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I hate that I had this surgery



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Or they are even more common than is reported on forums like this.

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I don't think they are. I'm in several WLS groups and yes, there are complications, but nothing like reported on this site.

I've been involved in many online support groups since the AOL dial-up days. People tend to join when they need things - usually information or support with issues they're facing. Once have the information they need, or their issues have subsided (or they've just learned to accommodate them), they tend to fall away as other things in their life become more important.

The people who stick around long term tend to do so because they form relationships that are important to them, they feel a drive to "pay-it-forward", or they are having longer-lasting issues than the majority (or a combination of the above). So you end up with a core group of "evangelists", a group of "dissidents", and a rotating group of newbies on any board. And of course, the drama llamas and trolls, but I tend to discount them, LOL. That's why if you hang around a board for any length of time, you can predict fairly reliably who will respond to a given post, and what they will say.

There are also a LOT of people who get their information needs met by their surgeon's team, have a good support group in person, and just don't have any complications to speak of. Those people never even sign on to a board like this. That's why I say if you want information about how common a complication or side effect is, talk to your surgeon. They report to agencies about that sort of thing, and they know the real numbers. Complications like nausea and vomiting are common, to be sure. But it's not common to have intractable nausea/vomiting (meaning not responding to meds). It happens, sure. But nowhere near the incidence rates one would think just reading this board.

For example, when my daughter developed alopecia, we were both very active for about a year on alopecia boards and groups. As we figured out how to deal with it, got all the research information we needed, and determined there wasn't any treatment just living with it, our time got filled with other things and neither of us have been on those boards for years. When I was trying to get a diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis, and then for a while after, I was very active on several RA/auto-immune boards and communities. Now that I have a diagnosis and am on a treatment plan, I don't have a lot of needs that the online community can meet. The deficits that I'm dealing with are fairly stable and I've had to accept them or accommodate them.

Despite how it feels, boards like this are not a true cross-section or random sampling.

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@@theantichick **There are also a LOT of people who get their information needs met by their surgeon's team, have a good support group in person, and just don't have any complications to speak of. Those people never even sign on to a board like this. That's why I say if you want information about how common a complication or side effect is, talk to your surgeon. They report to agencies about that sort of thing, and they know the real numbers. Complications like nausea and vomiting are common, to be sure. But it's not common to have intractable nausea/vomiting (meaning not responding to meds). It happens, sure. But nowhere near the incidence rates one would think just reading this board.**

I'm going to save this to just c/p from now on. Support groups/boards/online communities are TERRIBLE places to find out how safe/unsafe/effective ANYthing is. Your surgeon should be able to readily provide you with his/her complication rate for any given procedure, as well as tell you national rates of the same. You should also be provided with things like your hospital's rate of infections acquired during admission. I had a super easy post-op course, but that's meaningless to YOU other than it being reflective of the rate of easy post-op courses in general for a VSG. Do your homework with your doc/practice/hospital.

You can't even find out if a TOASTER is good or not because so few people take the time to say "I love this toaster" but nearly everyone has time to complain about their toast being too brown, not brown enough or popping up too high ;-) Same for gastric bypass, VSG, DS and bands!

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@@theantichick

exactly. people are much more likely to post and ask for support when they're having issues. there are very few, "hey everybody, i tried X food today and it went fantastic!" posts.

it's just human nature to reach out to others more when you're unhappy.

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@@theantichick

exactly. people are much more likely to post and ask for support when they're having issues. there are very few, "hey everybody, i tried X food today and it went fantastic!" posts.

it's just human nature to reach out to others more when you're unhappy.

Clearly you've not seen all the threads about popcorn, pizza, swedish fish, pork chops and tacos.

:o

:wacko:

:P

:lol:

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@@theantichick

exactly. people are much more likely to post and ask for support when they're having issues. there are very few, "hey everybody, i tried X food today and it went fantastic!" posts.

it's just human nature to reach out to others more when you're unhappy.

Clearly you've not seen all the threads about popcorn, pizza, swedish fish, pork chops and tacos.

:o

:wacko:

:P

:lol:

Ha, but those aren't asking for support, they're asking for permission ;-)

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@@theantichick

exactly. people are much more likely to post and ask for support when they're having issues. there are very few, "hey everybody, i tried X food today and it went fantastic!" posts.

it's just human nature to reach out to others more when you're unhappy.

Clearly you've not seen all the threads about popcorn, pizza, swedish fish, pork chops and tacos.

:o

:wacko:

:P

:lol:

Ha, but those aren't asking for support, they're asking for permission ;-)

But how many have popped in to say it worked fine for them so it should work fine for err'ybody??

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@@theantichick

exactly. people are much more likely to post and ask for support when they're having issues. there are very few, "hey everybody, i tried X food today and it went fantastic!" posts.

it's just human nature to reach out to others more when you're unhappy.

Clearly you've not seen all the threads about popcorn, pizza, swedish fish, pork chops and tacos.

:o

:wacko:

:P

:lol:

Lol, I suppose I meant the more boring on plan posts. For instance, I got to start solids this week and I followed my plan, chewed carefully, and transitioned with no problems! I didn't make a post about it because no one cares, lol.

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Or they are even more common than is reported on forums like this.

Sent from my iPhone using the BariatricPal App

I don't think they are. I'm in several WLS groups and yes, there are complications, but nothing like reported on this site.

Perhaps that is because of the high membership of this group, the varying regions and quality of care or because people here are less fearful of reporting.

If you ask my bariatric team, they deem my surgery as 100% successful because I hit goal weight at 4 months out according to their records.

Because they only measure weight loss and not health, I am not reported in their stream as having "complications".

I keep a presence here to support anyone I can. If I can eventually recover, then other people with near fatal post op complications can.

The symptoms my team said were because I was "anxious", were because of a serious, contagious clostridium difficile infection that could have also been fatal. Not to mention passing the infection to dozens of other people.

I was left with only a diagnosis. I had to fight for meds, re testing and no medical person ever once supported me or gave me information.

It was devastating to be abandoned when you are physically and emotionally fighting to recover.

I have my faith, but so many don't and need support.

I receive messages here frequently, from people suffering from post op complications, who don't message publicly.

I even get messages thanking me for refusing to stop supporting other people publicly, thanking me for telling my story.

I want post op folks to know that it is okay to feel regret. And for people who are really sick, telling them how great they will feel about it all because the weight is coming off, is really not helpful.

Really sick people who are losing weight through malnutrition and illness, are not pleased about it.

People who may have known pre op about the nausea, baldness, etc may not have truly appreciated the degree of these normal post op issues and have regrets.

For example, If the reason you want to lose weight is so you can be more mobile, to be more social, yet your baldness now prevents you, regrets are normal.

Regrets don't magically disappear at 3 weeks, 3 months or 6 months.

But the issues do change. The way you eat does change. Some infections heal, such as incision sites and some you battle with indefinitely like c diff.

Some people lose hair, others go bald and some lose no hair at all. My daughter would rather be bald than to be fat. I wouldn't.

I wasn't worried about loose skin. I knew that I would have some and planned to have it surgically removed. Now I can't as I am an unsuitable candidate. The skin on my thighs now impedes me from walking comfortably and it limits the clothes I can wear.

So some of my personal reasons for having surgery were not corrected by my vsg.

Hearing all the wonderful stories of weightloss, full health etc makes me happy. I love seeing people blessed and living well.

This was not my outcome. I just want people's expectations and information to be correct.

And most of all, for people to feel accepted, supported, heard and understood.

Even when they are being silly, emotional, reckless, going off plan, there might be genuinely intentioned people needing help.

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Or they are even more common than is reported on forums like this.

Sent from my iPhone using the BariatricPal App

I don't think they are. I'm in several WLS groups and yes, there are complications, but nothing like reported on this site.
Perhaps that is because of the high membership of this group, the varying regions and quality of care or because people here are less fearful of reporting.

If you ask my bariatric team, they deem my surgery as 100% successful because I hit goal weight at 4 months out according to their records.

Because they only measure weight loss and not health, I am not reported in their stream as having "complications".

I keep a presence here to support anyone I can. If I can eventually recover, then other people with near fatal post op complications can.

The symptoms my team said were because I was "anxious", were because of a serious, contagious clostridium difficile infection that could have also been fatal. Not to mention passing the infection to dozens of other people.

I was left with only a diagnosis. I had to fight for meds, re testing and no medical person ever once supported me or gave me information.

It was devastating to be abandoned when you are physically and emotionally fighting to recover.

I have my faith, but so many don't and need support.

I receive messages here frequently, from people suffering from post op complications, who don't message publicly.

I even get messages thanking me for refusing to stop supporting other people publicly, thanking me for telling my story.

I want post op folks to know that it is okay to feel regret. And for people who are really sick, telling them how great they will feel about it all because the weight is coming off, is really not helpful.

Really sick people who are losing weight through malnutrition and illness, are not pleased about it.

People who may have known pre op about the nausea, baldness, etc may not have truly appreciated the degree of these normal post op issues and have regrets.

For example, If the reason you want to lose weight is so you can be more mobile, to be more social, yet your baldness now prevents you, regrets are normal.

Regrets don't magically disappear at 3 weeks, 3 months or 6 months.

But the issues do change. The way you eat does change. Some infections heal, such as incision sites and some you battle with indefinitely like c diff.

Some people lose hair, others go bald and some lose no hair at all. My daughter would rather be bald than to be fat. I wouldn't.

I wasn't worried about loose skin. I knew that I would have some and planned to have it surgically removed. Now I can't as I am an unsuitable candidate. The skin on my thighs now impedes me from walking comfortably and it limits the clothes I can wear.

So some of my personal reasons for having surgery were not corrected by my vsg.

Hearing all the wonderful stories of weightloss, full health etc makes me happy. I love seeing people blessed and living well.

This was not my outcome. I just want people's expectations and information to be correct.

And most of all, for people to feel accepted, supported, heard and understood.

Even when they are being silly, emotional, reckless, going off plan, there might be genuinely intentioned people needing help.

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Wish I could love this post!!

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Saying that the rate of complications isn't as high as it would appear on this board is not the same as saying people shouldn't discuss their complications and support each other. I have witnessed a certain degree of "just hang in there, you will feel different later" when people talk about their issues, and I disagree with that sentiment. All I have said is to realize that complications appear much more common on a board like this than they are in total. And to discuss any concerns with your surgeon.

Gina, I know we are being terribly US-centric, but as a nurse I can tell you that your experience would be VERY outside the norm here in the US. There are bad docs out there who dismiss their patient's concerns, but they are not the norm. I feel very safe in saying your experience would have been COMPLETELY different here, if in no other way than the c.diff would have been handled very differently here. That is not to say you should be quiet about it, I absolutely think you need to keep raising awareness of not only potential complications, but also the potential deficiencies in the bariatric system in the UK (or at least in your network). All I want is for people to not get a skewed idea of the rates of complications.

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Saying that the rate of complications isn't as high as it would appear on this board is not the same as saying people shouldn't discuss their complications and support each other. I have witnessed a certain degree of "just hang in there, you will feel different later" when people talk about their issues, and I disagree with that sentiment. All I have said is to realize that complications appear much more common on a board like this than they are in total. And to discuss any concerns with your surgeon.

Gina, I know we are being terribly US-centric, but as a nurse I can tell you that your experience would be VERY outside the norm here in the US. There are bad docs out there who dismiss their patient's concerns, but they are not the norm. I feel very safe in saying your experience would have been COMPLETELY different here, if in no other way than the c.diff would have been handled very differently here. That is not to say you should be quiet about it, I absolutely think you need to keep raising awareness of not only potential complications, but also the potential deficiencies in the bariatric system in the UK (or at least in your network). All I want is for people to not get a skewed idea of the rates of complications.

I can only speak to what I know, that's for sure.

Even I was surprised about the way the c diff has been handled. My GP is totally baffled at the bariatric system locally and is exasperated by the lack of post op care issued.

From the messages that I receive here from people, mostly resident Americans, there is a higher rate of complications than is even being reported publicly here.

I don't think anyone can truly give accurate numbers for various reasons.

I think that every person here might class "complications" differently.

I don't imagine that the few regret posts here on BP skew the facts.

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@@GinaCampbell **From the messages that I receive here from people, mostly resident Americans, there is a higher rate of complications than is even being reported publicly here.**

What kinds of things are these patients experiencing? I'm truly interested, not trying to dispute you at all. I know what the numbers are nationally and regionally, as well as within my hospital's practice and throughout our particular health system, but interested in the civilian sector's common complications.

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@@GinaCampbell **From the messages that I receive here from people, mostly resident Americans, there is a higher rate of complications than is even being reported publicly here.**

What kinds of things are these patients experiencing? I'm truly interested, not trying to dispute you at all. I know what the numbers are nationally and regionally, as well as within my hospital's practice and throughout our particular health system, but interested in the civilian sector's common complications.

All varying degrees of what is posted in the majority of the "regrets" threads.

From serious post op complications such as twisted sleeves, leaks, ulcers and strictures to predictable ones such as gallbladder removal, nausea, dehydration, non tolerance of Proteins.

The most upset people are the ones who felt that they were well informed, did thorough research yet underestimated the severity of the combination of post op recovery, further surgeries, weakness, fatigue, the effort required to keep hydrated, the effect baldness would have on their psyche, the feeling of social isolation (not being to eat like everyone else) etc.

People that bought products in, prepared their routine, studied their plan and couldn't utilise any of it seemed to feel helpless and frustrated.

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