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Posts posted by cajun

  1. I put about 1/2 cup of fresh papaya in my Protein shake each morning. Papaya acts like an enzyme, in fact I think it is the main ingredient in meat tenderizer...try it. Might work.

    Lots of Vitamins too!

    I don't like the way it tastes by itself, but in a shake, it just adds sweetness.

    HI everyone!

    After 6 months trouble-free since being sleeved, maybe I was getting a little too cocky? 5 days ago, feeling fine, I ate half of a fresh coconut. I ate slowly, chewed well, and stopped long before I had any discomfort & went about my business. I have not been able to hold anything down since then!

    For the first 2 days, I was in agonizing stomach pain & vomiting everything I tried to eat or drink. I felt like I had a rock in my stomach. The following day I felt better but kept to liquids just to be safe & everything was fine other than still feeling like there was a lump in my stomach. The day after that (yesterday) I tried to have some chili & got about 3 spoons into my stomach before I felt nauseous again. The vomiting resumed with a vengeance.

    So last night I elected to do a barium study on myself (lucky to have access to radiology at work!) and after 5 hours there was still a perfectly round mass in my stomach that the barium was stuck to. Showed this to my doctor this AM & he sent me for endoscopy. He said I had a bezoar, which is a concretion of undigestible material in my stomach, basically from the cellulose Fiber of the coconut.

    The endoscopist is telling me that this is a common finding in people who have had gastric surgery. This is the first time I've heard anything about it!!! Has anyone else had this experience? Can anyone provide me with a list of foods I should avoid, so I don't have to go through this again? I asked my doc, but he basically just said coconut, pumpkin seeds, and celery. There has got to be more to it than that!

    Any advice or input is appreciated! Thanks, y'all!



  2. I was sleeved 3 weeks ago in Gonzales, Louisiana by Dr. Bellanger. Total cost, including psych visit, pre-op testing, nutritionist, anesthesiologist, internist who evaluated the pre-op testing, overnight hospital stay and follow up was $14065 (hospital portion $7600, and the remainder was paid to the doc). I was self pay. Iberia Bank will also finance all or part. I can't say enough good things about this physician and St. Elizabeth's. I'm sure the doc in Mexico is a good physician, but I need to be close to home. The surgery was a breeze, as was the recovery. Good luck and if you have anymore questions, let me know.

    According to the Obesity Help website where you can review the qualifications of surgeons in Louisiana (and elsewhere), Dr Bellanger has performed over 400 VSGs. Dr Hargroder has done 100. I read a lot of research before having my VSG by Dr Aceves in Mexico. He's done about 1000 with NO leaks, so his statistics made me feel very confident.

    The research says that once the surgeon has done over 300 of the procedures, their complication rate drops considerably. They have then seen about every possible complication and know how to handle them.

    Good luck!

  3. It's been a long time since I've been on the site and the chat room is not working like it used to. I can't figure out how to use it. I log into it, it looks like I am listed with two other folks but I can't type anything.

    Anyone got advice?



  4. hey to all! i did a new post inquiring about doc aceves because i'm also considering backing out of my surgery that's already scheduled here locally and going to him.

    i notice a spinal block was mentioned.... any particular reason why they do that instead of using the kind of anesthesia we use here? i'm not sure how i feel about it. i haven't heard anything about it from my surgeon here. that makes me nervous all over again! LOL!

    The spinal block is actually the recommended standard of care for obese patients in this country, and one of the main reasons is it allows the anesthesiologist to use less general anesthesia. Obese persons need a lot more general anesthesia to be put to sleep, because of our weight. Getting less general anesthesia is a lot safer, you wake up quicker, and have less possible anesthesia side effects, less chance of pneumonia, less time being immobile. The spinal also does a great job of pain control. I had the spinal by Dr Aceves' anesthesiologist, and they left it in until the day I was discharged, so I could get meds through the tube during my hospital stay. It was great.

  5. Well, at least one good thing came out of this horrific experience...the vas.

    Take your time deciding on this...and if you ever decide to go ahead with the surgery, there are ways to prepare so you have the least possible anxiety. Your counsellor and surgeon can help with those things. If you decide to not have the surgery, no one could blame you after what you went through.

    We are here for you....thanks for trusting us with your story.

  6. Just a few thoughts for you, Oub...

    You mentioned falling short on fluids sometimes. I've found that if I don't get in at least 60 ounces, I crash...no energy. And I stop losing. Be sure you keep your fluids up!

    Re: nutritionist. I saw one for a while, shortly after surgery. She was adamant that my surgeon's recommendation of 600-800 calories was STARVATION and not healthy/balanced at all, She advised I go up to 1200-1400 and eat more carbs... (I was eating 30-60 gms per day.) She works for my Internist and has never had a VSG. I did not follow her advice, but stuck to my surgeon's advice and I've lost 110 lbs over 9 months. About 30 more to go. This is just to say that all nutritionists are not experts in WLS. When I eat carbs, I stop losing and/or gain weight. So... give things a try and see what happens...you will find out what works for you. You did not become obese in a week, so stop rushing yourself to lose it instantly! I weighed daily for 8 months, but now...about twice a month, ...less stressful.

  7. I lost 20 lbs the first month, then 10 lbs a month after that until the 7th month, when it dropped to 5 lbs per month. The less you weigh, the slower you lose, and I am just fine with that.

    I find that my loose skin is shrinking a little and a gradual loss is probably a good idea at this point. I expect at 1 year I will be close to my goal, but whatever it takes is fine with me. It's working and I am just very grateful.

    I don't weigh every day now, just about once a week and that keeps me from getting upset that the loss has slowed down...Lower your expectations, and just enjoy the ride!

  8. Dr Aceves is highly qualified, with over 700 sleeves and NO leaks. He's board certified, teaches other surgeons how to perform the procedure, is highly respected by his peers, and on top of that is just a very kind and caring human being. He will give you the best advice about which surgery is most appropriate for your personal condition, and he is not "in it for the money", so you can be sure it will be a recommendation based on what's best for YOU.

    I cannot say enough good things about my experience with him, and I am VERY picky, did months of research before selecting him, and am very happy with the outcome. His staff still keeps in touch, and I get prompt answers to any questions via email.

    The downside to going to Mexico in my opinion is that some physicians here in the US can be biased, and when you mention that you went to Mexico their eyebrows go up. My internist seems to be fine with the idea, but my gastroenterologist who does my follow-up visits seems to have a negative view about it. His notes always say "...had VSG surgery in Mexico". Like that's a problem? If I had it done in California, I doubt that he'd write "had VSG surgery in California". It irks me. But there's nothing I can do about it.

    There's a popular travel show on TV where the host ends each program with the quote "travel is lethal to prejudice, bigotry and narrow-mindedness". Maybe US physicians need to travel more...:001_rolleyes:

  9. I stayed on mushies a bit longer than required, too. My tummy just was not ready for regular food when the schedule said I could have it.

    It'salso not unusual to have to "back up" occasionally. Even at 9 months, if I have a day when my tummy feels upset I go back to Protein shakes for a day, and it settles down fine. Listen to your tummy and treat it right...it will reciprocate!

  10. Research that has been done on the sleeve shows that once the surgeon has performed over 300 sleeves, their complication rate goes way down. I looked for a surgeon who met that criteria, and was self-pay so I did not have to go where insurance required me to go. I went to Mexico and Dr Aceves was my surgeon. He's done over 700 with no leaks to date. I was very pleased with his care.

    I work in health care myself, and did a lot of research before choosing a surgeon, so I'd have the very best chance of a good outcome. The information I found on this forum helped me make my decision and I am forever grateful.

  11. I HAVE FINALLY MADE IT TO ONEDERLAND:thumbup:. For the past few weeks I have played around with 198-201 but now I am officially at 198 and haven't seen a 200+ on my scale in over a week!!! I start my next zumba session on Monday and really look forward to it. I don't post often, but I do look at the board every week to grab some inspiration from all of you. Thank you to everyone on this forum....it has really inspired me to keep moving past the struggles and I know now that I am not the only one going through the glitches. It's amazing if I have a question - someone else has already asked it and many of you respond so I get my answers very quickly. Thanks again for all of your sharing and support.

    Welcome to Onderland! Isn't it great? I still don't believe I'm there either...so amazing!

  12. I've been cold since I started the pre-op diet, and I used to be hot all the time. I think that the body's metabolism slows down drastically when we consume such low caloric diets, as a way to protect itself. Also, a lot of the high carbohydrate foods we used to eat cause an inflammatory process, which I believe elevates body temperature.

    I am much happier being cold that I was being hot all the time.

    Many sleevers report this chilling effect so you are not alone.

  13. Brittu:

    I flew first class going home too...good idea. More room in the seat, just over all more comfortable.

    If you can find a driver, I would let someone else drive. Others may not agree.

    I went alone and was glad in a way, to feel free to sleep or what ever without feeling like I had to visit. But I wished I'd had someone with me a couple of times. Your call.

    I did use my computer for emails. Took only one pr of shoes which I wore, and rubber-soled footsies for post-op comfort. One pr of pj's. One outfit to come home in. No need for hairdryer. They supply soap/shampoo. Bring washrag though, and toothbrush.... Towels are provided.

    I had IVs until the day I left, for pain control. It varies with each person, based on need. Ask and you shall receive!

    They prefer to supply you with intake, so no need to bring anything. You're only allowed Clear liquids, and only after the leak test. Their broth is yummy. Applejuice is....well, applejuice. I had taken koolaid and tried it one time (did not like it...everything tastes different after VSG), but it seemed to upset the nurses that I had it. I think they prefer that you drink what they have there.

    Good luck! You'll be amazed at the awesome service.

  14. I am still taking mine, but this article just might make me re-think it ... I'll discuss with my doctor at the 6 month mark:

    Proton pump inhibitors can lead to higher risk of bone fractures, studies show - chicagotribune.com

    I wonder if this is because most people take Calcium carbonate, which is not absorbed if there is no acid in the stomach. Most of us take a PPI or other acid-reducing medication post op, so we take calcium citrate. It IS absorbed even if there is no acid in the stomach.

    Many, many people have reflux or "heartburn" and take OTC acid blockers on their own, without any advice from a professional who would be able to advise them to switch their Calcium to calcium citrate. Maybe that is causing more osteoporosis. Just a thought.

  15. I switched from nexium to otc zantac after 6 months, and I take it twice a day. Occasionally I forget to take it and some days I don't notice any acid. But if I eat any carbs, I do notice the acid burning, sometimes even when I've taken the zantac. chocolate is also a problem. Darn.

    Milk does take the edge off for me, if I am having some acid burning, and eating a few bites of Protein every two hours or so will also help me. I guess it gives the stomach something to burn besides my stomach!:) One of the advantages of having a "normal" amount of stomach acid is that it kills harmful bacteria, which we might consume on food that we eat. The PPI's stop all acid production so we lose that protection when on a PPI.

    I am hoping that eventually I will not need anything except a few Vitamins.That raises another issue. Presence or absence of acid is a factor in whether or not some medications and Vitamins are absorbed and properly utilized in the body. It's a juggling act to take certain ones on empty stomach, but take others with food, as recommended.

  16. From Wikepedia:

    Proton pump inhibitors (PPIs): The PPIs include omeprazole (Prilosec, Losec), lansoprazole (Prevacid), rabeprazole (Aciphex), pantoprazole (Protonix, Pantoloc), and esomeprazole (Nexium). The reduced secretion of gastric acid and pepsin produced by PPIs can reduce absorption of protein-bound (dietary) Vitamin B12, but not supplemental vitamin B12. Gastric acid is needed to release vitamin B12 from Protein for absorption. Reduced vitamin B12 levels may be more common with PPIs than with H2-blockers, because they are more likely to produce achlorhydria (complete absence of gastric acid secretion). However, clinically significant vitamin B12 deficiency is unlikely, unless PPI therapy is prolonged (2 years or more) or dietary vitamin intake is low. Vitamin B12 levels should be monitored in people taking high doses of PPIs for prolonged periods.

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