW a new VERY VERY Large hernia in my abdomen area (again!). The doctors don't want to do surgery yet--if it will help. It is very uncomfortable. I still
do not sleep in a bed--after 18 months--I sleep in a recyliner (let's hear it for LazyBoy!). Anyway, that's my plight for now--it is still a challenge to keep most of the weight off.
7/31/06: Recently I celebrated my third anniversary from the date
of my original gastric bypass surgery (7/30/03). I am now down approx. 210 pounds since that date--wahoo!! The past few months
have been very trying. In early March 2006 I was in the Hershey Medical Center to have a hernia repair and panillectomy (skin removal). Initially all went well after 4 days in the hospital. Soon after my discharge I had 3 occurences of infection--which landed me on an extended medical leave for FIVE months. During this
tenure and with the skin removal I had lost 75 pounds--so you can
see how wild this time was--particularly since I was on the wound vacuum machine. I am still NOT fully healed yet, but recently I just
shed my 'old' wardrobe--which was very exciting--but very sad at the same time--only because of how much money "big" clothes cost and how much I will need to replace--ughhh. But I did part with over 100 pieces of clothing (shirts, shorts, pants, etc.). Some were given to another large friend--while others were donated to the local Good Will charity store (that have requested my big clothes for area people). I am on a protein kick for the past 5 months, primarily due to my 4 surgeries that require an intense amount of protein. I have not been getting all my vegetables and fruits it--but I try when I can. Of course, my NEW stomach (2003)
has been enlarged somewhat--I can't really eat BIG meals, but I am not eating real small portions either.
7/30/03: 569 lbs. Size 72-74 pants
7/30/06: 359 lbs. Size 60 pants (I haven't done all my
other measurements lately)
11/24/03: BMI History: 7/30/03=79.4
I am pretty happy for my progress to date! I've come a long way.
I am also glad I saved old clothes from former sizes of the past--so I didn't have to spend a bundle on new clothes, since I have lost so
much weight. I am not sure at this point about plastic surgery.
Since the recent 4 surgeries, I have been somewhat contoured in
my chest/abdomen area--but my legs, hips and posterior are still
big. But I am uncertain of when I will attempt to contemplate
plastic surgery. I am trying NOT to think of going under a knife right now.
I still recommend gastric bypass to people! Still looking to weigh less in the next few years. I turn 46 this week; and my personal
goal is now to get closer to 300 by age 50!! It will not be easy--but I enjoy challenges.
2/19/04: It's a New Year and the old me is emerging, of course at a less weight. I am now down 114 pounds since my operation (7/30/03). And to boot, several, and I mean several inches down too. I have started to have my pants altered, because it is too
expensive to buy all new ones right now. I also had the pleasure of going on a 10-day cruise in January--and you know, I did fine with all the food--I kept a journal, walked everyday and I believed I probably lost a pound or two. It was a good experience, even with the new stomach and a somewhat bumpy ride out of New York to the Caribbean in the middle of winter. I am feeling great--lots of energy, rarely hungry (kind of a bad thing!)--my surgeon keeps telling me to eat more (protein, that is!)--what a novel concept--sometimes I cannot--but I am working on that issue. I am trying to also walk 30 minutes weekly, if not more at an indoor track. That's all for now...
11/24/03: BMI Update: 7/30/03=79.4
11/24/03: Saturday, November 22, marked a special milestone, I have now reached the century program of weight loss--since
my surgery of July 30,2003, I have lost 104 pounds. Obviously you can tell how excited I am. I continue to be
challenged by some foods, but do not get depressed or stressed over this topic--because I can still eat--just maybe
not everything I have always wanted. Yes, my clothes continue to be an issue, in that they have become baggy--at least
in the pants I wear--so it's time to contact my local seamstress. I will have to get my tape meausure ready to
calculate the inches I have lost--even in my shoes! Generally I am feeling well; more energy than a year ago and even
my legs feel better and stronger. I have an appointment with my surgeon and dietitian on December 4, which
is routine after surgery. And I will have bloodwork and a B12 shot within the next month as well. As I have told some
of you, I do not have any real appetite and I must force myself to eat--particularly protein! It is such an odd
phenomenon. Just wanted to drop y'all a line to let you know a little about me.
Wishing you well on Thanksgiving and throughout the entire Holiday Season! Take Care, Steven
11/3/03: Down 85 pounds and feeling great. It has been an interesting last weeks coming back onto some other "regular" foods. I still have an occassional flair up of nauseau with some
items--but I have not "thrown up" yet. And yes, I have had some
experiences with dumping and some diarrhea. Generaly my energy level has been great. Of course, the fun of this lately is that
my pants are getting VERY baggy. I need to get to a seamstress
SOON! My surgery is a blur (7/30/03), but the scar remains on
my chest! Still need to build in EXERCISE--which has not been a
part of my life.
9/9/03: It has been some time since my last posting--so much has happened since then. Well, the event happened on July 30 @ Hershey Medical Center with Dr. Robert Cooney presiding. All went
well. I was initially put in an intensive care unit, something about "not enough beds" (for 2 1/2 days), then into a private room for 2 days. My sojourn in the hospital was prolonged to a small medical error. Right before we thought I was going to be discharged the doctor went to remove my "drains" on my chest and
unexpectedly one of the tubes got snarled inside my chest somewhere--which meant going back on the operating table and pulling it out. They did it lapriscopically--but it was still a long ordeal. But they discharged me the next day. MY operation
and initial hospital recuperation went VERY well. I was up my first night, sitting at the foot of the bed. The first full day after surgery I was sitting in a wheelchair and walking around several times (with my morphine drip and I-V). I wasn't feeling much pain during this period (or even since then!).The staff at Hershey was pretty accomodating. I had little needs initially--which the staff liked. I was determined --with my positive attitude, that I was "full steam ahead," and to get into a new
regime. Yes, I was weighed during my hospital stay, and YES you
do gain weight--my weight hit 569 during my stay. I was discharged on Sunday, 8/3 @ 3 p.m. My friends drove me home in my van with a pillow in tact on my chest for the bumpy ride home (just in case).
I arrived home to see friends had weeded my front yard gardens and planted new flowers (that was somewhat emotional for me--it was unexpected!). I had friends stay with me for the initial 48 hours (in all different shifts)--but I didn't need much help. I needeed NO walker, no cane. It did take me a few extra seconds to get up and down, but hey with a 10-inch incision on your chest--that is ok! My mother stayed with me for 2 weeks thereafter, so I almost always had someone with me--but basically I was fine! I had a singing telegram with four ladies in red gowns visit, many flowers, planters, and special gifts from over 100 people--which truly showed me "I was special." Sometimes we just don't know. I had many visitors also during my
four week recovery at home. I went back to work on September 2 for half days at first, then full-time on 9/8/03. My initial doctor post-op visit on 8/14 was amazing, to say the least. The doctor noted I was doing well! He took me off ALL medications
and semi-released me (no further doctor appointment needed until December 2003); the incision looked fine (then) and my energy
level was starting to kick in. My weight 524.5 (44.5 pounds down since 8/1 in the hospital)--I was AMAZED. I made the nurse weigh me three times. It was true. All things were going well. Just a few days of nauseau. NO throwing up of any kind (actually none yet, as of 9/8/03). I started a small walking program, two times daily in my neighborhood--about a block at a time in the morning and evening. Negative: of course, I was not keen on the portein drinks--especially those of the "milk" nature. I think I did develop a small aversion to milk products, particularly if they were vanilla (chocolate was ok!--go figure). I had been approved to drink a high protein replacement shake from LA Weight Loss,
which had 20 grams of protein in a 11 oz. drink container. Of course, I had bought several cases of this drink and had to exchange the vanilla for chocolate. I have to still drink it with a chaser of water and Tums. Basically, my recovery has been
FANTASTIC--as I noted earlier no dumping, purging, pain. All internal systems are go. I got on another scale recently and
it "said" I was down to 503 in five weeks! I will wait to have
officially verified at the doctors office. I will see my dietitian in late September. The foods have been going fine too!
Baby food (meats) even tasted OK. My basic staples for the first few weeks were mashed potatoes, baby food, cottage cheese and applesauce. Recently I added tuna. And this week I add all the LIST 2 items (mac&Cheese, some other carbs, veggies, fruits, ground meats, etc.). I am overjoyed at my weight loss to date, and I am realistic knowing that this will not be forever. While at the doctors office in mid-August, we discussed my goal weight--225 pounds. It seems so far away in numbers--but I hope I can
accomplish this with some plastic surgery and whatever it will take me to get to this level. I am awaiting a new me. I did take photos on the day before surgery, more to come on them, as well as I did the full measurement report--and the inches are going away. Some of my pants and shorts are already falling off of me--oh my! (not in public yet--thank God for suspenders and belts!). That's about all for now! Until whenever....
7/4/03: Family outing today. Met with my mother/father, brother/sister-in-law and their two great children for a small outdoor picnic in PA. It was a beautiful afternoon--I brought my own chair--so I wouldn't have to worry about the whole chair thing. Everyone in my family knows EXCEPT my mother--who has some
issues with the whole surgery. She has me dying on the operating table (not that it isn't a risk)--but this is very hard for me to tell her, because I believe it will send her into a tailspin of some medical/mental complications for the days before, during and after the surgery. I told the other family members I would wait until 2 days before surgery to tell her. I must admit I am somewhat uneasy about the surgery, being such a big guy and all the things that could possibly go wrong--but hey, I could die at any minute right now. So I am hopeful and will pray for myself and others to face this life altering situation with open, positive feelings.
I have hopeful also that within a year or two I will have the plastic surgery also to get rid of some of this major extra skin (i.e. apron, tummy massive tuck, etc.). It is already cumbersome, I can't imagine it after losing a large amount of weight--I can't wait (wings and things, here we come!).
7/3/03: Today I had some pre-op procedures at Hershey Medical Center. Only 27 days until surgery. I had (and still have some)
concerns about the whole anesthesology situation. I had a blood test, urine test, met with my surgeon, received several prescriptions for pre-op; all systems are a go right now. Do I feel relieved? Yes (I think so!). I am up to 563 today, BP was also high (yuk!).
7/2/03: Surgery was approved today via Highmark Blue Shield--yahoo! Another hurdle! I felt pretty positive about this!
06/27/03) WT: 560; I am 33 days pre-op to my surgery scheduled @ Hershey Medical Center w/Dr. Cooney. I am anxious and nervous does this sound familiar?). I am a pretty large man--560 and have been for many years, particularly in the past 12 years, where I have gained over 240 pounds. I work full-time at Millersville University of Pennsylvania and love the diversity of tasks associated with my position (alumni director), which includes travel, planning special events like reunions, parades, concerts, and many other people-oriented tasks (working with hundreds of volunteers of all shapes, sizes, ages, races, etc.). I am a high energy person who enjoys (for some sick reason) doing reports and planning many things--all at the same time. Unfortunately I set my goals too high and work excessantly--which is one of my major problems to work on (which has resulted in bad eating habits, for example). In my free time, I do enjoy playing trivia with my friends (weekly), tv, movies, Broadway, cruises and travelling around the world, family (very committed to my Italian ancestry) and friends!
I have been planning this surgery for over 13 months now, due to insurance setbacks(my former carrier would not cover), waiting for the period to change, then scheduling to attend the information session @ Hershey Medical Center and getting all the medical and other related tests and prep work done--seemed to take a lifetime....I finally have a surgery date for Wednesday, July 30. I am more worried about post-op, than the surgery. I have been reading so much on this topic (of course, surfing the web), attending 2 support groups one in Hershey, one in Lancaster, PA) and participating in one e-support group (locally of patients within PA). I can't believe it will be coming around the corner so soon. I have many hopes for my future particularly at age 42, almost 43--my birthday is August 6). I want to feel better--that is feel less weight on me, feel better walking; feel better breathing while walking up a flight of steps, I want, I want, I want...too many things here to list (so I will stop for now). Good health is number one with me--the looks thing is way down on the list! [Let's take care of high blood pressure, diabetes, sleep apnea, venus statis, etc.
I have been excited over all the people who have done WLS or who are about to--I share in their concerns, fears, hopes, etc. These
people are like me, many smaller, SOME even bigger. But I enjoy listening to them and reading what they have to say!
This is going to be a whole new way of life--I am so looking forward to this! Ciao!