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Insight/thoughts for someone considering sleeve surgery



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- Do it, you will only regret not doing it sooner

- Do your research and be completely comfortable with your surgeon; make sure you ask what they will do and how they will manage complications

- Get up and move around as soon as you can postop. It helps move the gas out of your system. Use a heat pack for the shoulder blade pain from trapped gas.

- Don't worry about loose skin yet; deal with one step at a time.

- Go to a psychologist or therapist. The mental reasons you overeat to the point of obesity are not helped by surgery. You have the aid of no appetite initially to lose weight, but once that restriction eases over time, it's just you again, with all the same issues and problems. See someone. Consider what led you to get where you are/were. I was never a believer in "therapy" and thought it was rather useless and self-indulgent to sit and "whine" to someone about your problems. I misunderstood. It is unbelievably helpful to have a professional with whom you build a good relationship, to call you out on your BS and encourage you to feel your feelings instead of eating to suppress them (if that's what you do - it's what I do). Cannot recommend strongly enough, and think it should be mandatory for before and after WLS.

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On 06/02/2022 at 20:47, Veebear said:



@LilaNicole20




Thanks for the additional info! i read that the gas pain can be rough at first but that once that passes, normally, it's not too bad. Glad to hear yours is going well and best of luck with the summer!!




@redhead_che




Thanks, that's good to know. I'm set to have my initial zoom learning session on 7/6. I'm excited to learn more and meet the surgeon and see if it's something I want to move forward with. My SO is also going to join and listen for support. I figure regardless of what I decide if I move forward, I plan to be at home for some time and thankfully, I can have time saved by then or wfh if needed if I'm feeling well enough.








@blackcatsandbaddecisions




Thanks! Didn't know some insurances wrote that in, I'll need to check mine to see if there are any exclusions for it in my current insurance. I found out that my insurance is accepted where I'm considering the surgery, but not sure if they'd block this specific thing. I thought a lot about the extra skin and honestly, I'm not bothered by it and think the health benefits far outweigh extra skin. It's always something I can save for in the future if needed, but to be healthy and comfortable is where I'd like to be.




@Queen ApisM




Thanks! Super helpful as well. I figure after we go through the initial learning session on 7/6 which I think will cover any surgical options they offer, I'll be asking all the questions and trying to also get insight into my body type and what they find to be most successful and safe. I think for me, I want to be sure I'm mentally ready. More so because I am a stress eater which I can admit helped put me where I am today so I know I need to overcome that. I think I'm ready in most ways such as cutting out some things and knowing I need to be more active to help take off and keep the weight off.




More a question for anyone, but for stress eaters, did you see someone to discuss this before or after surgery? I know prior to, you talk with someone about the obvious live changes that any weight loss surgery can do to you, but i'm curious if someone has/is overcoming the stress of eating and what helps you? That's I think my biggest hurdle so i'm hoping for some inspiration. I think once I go through the information zoom call next month, I need to mentally set myself on the path to find more healthy ways to work through those emotions tbh my job is a large cause so I've been working towards that change already.


Re: seeing someone, I have a therapist I see regularly (even before the decision for surgery) - and he’s been very helpful.

How did your info meeting go?

Met with my surgeon yesterday and have a surgery date for next month. I was surprised when she recommended sleeve for me (I was sure she was going to say bypass) - but we talked through all the pro’s and con’s and settled on the sleeve.

Hope all is going well.

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My only issue ended up being gallstones. I know they're a high-chance issue and recall reading that some doctors will take your gallbladder out during the surgery as a just in case. In my case, maybe a year or two after my sleeve, I had to be VERY careful about eating overly fatty things in any quantity or it'd be a guaranteed gallstone attack. Since I knew what triggered it, I could pretty much prevent attacks rather than have another surgery to remove the gallbladder. But either the problem stones passed or they aren't kicking up a fuss anymore because I haven't had an attack in a few years.

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Sounds like you are already ahead of where I was at your stage. I didn’t realize that I had disordered eating patterns until post surgery (I eat when board and emotional eating) and I wish I had realized this and got started working on it beforehand like you are. The only real advice I can give is that we are all here to answer questions and cheer you on but your journey will be very much unique. Just don’t compare yourself to others too much.

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On 7/22/2022 at 5:38 AM, LookingForward22 said:

Re: seeing someone, I have a therapist I see regularly (even before the decision for surgery) - and he’s been very helpful.

How did your info meeting go?

Met with my surgeon yesterday and have a surgery date for next month. I was surprised when she recommended sleeve for me (I was sure she was going to say bypass) - but we talked through all the pro’s and con’s and settled on the sleeve.

Hope all is going well.

Hey there @LookingForward22! It went great. Had the initial "educational" call with a ton of other people. My appointments were originally scheduled for the end of August, but due to cancellations, I had my health and exercise appointments this past Monday, and the nutritionist will be at the end of August.

Both appointments went well and we talked a bit about the surgeries and medicine-type options. I think I'm leaning towards sleeve as recovery time isn't too bad but also still very effective. Still learning, but from everything I've read and heard, I think that'll be the option for me. I also started seeing a Psychologist (took a bit to find one taking new patients, but did it!) who has been super helpful. I found out during my appointment she could also be the one to do my eval. I didn't know it prior, but she used to do evals for these types of surgeries in the past so it's nice talking to someone who has an understanding.

Happy to hear things for you are going well! out of curiousity, how long did your program go? I think this one I'm on would be 4-6 months. I'm not in a rush though, it has been pretty interesting and happy to have motivation to work towards a healthy goal again.

@Midgetlegs

I have had kidney stones a few times but it has been about 2-3 years since. I've really kicked up my Water intake over the years, those are no fun. The Dr. I saw did mention it could increase risk. I recall same for Gallstones as you mention. My brother has gotten those in the past and I hear they're also super painful. thanks for the tip, though. Glad to hear yours have not been an issue! I definitely plan to be careful around those high fatty foods as I know how painful Kidney stones are and I'd rather not have to deal with gallstones.

@ShoppGirl

Yeah, the eating stuff I've kind of accepted for a while but this is one of the first times I'm trying to seek help on it also because I want this surgery if/when I move forward to be a success. Mine is definitely more emotional/anxiety driven, but I have also snacked when bored. I appreciate your support! Being on this forum I really have learned a lot from the threads and discussions and everyone is super helpful. I think having different opinions/views/experiences can really help someone such as myself make educated decisions and the support really helps. :)

Edited by Veebear

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59 minutes ago, Veebear said:

out of curiosity, how long did your program go?

Mine was pretty fast, shorter than I expected for insurance - from what I am hearing from my friends who went through this already.

My insurance did not have any weight loss or education requirements. I met the criteria of BMI which was enough to move forward.

My first class, informational & weigh-in was May 16th 2022. I was put on a 3 month program - since I didn't have insurance requirements, that is the shortest duration the program I am in does (mainly because of medical clearance testing & scheduling).

In June I had 2 virtual zoom classes (they were spaced about every two weeks) My second one I was the only person on her schedule - so I got a private class with the nutritionist. It is normally a group class it just worked out that way. If I was in a 6 month program or longer - they would have covered the same information - they just would have been more classes of a shorter duration.

During June I was able to schedule my psych evaluation, PT evaluation, upper endoscopy, labs and cardiac clearance. Unfortunately there was a miscommunication about wanting an echo done along with my cardiac appointment - so I had to go back for that on July 1st.

My final weigh-in and class was July 7th. Unfortunately they had not reviewed and signed off on my cardiac echo yet, so I couldn't schedule my surgical consult appointment that day, as planned. A few days later they called and were able to get me in on July 21st. The surgeons do their own scheduling - so I was able to schedule directly with her, and her first available opening was August 16th

I have an 8 day liquid fast starting the 8th... and a covid test on the 13th yet.

So from first appointment to surgery day will be exactly 3 months to the day. I got very lucky with scheduling to get everything in as quickly as I did. I had the flexibility of taking what ever was available (I am not working) and I asked to be put on cancelation lists for anything that scheduled out further than June 30th and was lucky to have get called for availability.

I was in a little of a time crunch because I have driving restrictions, my program and hospital are about an our away and my husband was trying to be at as many appointments as he could. He is a teacher so he is off for the summer - so we were trying to get the surgery done before he starts back to school. He actually starts back in-service on the 15th but thankfully school is willing to work with him and he shouldn't miss anything more than possibly the morning of the 16th (if I am scheduled first possibly not even that).

Edited by LookingForward22

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On 7/24/2022 at 5:33 PM, LookingForward22 said:

Mine was pretty fast, shorter than I expected for insurance - from what I am hearing from my friends who went through this already.

My insurance did not have any weight loss or education requirements. I met the criteria of BMI which was enough to move forward.

My first class, informational & weigh-in was May 16th 2022. I was put on a 3 month program - since I didn't have insurance requirements, that is the shortest duration the program I am in does (mainly because of medical clearance testing & scheduling).

In June I had 2 virtual zoom classes (they were spaced about every two weeks) My second one I was the only person on her schedule - so I got a private class with the nutritionist. It is normally a group class it just worked out that way. If I was in a 6 month program or longer - they would have covered the same information - they just would have been more classes of a shorter duration.

During June I was able to schedule my psych evaluation, PT evaluation, upper endoscopy, labs and cardiac clearance. Unfortunately there was a miscommunication about wanting an echo done along with my cardiac appointment - so I had to go back for that on July 1st.

My final weigh-in and class was July 7th. Unfortunately they had not reviewed and signed off on my cardiac echo yet, so I couldn't schedule my surgical consult appointment that day, as planned. A few days later they called and were able to get me in on July 21st. The surgeons do their own scheduling - so I was able to schedule directly with her, and her first available opening was August 16th

I have an 8 day liquid fast starting the 8th... and a covid test on the 13th yet.

So from first appointment to surgery day will be exactly 3 months to the day. I got very lucky with scheduling to get everything in as quickly as I did. I had the flexibility of taking what ever was available (I am not working) and I asked to be put on cancelation lists for anything that scheduled out further than June 30th and was lucky to have get called for availability.

I was in a little of a time crunch because I have driving restrictions, my program and hospital are about an our away and my husband was trying to be at as many appointments as he could. He is a teacher so he is off for the summer - so we were trying to get the surgery done before he starts back to school. He actually starts back in-service on the 15th but thankfully school is willing to work with him and he shouldn't miss anything more than possibly the morning of the 16th (if I am scheduled first possibly not even that).

That's great! I also heard it can be a somewhat long process for many, which I wasn't bothered by. Actually, it will likely be quite a long process for me now. turns out the person I spoke to for my insurance who said it was approved was wrong.

I found out yesterday it's not approved which was a bit rough for me mentally, but I spoke to our president today and he'll be adding it either this year or next year for January, so i'm sure the program I'm working on currently should be okay with making it a Jan surgery. The insurance company we changed to this year is not great so we likely will be switching again. It's my work busy season from now til Jan anyway so least they'll add it for next period. Hopefully it won't cause any issues since I'll already have completed the program by then.

Gotcha, the quick one seems pretty well put together. I think the nutritionist I'm seeing next month is a single but I'm not positive. They didn't mention it being a class but I could be wrong. I'm thankful the support groups are via zoom for this one too. It's like a 25-30 minute drive for me for each appointment and I've been taking a lot of time from work haha but it's worth it to work on myself.

We haven't touched too much onto the other testing. I did a sleep study previously, so I don't think I'll need to do another since it was end of last year or so. Wow, that moved quickly, but it must be a relief also to be finishing up?

That's great how things worked out and went fairly smooth. :) Not too much longer until the road to recovery! The open flexibility is nice, I'm also pretty open to taking cancellations but I may hold off on that since my stuff may now be delayed until they can fix the insurance for me. I doubt we can add it half way into the insurance year, but I'm not too sure.

that's great you both could go through this together for the support and they're willing to work with him on the timing. It has been super helpful having a supportive spouse. My husband wasn't able to make my changed appointments due to timing, but he's been super supportive and whenever I'm able to move forward, he'll be able to wfh and help me. Excited for you!

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I’m sorry that the insurance is not cooperating but glad your employer is looking to add the coverage. Hopefully it will be sooner than later, but that gives you some time to work through the program and start making some small changes.

I’m working with a larger hospital and their program has some things I love and some things that are so-so, but I love my team and am confident I’m in good hands with them.

The only disadvantage I see to the faster paced program (for me) is the mental process is kinda rushed. I’ve been through another program and withdrew because it wasn’t a good fit for me… so I’ve been working to make changes (mentally and practically) for longer than I have been in this program. But I still wonder at times “what if I mess up… what if I make a mistake”. I’m a bit of an over planner … and can obsess about it the unknown details. So in a way - getting through things to deal with the pre-op diet and the surgery is better for me.

I’m a little scared, nervous and anxious… but I’m excited to move forward, get healthier and see improvements.

I’m looking forward to hearing updates and seeing your progress as you go forward. It’s always nice talking to others in all stages of their journey to learn from and root for.

Glad your husband is being supportive, that makes everything so much easier! This has been a big change and while I’m sure I could do it without him, it’s so much easier with my husbands support and help.

Thanks for the encouragement!!

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