I am in the early stages of research. I live in south bend and plan to attend the free informational sessions for both South bend Memorial hospital and St. Vincent Hospital in Indy. According the hospital's websites and online reviews, St. Vincent looks like a fantastic facility with amazing surgeons. But I am also hearing good things about Memorial. By question is... how important is it to have a local doctor? I am 10 minutes from Memorial and several hours from Indy. I am not thrilled with the idea of having my doctor so far away. But if it really is the best in the state, is the drive worth it?
You may have already made your choice. I live 2 1/2 hours from St. Vincent's where I had my RNY 6 years ago. It was an awesome experience. My bariatric surgeon and dietitian are always available by email and will see me when I need it. It is well worth the drive and I would choose St. Vincent's again. I have had to go to a local ER and be hospitalized and the ER physician has called my bariatric physician for consult. It has never been an issue for me to be 2 1/2 hours away. St. Vincent's also has a support group that meets monthly just 30 minutes away from me and I attended that monthly for the first 3 years after my surgery. The support group is very helpful.
I had my Duodenal Switch at St. Vincent's. I was going with a surgeoon at Elkhart General who did the DS, but unfortunately, he passed away before getting to my surgery.
St. Vincent's is the only bariatric program in Indiana that offers the DS, and Dr. Margaret Inman is the only surgeon in the state who performs them.
If you're using insurance, most of them require the surgery to be done with a program that has the Center of Excellence certification. St. Vincent's does. Memorial (Now Beacon) does not, at least not yet.
I would go with St. Vincent's. They've been doing bariatric surgery at least since the mid 1970's. I heard about them when I attended college in that region of the state in the 1970's and 1980's, but bariatric surgery was not an insurance covered procedure for me at that time. I wi**** had been, because I was young and just starting my life.
All of their surgeons are experienced in their respective procedures, but Dr. Margaret Inman is the only surgeon who does *all* the surgeries, including the Duodenal Switch, which I have.
The DS, as we call it, takes a lot of work and a lot of commitment to remain healthy.
I would suggest attending a general seminar, and then attending Dr. Inman's seminar on the Duodenal Switch.
I have had *no regain* with the DS. That's what made it attractive to me, plus th fact that I did not have to avoid a laundry list of foods.The only things that give me digestive trouble are white flour and products made with it, (depends on how much, though) and simple sugars, such as white sugar.
St. Vincent's has the experience. and they don't just "cut and run". There are support groups for St.Vincent's Bariatric patients all over the state. I would go with them, no matter which surgery you choose.
I misspoke. It is the only designated Center of Excellence offering the DS in Indiana. That accreditation is very important for those using most types of insurance to cover their surgeries.
It is required that COE's be used by people who have Medicare as their primary insurance, which I did due to disability when I had my surgery. Many commercial insurance companies have similar requirements, as I've seen numerous posts on OH regarding pre-op paperwork requirements.
Also, unless it has changed recently, the DS and RNY are the only two surgeries Medicare will approve, as they are the only ones they consider permanent. I haven't seen anything saying that they will approve the VSG as a stand alone surgery.
The VSG is actually the top half of the DS. Haven't seen anything regarding the use of DaVinci robotics, either, but IMHO, if it increases the cost of the surgery, it's probably not covered under Medicare or private insurance!
Feel free to add me on here. I had Margaret Inman, MD for my RNY. My original surgery was at Clarian North, but my many hospitalizations, revision & ultimately the reversal was done at Carmel St. Vincent.
Veronica C. David