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Well here I am - still stuck in what I can only describe as a mental culdesac of indecision and frustration. I spend maybe 1-2 hours per day on this forum hoping to finally make my mind up. So far I've "decided" on several different surgeons. Except I haven't really "decided" anything - and therein lies the problem.

Do you want to know what's been going on in my world of VSG madness ? - okay, first I wanted to go with BeLiteWeight - a little pricier but well reviewed (AND FYI their in house financing is easy peasy) but communication not so super but I can get over that. OH and NO DRAIN - me like that very much. So why haven't I committed with them ? - they tried a little scare tactic on me which I really don't appreciate. Don't try and boost your image by making someone else look smaller, not cool.

Contestant number two - Ready4Achange - alma is ALL about communication - that girl gets straight back to you no matter when it is. Again, price is right, no easy finance though so would need to go through a nasty finance place but again, doctor reviews seem good - Alma is still definitely on my list.

Contestant number three - Dr. Kelly - this guy is very clearly a rocking doctor but hampered by association with questionable coordinators and their shady tactics. A little on the high side but it isn't and never will be all about price (but lets be honest - it does have to have SOMETHING to do with it - unless you're independently wealthy) - he's still on the list though - can't look a gift doctor in the mouth.

Now right about this time, I started getting interested in the "single incision" idea so began researching surgeons performing this. Enter Dr. Diaz - rated highly for this - they promote this as faster recovery and NO DRAIN (again - me like that) and price is actually pretty right - does not seem to have a ton of reviews however but what i could find seemed positive. Still on the list - but then enter contestant number four (Dr Ortiz) - read a lot about him and decided to check him out.

Contestant number four - Dr. Ortiz - arguably the cutest doctor (yes, I am that shallow) Luckily he is also a very good doctor with super reviews. BUT does NOT perform single incision surgery because he feels it is "to risky and much bigger risk of bleeding"

Here is what I want - safety first and foremost (like all of you, I would quite like to live) - secondly - I would like to not have to bankrupt myself (yes I am fully aware it isn't ALL about money - I get that already) - thirdly - I would quite like to lose weight afterwards and LAST of all - I want ALL of this with as little pain and discomfort as possible - what is so wrong about that ? I'm a chicken - so sue me.

Okay I'm done - I'm gonna go have a cup of coffee and regroup and start researching again.

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I enjoyed reading your post! For me personally I opted for Dr. Ortiz and have my surgery scheduled for next Wed. I can tell you that I have been sooooo impressed with the coordinator Carolyn. She is awesome and does not contract through a 3rd party, works only with OCC for Ortiz. She also has had surgery with him and was able to answer all questions easily.

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Actually the drain wasn't too bad. I was dreading it too. I had it in for 48 hrs, they took it out right before I was released from the hospital. I was so doped up, it didn't bother me a bit. I had my surgery in the states.

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Yeah I second the comment about the drain. It wasn't that bothersome since I was so doped up being in the hospital. When they took it out, it wasn't an issue either.

I do want to say though..I am not sure what you are expecting as to a level of pain and discomfort and your wanting as little as possible. This is major surgery..it is going to hurt and it is going to be uncomfortable. I had never had surgery before and I would rate my discomfort level on a scale of 1 to 10 the first two weeks as an 8. After that..it was fine. So not to rain on your parade I just am trying to give you a realistic picture.

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Having a drain is a very important precaution that I'm glad my surgeon uses. It measures internal bleeding and other issues. I didn't even know I had one until I got up to pee and walk. No discomfort what so ever.

You can't shop for level of pain and discomfort. I had a totally paid free recovery, but that doesn't mean the next patient did. Sometimes its a hit or miss.

Good luck :D

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I am in sales as we call this paralysis by analysis....I agree, this is a big deal. Huge deal. My Surgeon told me that the worst pain is if you have gas pain. I guess for some it's pretty awful, but walking around helps it go away faster. He said that there is no way of knowing who or who won't have it. Luckily, I had very little, but I had nausea. Research is really smart, until it stops you from going any further. I didn't have a drain, I was in the hospital overnight. Was back at work within a week. I also, am self pay and what I did was got a loan through my credit union for as much of it as I could, then did the rest with the horrible medical financing company with the 19% interest. However, I paid a couple of grand off of it, and then paid it off with a zero percent interest credit card. So, there are options even after you get your original financing! I had to finance 18k.

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Lia - analysis paralysis (LOVE it) - yes, that is what I have for sure. First thanks to all for your responses and they all make huge sense of course. HAVE to explain I was joking a little about the pain comment - that was more my "ideal world" scenario and just being cheeky really. BUT if I'm being downright honest here - my biggest problem with surgery is the iv insertion due to my past problems with surgeries. They have a dickens of a time getting that sucker in and it HURTS. I had two surgeries within a week of each other a few years ago and both times that iv was a biatch to get in, they finally gave me a shot for pain and plugged it in okay. SO - here is my burning question to you - are there any surgeons that you know of that will do the iv AFTER you're out ? or at least dope you up with pain meds before they commence digging around for a vein ? (sorry but I must reiterate - the problem was not with the doctors and nurses - it truly is my stupid small veins)

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I have a great fear of needles as a result of my miniscule veins, too. To minimize the pain, I always forbid them from "fishing" around for the vein once the needle is under my skin. At the hospital, they took a look at my lack of veins, listened to my requirement and gave me a local anesthetic. Problem solved. Once you have chosen a doctor, ask in advance if they will do that for you. It doesn't seem possible to put the IV in after you are out because the drug to put you out is given through the IV.

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No time - well yes and no to the IV thing - I have heard (in fact i also read it somewhere on this website) that some doctors can and do knock you out via your arm instead of hand. But you make a good point and I will definitely make sure to ask prior to surgery if anything can be done to lessen this problem. Thanks !

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I also have small veins that like to roll when they try to get a needle in there. We have found that if they use a pediatric needle things tend to be a whole lot smoother and a lot less painful.

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I have the same needle issues.

Its sad that I am going to another country to be cut open and my main concern is the IV. I have had them try 5 or 6 times with no luck. Last time I had a baby they acted like it was a game to see who could get it in. They finally had to call up a doctor from anesthetics to do it. My husband was so mad at the nurses he said we were about to get up and leave to go to a different hospital.

I am going with Dr. Garcia on August 10th and I fully plan on asking to be put under first and yes that is fully possible.

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Oh BTW, always ask for a butterfly needle if you have this problem.

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If you are concerned about the IV there are things that help numb the site; L.E.T., EMLA cream or Ethyl Chloride (spray). See if the facility has a policy to use any of these. Also suggest to the nurse where they generally get your IV (sometimes the nurse will listen or not).

A butterfly is only a style of needle and not size. I use a small butterfly to draw blood or a very large butterfly when I worked in dialysis. Also most butterflies are just needles and not an IV catheter.

Good luck with your decision.

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regarding the pain. unfortunately like people above that is not a criteria that you can shop for, for it is not always about the doctor. in my case my doctor had one case before me, a very nice lady we were half an hour apart but our experiences could not have been more different, she bounced on her feet and felt great, I had lots of bloating and pain for a while. Same surgeon, same time, same place. But they manage the pain so no worries.

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