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Anyone use Dr. Fitzer at Virginia Bariatric?



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I know this thread is old but if anyone is still around I just wanted to say THANK YOU! I did a search on medstar (which so far I had not been totally impressed with) and found this thread. Called Dr. Fitzer's office and have a consultation in 2 days!

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1 minute ago, SideOfSunny said:

I know this thread is old but if anyone is still around I just wanted to say THANK YOU! I did a search on medstar (which so far I had not been totally impressed with) and found this thread. Called Dr. Fitzer's office and have a consultation in 2 days!

He is AMAZING!!! He's definitely the 1!!

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11 minutes ago, SideOfSunny said:

I know this thread is old but if anyone is still around I just wanted to say THANK YOU! I did a search on medstar (which so far I had not been totally impressed with) and found this thread. Called Dr. Fitzer's office and have a consultation in 2 days!

I'm also going (back) to Fitzer's office in 2 days! It's been 2 years since my surgery with him, and it's time for my annual follow-up. As @SampTheChamp said, Fitzer is the best. He may come across as a bit over-confident, but he is not wrong about how good he is and how relatively few complications his patients have. 😄 I had to work a bit to get him to recommend which type of surgery was best for me, but when I finally asked him if he were in my shoes, would he choose sleeve or bypass, he said bypass all the way. He explained why, and that's why I went with the bypass. Best decision I've made in a long time.

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Thank you both! I watched his youtube video last night as required and and really liked his style and personality. He definitely came across as over confident but I don’t mind that!

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I had a VSG in January 2019 with Dr Fitzer. I ended up with a complication and stayed at Reston for just over 6 weeks, but Dr Fitzer was amazing and his entire staff (and the AMAZING nursing staff and Roz at RHC) were great. Complications happen but Dr Fitzer and his personality made it as good as it could have been. I am fully recovered and my weightless is right on track. I still recommend him to people that ask.

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5 minutes ago, JustLynn said:

I had a VSG in January 2019 with Dr Fitzer. I ended up with a complication and stayed at Reston for just over 6 weeks, but Dr Fitzer was amazing and his entire staff (and the AMAZING nursing staff and Roz at RHC) were great. Complications happen but Dr Fitzer and his personality made it as good as it could have been. I am fully recovered and my weightless is right on track. I still recommend him to people that ask.

Mind if I ask what your complications were?

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Leak in the sleeve staple line caused me to become septic. I was fine the day of surgery and then the night before discharge I was in so much pain and they kept telling me that it was gas. It was only after I literally could not stand up that they determined something serious was going on.

After the sepsis was addressed (apparently it was pretty dire) he wanted to convert me to bypass to "fix" it, but I was still in the frame of wanting to stay VSG since that was what I decided going in. Most of the time we were just waiting to see if it would heal on its own and while it did leak less and less (after what felt like a hundred barium swallow tests) he ended up doing a shunt to direct the leakage back into the intestines.

This was apparently the first time he had done this procedure, but he was confident that he could do it and that it would resolve the issue while still leaving me with the sleeve. It worked well and I recovered enough to discharge, which he did by "surprise" on a Friday evening 44 days post first surgery. I doubt the surgical floor had ever seen someone pack up so quickly.

Seriously, without the awesome surgical nurses and techs caring for me 24x7 and Dr Fitzer or his staff coming to see me daily it would have been brutal. The hospital also let my husband stay in the room with me for the duration (he works remotely) and that was a HUGE thing.

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2 minutes ago, JustLynn said:

Leak in the sleeve staple line caused me to become septic. I was fine the day of surgery and then the night before discharge I was in so much pain and they kept telling me that it was gas. It was only after I literally could not stand up that they determined something serious was going on.

After the sepsis was addressed (apparently it was pretty dire) he wanted to convert me to bypass to "fix" it, but I was still in the frame of wanting to stay VSG since that was what I decided going in. Most of the time we were just waiting to see if it would heal on its own and while it did leak less and less (after what felt like a hundred barium swallow tests) he ended up doing a shunt to direct the leakage back into the intestines.

This was apparently the first time he had done this procedure, but he was confident that he could do it and that it would resolve the issue while still leaving me with the sleeve. It worked well and I recovered enough to discharge, which he did by "surprise" on a Friday evening 44 days post first surgery. I doubt the surgical floor had ever seen someone pack up so quickly.

Seriously, without the awesome surgical nurses and techs caring for me 24x7 and Dr Fitzer or his staff coming to see me daily it would have been brutal. The hospital also let my husband stay in the room with me for the duration (he works remotely) and that was a HUGE thing.

I'm sorry that you had to go through that but, super glad you made it out on top. Dr. Fitzer and staff are REAL DEAL!!! Reston Hospital were phenomenal as well. Buckle up. Your life is about to get REAL GOOD!! I'm excited for you!

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Holy cow, @JustLynn I'm glad you are okay, and glad to hear Dr. Fitzer was so great! I'm really getting excited!

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How long did you all have to stay in the hospital after surgery? I'd love to hear about your process and how things went if you're willing to share.

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1 hour ago, SideOfSunny said:

How long did you all have to stay in the hospital after surgery? I'd love to hear about your process and how things went if you're willing to share.

Stayed one night and went home the next day. Everyone's experience is a bit different. The nurses and all of the staff at Reston were fantastic and took care of my every need. Not that I needed a *lot* of help. You are actually up and walking shortly after you are out of the OR.

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Thanks, @gr8ful1 - that's interesting to hear. I wonder why some folks stay 2 nights and some only 1?

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I had my band-bypass conversion by Dr Fitzer almost 8 months ago. I stayed two nights, but I had not just the conversion but also a hernia repair. If I lived locally I might have been able to go home after one night, but since I had a 5 hour train ride they approved staying an extra night.

Now there is a new bariatric surgeon in a city only 30 minutes from where I live. But I was happy with Dr Fitzer and especially his whole staff. A good surgeon is of course important, but how the rest of his staff works is also very important since you only see the doctor that one time but all the follow up is by the office so they have to have their act together!

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3 hours ago, SideOfSunny said:

Thanks, @gr8ful1 - that's interesting to hear. I wonder why some folks stay 2 nights and some only 1?

I believe I was told that 2 nights is the "standard," but I asked to go home after one night, mainly due to financial concerns, but also because I was doing well after surgery. Fitzer said he would only release me the next day if I met all of the criteria, such as being able to drink enough Water, no complications requiring a longer hospital stay, and understanding the discharge instructions. He visited my room to give me a quiz to make sure I knew what to do on my own, and when he was satisfied I was ready, he discharged me.

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Wow, gr8ful1, you've done wonderfully! You've lost a whole person...yet another success story for Dr Fitzer and his team!

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