I saw a woman in the office yesterday who has been struggling with major life stress, and, as a result, has been gaining weight over the past few years since her surgery. She wanted to come see me years ago, but was embarrassed by her weight gain. Please, do not be embarrassed to come see me. We are all in this fight together, and my Team has some great techniques to help folks get back on track. Stress causes increases in cortisol, which can lead to weight gain. Combined with time constraints limiting access to exercise, and stress eating, weight can begin to creep back. Come see me so we can help each other, and let’s get healthy together!
A little over a year ago, a gentleman in a wheelchair, with severe Parkinson’s disease, came into my office for a consult. He was over 500 lbs, and could barely care for himself, let alone for his family. He and I were both concerned that his weight-related medical problems were so severe that we would not be able to get him through surgery safely, but, without bariatric surgery, he was not likely to live much longer. We brought him into the hospital 3 days ahead of time to work on an aggressive medical plan to get him tuned up for surgery, and the procedure went very well. Some of the post op hurtles included needing his wheelchair to move around, high-dose Parkinson’s medications, and severe leg swelling. Additionally, several family members and staff were needed to help him with his daily activities. Today, just over 6 months after surgery, that man WALKED into my office. Yes, he walked. No wheelchair, no nursing staff, he walked, upright, into my office. He’s lost 135 lbs already, and has a new lease on life. That man (you know who you are) reminded me why I love what I do. I can’t thank you all enough for trusting my team and me with your lives, your loved ones, and for honoring me with your friendship. You all make it worthwhile. Thank you.
“It’s a great tool for me, but you still have to work your butt off.”
“I eat like a normal person now. I’ve learned better habits, but I still can’t eat a ton of food.”
A patient several years out from his sleeve, with a now normal BMI said the aforementioned things to me today in clinic. I happened to be at the front desk annoying our amazing office team when the gentleman in question walked into our waiting room. Had I not known he was coming in for an appointment, I never would have recognized him. He’s down over 130 pounds, and all the ladies were staring at him with approving eyes.
This particular patient was told by another physician that, had he not had bariatric surgery, he would not have lived to make today’s office appointment with me, and he is only in his middle 40’s.
I am so impressed with his dedication and perseverance, and I’m truly in awe of his family support system. He, like so many of our patients, is an inspiration to me. Thank you, Sir, for making my day today!
Let’s get healthy together!
As a result of the outstanding success in our loop duodenal switch patients, I have been selected as one of six centers in the United States (alongside Duke University!) to have our patient data entered in the long-term study of the SIPS procedure (Stomach Intestinal Pylorus-Sparing Surgery). I have been invited to gather with the five other leaders in the field at an international scientific meeting being held in Boston later this month.
I would not possibly have achieved this highest quality status without the support of our amazing staff, but I owe the greatest of thanks to all of our patients who have agreed to participate in the on-going study. Your continued involvement is what helps advance the science of medicine, and helps keep all of our patients safe.
Thank you so much for all of your support.
Let’s get healthy together!
Why are skinny people featured in the media as healthy, sexy, and successful?
Why do ad campaigns repeatedly teach us, “New ways to get rid of ugly fat?”
Why do most people want to be thin?
Back in the day, having a few extra pounds was a sign of wealth. It meant having more than enough food to be satisfied, and it meant having the leisure time to enjoy that food. Yet, over the past century or so, having a lean, hard body has become equated with success, while being heavier has become cause for ridicule.
For starters, it has been argued that a lean body highlights the beauty of the human form. Curves and bulges in the right places are beautiful. But therein lies the paradox. Women undergo potentially risky surgery to enlarge their breasts and buttocks. Men get calf and pectoral implants. All in the name of achieving an ideal look, which is based on what the entertainment and fashion industries determine to be attractive. Kids (and adults) develop eating disorders. Weight loss products have become a multi-billion dollar industry. Millions of people wreak havoc on their metabolisms every day by undergoing costly (and risky) crash diet programs, which just end up making more money for the Program CEOs.
However beautiful the pure, physical human form may be, there is a much deeper reason to want to reach an ideal weight than just to be appealing in a bathing suit, or to emulate one’s favorite movie star.
The real issue is that death arrives faster as the number on the scale goes up. The National Institute of Health published consensus data on weight as far back as the 1980’s that showed that, as weight goes up beyond normal, mortality goes up. They showed an increase in weight-associated medical problems (co-morbidities) on a dizzying scale.
We all know about the increases in diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, and sleep apnea that occur when people are overweight; but does the public know that the risk of numerous types of cancer goes through the roof when people are even a few pounds overweight? Colon, rectal, and prostate cancer rates are significantly elevated in heavier men; while breast, uterine, gallbladder, ovarian, colon, and endometrial cancer rates are markedly increased in heavier women, compared with their normal weight counterparts.
Controlling one’s weight is much more than just feeling better, or parroting the latest reality TV celebrity. It’s about living longer, about being around for one’s children, about increasing fertility to be able to have children, about preventing cancer, and about living a fuller, happier life.
Bariatric surgery is currently the only treatment that can help reverse all those aforementioned medical problems, and, for people that are really struggling, surgery is the most powerful tool available to help achieve a healthy weight. Weight loss surgery, in the right hands, is safe, effective, and even less expensive than many of the prepared-food diet plans that are on the market.
Let’s get healthy together!