Jump to content
Are you looking for the BariatricPal Store? Go now!


LAP-BAND Patients
  • Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by parisshel

  1. parisshel

    Feeling kind of devastated…

    I had a tummy tuck--different from your surgeries--but just to share that the final result is not set until up to 12 months postop. Your shape will keep changing as fluid leaves and the new taut skin adjusts. I remember thinking that I had no waistline post TT but eventually my hourglass shape emerged. It tooks months for the sweliing to go down and the true shape to show itself. Also your thighs may look bigger because edema (water) moves downwards with gravity. This will clear eventually. However my thighs looked shockingly large to me postop because I had never really seen them without my belly hiding the tops of them. Once my belly was gone...everything looked really different down there! I hope that with time you are going to love your new body. Every single day I am thrilled when I look at my nice, flat tummy. BTW I am 63 and did my surgery when I was 60.
  2. Thanks for this additional information and I'm pleased you are on the other side of this and recovering perfectly. Totally agree on continual checks/barium swallows for those of use who still have bands. I've had mine going on 9 years now and do a barium swallow each year just to check placement, flow, etc. Like you, I no longer fill but that doesn't mean I should not check it for viability purposes.
  3. This sounds like a painful and stressful experience. I'm sorry you had to go through it. I have a question about "hooks" and how they embedded into your intestines. The band, which goes on the upper part of the stomach, is not near the intestines. Did you surgeon say it had migrated? Can you ask them how this could have happened? In any case, I hope by the time you read this you are feeling much better.
  4. parisshel

    Pandemic Check In

    Thanks for starting this thread. We went into lockdown in March, opened up a bit in the summer, and locked down again in early November. I knew with the initial lockdown I'd have to pay attention to two things: exercise (we were allowed one hour outside each day, limited to walks within a 1 km radius) and my food. In the initial lockdown I gained 2.5 kgs, which apparently was a national average! I know this was due to reduced activity + having food a mere 5 steps away from my WFH set up. Right before the November lockdown my BF up and announced he didn't love me anymore, leaving a two-year relationship with no discussion. I turned a sow's ear into a silk purse and spent that lockdown working out and eating cleanly, knocking off the weight I had gained in the spring and getting back towards my best weight. I'm a bandster, and stress tightens my band so all of these events have made it easier to eat healthfully since I'm rarely hungry. We are now semi-locked down, with a curfew, but I take advantage of the mornings to walk 5-10 km every single day. I'm not sure this helps weight-wise, but it is vital for my mental health! Foodwise my fridge is stocked with the kinds of foods that keep hunger at bay but that I enjoy: proteins, veg, fruit...you know, the classics!! Keep well, everyone!
  5. parisshel

    13 years later and - I Love my band

    This sounds like me. I'm a longhauler, too, 10 cc with 5.0 cc fill. I can eat pretty much everything, just smaller bites and much slower. No one likes to go to lunch with me because I take so long to finish my food! But still....love that my weight is stable and I had a tummy tuck last year to complete the transformation. Both procedures totally worth it...it is quite freeing to live in a body that I'm not ashamed of.
  6. parisshel

    A blessing in diguise

    Hi. My story is similar to yours, and we have very close band dates. I'm sorry things did not work out in a positive fashion but glad your removal went well. I have a question for you. Do you sense a difference in appetite/satiety now, without the band? Or is it similar to when you had an empty band? I ask the question because I'm supposed to have my band removed. It's empty now, and has been for awhile, due to an Afib I developed because of the band's restriction, but I'm fearful to have it totally removed. I'm not sure just having the empty band gives me any restriction whatsoever (I maintain my loss by dieting, sadly, with the same crappy mindset that requires), but I figure it may be better than not having any band at all. Your thoughts about differences between empty band/no band and hunger levels are appreciated!
  7. parisshel

    For those who have had unfills

    I had an identical experience to what you are describing after having an unfill, and then refills. When I asked my surgeon why we "refillers" seem to report a lack of being able to refind original sensations of fullness/lack of hunger between meals/restriction, he answered "We don't know." It's a drag, but it may be helpful to get in the mindset that your band ultimately doesn't do the bulk of the work after the initial, glorius first year (or so). Mine ran full power for the first year, making the weight drop off with little effort on my part, other than eating in a band-friendly way which was super easy due to my perfect restriction. Then I started having complications and a first unfill. I never found the original restriction once I was cleared to start refilling. As time went by, and my weight started slowly climbing, I told myself I had to throw out the fantasy that my band was going to do all the work for me. So I brought in my old tools (from my dieting years) and polished those off. The weight gain halted (I've been at the same weight for more than a year now--no losses, but no gains). I had to let go of feeling badly that I was "back to dieting" but you know what? At the end of the day, it still is easier, at least for me, to do this with a band (mine is now unfilled completely, due to other complications) than to do this as an unbanded person. In short, I understand and have lived exactly what you are experiencing. My only "tip" is to "live like you have an active band" even if you aren't feeling it. (I know, it's not as easy as when the band was indeed active.)
  8. My experience with an unfill and re-fill is that I never found the same restriction/satiety again. Others on this forum also had the same experience. We don't know why that is, but it seemed to be universal. I remember having better restriction/satiety at 3ccs (in a 10cc band) prior to my unfill, than I had at 6 cc after a re-fill. Sorry I don't have a better story for you, and I hope you re-fill experience will be a successful one.
  9. parisshel

    So what am i missing?

    I'd suggest ruling out MS.
  10. parisshel

    So why does this annoy me so much?

    This is a terrific thread with great contributions from everyone. Here are my thoughts: I agree with @@B-52, and I think we might be in a minority, but I do know from experience that my WLS was the only thing standing between me and consuming too many calories. It is not me making appropriate food choices, but my WLS tricking my brain into allowing me to make appropriate food choices. How do I know this? Because with an unfilled band/no band, I don't make appropriate food choices, or, rather, it takes intense, consistent willpower to make appropriate food choices. (@@gowalking made an excellent analogy to pain levels with NSAIDS and pain levels without them...a world of difference. WLS is the NSAID for obese people It is an external aid to keeping us on the right, painfree (psychologically-speaking) path.) It does not make us more moral, noble or smarter. It just overrides our default [overeating] personality. My weight-loss inducing food choices were not made because all the sudden I had some new-found wisdom/will-power/or healthy sense of what I needed to eat. No, the only reason I could eat less was because I had had WLS. When one's WLS tool is no longer effective, we go back to our default (for the most of us). Because that's they way our mind and body works. It is not a moral failing, it is the way we are hard-wired. If I see someone who I know had WLS and I'm watching them eat normal-size portions of food, or "unhealthy" food, or food that is not compliant with a post-op diet, I don't think "what an idiot." I know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that their WLS choice isn't "active" anymore. Because when our tool works, the idea of consuming large portions, or foods that are not WLS compliant, doesn't even enter our brains. Right? Remember when you were fresh out of surgery? And your tool was sparkly-new? Did any of you start off by eating non-compliant foods? No, of course not. Because your tool was active. And part of what is was doing was dimming your hunger and restricting your stomach space (this applies to all WLS). An optimally-working, active tool translates to weight loss/maintenance. I really don't think that someone overeating after WLS is wasting their tool. I think that their tool isn't "speaking" to them any longer. Bands can go awry, sleeves can stretch, bypass I don't know about...but the sweet, effective timeframe of many of our tools can be brief for some of us. Yes, it is sad that someone would undergo such a drastic step to not have it turn out as one dreams (believe me, I know this from my own experience), but I really think the fault is more on the tool than on the person. Am I naive? Possibly.
  11. parisshel

    Possible band slip. Kinda freaking out.

    Last week during a routine checkup I was told my band had slipped. The surgeon encourages removal as the angle at which my band now sits can cause a complete obstruction. Your surgeon can tell you how long an unfill might last. I've read that they can resolve the slipped band issue, but sometimes they do not. When I had my band unfilled a year or so ago, I just stayed on a Weight-Watchers-type diet plan and was able to maintain my loss. The point is to not go crazy due to the unfill, but do be prepared to have a plan in place because you will feel hungry.
  12. parisshel

    After emergency band removal questions

    I haven't had my band removed yet (it's forthcoming) but I suspect removal causes some swelling in the banded area, especially if the surgeon had to cut out any scar tissue that may have built up under the band. Did they how your port and lap band became infected?
  13. parisshel

    Skinny chasers

    Yes, this thread has been an enlightening read. This topic of how our obesity shaped the way we view the world--even for those who are no longer obese--is a topic meriting its own thread. I know for a fact that everything I do in life, every single choice I've ever made, is done from the lens of a fat person. When you are fat from childhood (I tipped over into the "fat" category in third grade, and it was all downhill from there), especially in a time when few kids were fat (unlike today, where it is more normalized), it is rare that you grow up relating to the world in a way that a slender person would. This is of course my perception, and there are certainly people out there whose experience differs, but I know that my personality was vastly shaped by growing up fat and therefore different from my classmates. So when we shed that fat, after years of moving through the world dodging society's slights and insults, we don't really have any kind of touchpoint for knowing how to relate to potential love interests. It is so very normal that newly-thin people are confused in the dating world. I don't have any solution but I suppose it is like being a teenager again, with all the passion and heartbreak that accompanies that stage of life. You just have to walk through it, learn your lessons, and hopefully come out of it with a great and worthy mate.
  14. parisshel

    Care to share your dating profile?

    @OKCPirate: Yes. I've seen (or been sent) that. It's hilarious!
  15. Even more than your successful physical transformation, I admire your successful mental transformation. You'll end up with a fantastic partner, of that I'm sure.
  16. parisshel

    Any Regrets?

    I don't mind. I developed a heart arrythmia (atrial fibrillation) around 18 months post op. The band surrounds the vagus nerve which controls, among other things, heart rhythm. I ended up in ER with my heart completely out of rhythm, beating at a rate that was close to having me have a stroke, and blood pressure also sky high. It took seven hours to bring everything around using medication, and now I'm on medication for life. I had my band's restriction loosened so as not to touch on the vagus nerve and just went back in last month to get a bit of fill as I'm gaining weight and hungry all the time. Immediately following the small fill, I went back into atrial fibrillation. That's pretty conclusive evidence that there is a correlation, at least with my particular anatomy. If you google gastric band, or lap band + atrial fibrillation, you will see a lot of people who have now experienced this. There are several on this forum right here. So yes, I regret what I did. Living with a-fib is no picnic, and the side effects of the three medicines I now have to take have greatly compromised my quality of life: extreme fatigue, memory loss, inability to do any sports that might raise my heartrate...wish I had chosen a different path. Would a sleeve revision correct the afib? Unfortunately, no. Once you have afib, you have afib. In fact, afib begets afib. In other words, once the electricity in your heart becomes chaotic (which is basically what afib is), it will constantly create new "bad" pathways in your heart. According to my cardiologist, it is unlikely that even removing the band will make the afib disappear, as the band has already done its damage. All I can do is keep it loose and off the vagus nerve, and continue with my meds (or, in the future, ablation or pacemaker if the afib worsens). I would not do another WLS in any case. I'm out of the game. For me, these are "Flowers for Algernon" situations. When I was doing my research, I was convinced WLS was the gold standard for permanent weight loss. Now my thoughts are different, especially concerning the lapband (since I had a bad experience with it) but also with other surgeries. There really is no tinkering with major body parts that is going to come out ok in the longterm, imho. We are seeing wonderful transformations in the short term, yes...but my sense is longterm we are going to see some health-complications from all WLS that have yet to reveal themselves. I would not even consider going under the knife again.
  17. You've asked a good question and it's a good sign you are doing thorough research. My surgeon did band or bypass. I knew I only wanted a band, as I mentally could not handle the idea of any other more-invasive WLS. The band is also invasive, certainly, but "less" invasive in how I perceive it. My surgeon also thought, after reviewing my pre-op evaluations (psych, dietician, health issues) that I fit the criteria for a successful experience with the lapband. So I felt supported by him and his expertise. I wish I had had the mindset to have been braver, and to have gone with either the sleeve or the bypass. My band was terrific the first year out...I loved it and sang its merits to everybody whose path I crossed. Then I got complications. I've said this before on this platform...when considering WLS, or any elective surgery, read closely all the risks and potential complications, and picture yourself living with any or all of the complications. This is a good way to evaluate the risk and benefit of this elective surgery. So, with the band, if you are one of the patients whose band erodes into your stomach....picture that and ask yourself how you would resolve that? With the sleeve or bypass...look at the potential for GERD or malabsorption properties, and ask yourself how you would resolve those issues? The thing is, we are human and really can't predict outcome. I know for me, I refused to read the posts from bandsters who had experienced complications, or the band-bashers, or even the blogs of bandsters who had failed. I didn't want to be dissuaded from my decision and I was convinced I was going to be a winner at this...no issues, no complications...I wasn't going to be "like those other people." And indeed, I followed my band rules to a T, and still ended up here today, with a dormant band, unable to tap into its usefulness to the extent I need to support finishing my weightloss. All this to say that I would not today choose a lapband. It was perhaps the gold standard in its time for WLS, but I think it has now gone the way of the Blackberry. It can still work for people, but there are other, less-problematically-prone WLS on the market (at least for now they appear to be...who knows, tho, ultimately?).
  18. parisshel

    "What are you doing?!"

    I always give credit to my WLS. I feel it is only fair. If I were to leave out this essential tool, I might make the other person feel bad, as if he/she couldn't do it "like me." It's so very rare to have significant weight loss/sustainable weight loss without WLS, so giving credit to a real and useful tool is important to me. Omitting WLS in my story (such as it is; I'm hardly a success) wouldn't feel right to me. I would never want another overweight person to walk away from me thinking I did this through sheer willpower.
  19. Nope. I just fart a lot. And I tell my family "it's medically necessary." I will take Mylanta if I have to be around non-family members (or if it gets really bad at work). I never had this issue prior to being banded. I believe it comes from the slower passage of the food, which gives it time to ferment.
  20. parisshel

    Surgery Scheduled for March

    @Karina150: How cool of you to check in. You've done great! How are you feeling? I've had complications with my band, sadly, so I'm not a success story in that I'm not at my goal. But I am pleased with the weight I did lose before my complications set in. I'm now a "traditional dieter" just making sure my lost weight stays lost, but that's ok. I'm not looking to ever revise--that's certain--and will have to take the rest of my weight off the old-fashioned way. Too bad, because when my band worked, it was AMAZING! Anxious to hear from the rest of this cohort.
  21. parisshel

    "lump in throat" feeling...

    I've experienced this, especially after a fill. It sounds a little different from what you are experiencing, however. Mine is more like the food is just sitting there in my throat, and indeed it probably is, as my vocal chords are affected by it too. It goes away after a couple of weeks, with me.
  22. Sadly this has been my and other's experience. Once unfilled, it seems extremely difficult (in my case impossible) to obtain the same feeling of restriction. I am curious as to why this is, and I hope some band doctor researchs this because so many bandsters who have been unfilled and are now re-filling state the same thing: a re=fill (even if done very slowly) back to the previous fill level does not feel the same as the original fill. When I started getting my refills after an emergency unfill, the radiologist told me they never take you all the way back up in one fell swoop. The stomach has "relaxed" during the unfilled period and you just can't zap 6 ccs into the band like that. So we went very slowly (see my ticker) and once I got to 5 ccs I had to stop the process entirely as I started having band complications. (That's an entirely different thread). I lost the bulk of my weight at 3 ccs...and now, at 5 ccs it is as if I have no band at all. Seriously. I feel no restriction whatsoever, and am only hanging onto my lost weight by fighting regain tooth and nail. The band is doing nothing for me at all. I hope this will not be your case and you will refill slowly and suddenly you'll be at your green zone. I'm sorry you had a slip (and sorry you had that awful flu) because no one deserves complications, especially when you have done so well.
  23. Was banded 3 days before my 53rd birthday. I wish WLS had been this perfected when I was younger; I'd have done this in my 20s and my entire life would have been different (I imagine).
  24. parisshel

    Goodbye Antonio Banderos!

    Thanks for checking back in and I'm glad the removal is behind you. I'm sure you will be fine with your maintenance plan. Enjoy your continued good health!
  25. parisshel

    Band tightness

    I'd wait it out, myself. You can eat and drink so it doesn't sound like it is worth going back before your next consult in a month.

PatchAid Vitamin Patches