Question for you regarding DS

Liz J.
on 7/10/19 6:47 am - Saint Louis, MO
DS on 11/29/16
On July 9, 2019 at 9:52 PM Pacific Time, glowalam wrote:

Please seek out a few opinions before having the DS. I have had serious consequences. I am a RN. I should have known better. I have very serious issues some years later as a result.

I would not advise the DS

Actually, I did a ton of research. I got all my vitamin levels up prior to surgery, which was recommended to me. I have lost no noticeable hair at all, my blood work is seller, my A1C is perfect, and I can maintain with little to no thought. Yes, I gained back 10 pounds from my lowest but I'm still 25 pounds lower than my wish goal. I eat protein first and get 100 grams or more in daily. I watch my carbs and could careless about fat.

This surgery is the Gold Standard and it's the number 1 most successful WLS world wide. The bottom switch portion of the surgery is used in Europe to treat and cure diabetes. This surgery is safer than the RNY and the gastric band. Maybe you didn't do your research on your surgeon, I did.

HW: 398.8 SW:356 GW: 175 CW:147

(deactivated member)
on 7/10/19 5:42 pm

I did extensive surgery and have worked in health care for 37 years. I do not need you to tell me what I did and did not do. I am entitled to my opinion and this is a screwed up procedure. Do not message me back I am not interested in debating with you. Good luck

on 7/10/19 10:42 am - CA

Who was your surgeon (the name doesn't happen to start with "H" does it)?

The DS is a complex surgery, and as a result it tends to attract the best and most attentive surgeons, but there were a few surgeons back then (my wife had her DS in 2005 also) who got in over their heads, or thought that they had a "better idea" (like 20cm common channels, etc.) with the expected results, similar to what you have experienced. Such problems are very rare amongst patients whose surgeons stuck to the established standards of care for the DS and who are compliant with their supplements and lab follow ups. In addition to the folks here on this forum who have done well over the years, we have a dinner support group with a bunch of vets, mostly in the 10-20 year range, who likewise are doing well with only minor glitches along the way, many of which are indistinguishable from ordinary aging.

The DS is serious medicine, and should be taken seriously by all involved - patients and doctors alike. I went with the VSG instead as I didn't need that strong of a tool, but that does preserve that option for the future. For those who do need the stronger medicine, nothing else comes close in its effectiveness - neither the RNY nor the VSG.

1st support group/seminar - 8/03 (has it been that long?)  

Wife's DS - 5/05 w Dr. Robert Rabkin   VSG on 5/9/11 by Dr. John Rabkin


(deactivated member)
on 7/10/19 5:40 pm

Yes His name does start with an H and it is not in California.

The hospitals he worked in are not allowing him to do the procedures any longer.

It is very serious and I regret it. I am slim but I have a whole host of issues that are extremely serious. I feel it has ruined my life. If it were not for a prominent surgeon in a different health system *****vised me in 2007. I would be dead.

I am only age 57. I think folks need to realize that any of these procedures are only a tool to weight loss and not a cure. Ultimate behavioral modification and lifestyle change are the only way to keep the weight off for good. I no longer enjoy eating food. I only eat to live, not vice versa. I am happy for those doing well. I would never advocate for anyone doing this drastic procedure.

on 7/11/19 1:11 pm - CA

The doc that I am thinking of is something of an interstate menace as he has left a trail of problem patients in his wake. He was recruited from the midwest (Nashville, IIRC) into our doc's practice (though in retrospect it may have been more like having been run out of town by a horde of torch and pitchfork wielding hospital administrators) but he only lasted a few months before being let go. He then moved to another prominent practice across town (contrary to the non-compete clause in his contract) where he was also let go after a few months. AFAIK, there weren't any real problem patients around here as he was never allowed to do surgery unsupervised. He disappeared for a couple of years before showing up in another state, running a hospital's bariatric program, where he lasted a year or two before disappearing again, only to pop up in yet another state, etc. etc. etc. For a while there was something of a "Where's Waldo" game on the forum here where someone would pop in asking if anyone knew where Dr. H was, as they need to get their annual labs done and calling the number on his website just yields a "he doesn't work here anymore" answer.

We had a gentleman in our support group for a while a few years ago who was a patient of this doc in his previous venue that was showing similar problems to what you have gone through, and yes, he ultimately had it revised away by another doc local to here. It certainly seems that the problems that you describe, by and large, follow the surgeon rather than the procedure. Any surgeon, no matter how good, can have some problem patients owing to unique cir****tances that those patients present, but they tend to be outliers. For Dr. H, the outliers seem to be the ones that had no problems.

There is no question that the DS is a complex procedure and is subject to complications as any other, maybe somewhat more so. Unlike the lapbands which are defective in concept no matter who installs them, the DS is sound, but it is obviously a more extensive compromise than a VSG (and not all that much more of one than an RNY) but some need the extra performance that it offers that you can't get with the others.

But this makes it all the more important to find a vetted surgeon to do the job, and this situation illustrates one of problems that we patients have - finding out who the really good surgeons are and who are the ones to avoid. If even those in the bariatric business can't tell the good from the bad before seeing them in action in the OR, what chance do we have? From what I can tell, this guy is still in business as of last year, so even multiple malpractice suits over the years hasn't weeded him out. Looking for someone with a stable job history would be a start. Reviews on forums and other media don't help much as most any serious action against a doctor will involve gag orders, so the really negative things have a hard time getting out. State disciplinary records can help, but they don't seem to follow these guys across state lines.

1st support group/seminar - 8/03 (has it been that long?)  

Wife's DS - 5/05 w Dr. Robert Rabkin   VSG on 5/9/11 by Dr. John Rabkin


on 9/6/19 5:27 am
DS on 09/17/19

So I have to ask since one of the surgeons doing my surgery in a couple weeks is also a Dr. H, who is this Dr. H? Or I guess, to not infringe on anything- can you confirm that this Dr. H is not Dr. Halmi?

He is not my main surgeon, but he is one of two surgeons at my center and they work together on the DS.

on 7/10/19 1:08 pm, edited 7/10/19 6:09 am
DS on 10/18/12


The DS saved my life in two ways. First, from all the obvious co morbities that come from obesity. Second, just 5 months after my surgery, due to rigorous post OP labs I was dxd VERY early with Acute Myloid Leukemia AML.

This early diagnosis and the grace of almighty God, certainly saved my life. That was over six years. Before I had the DS I was looking for a removal of a lap band and I was headed to a bypass. I had dozens of friends and co workers who'd had the bypass and regained.

I researched a ton and actually self paid because I was so convinced the DS was the very best option. I've maintained my 120 lb lost with little to no attention to carbs but I am ubber vigilant about my vitamins and protein.

I had my ds and lap band removal with a hyetal hernia repair in one procedure. I recovered very fast with no complications.

Best wishes with your decision.



Valerie G.
on 7/19/19 8:33 am - Northwest Mountains, GA

Do not fall for a two procedure suggestion unless there is a true medical danger for you. A top surgeon has successfully done a one-procedure DS on a 500 lb patient laparoscopically - so no excuses. Two surgeries means twice the copay, twice the risk, twice the recovery and twice the downtime.

Deciding factor for me on the DS was the superior long-term statistics compared to all other procedures. Also ready the regrets and revision forums and take note of the procedures being complained about.

DS 2005

There is room on this earth for all of God's creatures..
next to the mashed potatoes

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