Band is coming out

Jun 13, 2008

Well, I am still having trouble with my band and am unable to tolerate a fill yet again.  Even empty, I vomit veggies and meat refluxes for hours.  The heartburn is torture.  Nausea is still around.  I have pain that radiates up my neck when I lie down or take a deep breath.  This is torturing me.  

So... my band is coming out on July 21st and I will be getting Lap-RNY.  I spent a long time (several months) researching VSG, DS, and RNY.  All the doctors/surgeons I talked with feel that RNY is my best option.  Dr. Raul Rosenthal will be doing my revision and he has done plenty before.  He is convinced that RNY is my best option for a healthy and normal life... so RNY it is!  Since I have severe reflux, RNY will help me with that as well as help me lose the weight for good.  

I am ready to move forward and get this band out.  My situation is not the norm by any means, but having it happen to me is frustrating.  I will post more after my RNY!

Short Update

Apr 22, 2008

Well, I am still making progress and I hope that things continue to improve.  I still have pain when I lie down and take deep breaths, but I also I feel the pain at other times.  I tried weight lifting and that hurt A LOT, so I have to take it easy still.  I have no more food regurgitation, vomiting, or nausea.  I got Prevacid SoluTabs and that stopped almost all acid reflux that I had left.  Hopefully I can get another fill the first week of May.  I am still too hungry and my portions are too big... but I hope the next fill takes me to my sweet spot (or at least close)!

Oh!  I am moving this summer!  I am starting med school this fall and am so EXCITED!!!  I did a program where I took the first year of med school and LOVED IT and now I start med school in the fall.  I have wanted to be a doctor my whold life and I am thrilled to be starting that journey this fall!!!

So... if I am not online much... it is because I am moving, unpacking, visiting family on vacation, then starting classes!

On a bad note, I got diagnosed with insulin resistance and reactive hypoglycemia.  That really sucks, but the endocrinologist thinks it is why my hunger is so excessive.  He thinks I will have this regardless of my weight (but yes, obesity aggrivates any condition).  I will have to follow a diabetic-like diet for life, but add that to my band restrictions, my vegetarian preference, and IC diet... I am going to really struggle to find foods that work for my body!  Yikes!  

Slowly Getting Better

Mar 31, 2008

Well, I am slowly getting better after my band and HH repair.  I am on soupy textures and doing well.  I have little to no reflux (thank God) and no nausea or vomiting!  My PCP today said, "You look better than I have seen you in months!  You seem to have turned the corner and are on your way up now!"  So that was great to hear!  Hopefully my bladder will continue to get better so I can exercise again (I am limited still as to what I can do comfortably).  So... after a year from hell, it looks like things are getting better!  I just wish the pain would go away from the repair... and I wonder what solids would be like eating now... will I tolerate a fill?
 Wakka Wakka 

Harder than Expected Recovery

Mar 19, 2008

Well, I have had 8 surgeries and this hiatal hernia repair is by far the  most painful one!  It hurts to swallow, breathe, yawn (major ouch there), sneeze, cough, lie on my back, lie on my side, etc.  It is getting better, but very slowly...

I also had a lot of swelling from the slip repair and adhesion removal.  So, after 5 days, clears are going down alright.  Each day is getting a little better... but this recovery process is rather rough compared to other surgeries.  I didn't really need pain meds with my other surgeries, but with this one... I have to use pain meds 2-3 times/day.  It's rough, but needed to be done!

Home From my Band Repair!

Mar 15, 2008

Well, I am home from the hospital!  They had to keep me overnight because I was obstructed.  Clears are going down now though!

1st: the doctor repaired a small hiatal hernia, so that wasn't a major reconstruction or anything;

2nd: the surgeon said that my band was at a good angle, but it was too far down on my stomach.  He expected to need a slight repositioning after fixing the hernia, but he said it has a signficant slip.  So, he repaired that;

3rd: to get to the band, he had to remove a lot of adhesions.  This caused a great deal of swelling and pain.  I couldn't keep anything down until about 7 or 8pm last night.  I am doing well with liquids now.  I can do clears without much discomfort.  The surgeon was pretty sure that the obstruction was from inflammation, and I'm glad he is right!

4th: I have had the 4cc band all along.  I was told from the beginning I have the VG band, it is in my records, and post-op note.  Somehow there was miscommunication or misdocumentation.  The expert went in thinking I had the VG (he asked me pre-op) and when he came to my room, he said there is no way it is the VG band.  So... I have had the 4cc band all this time.  It explains a lot (like why I could never have a fill past 3.25cc's, and why 0.1cc fills make a huge difference)

So... pretty interesting findings in surgery.  It explains a lot of things and hopefully this repair gets me feeling better and gives me a "normal" band experience!  I am quite sore, especially below the sternum.  Coughing, deep breathing, and swallowing to a degree hurts.  So, I'm just sipping, walking, taking deep breaths, and sleeping.  

I am glad that this repair happened and I hope to feel better soon!


Feb 13, 2008

I have had so many barium swallows this past year and until today, you could not see the problem.  It turns out I have a slipping hiatal hernia that has been causing so many problems with my band (reflux, vomiting, pain, nausea, night coughs, etc).  Finally it was seen and apparently it was "a clear cut case" of a hiatal hernia.  I was told it is an easy repair and my symptoms should go away once I get it fixed.  I CAN KEEP MY BAND!!!  This should fix all my problems with my stomach!

It has been such a horrible year with band and bladder problems, but my bladder is better than it was a year ago and my band... there is finally hope on the horizon!  It worked so well at first for me and I hope it gives me the health and satiation that I once had!  I will update again when I have a repair date!  It is strange to think that I will have to do the whole 6 week post-op healing diet again, but it will be so worth it!!!

More trouble...

Dec 28, 2007

Well, I knew I was having trouble with solids, especially vegetables and meat.  The salad on Christmas looked too good to skip and I had a side bowl.  Well, I burped up pieces of lettuce, carrot, and cucumber for hours (about 8 hours) then the vomiting started.  I wretched and vomited harder than I have ever in my life.  After 5 hours of that wretching, my dad took me to the ER around 6am.  They admitted me due to intractable vomiting.  My bloodwork indicated inflammation, high (but still normal WBC), elevated liver enzymes, and elevated pancreas enzymes.  They diagnosed me with pancreatitis due to the violent vomiting associated with the salad.  I had a mild fever due to the inflammation but that went away once the vomiting was under control.  I was on IV anti-nausea and pain meds for 2 days and when I could tolerate fluids, I was discharged.  There was no indication of the flu or food poisioning.  The doctors there felt my band caused the problems.  I knew I couldn't do solids, but I never had a reaction like that before!!! 

So, no more solids with this lap-band.  I talked with my surgeon and he is going to remove my band after January 7th.  When my body is healed and rested and I am eating solids without trouble, I will then consider rebanding or VSG.  The way I feel now, I would say VSG is more likely.  I see that surgeon on January 11th.

I just want to point out that my band has been abnormal from the beginning.  I did very well with it, but I can't tolerate it anymore.  The cause of my problems, we don't know.  Don't dismiss the lap-band based on my experience.  So many people do well with it... but mine does seem to hate me lately...

My Band Journey

Mar 31, 2007

I am around 5'8", 24 y/o, and was banded May 23, 2005.

I started out at 352 pounds.  I am around 280 pounds now.  I started with a BMI of 52 and my current BMI is around 43.  

I actually lost 145 pounds in the first 11 months but life throws curve balls.  I had gallbladder trouble and once that was resolved, I was doing great.  Then I developed a bladder problem (Interstitial Cystitis).  My symptoms started November 2006 and I've only had a small improvement.  I can't really exercise because of it, so that was one setback regarding my weight.  Then, I had a horrible obstruction episode Christmas 2006.  I get obstructed when I get a cold, so sure enough, I got a cold.  I just got tighter and tighter.  I started out being able to eat solids, then could only tolerate mushy foods, then full liquids, then I started to vomit everything.  I was out of the state and so I thought, I have 3 days left, I'll wait until I get to Florida to see my surgeon for an unfill. 

So, I was completely obstructed for 3 days.  Vomiting saliva, nasal drainage, and foam was horrible.  I got my band empty (after about a week of vomiting many times a day).  Ever since then, my band has been 'wonky'.  I can't tolerate a fill, I get obstructed when we try and fill, I have reflux, and I vomit too much.  I am just having a horrible time with it.  I hate throwing up and I hate getting obstructed.

At this point, I am thinking about getting VSG.  I need something to help with the hunger and portions and my band, being empty, isn't doing the job.  I will try and fill it again, but I doubt things will work out.  I tried to blame my obstruction episodes on meds, lack of sleep, colds, allergies, etc... but I can't find anything else to blame my band trouble on.  

My band was a blessing the first year (even though I did have some trouble with obstructions then), but this last year has been really rough.  I haven't made any decisions at this point, but I am just tired.  I am tired of:

* Getting obstructed with colds, allergies, swelling from certain meds, from swimming or flying, etc
*Not being able to eat apples, oranges, pickles, or other "skins"
*Vomiting as much as I have this last year
*Not being able to eat solids some days due to my band being "angry"

I think the band is a wonderful tool for weight loss, but sometimes it just doesn't work.  At least I gave this option a try before doing something irreversible.  It is the safest operation and it being adjustable is an amazing plus.  Just because I am having trouble with my band, I am not going to band bash.  It does work wonders for people... but I just don't know if my band will work for me anymore...

About Me
Sunny, FL
Surgery Date
Mar 11, 2005
Member Since

Friends 298

Latest Blog 8
Band is coming out
Short Update
Slowly Getting Better
Harder than Expected Recovery
Home From my Band Repair!
More trouble...
My Band Journey