So here is a little bit about me....
I started my WLS journey in April 2009. I attended the classic WLS seminar and opted to go with the Realize Band over RNY. I had my band placed on November 12, 2009. I woke up from surgery thinking OMG what have I done. I had true buyers remorse. Just one week after surgery I began having problems with my band. They readmitted me to the hospital for rehydration and antibiotics. As I recovered I learned what my band would and would not allow me to do. Some days it was very tempermental and my food would not go down, but then there were other days that I could eat anything.
At 6 months post-op I found out that I was pregnant. My boyfriend of 4 years decided that he did not want any more children and left about a week after finding out. This was obviously devastating to me but I now had to think about more than just me. I was trying to figure out how to handle being a single mom, dealing with pregnancy so soon after WLS, and living in a new city with not a lot of local support. I did figure it out. I began planning for everything that was to come. And then I was struck by tragedy, I lost my child at 13 1/2 weeks while on business in Canada. I was devastated and spent several months trying to recoup and try to understand. But I have learned that there is no making sense of the loss of a child. It did make me realize that I wanted to have a family and I needed to stay focused on my health to achieve my goals.
I tried to work my band, but I had continued problems. I had developed several problems with my band including:
- severe reflux
- Esphogheal Strictures
- couldn't eat or drink
- constant port site pain
- port flipping
- port migration
- tugging of the band
- Band attaching to other body organs
- Weight regain
I finally decided that I was just done with my band. I realized that it obviously did not like me. So in February 2011, I decided to begin exploring my options for revision sugery. I looked at the RNY but just wasn't comfortable with the thoughts of rearranging my intestines. Then I stumbled across the Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy, for the first time I became excited about the possiblities. I spoke with my new surgeon and asked her opinion of the Sleeve. She was so excited and had done so many that I was sold on her when I met her at the end of March. We decided to do surgery to remove my band and revise to the sleeve. My surgery was scheduled for April 13, 2011. I found out about surgery the day before. My insurance approved the surgery on April 13, 2011 while I was enroute to the hospital. You can only imagine the nerves that go through your body. I got to the hospital for surgery and spoke with my surgeon. She promised me that I would love my sleeve more than the band. She also told me that with the damage I had experienced that it was possible that we would have to remove the band and allow my stomach to heal before doing the sleeve.
I woke up a few hours later in the hospital not knowing what was able to be completed. My surgeon came in and told me that the damage was too much to do the sleeve at that time. She wanted to wait until all of the swelling went down before doing the sleeve. The risks for leakage were to high with my swelling. Although I was bummed, I was also relieved that she was watching out for my best interest. After 2 weeks, the swelling in my stomach disappeared and we scheduled my sleeve for June 8, 2011.
On June 8, 2011, I went in for surgery to have my sleeve done. It has changed my life so much. I no longer have the pain I had with my band and I can actually eat the healthy foods I crave. I have not had any buyers remorse with my sleeve! I can't wait to see where my journey takes me now!
If you have any questions, please just ask. I will be glad to share everything. Good luck to all!