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pk88

Gastric Sleeve Patients
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Everything posted by pk88

  1. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Glad to hear it. I was pretty worried about you right after your surgery. I'm doing well. I'm just starting to add some pureed foods and trying to find high protein, non-sweet, non-protein shake options. The challenge is real. Ugh, I tried a soft scrambled egg yesterday and felt a restriction within two bites. I get it about the protein shakes. The ONLY flavor I can tolerate is chocolate and it is getting really old. I'm still drinking at least one protein shake day, but I've been making my own too that I like a lot. I had some frozen huckleberries (though I'll try some banana I think later this week) from last summer so I threw 1/4 cup or so of them in the blender with plain greek yogurt, toasted almond milk, a couple drops of liquid stevia, some plain protein powder and some crushed ice. It isn't terribly sweet and much more palatable than the prepackaged ones and 25 grams of protein. Take care and keep in touch.
  2. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Congratulations! Now's a good time to start on the protein shakes and liquids. Even if your surgeon doesn't require a pre-op diet, you'll be glad you prepared your body and mind for the smaller amounts after surgery. Drink tons of water and start getting excited about how good you're going to feel! Wishing you well and hope you'll let us know how it is going.
  3. I had multiple food allergies as an infant and toddler and became a chubby kid with a mom that restricted my eating. At age 7 my mother committed suicide and I began stealing candy from the local drug store. I hated vegetables, loved carbs, cheese and fried foods. I was alternatively rewarded and cajoled for my eating. I managed my weight in early adulthood by doing 500 calorie a day diets and staying active. I gained 80lbs with each of my pregnancies, and stopped nursing my second child early so I could do a calorie restrictive diet. I got down to almost normal weight, then started gaining, weighing 280 lbs in my mid thirties. I divorced my husband, lost some weight, started working out. Decided I'd just get comfortable being 50-60lbs overweight and was for fifteen years. By the time I hit my 50's I was steadily gaining, then losing (no carb diets, doctor supervised diets, calorie restricted diets, personal growth programs - because certainly there was something wrong about me that I could fix!) I was depressed, borderline diabetic and took meds for blood pressure, thyroid disease, fibromyalgia, PPI for reflux and used a CPAP. I gained an additional 40lbs during the pandemic because I literally decided I would eat anything I wanted - and I did. Shortly after the first of this year, I realized I was constantly thinking about dying. The only future I saw was of my continual decline. I could see no way to interrupt the path of my life. Then, I saw a post of an acquaintance on Facebook who had VSG four years ago. She looked fabulous and seemed so happy. I contacted her and we met for lunch. I began to consider surgery and started doing my homework on it. When my insurance turned me down, I again reached out to my friend who had gone to Mexico to have hers. She offered to accompany me if I decided to do it. I discussed it with my kids. I met with my doctors and told them what I was thinking. They all supported the surgery, although one was concerned about me traveling for it. I researched the surgeon, found Bariatricpal.com and read some of your stories. I journaled and wrote about my big why, and I began to have hope for my future. I started to imagine my life without the shame and fear around eating and food. I called everyone I knew who'd had bariatric surgery and asked them about their experiences. Finally, I called my Facebook friend back and told her I was committed. I paid my deposit, scheduled the surgery and I haven't looked back once.
  4. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Pain is so relative, it is hard to know what your "really bad" pain is in relation to my own, but I think if you are worried you should call your surgeon. I didn't have bypass so I can't speak to it specifically, but I did have pain in my side that was very sore for a week after surgery. I had trapped gas in areas of my belly that increased my pain. I still have tenderness at one of my laparoscopy sites, and I'd expect you are still experiencing a lot of that given your surgery was just a few days ago. I say let yourself rest and know your body is going through some trauma that is not going to last for very long. But always, always trust your own instincts and call your surgeon if you feel your pain is out of the ordinary. Be well friend!
  5. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    I had a longer prep as I needed to lower my BMI for a safer surgery but otherwise I did as you have. I bought vitamins and stocked up on protein shakes ahead of time. I also bought some sugar free Jello and SF popsicles (Popsicle brand is the best), which tasted good after surgery. I craved something salty so I had chicken broth/bullion on hand (though too much salt contributes to edema and I may have overdone it at least one day). Having had laparoscopic gall bladder surgery five years ago I was relatively prepared for the tummy soreness, but honestly the pain isn't horrible after VSG and I got by with just Tylenol after I got home. I think anxiety is just a part of any surgery, but I think you're on the right track by being prepared. Make sure you have people lined up to vacuum and lift anything heavy for you for a while and plan to just take care of yourself for several days. I also listened to the meditations/visualizations provided by Kaiser Permanente for people having surgery and they were soothing https://healthy.kaiserpermanente.org/health-wellness/podcasts/conditions-diseases/surgery Oh another thing I'd recommend is to do some journaling. There is a forum on this site called "What is your Why?" I loved digging into that and I found focusing on my Big Why would alleviate my fears or at least balance them out. I wrote about being healthy, fit, feeling in control of my eating. I'd write about the things I'll be doing this winter and next summer with my grandkids that I've avoided doing now. And, in the next day or two, measure yourself everywhere from ankles to neck and record those measurements. I did, and I know there will be times in the near future when my weight loss plateaus. I will re-measure then and relish in the inches lost even if the scale doesn't budge. Check in with us and let us know how you're doing. There is a wealth of knowledge in these forums and very soon you will be the one supporting someone who is just getting started. Your experience will serve as inspiration for others. I can't wait to hear all about your successes!!
  6. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    A friend of mine recommended a book to me when i was considering surgery and I'm glad i read it ahead of time. It is called The Emotional First Aid Kit: A Practical Guide to Life After Bariatric Surgery, by Cynthia Alexander. She really stressed that the surgery is just a tool, but that the mental aspects of overeating, the depression/anxiety that underlies eating disorders doesn't go away. It is crucial to find other outlets for the needs that your overeating has met and it isn't easy. There are counselors who specialize in eating disorders and overeating or eating as a mood stabilizer is disordered eating. There are 12 step groups too, such as Overeaters Anonymous that can be helpful. I have a recommendation for a counselor in my area that I've hung on to for when I am "eating normally" again, because I know myself well enough to know that it would be easy to fall back into some of those same patterns a year or two from now. I may need that help, Bariatric surgery isn't a magic bullet. The hard work begins once we are healed. We then have to face ourselves without the crutch of food; we have to learn to see ourselves as whole without the trigger foods that got us into trouble in the first place. Many of us will need support with that. I admire you for being so honest and I hope you'll let us know how your'e doing.
  7. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Yes, I can relate. I had to stay propped up, and felt like my belly was so full of air, it came up into my chest. The gas used during surgery was trapped and irritated a nerve that runs up into my shoulders, so when I breathed in I'd get pain at the tops of both shoulders. It started to dissipate after a few days and at 11 days post surgery, it is gone. I also had pretty bad edema, with both feet and ankles swelling a lot. I just had to recline a lot more, force myself to sip water slowly, but it did take a week before things started to improve. Hang in there!
  8. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    I'm so glad you got rehydrated. I've been wondering if you're bouncing back! You sounded so miserable after surgery. It is amazing how much fluid is necessary to prevent fatigue and weakness. Hoping you continue to feel better and better!
  9. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    I had my VSG surgery on 5/12, with similar post op symptoms. It felt like a jabbing in my left side near where my drain tube had been. I also had terrible shoulder pain when I breathed in or swallowed, and came to understand it was a result of the gas used during surgery. It can get trapped in the tissue and disrupt the nerve that runs up into the shoulder area. It has all subsided as I've continued to heal. Drink very slowly, but get plenty of fluid. It took a week for the pains to subside and they are completely gone now that I'm 10-11 days out from surgery. If you are in a great deal of pain or it doesn't lessen in the next couple days, definitely call your doctor, but it does sound like your symptoms are common among VSG patients. It does get better!! Wishing you all the best.
  10. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Those are all post op symptoms. I didn't weigh myself until I was over a week post op, when the bloating and edema had subsided. As to the inability to concentrate, that is also really common. Every system in the body takes a back seat to healing and your body is going through a significant change. Be sure you're getting adequate fluid intake. Dehydration is a common cause of mental fatigue and concentration issues. Mostly though, be patient. Your body needs to adjust. Stay on your program and the weight will begin to slide off you. Best of luck.
  11. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    My dietician went through a pretty thorough list of options with me. Here's a summary of my food progression. She also has a variety of recipes she's adapted for bariatric patients that I'm sure will come in handy. Week 1- Liquids, to include 1 Liter of water, 1 pedialyte, 1-2 protein shakes. Optional: broth, sugar-free popsicles (no pulp or fruit), tea, juice and sugar-free jello Week 2- Puree textures: Two protein shakes per day, 1 Liter of water, Warm pureed soups and vegetables (Not Hot) can have avocado, applesauce.... start taking bariatric vitamins Week 3- Soft textures, gradually introducing soft foods one at a time in very small amounts. (Non starchy vegetables, proteins, fruits and healthy fats) Week 4- Normal textures, small meals, chew chew chew. Lots of water in between meals.
  12. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Yes, I am. Sipping slower helps, but it is still a big learning curve. I actually have to remember to take a breath, blow it out, then take a sip otherwise I tend to trap air in my pouch and it is uncomfortable.
  13. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    That's great, N!KK!. I'll be thinking about you tomorrow and wishing you well. Let us know how things go for you.
  14. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    I'm baaaack. Well, sort of and only partially. I had my gastric sleeve and 3" hiatal hernia repair last Wednesday, 5/12 and am starting to feel more alive today. Yesterday was a veritable **** show. I traveled for my surgery and Saturday coming home was a long, horrible day of car rides and changing planes and I was exhausted! Filled with emotional turbulence already, I came home to a sick dog and all that goes with that. But, I allowed myself to just cry, rest, sleep when I felt like it. I carried around a glass of ice water everywhere I went and sipped on broth and Pedialyte to maintain hydration and electrolytes. I've added in some protein shakes today (though not what my body needs just yet) and made a cup of egg drop soup today also to increase protein. My belly still feels hard and bloated, but I made myself walk both yesterday and today and IT DOES HELP! I had a lot of pain in my shoulders post surgery that is starting to improve, but still comes on when I burp or need to burp. I understand it is referred pain in the phrenic nerve from the carbon dioxide used to inflate the belly during surgery. Again, the walking seems to help. I won't win any medals with these walks mind you, but was told to get up and move my body to work that gas out of the tissue. No matter how much I think I know, how much I have read, how much you all have taught me, I am still going to have to experience this all myself and learn as I go. Hang tough everybody. We can do this!!
  15. pk88

    May Surgery?!

    My surgery went really well. No nausea or vomiting yay! The surgeon repaired a 3 inch hiatal hernia as well as the VSG. Other that some pain where my drain is in my belly I’m doing great. I was up walking within a few hours of surgery... very slowly but helps move the gas around. best wishes everyone and thank you so much for your well wishes. 🙏🏼
  16. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Heading to surgery soon. Chat w u all on the other side 😉
  17. Tomorrow is a travel day for me, then surgery Wednesday. I'm exited and ready. Wishing you all successful surgeries with full and easy recoveries.
  18. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    I'm 48 hours out from surgery today, with tomorrow a travel day. As everyone has noted, I'm excited and a wee bit nervous, though not much. I'm just ready. I've done some serious work this past few weeks, both with the pre-op diet and with getting my mind ready. I've been journaling and reading The Emotional First Aid Kit: A Practical Guide to Life After Bariatric Surgery which was recommended by a friend. It's pretty common sense, and covers a lot, mental, emotional and physical. I'm also listening to the guided visualizations and affirmations Kaiser Permanente has on their website for people undergoing surgery. https://healthy.kaiserpermanente.org/health-wellness/podcasts/conditions-diseases/surgery I'm grateful for all your stories and messages as they remind me I am not alone on this journey and while we all have individual experiences, we're fortunate that these procedures are much safer and more effective than they've ever been. To to those just starting on the pre-op diet, it is SO worth it to follow the plan. Keep busy, and if you are hungry, drink an extra protein shake or some broth. You don't need to starve yourself. Drink as much water as you possible can so you go into surgery well hydrated. Cheers to your health!
  19. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    I'm 5 days before surgery and have been on the pre-op for 10 days now. I know I'm getting plenty of protein, I drink a ton of water, and I feel tired all the time, with a low-grade headache. It wasn't like this initially; in fact I was kind of buzzed at first. Now I just don't seem to have any energy. I started taking the bariatric iron and multi I bought for after surgery, thinking it may be a lack of micro-nutrients, but sheesh I'd sure love to feel well rested, especially going into a month or more of super low calorie, liquid intake after surgery. Anyone else feeling like this?
  20. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Isn't it possible to ask their office to send it to you? I'm WAY too visual and need something in writing to refer back to. I was told to stop taking these meds, which I don't take anyway a week prior to surgery. I also stopped taking fish oil because it can lower blood pressure. Stop one week prior to surgery: Coumadin, steroids, other anti-coagulation medications, Aspirin and NSAIDs
  21. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Everyone here is such great support and knowing all of us are going through a version of this this month, I find encouraging. All bariatric surgeries are major surgeries, and remembering that everyone responds differently to it is helpful. My VSG is scheduled for May 12th. I'll pop on here as soon after that I can. I hope to see a post from you sharing your success after your surgery.
  22. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Oh boy, you've been through it haven't you? I hope you trend only upward and forward, Sophie. I'll be thinking of you and wishing you well.
  23. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    Awesome! So glad to hear everything went well.
  24. pk88

    Hangry

    Wow, that's a drag. I'm just the opposite. I'm on day 8 of pre-op and have nearly no hunger. I do pump a lot of water through me though because I learned sometimes when I feel hungry I'm actually thirsty. My only issue, and it's minor is that I am having trouble sleeping at night. I understand it isn't uncommon with Keto and high protein diets, but I wish I could get a really restful night in. All the best!
  25. pk88

    May Surgeries - check in!

    I had the same issue with caffeine withdrawal. I had some green tea the first day, but it didn't help at all. I broke down and had a half cup on day 3 because I had such a bad headache, but I've been without since then and feeling a lot better. Hang it there!

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