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15-year-old with a BMI about 40. ESG



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I’m looking for any advice from people who have had a teenager go through this procedure. He needs to have some thing done and I feel like this is the least invasive with likelihood of success. He’s 15 years old. He’s 6’1” tall but he’s at least 300 pounds. He needs this for his emotional and physical well-being.

WhatI’m looking for any advice from people who have had a teenager go through this procedure. He needs to have some thing done and I feel like this is the least invasive with likelihood of success. He’s 15 years old. He’s 6‘1“ tall but he’s at least 300 pounds. He needs this for his emotional and physical well-being.

What were your results. What teen-specific issue did you have.

would you do it again?

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What does he say? Is he ready to lose weight? Does he think he needs to lose weight? Because if he isn’t ready yet, there is absolutely no point in having this surgery, if you can find a surgeon to do it. This is A LOT of work and if you don’t want to do that work, you’ll find ways around the sleeve or pouch.

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Thank you for your response.

This is how I approached him. I asked him if there was one thing I could change about him with a magic wand and it would change instantly what would it be?

He could’ve answered with any response. His answer was… “I would like to change how I am physically and I want to change the bad habits that got me this way”

I was able to get him to see his problem without pointing it out to him

It was then that I brought up all the options that were available to him to help him lose weight from diet and exercise to medication to surgery.

It’s just me and him together. I am willing to do the work that he’s going to need to help him be a success with his surgery. I had mini gastric bypass 20 years ago. I know what patient go through and I warned him that the psychological part is going to be the hardest part for him.

Anyway, thank you for your reply

Edited by Jon1rene
Bad voice to text

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From what you're saying it sounds like YOU are willing to do the work, but has he said this is 100% what he wants? This sounds manipulative IMO.

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I am not sure an ESG is a good option for a younger person with a higher BMI.

I had an ESG which is now converted to a standard surgical option.

Unless the doctor is extremely expericenced in doing ESG the sutures have a high rate of loosening or coming loose all together. About 15 months or so after my ESG an endoscopy showed that had happened to me.

Put this together with a young person who may not be so compliant with food volumes etc - eating more than a specified volume amount (consistently) could also cause the sutures to come undone or loosen.

ESG leaves a stomach with a bigger volume than the surgical options so average weight loss is less than the surgical options. I believe the ESG average rate of loss of excess weight is 20%. Some people will lose more, some will lose less.

I chose the ESG because it was minimally invasive, quicker recovery etc...but after going through the surgical option later, I wish I hadn't let those things sway me.

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If he has never tried any other method for weight loss you may want to try something like Weight Watchers. I did it for years before I finally had surgery and saw that the younger kids were actually pretty successful. That would give you an idea of how dedicated he is to changing his eating habits and lifestyle. Sometimes that's all kids need is to eat right and exercise. Whatever decision he makes is going to be a lot of work and I wish him great success...and you too as you direct him through this.

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I know that I wouldn't have been ready to do the surgery when I was a teen, but that doesn't mean that he isn't. But it's a lot of work. Here is an article about teens having bariatric surgery from the New York Times:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/02/24/health/obese-teenagers-bariatric-surgery.html

If you can't access it, let me know and I will try to summarize.

There are also medications that can help that could see if he's ready... but he'd have to be compliant with the medications, and in order for them to work, you have to eat less, so if he has bingeing issues, it won't help.

It is certainly better to have surgery when you're younger and don't already have co-morbidities, but you have to be mature enough to change your eating habits, which can be hard if all your friends are stuffing their faces with junk food.

Good luck!

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Thank you so much for your input. I did read the article and it gave me some decent insight.

We have a consultation today on zoom and I will have a lot of questions.

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Have you considered other options like the gastric balloon maybe? It’s a temporary change of up to six months and could be a good way to test his personal resolve and commitment to changing his eating habits without surgery. Plus he’ll lose some weight, which might be enough motivation for him to live a healthier lifestyle

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I am not very familiar with this procedure but the only thing I would suggest is probably what a doctor will suggest as well is that he get evaluated by a psychiatrist to see if he is ready for the procedure. If they do not required it, however, I would seek this out myself. You may even consider having him work with a specialist (on disordered eating) for a little while to see if he can lose it on his own first. I had the mandatory psyc evaluation and passed with flying colors only to learn AFTER the procedure that I suffer from emotional eating and without the therapy my sleeve would be a waste because I still feel hungry all the time (it’s head hunger) and I can eat a little bit every hour or so and consume quite a lot of calories that way if I wanted to. I wish you the Best of luck in your research and his journey.

Edited by ShoppGirl

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That’s such good information. I think he will definitely need a psychological evaluation as I don’t know exactly what motivates him to eat so much when he does eat. Endorphins? It’s hard for me to know but thank you again!

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I would not do the gastric balloon and honestly for a 15 year old, I don't think ESG is a good option either because you have to be really committed to lifestyle changes for it to work and it is hard enough for adults to lose weight on it. I would recommend like the other person posted - nutritional counseling, weight watchers, and at most a prescription weight loss drug such as Wegovy or Saxenda. Wegovy has had results as good as an ESG but can be quite expensive if not covered by insurance.

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