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DS Result May Assist Iron Overload?



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I am pre-op and researching my options - OK here is the boring part: I have a genetic blood disease commonly known as "Iron Overload", medically known as Hemochromatosis. Essentially my body absorbs Iron until it becomes unhealthy, damages your organs and can lead to organ failure if untreated. Long story short - I have to have phlebotomies (1 pint blood draws) regularly (every 2 months) for the rest of my life to keep my blood iron levels low (unfortunately they will not use the blood for the community blood supply - not because it is "bad blood" but because it is expensive to manage :-( ). When I mentioned to my current Doctors (yes that is plural) that I am considering Bariatric Surgery they all mentioned that a malabsorptive (sp?) procedure might actually decrease the amount of iron my body absorbs. My Doctors both indicated that RNY (they didn't mention DS) would do the same but I think the sleeve with DS is the better option as it removes a portion of the stomach rather than just detaching some of it...I have been scanning the DS forum because I am interested in DS above and beyond the vertical sleeve, and noticed that a member shared that they need iron injections following DS. So I am curious - is that a regular result of DS? Maybe it is more normal to have to take iron supplements? In either case it would probably just make my iron levels normal and that would be a good thing for me :-D

Please note that I am self pay - so I am betting I can't afford DS - I am thinking it is around $20-25K...

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I have a dear friend who had your Iron condition as well as Lyme Disease. Yes, I believe DS would be a better choice for you because many of us end up needing Iron infusions. Not ALL, but many. But if you speak with a hematologist, they will tell you they really aren't sure where iron is absorbed in the body. They suspect all the way through, but I have my doubts. In any event, my iron absorption always sucked pre op. Had one infusion post DS, at the 3 year mark when my ferritin bottomed out at 9. Since then, however, I am suddenly able to absorb Proferrin Heme iron marvelously.

If you are having weight loss surgery, it sounds like the DS is your best choice. Definitely research all your options, but you've already got a handle on the fact that a "blind stomach" (left with the RNY) is a bad idea. Keep reading. There are other problems with the RNY, like not being able to take Ibuprofen. DSers can take all meds, sometimes the extended release ones are a problem, but not for me.

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I have a dear friend who had your Iron condition as well as Lyme Disease. Yes, I believe DS would be a better choice for you because many of us end up needing Iron infusions. Not ALL, but many. But if you speak with a hematologist, they will tell you they really aren't sure where iron is absorbed in the body. They suspect all the way through, but I have my doubts. In any event, my iron absorption always sucked pre op. Had one infusion post DS, at the 3 year mark when my ferritin bottomed out at 9. Since then, however, I am suddenly able to absorb Proferrin Heme iron marvelously.

If you are having weight loss surgery, it sounds like the DS is your best choice. Definitely research all your options, but you've already got a handle on the fact that a "blind stomach" (left with the RNY) is a bad idea. Keep reading. There are other problems with the RNY, like not being able to take Ibuprofen. DSers can take all meds, sometimes the extended release ones are a problem, but not for me.

Thanks Sheanie,

I noticed your value of 9 - when I was diagnosed my value was over 900, and I was caught early, some have values in the 2000's when they are diagnosed. When my Hem-Onc said that malabsorption was the way to go - I have to say I was more familiar with RNY because my cousin had one a few years ago. luckily I found VSG Talk and now BariatricPal which has allowed me to learn about DS. I have two surgical centers that I have investigated and am scheduling initial consults, I hope to learn more soon!

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I don't know if you are open minded enough to travel for the duodenal switch, but there is a Dr. Ungson in Mexico who performs the DS and he is wonderful. His prices are far lower than U.S. prices, he's VERY EXPERIENCED even moreso than most American surgeons, and he has a full service hospital and staff right there for you. If you can't afford the D.S in America, you might be able to afford his prices.

On your original question I think the DS would definitely be the best surgery for someone in your condition. It offers the best weight loss stats of all the surgeries and you can eat a more "normal" diet than you can with the other surgeries. Keep doing your research and talking to people who have had the DS. You will have to take a lot of Vitamins and make sure you follow up with labs but it sounds like you are already used to doctor's visits so this will be nothing new and it is for a good cause (getting healthy). Best wishes to you!!

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Thanks Sleeved&Hopeful,

I am keeping an open mind for all options, my first quote for DS was $28k, and being practical I have to keep looking. I am very jealous of all the folks who have insurance coverage but not so much that I am willing to go work for company that provides it.

Onward!

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