By Kerri Zeblisky
About 3 years ago I had the Gastric Sleeve operation. It was recommended by my primary-care physician, as I gained too much weight and had tried other ways to lose it. While there’s other options like the Lap-Band and Gastric Bypass, I chose the sleeve. The time in surgery is shorter than the Bypass and has better success than the Lap-Band.
When I started out with the surgery I weighted about 330lbs. My highest weight was about 350lbs. The surgeons encourage one to lose some weight pre-surgery, so I lost about 7lbs. The surgery took about 3 hours. I wasn’t allowed to have any food for a day afterwards, as they needed to see if everything was stapled/sewn together correctly. I really didn’t feel hungry afterwards and when allowed, was on liquids and Jell-O with protein.
Immediately after surgery I had to stick with a liquid diet. Mostly protein shakes and water/broth. That was about 6 weeks. Then it was on to pureed foods. That was a bit tough on me as my new, smaller, stomach didn’t tolerate it. I was fine with puree vegetables, so I ate them. For protein I had to cook meat in broth and cut it up really small. I still did my shakes to supplement the protein need. After approval from the surgeons I started on soft solid foods then regular solid food.
While I initially lost a lot of weight my psych medication took its toll on my physical health. That and I was also on Ambien for sleep. The Ambien started to make me sleep eat, it is a side-effect of it. I put back on about 30 of the 60lbs I lost. I had to fight my new psychiatrist to get off my psych medication of Abilify. I was becoming, and still am, pre-diabetic. It took me a year for him to finally to take me off it. I eventually had to ask for a new psychiatrist as I got tired of trying to have the other to understand that my physical health is just as important as my mental health. My new psychiatrist put me on a different mood stabilizer. She also worked with the bariatric population in one of her previous jobs so she understands weight loss issues. I’m happy to say that over the summer I lost 30lbs and need to lose another 20-25lbs to be at the weight I’m supposed to be at.
All in all I’d still endorse weight lose surgery to people who have tried other ways to lose weight on their own. I just had a tougher journey as some of my medication wasn’t helping out to make it easier. I would say that the Gastric Sleeve or Bypass is the best option if one wants to so it. I’ve heard too many issues with the Lap-Band and its complications. Just get educated on the type you want. It is a life saver and well worth it. A good mindset about it helps greatly too, cheers!
Blog posts are written by Shore House members and staff.