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LAP-BAND Patients
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    brandy1983 reacted to momolynne for a blog entry, my story with the band! how it did not band me!   
    So you all are probably wondering how having the "Band" did not band me? Well if you have the time to read this then read ahead.
    Back in August of 2007, ahh i remember it well, I was contemplating on what I wanted to do to loose weight, The band or Bypass surgery? So i decided to go with the band. I really did not want to be all cut up and the thought of having my digestive system all re wired ( so to speak) was not really appealing to me. So now I called and made my appointment for a consultation.I was very excited and could not wait to finally do somthing that would change my life forever! So everything was moving right along, did all my requirements needed for this surgery, and months went by so finally January 31st 2008 was the date of my "first surgery" of having the lap band implanted. I was sooo nervous and scared and was not sure if this was the right thing to do, but at that time it felt right and I was ready for it!
    Surgery came and went, a week later i came down with some sort of "stomach bug". I had very high fever and doctors could not understand what was going on. But i was in the hospital for 8 days! Not so fun So once I was home everything started to get a little better day by day.I was feeling great! I was loosing weight and very excited about what was ahead of me with finally having the life and the body ive always wanted!
    so about 7 months later i beleive it was at the end of August , it was a Friday night and I was in the middle of doing laundry, I started to develop some pain in my stomach everytime i needed to lay down. It was the oddest feeling ive had since I had the band in me, I called my boyfriend at the time to please come over and stay with me cause of course i was nervous and didnt know what was going on. so when I got home from doing laundry at my friends house, i called the on call doctor at the office to make sure that i was in no harm and everything would be ok. I had some pain meds from before so i took one to see if it would help with the pain i was having. So that night i was pretty much up all night due to the pain in my stomach and not being able to lay down the right way.Finally morning came, my boyfriend had to leave to go to work and i said i would be ok and id call him if anything changed. I was supposed to get my friend from the airport that night and all i kept thinking about was how I was going to do that with this pain!!! Finally it was near like 12pm and i said i cant take anymore right now, so i called the doctor and he told me to come to the ER. of course i was panicing cause i did not know how serious this was going to get.So one of my friends came and braught me to the ER and stayed with me while they ran some tests. I was in the worst pain at this point and was very scared. So of course it was a Saturday and ALL the main docotors are off the weekend so they ended up addmitting me to the hospital and said basically i have to wait till monday to see any of my doctors. That sunday a Gastro doctor came in to see me and i explained to him what was happening. So he ordered that on Monday morning I would have and upper endoscopy done to take a look at my stomach.
    Monday came and here i was going for this test and was really nervous and not sure what he was going to find. so they put me to sleep and then a short while later i was waking up in the recovery room and the gastro doctor came over and said, Unfortunatly we found a small eroision where the band was sitting which is causing your pain, I am going to notify your doctor and see what he wants to do. So im like crying and not sure what to think I called my dad and demanded him come to the hospital to be with me. So then my Doc came in who did my lap band surgery and basically told me the same thing AND...I would have to have the band removed due to this. Well of course I was extreamly dissapointed! Here this was the ONLY thing EVER that worked for me to loose weight and I had to lose it!!! So they schedualed me to have it removed on that Wednesday. I was sooo upset and I cried a lot because I could not beleive this was happening. The doc told me that 1 out of 100 this happens to. I was like great I has to be the 1 that it happened to.
    So Wednesday came and I was nervous about surgery but everything went well and they said it was not a huge hole but the band was starting to come through my stomach. So here I am not able to eat anything, I was there for 8 days again but was kind of releived of not having that pain anymore. But at the same time I was really depressed and all I kept thinking was How am I going to do this on my own. I suck at doing this on my own. I had Lost 80 lbs and i was feeling really good, now how to keep it off and loose some more!
    So finally i was home from the hospital and recovering, I was able to be on a full liquid diet but overall i was not very hungry, but time passed and it was a little over a year when i decided to see if I could have the band replaced.
    I met with my doctor and discussed my options. So your probably wondering if i had gained any weight back? Well I did, I tried hard not to, but once I was able to eat normally again I gainded 50 lbs back. So I figured hey I beleive that I could do this again. Time has passed and im sure my stomach has had enough time to heal so my doctor agreed and said most people that have this problem come back and try it again and dont have the same problem again. So I was confident that this was going to work this time!
    Yeah right!! My surgery was schedualed for January 13 of 2010, surgery came and went, I had a new boyfriend at the time and he stayed with me in the hospital. He really is the the best!! Anyway, 2 days later I was able to go home, Went home and started the recovery process. Everyone was really worried and was scared for me and praying that nothing goes wrong. About a month to 2 months later it was the week of my Birthday, I was excited to start a new life again at the age of 31, but earlier that week I started to develop pain where my port was. so i saw the doctor and he suggested that he move the port to the other side. So what did that mean...yes...another surgery, So here i go into the hospital the day before my birthday, and operated on to have my port moved to the other side. The next day Birthday day, i was able to go home but the area that he removed the port from was opened i had like gause tubes for drainage hanging out and they covered it up and said come back in 2 days to have them removed, ok no problem.2 days later came back had the gause removed and he bandaged the area up and said the insition will close on its own, no problem, went home everything was good. well the insition was closing and i was doing what the doctor said to do on how to care for it, but i started to come down with fever and the area where this insition was warm to the touch and it started to look infected. So i waited a day or two and then it just really looked bad so i called the doctor and he told me to meet him at the hospital. This was a different doctor, and accosiate of my doctor, who I really did not like. Anyway im in the ER and laying there in pain again, and very flushed with fever and i had to wait for the doctor to come in. Well he came in and said yes it is deffinatly infected!! GREAT!! of course i started to cry when he told me what he had to do, He said they are going to have to cut the insition open to release the infection because it was bulging out like a baseball. So i looked away and he cut it open, now not to gross anyone out but, when i tell you it was like niagra falls pouring out of me of blood and puss yes it was!!! All i felt was warm liquid pouring down the side of my stomach, my underwear was ruined i felt gross the smell was terrible, but he got the fluids out and then gaused it up a little more and bandaged it up. So i had to be addmitted into the hospital AGAIN!!! And was on some anti-biotics for the next few days.
    Everytime i got up though fluid was draining out all over me so they had to come up with a better plan. So they basically cut a tube from and cathiter stuck it in my stomach and then put and elostomy bag on so the tube could drain into the bag. I had to keep this back on for 2 weeks!! So they sent me home and schedualed for a home health nurse to come and see me. She came and just showed me how to clean and change the bag when needed. I could not go to work with this, and it was very weird to be walking around with this bag attached to me. At this point from all the tape going on and off my skin, it made my skin very itchy and dry and when i would scratch it the skin would break, so i was not helping the situation very well.Once the two weeks were up I went to the doctor and he removed everything and then just bandaged it up and told me to just keep it covered and that i could shower and just try to keep it clean. so fine everything healed and i was ready to start my life again and work on loosing weight.
    So now it is June. I was starting to develop some pain but not severe, so i called the doctor and he asked me to come in and have a few tests done to see what was going on. Had the tests and he said everything looked really good he didnt see anything wrong adn everything looked great. ok, so i went home. about a week later i started to start feeling really bad pain in my stomach every time i ate, I didnt want to call the doctor because i didnt want to hear again that nothing is wrong. So i wait as long as i could, On the 18th of june he asked me to come in and have an endoscopy done. So my bf took me and i had the procedure done, as im waking up in the recovery room i was not sure what was going on, and i thought i hear the nurse say oh shes going into the operating room soon. I was a little loopy and not sure if he was talking about me. so once i was fully awake the doctor came in and said, Well you have another erosion and its pretty severe so in about a half hr we r going to remove the band again. Then my bf came in and sat with me and i was sooooo upset that this was happening again!!!! I really thought this time was going to be different! So he called my parents and told them and my brother then came to the hospital with my dad and they could not beleive this was happeneing again. So they operated and removed the band again. I was on heavy duty anti-biotics and could not eat anything just suck on ice chips. so here i am again in the hospital now to be the 4th time i was in the hospital for this yr. Basically my doctor told me if i had waited any longer i could have died. I was in shock and could not beleive what he just told me. Who would of known that having the band could end your life!!!
    So the week came and went and i was able to go home. at this point i did not care about loosing weight anymore. I just wanted my life back to normal. so i was home for the rest of the month and the week i was schedualed to go back to work i started to have sever stomach pain. I had a lot of diareaha that week and was unsure why. so one night i had really sever pain that i could not move, my bf rushed me to the hospital and they ran tests and could not understand why i was having these pains and i was also very nauseous. I had a lot of diareaha and they started to treat me for C-diff. C-diff is what they call a super infection which you can get from being on tons of anti-biotics, so they had to seclude me from everyone else because it was highly contagious! anyone who came to see me had to wear gloves and put a gown on. So they admitted me again now for the 5th time in the hospital this yr. I was so upset and could not beleive that i had gotten c-diff, the worst thing anyone could ever get! so i was treated and was sent home a few days later. I had to start eating a lot of yogart to prevent getting anymore infections. They told me it could come back so i was nervous about that.
    Well it did not come back and finally i was able to go back to work, I was glad to be back and excited to just live a normal life again. well slowly i started to develop these lumps on my legs, they were really really painful and i did not know what was causing these noduals to develop. My doctor said they look like carbuncles which are like ingrown hairs, so she put me on pain meds to stop the pain but more just started to develop. so i went back and she sent me to a disease specialist. She thought that i would have MRSA. Initially I was scared, My boss found out and she told me i could not work there if i had MRSA. I was like great now im going to loose my job, can anything else go wrong??? So the day came where i went to see the disease specialist and i was soooo nervous on what he was going to tell me. The doctor came in and i showed him what was going on with my legs. He told me well i can tell you one thing, it is DEFFINATLY not MRSA!! I was so realeived!! What he did tell me was that what i had was called Erothema Nadosum.or EN. He gave me a huge print out of what EN was, and basically its hard painful noduals that develop in the legs.And from what i read it said its and inflamation of the fat cells. He said i could of gotten it from being in the hospital and all the anti-biotics i was on. So now i said how do i get rid of them. Basically he told me, there is no treatment for them. they come and they stay about 6-8 weeks and then go away on their own. So now im thinking ok so now i have to live with this pain for the next 6-8 weeks?? what am I going to do. so my regualar doctor gave me a bunch of pain meds to help with the pain. Well what he gave me was a patch called fentynal. it was for 50 mgs and i would wear one patch for 3 days at a time. so i put the patch on and later on that eve i started to not feel the pain as much. I went to bed and woke up the next day and was extreamly nauseous!! And was very very loopy, these pain meds really messed me up and i was nauseous all weekend and then finally on monday morning i could not go to work because i was so nauseous, and i went to the doctor to see if there was anything else he could give me so he lowered the dose of it that helped better.
    So moral of my story is, I went through hell and back this year, and could not beleive everything I went through, My stomach has never been the same since this and today i still suffer from things and not sure how my digestive system is REALLY working. Im still in the process of having tests done and looks like my next surgery is going to be my gallbladder. but im trying to hold off as much as i can because the thought of being in the hospital again for this really really scares me! I didnt write this story to scare anyone, but to just let people know that there are many risks with surgery and even though the band seems like the safer way to go, it really is not. It works for some people and from the things ive read this is more common then people think and that the doctors DON'T tell you when you initially go for your consultation. If you are thinking of having the band done please be carfull! and if you have expeirienced what i have, im really sorry and i feel your pain. Im just trying to take it day by day now, I am trying to get my life back to normal and just want to feel good. Slowly but surley im getting there.
    Im sorry if there is a lot of grammer problems in this, It was alot to write and just wanted to get it done. lol!
    Good luck to everyone and I hope you all have better luck then i did!

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