Many people struggle with weight the majority of their adult life. Sometimes it takes a physician to intervene and suggest bariatric surgery. At 363 pounds, this was the case for Deena. With the help of Dr. Brian Long, Bariatric Surgeon at the Nicholson Clinic, Deena shed 191 pounds.
This is her story.
“Prior to having weight loss surgery with the Nicholson Clinic, I had been severely overweight for the majority of my adult life. I had tried everything to lose weight, but could never get very far,” Deena said. “I gained quite a bit of weight with my pregnancy and was at my heaviest weight of my life at 363 pounds.”
As is true for many patients living with obesity, Deena suffered a number of comorbidities, including joint problems, type 2 diabetes and sleep apnea.
“My body hurt all of the time, I had severe knee problems and had a knee surgery with the surgeon telling me I would need a total knee replacement in the near future,” she said. “I was on several medications for acid reflux, depression, pain, etc. and had been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and used a CPAP for sleeping.”
But the excess weight wasn’t just a serious health concern for Deena, it also impacted her daily life and prevented her from doing what she loved most — especially playing with her children. Being a parent is a lot of work, and we see many patients, like Deena, who come to us because they simply aren’t able to be as active and involved with their kids as they’d like to be.
“I have 3 children and I wanted to be able to run around and play with them, but I couldn’t. I could not get up and down off the floor with them. I got worn out easily and couldn’t do as much with them as I wanted. It made them sad that Mommy couldn’t play with them like they wanted.”
The primary concern with obesity is that it has been proven to take years off a person’s life. As parents ourselves, we want to be healthy and around our kids for as long as possible, and we want the same for our patients. Thankfully for Deena, her new primary care physician recognized the dire shape she was in, both physically and emotionally, and recommended weight loss surgery as an option to help her lose the weight and reclaim her life.
“After the suggestion from my primary care physician, I contacted the Nicholson Clinic on a referral from a good friend who was a previous patient,” Deena said. “At my initial consult, we discussed all of the options and what I could expect from surgery, including the outcomes.”
“Nicholson Clinic set me up with nutrition and mental health pre-surgical counseling. They really take care of their patients well before the actual surgery, ensuring they are ready for the changes this will bring in their life,” said Deena. “Post-surgery, the Nicholson Clinic and staff have been amazing as well. They have been in touch with me, supporting me throughout recovery and transition to my new life.”
At the recommendation of Nicholson Clinic doctors, Deena selected the gastric bypass procedure and had surgery on November 18, 2018. Just 16 months later, she has lost nearly 200 pounds!
Not all of our patients come to us with a recommendation from their primary care physician, like Deena, but that extra push helps make the decision easier. We encourage our patients to consult with their primary care doctors and/or endocrinologists and we work hand-in-hand with those other healthcare providers to ensure our patients have the best comprehensive team and support system in place before and after surgery.
“I truly do have a new life,” said Deena. “The Nicholson Clinic and this surgery completely changed my life. I am happier overall, I feel great, I feel like I look great. My family is proud of me and I am proud of myself. My kids love that I can run around with them and do anything they want to do. I can jump on our trampoline with them now! I am now off of all medications, and no longer need a CPAP to sleep. I have no more pain in my body, and have not had any more knee troubles. At my heaviest weight, I was 363 pounds. I am now 172 pounds. I am maintaining now, and could not be happier with my life and my health.”