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Disappointed Surgeons



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Hello everyone, I am 6 weeks post op and I'm a bit discouraged by the amount of weight I have lost and my surgeons reactions. The first week after surgery I could not get anything but 12 oz of apple juice and Water down. I experienced Protein aversion and would spit out any Protein Drink or shake that I tried to take. To my surprise, at my 1 week visit I gained 2 pounds (I was also experiencing my first bout of constipation post op). For reference Surgery day: 317; Week 1: 319. After that I moved to the puree stage and found that I can only eat a limited amount of food varieties without feeling sick, and for the most part that will only last for a few days. The only thing I can consistently eat is yogurt or a yogurt drink (8-12 oz per day) for Breakfast and water. Most days I force myself to eat different low fat pureed things like burrito-less burritos, buffalo chicken dip, tuna, chicken salad, crust-less quiche ect. I tend to make them in cupcake or muffin molds so it's easy to pack for work. Usually, I can only eat one at lunch and have half of something else for dinner. Last week I had my 1 month visit with a different surgeon (mine was out for personal reasons) and I lost 17 pounds since surgery day, but the surgeon seemed disappointed that it wasn't more. They asked what I was eating, and then I was chastised for the amount of sugar in the yogurt drinks. I tried explaining that most things make me feel sick or that I have to force myself to eat.

I guess my question is how do you no feel discouraged by the speed you are losing weight? Or the expectation of your medical team?

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I'm so sorry, that is really difficult. I experienced something somewhat similar. When I was about 3 weeks out my mom fell and broke her elbow and I completely spiraled and ate whatever I could, I was depressed and I drank alcohol. So when I went to my 6 weeks appointment they were disappointed that I didn't lose more. However, my dietician tried to not be judgey and try to work with me to get back on track. She looked at my log and told me to stay focused on Proteins, Vitamins, Water, and if I have room vegetables, also finding the formula for Miralax so I can relieve constipation. I also didn't see my surgeon I saw his assistant.

Okay so to your question, honestly its so hard. I've been blessed to have a therapist so I meet with her every other week to deal with my mental health because that's part of it. I'm trying to take time to be disciplined, dedicated and intentional. I keep working really hard every day to stick to that book they gave me before surgery and I try really hard not to compare myself to others. Some people bodies are just so different and I keep telling myself to keep going. But the reality is that I still cruise this site to see where everyone else was at this week or that week. And while sometimes it helps me there are a lot of times where it doesn't help.

My best advice would be, if you can work closely with your dietician to try to find something that you can eat without discomfort. Keep repeating that and stay steady and give yourself some grace.

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You lost 17 pounds in 5 weeks and the surgeon is disappointed?!? Also, it's normal to gain weight right after surgery because you are pumped full of fluids that cause Water retention.

If you can't stomach sweet Protein Shakes, consider broth/soup with unflavored Protein Powder added (just follow the direction on the powder because if you microwave it, it's totally clumpy and gross!).

I can understand the surgeon's concern with the sugar in the drinks. Light and Fit makes a sugar free Protein Shake. It's pretty small, so maybe you can drink that?

Also, make sure you are getting enough liquid. If plain water doesn't taste good (I don't like it now), try flavoring packets like crystal light, or tea or coffee (decaf if necessary).

Like @Kaguragetshealthy_87, you should be gentle with yourself. You just had major surgery! Beating yourself up won't help your progress.

Good luck!

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At 5 weeks you're still healing! 17 pounds down is excellent. Your surgeon shouldn't be so hard on you. Do you have a dietician you talk to? See if they have any suggestions. I drink Bone Broth for Protein (I hate the shakes too but I force one down a day - I'm 5.5 months out so I can handle it but at first I had to find alternatives because like you I'd spit them out when I tried the first few weeks). You can also drink Fairlife skim milk. It's not sweet or thick and goes down easy. Protein Water and Gatorade are good, too. I drink those on occasion when I fall short on protein. Hang in there! It'll get better.

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You are doing fine, as long as you are loosing thats the main thing. I was unable to do shakes etc i lived of KFC mash and gravy and kids yoghurt pouches for my first 6 weeks. But you do need to watch your sugar intake but i think at this early stage as long as you get something in and you dont go over board you will be fine.

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I think your weight loss sounds good. I was a slow loser and I am sitting (stalled unfortunately) at 9 pounds from goal now. It’s not a race to get there as long as you are losing and continue losing you will be fine. Honestly you are eating such small portions it doesn’t matter that much what you are eating now (within reason). My plan even included things like mashed potatoes on the purée phase which others cringe at. I think because of situations just like yours where it is all you can get down and you have to eat something.

Edited by ShoppGirl

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17 lbs the first month is fine. I lost 16 lbs the first month. It seems like most people lose in the 15-25 lb range that first month. Of course, you'll always find a few folks who lose more or less than that, but they're outliers.

I'm very surprised your surgeon didn't know that. I know a lot of patients worry about that - but I think that's because they watch shows like "My 600 lb Life" and expect to lose 30 or 40 lbs that first month -- but those people start out WAY heavier than the average WLS patient. But your surgeon should not have been disappointed by a 17 lb loss. That is totally normal.

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Hello, I am just a week ahead of you and having much the same problems. Every time I try to eat or drink a new Protein I am sick and nauseous for days. My team are worried I am loosing muscle mass as they say I have lost too much weight. I was told to eat 6 small meals. I can manage 4 tiny ones. I can eat tiny slivers of hard cheese, porridge, Melba toast, smooth pate, raspberries, Biltong, lollies, apple sauce, surimi sticks and drink a little milk. I am no where near any of my protein or Water goals. I have managed all my meds and Vitamins though, massive breakthrough.

Lets just keep trying to do the right thing. Our teams will just have to be patient with us. I am very sure you will be a star student at the end of your journey.

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My surgeon was nothing but supportive. She never chastised me for not reaching goal but encouraged me to keep trying lose another 20 pounds. She understood when I gained COVID weight.

But as for you . . . you're still healing from the surgery. Your body is stall adapting and adjusting. You are about to hit a stall, by the way, just to let you know that everyone stalls starting somewhere between Weeks 3 and 5. Be kind to yourself. Don't let any negativity on the office staff's part get you down. You are on a journey. Good luck!

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