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My name is Cynthia Marler, I do go by Cindy though. I am 44 yrs young, married to a wonderful man and I have one son who is 7 yrs old. My son Matthew is my life and I want him to be proud of his mom. Some background on myself - I live in the wonderful state of California in the beautiful redwoods, but just 20 minutes from the beautiful central coast beaches. I have always had a weight problem and as a child my mother tried everything she could. Here are a few of the things I've tried: TOPS, Overeaters Anonymous, WW, Meridia, Fen/Phen (my favorite), Xenical, high protein/low carb diets, Herbalife and so many more I can't even think of them all.
Finally in 1988 I saw an advertisement for Lite Life and I made the call only to find out it was surgery and decided "NO way!". Once again I tried everything and nothing worked. So I gave in and called Lite Life and made an appointment. My local doctor of 21 yrs wanted me to go thru a program locally and they sent me to UCSF where the doctor told me to loose 100 lbs first then he would consider doing the surgery (band). At that time I was 476 lbs and if I could loose the first 100, who would need his help! I finally convinced my doctor to let me go thru Lite Life and drove to San Luis Obispo to see the Dr. Winston Anderson.
Dr. Anderson was more than happy to do the surgery and didn't ask me to loose any weight prior to my surgery date. As for the insurance companies, I really don't recall to many problems - my employer was very helpful and they wrote a letter on my behalf along with my local doctor too. So in September 1988 I had the stomach stapling (band) done. I soon was on my way to loosing those dreaded pounds. Once I got too around 375 I slowed way down and decided to join a local gym (6-7 days a week). I got myself a workout partner and I was off headed down that slide. At about 325 lbs (1993) I got pregnant and gained 90 lbs with my son.
After giving birth to Matthew (10 lbs 9 oz and breech) I started back to my regular workouts as soon as possible. Then came Fen/Phen - wow was that a blessing...The downward spiral started to speed up again and I was looking fantastic. By 1997 I was down to 275 and looking great. In 1998 I had 3 plastic surgeries (all within a 3 month period) - both upper and lower abdominables and a breast lift. Things were going great then in 1999 I got hurt on the job- lower back and hip injury and I'm unable to workout. In 2001 workers comp finally approved for me to have cortizone shots and a Radio Frequency Ablation done on my hip which has helped with some of the constant pain. And now in 2001 I have put back on 75 lbs since being injured and my back/hip injury is not getting any better due to the weight.
I had heard they had perfected the stomach bypass surgery so I decided to check into it alittle further. My PCP said she would back me in any decision I made and I knew from that moment on I was going to have the RNY procedure done. It took approximately 2 wks to get approval to see the surgeon for a consult. The program at Stanford requires you see a shrink and nutritionist first and the insurance had no problem with approving that. Currently I have lost 23 of those 75 lbs on WW and have a surgery date of 8/20/01, but I am still pending insurance approval. Both my PCP and the surgeon Dr. Pamela Foster at Stanford University Hospital say I won't be denied due to high BP, varicose veins and my back injury.
I am very excited and can't wait to have the surgery done - being I've had the previous surgery, this one will be open and the planned time in hospital is 3-4 days. I just can't wait to get back into the gym!
My hobbies include - scrapbooking (I'm a Creative Memories Consultant), being involved with my sons sports activities and an avid Nascar Race fan. In fact I spend every friday nite at our local track taking pictures of the two cars that my husband and I sponsor.
AUGUST 13, 2001
Well I am 6 days out and counting!! I Dr. Foster again on Thursday last week and everything is still a go for the 20th of August. They have taken me off my vioxx which has brought back alot of pain that is becoming difficult to deal with at times. I keep saying to myself only 6 days left, 6 days.
AUGUST 15, 2001
I just got back from having to take a barium swallow test - YUCK!!!! I hope I never have to do that again. Everything still looks like a go for Monday morning - it is coming so quickly. The pain in my hip and back continues to get worse - I can't wait til its all gone - 4 days left!!
AUGUST 20, 2001
Well it is 4:02am and I have to be at the hospital at 6:30 am today!!!!! I didn't sleep very well...stomach kept growling and I couldn't get to sleep. Now I just can't wait til its all over and I'm on the other side.....see ya on the other side!!
AUGUST 24, 2001
Well I made it to the "OTHER SIDE"!! Yes I am out of the hospital and feeling great. My surgery went great! I had Open RNY I was in the operating room approximately 3.5 hrs, Dr. Foster took a little extra time to find a "C" clamp that was left in me from my previous VBG 13 yrs ago and she found it!! As soon as the woke me in the operating room she said here it is and I new exactly what she was talking about my response was "I want it!" They said they didn't see a problem with that but had to send it off to pathology. My first 24 -30 hrs was a little rough....but let me explain. After the general wore off I apparently wasn't pressing the pain med button like I should of (I hadn't had any pain to speak of so why press it) well was I wrong...I started having muscle spasms (cramps) in my abdomen near the top of the incision. My nurse told me to keep pressing the button and it would help...but you see I was way behind in pressing it so the pain had built up to a level that those meds wouldn't help it. Tuesday morning the doc from the Pain Center came in to ck out the epidural, he made a comment that it was a little splotchy but we could deal with that. I tried to explain the spasm thing but he really didn't quite understand what I was talking about. Well when he was done with his check he started to place a pillow back where I had it and he let go (it was only an inch or two above my stomach) well that did it I went into spasms. The doc said so this is what you were talking about....he ordered the nurse to call in some meds to the pharmacy and she tried to correct him stating he had to enter them into the computer...his response was this is an EMERGENCY just do (several times). Once he gave me a boliss(sp) of muscle relaxant I was back to normal. This lasted about 3 hrs. I asked for him to be paged (alot more happened but I thought I would shorten the story)he arrived at 5pm with the on-call doc for the pain center explained to her what he was doing and if I should need this again don't hesitate to call the on-call. I followed his instructions to the tee! I had no more spasms and every time I woke I used my pain button twice before going back to sleep. I woke up Wednesday morning feeling like a MILLIION BUCKS!!! I got up out of bed by myself, sat down and went for a walk. To make this even shorter they released me on thursday and I'm feeling great.
August 10, 2001
Today my incision opened up..it was the size of a pin hole but the doctor had me come in. They decided to pack it with a wick and showed me how. On August 12th the wick was putting out some murky stuff and smelled along with the area burning a little. I called the doctor they had me come in for an ultra sound and found nothing. So they decided to open up the area completely and have me start packing it with saline and gauze. What a bummer!
Pre-op 8/20 - 330
Post-op 8/22 - 343
" 8/29 - 322
" 9/4 - 314
" 9/10 - 306
October 31, 2001
Its been awhile since I last posted - at my nine weeks appointment I was down 50 lbs!! I really need to sit down and take my measurements but just haven't found the time hopefully soon. All else is good, my incision that was opened is almost completely closed now - hopefully just a couple more weeks. Eating is going fine - I have good and bad days.
January 9, 2002
Well its been a very long time since I last posted and alot has happened. I am now down 82 lbs and my incision is not closed yet! I had to go back to the surgeon today I thought I had a hernia but found out it was a small cavity filled with puss. The surgeon said it was not infected and now I am back at packing the wound. If there is no improvement by next week sometime I am looking at surgery again! Aside from that life is good I am enjoying working out in the gym everyday and feeling great!!!!!
February 4, 2002
Time just seems to be flying by and I get caught up in the everyday things and forget to post. Well today is my surgery day and I can't wait to get this incision recut and hopefully then it will heal properly.
Dr. Foster is very personable and friendly and listens to your concerns. The staff at Stanford University Hospital are very nice and cordial. I was most pleased that she didn't talk in mumbo jumbo and was very exact in making sure you understand all the aspects of the proceedure. Considering I've had this surgery done once before - her program is well thought out and planned as far as making sure you know exactly what will happen when you get home and what can be eaten and to have a plan before the surgery. As for the aftercare program I'm not sure yet. As for the risks, she went into everything in detail - alot more than the first surgeon I had. In rating Dr. Foster she is an 8 on a scale of 1-10, with 10 being the absolute best. I think both surgical competence and beside manner are very important in this type of surgery. The patient is altering their life and knowing that she is there for you means alot to me.
August 24, 2001
I can't say anything negative about Dr. Foster she was the greatest! I've never received such incredible care from a doctor in my life.
I really didn't have any problems to speak of. They originally told me it had to be medically necessary so I had my PCP refer me to a surgeon, which the insurance said was not necessary. The insurance referred me to a specific doctor for a consultation appointment only. I saw that doctor she stated that legally the insurance could not deny me the surgery due to my comorbidities. She put in the request which they received on July 19th and I received my approval letter on August 3rd. I was given a surgery date of August 20th on my first visit with the doctor.