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who loves their program, who wishes they chose a different one, and who is not impressed

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ok guys this might be here somewhere but if it is ignore this and show me to that thread. so i wanted to start a thread on programs. now i know everyone of us is is different and has had a different but all the time i keep seeing people ask well is this ok is that ok well i dont know what does your particular program teach. so here is my deal come here tell me where you are from your surgeons name your nutritionists' names and the hospital also this is a place for the good, bad, ugly, indifferent.

so i will start with me im in baltimore, maryland. my hospital is greater baltimore medical center. my program is called the comprehensive obesity management program. there are 3 surgeons Elizabeth a Dovec she is the head of the program. her and her or staff are all female including anesthesia it is great. there is Dr. Bello. i dont actually know much about this one ive not met him but other people in my program absoulutly adore him say he is highly skilled. and then there is my surgeon timothee freisen. all of these surgeons have taken extra training to make the surgery to make it as cosmetic as possible. my program has its own closed Facebook group. where we have access to all of the surgeons just tag them in a post and they will answer. also the registered dietitian watches the group and answers all our questions seemingly at all hours of the day i swear its like she does not sleep lol. so anyone in maryland considering this surgery i highly reccomend gbmc

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I have been with two programs through this process, which will hit the three-year mark in mid-May.

The first was at Memorial Weight Loss and Wellness Center in Springfield, IL. I was with that program for right about two years and got nowhere fast. I got bounced around from practitioner to practitioner (they have a high turnover rate for nutritionists, especially) and I think I saw at least seven nutritionists, a nurse practitioner, two physical therapists, two physician's assistants (including one I went to high school with), a bariatrician, and a social worker. Everyone SAID they were on the same page, but I would get different recommendations from every nutritionist and different goals from every medical provider. I never saw a surgeon; they wouldn't even consider surgery until I got down to a certain BMI, but depending on the practitioner, that varied from 60 to 65 to 70 (I was at roughly 75 when I started). After a lot of nonsense and setbacks and them refusing to talk about me with the PA who saw me every month at my PCP's office, I switched programs, and my PA is no longer referring patients to them (she said she'd had problems with them before, but the way they treated me was the last straw). It got to the point that we were both pretty sure they were just milking me for my money, since I had to pay them a $70 copay (plus whatever my insurance didn't cover) for every appointment other than physical therapy and nutrition, and I had at least three appointments most months, because they wanted me to see a medical provider, nutritionist, and physical therapist every month (sometimes I also saw the bariatrician or social worker).

I ended up switching to the Washington University bariatric surgery program in St. Louis, MO, (the only one in STL that my insurance would cover), and I am SO happy with it. I went to their introductory seminar in June, had my first appointment in late July, got all my clearances out of the way (my insurance requires six months of medically supervised weight loss, and I already had that from the other program) by November, and had a surgery date scheduled by December with Dr. Arghavan Salles, who has been a DREAM to work with. Surgery was Feb. 15 at Barnes-Jewish Hospital in St. Louis. Before surgery, I had one appointment each with the physical therapist, nutritionist, and psychiatrist, plus a couple with the nurse practitioner, as well as one support group meeting. Since surgery, I'm only required to follow up with Dr. Salles; I have the option of scheduling follow-ups with the nutritionist or physical therapist, but I haven't chosen to do so (my PA at my PCP's office is a registered dietician, so I just go to her with any questions because I see her more often -- though not monthly anymore -- and she's only 15 minutes away vs. over an hour). After being on these forums, I have noticed that my program advances through the food stages more quickly than many do -- Water only day of surgery, Clear Liquids the next day, liquids until one-week follow-up appointment, purees for two weeks, soft foods for two weeks, then regular foods starting at five weeks, with no restrictions on certain types of foods, like raw vegetables (basically, if I want to try it, I can, and just play it by ear with how my stomach reacts).

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My program is St. Peters Bariatrics in NY. Surgeon is Mehul Trivedi, Surgical PA is Tyler Chenel. They are wonderful charismatic skilled professionals. I don't See Trivedi often and I'm cool with that. I prefer he works on maintaining his skill level by going to conferences, updating training, clocking surgical hours etc. That is his craft and I'm thankful for it. No complications not even nausea, it's like I never had surgery at all.
Chenel is wonderful, also highly skilled and friendly. 10/10 recommend.

HW 270
SW 238
CW 182
VSG 11/7

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