I'm 41 years old and have fought with weight all my life. So far I have been mostly healthy except for Fibromyalgia and depression. Diabetes runs in my family.
Surgeon: Helmut Schreiber M.D.
I have not had any serious health issues but was told by my doctor that my cholesterol was a little high. Plus I have been having problems with one of my knees....doctor said that the weight wasn't helping but again nothing serious.
Just like everyone else I've tried numerous diets. When I brought to my doctors attention perscribing anything to help me with the wight she said Meridian but said it can be addictive and really didn't think it was worth the risk. She also mentioned Xanical but said it was a bother because of the urgent need to go to the bathroon. She recommended working with Weight Watchers.
An episode this past fall at an amusement park that was such an embarassement to me was the last straw and that is when I started my jouirney with WLS.
I started with the Bariatric Treatment Centers but they are not covered under my inusrance only as out of network. My insurance did inform me that Cleveland St. Vincet Chairty Hospital's Bariatric Center was. So that is where I will start.
I pray to God that this is what I'm to do. And hope the insurance will not be an issue!!!
I have a consult date...Jan 21, 2003!
It is now 3/19/03 and still no news just major frustration in getting the physc eval approved when it is my insurance's requirement!
Well, I had my physc eval (finally) on 4/16/03 and took a 560+test. Wasn't bad. Mainly a chat session.
Called 2wks after physc eval and no report done. Called 3wks out and was told mine was next 2b scored. Then the physc dr could write her report.
Gee it is now May 7,2003 and I am still waiting for the results of the physc eval test. Had requested a copy be sent to me and still haven't received anything.
So the waiting game goes on!
5/19/03 Finally got my physc eval test results. FAxed to St. Vincents. Now waiting for paperwork 2b sent to insurance for approval.
6/03 St. Vincents advised that if they send in the physc eval that likely I would be denied. So they suggested I seek another physc dr for a new eval or go back to original one for an explanation of the test results for her to have written a "not so favorable" report.
6/03 Had meeting w/physc dr. She stated that I scored 2 points over normal in a particular category that I should seek a LPPC to talk. I can't believe it...2points. Dr even said it wasn't anything too alarming but thought it best and would make her feel better to talk w/a LPPC just incase there is an issue. UGH!
6/10/03 Went to local WLS support mtg. Spoke to a few nice people there about this physc situation. One actually is a LPPC, but not practicing, anyways....they said I probably talked too much which might have led them to feel there is an issue. Go figure...someone who likes to gab and a phsyc dr thinks that is an issue????!!!!!!!!!!! Oh well, tomorrow will be here soon and one more step in the waiting game is over!
7/2/03 Going tomorrow 7/3/03 to see the LPPC. Hopefully this will be the last of this physc nightmare!
7/9/03 Kris from St. Vincent's called to inform me that my insurance denied surgery b/c I did not submit a 6month supervised diet review. I was never told by Cigna they required this information. The only thing I knew was a 5year diet history. Plus this physc stuff...I was denied on that. ST. Vincent's wasn't to send anything into Cigna until that was worked out. So I'm up ____ creek w/out a paddle. Onto the next step in this whole mess.
11/5/03 Well it is November and I am a few months closer to something! Meaning, I started the counseling in July, insurance wanted 3-6months of pre-op counseling, so that would make November my 5th month....one more month to go! Also, I'm 3months into the medically supervised diet...3 more to go! Dr has but me on Xenical....not fun and haven't lost much. Insurance doesn't want to pay for that so I get it when I can affort it. So I keep plugging along. It has been a long haul but I know I will get approved soon. Maybe the new year will bring a new me!
As far as the pre-operative counseling, I do believe in it. It can only help. Though I think the insurances would do better by their clients to require post-op counseling. Whether it starts 6wks post-op or 4 months because that is when people need the most counseling. To help them through the bigger changes.
6/1/04...can you believe it has been 17 months since I started this whole thing? Well, I got APPROVED! finally after all the crap I've been through! I was denied twice. 1st time b/c insurance said I didn't meet all their requirements which they added since I 1st started this endevour! Then the 2nd time, after I completed all requirements, PCP sent only part of the info to insurance when I specifically told them not to send anything! I told them to send the info to the wls surgeons office so surgeon could send all to insurance. Well, this error resulted in me having to go through an appeal process. But the end result is that I am approved. That was in April. Now I must wait to be seen by a vacsular doctor b/c my surgeon just wants to make sure I'm ok b/c of my family's history of blood clots. Went to see vascular dr. He ordered blood work. Took 2.5 weeks the results which came back after vascular dr went on vacation for a week and a 1/2! ARG! Anyways....I go this thursday 6/3 for the results. Then he has to write a letter of medical clearance and send to surgeon. So MAYBE by next week I'll have a date!
Well, I have always said...good things come to those who wait. I ahve waited a long time!
Boy and I behind the times! Been awhile since I've been on this site. Alot has happened!
Vascular Dr. finally wrote the letter medical approval only for my surgeon still insisting I see the vascular dr he wanted in the 1st place who is Dr. Gilbert. So I got an appointment w/Dr. Gilbert in Cleveland and have to wait 2 weeks for appt. But they told me I would be put on a cancellation wait list. I just happened to call back the next day to see if a cancellation happened. NO luck. but the lady who answered the phone said she didn't understand why I needed 2b seen and why I couldn't be consulted by Dr. Gilbert while I was in the hospital. Dr. Gilbert agreed. This was on a friday. Then I had to wait until tuesday b/c surgeon only in office on tuesdays. Tuesday came and surgeon agreed. Patient Rep then told me she would walk my chart to scheduling and it might be a week b4 I'd hear anything. I get a call a few hours later(still tuesday) from scheduling had me down for that Friday for PAT's and then SURGERY THE FOLLOWING FRIDAY 7/30!
IT IS NOW FRIDAY 8/6/04....ONE WEEK POST-OP AND 10LBS GONE FOREVER!!!!!!
FINALLY THE STORY HAS COME TO AN ENDING BUT THE JOURNEY STILL CONTINUES.
8/9/04....the story continues. I think so far I am doing fine. Iknow I have lost appx 14 lbs being 11 days post op. I have been on full liquids. Though I don't know if I'm doing it right. My liquids seem to get thick. Actually those are the days I felt my best, eating thicker foods than full liquids that is. I mean they would start out runny but would thicken as I ate the food. I've basically lived on runny cream, runny mashed potatos, yogurt, some canned soup, sf jello/pudding, Dole frozen fruit bars and Carb Option Fudgecycles. Oh well.
Tomorrow I start pureed. I'm excited only b/c I get to have "other" flavor foods. I just hope I can "stomach" the texture!
Yesterday my family took me out to the grocery store. It was nice to get out of the house. I was tired when I got back home!
Hubby returned back to work today. House is quite. My daughter is home today but I know she is going to get board! She is only 11yrs! She sure has been I big help to me this last week!
Today is October 1, 2004, I am 9wks post-op, and have lost 42lbs,and down 15". Gone from a size 26 to a 22/24. I feel great. Though I still have to remind myself to eat. There are days I just have no desire to eat, or maybe eat just a little bit and be full. So I continue to take my protein drink (100%Whey protein) and/or meal replacement (slimfast).
12/13/04 - Wow 4.5months have gone by. I am down to 223lbs. Not forsure about inches lost. I've joined Curves, so I am exercising at least 3x/wk. I know I need to exercise daily but it is so cold outside, that I don't want to take a walk! I'm a little depressed only b/c I feel like I am at a stand-still. I've been at 223lbs for almost 2wks and it is frustrating. I've found I can tolerate popcorn and corn chips. It curves my crunchy/salty cravings. I try hard to get in my 64oz of liquids/day and 60+g protein/day. ATt 4.5mo it is still hard for me to get it all in! Well, I guess this is part of the game! I have to keep reminding myself that I didn't lay on that operating table and have my insides reworked to beable to eat popcorn! More later!
2/1/05-I am 6mo and 2 days postop. I was told in an e-mail reminder from obesityhelp.com that I am now considered a "seasoned" postop!! I am now down to 212lbs. I am grateful for the 76lbs lost so far but I don't understand the stand still. In my last entry I was at a stand still for about 2wks on 12/13/04. Now I have lost 11lbs since then. Wow 11 pounds in 6wks. That is still really good right?! That is almost 2 pounds a week which is considered normal in the eyes or traditional weight lossers (those who did not have wls). I guess I'm not at such a stand-still after all. In the beginning of this journey, you loose weight so fast that you kind of expect it to keep falling off you at that rate, eventhough you know it slows down, so when you slow down one feels they are not loosing. I guess that is a lesson to really step back and look at the numbers!
I feel good, except I seem more tired these days. I go 2/3/05 for my 6mo followup. I have many questions for the dr! My PCP who took my blood, hasn't called me. Their policy is if a test has negative (bad) results they call, and they haven't, so no news is good news. I don't take iron b/c of constipation issues so that could be why I'm tired. Just don't want to fight being constipated!
Still don't feel "hungry". There are times when I get maybe a little anxious if I haven't eaten for a long time. I still get those head hunger cravings. Usually in the afternoon when I get bored or when I'm studying and need a break. Reaching for a few miniture reese cups takes the edge off. I'm really trying to control that. Sometime reaching for a protein snack or fruit/veggie snack doesn't always do the trick...sometimes something w/some substance really helps!
Well, more later!