Three years ago, on September 9, 2013 I made the decision of a lifetime. My weight has always been the focus of my health and wellbeing as well as a constant struggle throughout my life. The last time I remember weighing within the normal weight range of my peers was the second grade. Although I was just as active as every other child playing both school sports and outside with neighborhood children, the pounds continued to pile onto my small frame of five foot two. Growing up can be difficult within itself, but growing up severely obese is a whole other ballgame with its own set of rules which can cause both physical and emotional damage.
To better understand my ...view middle of the document...
Because there is less digestion of food by the smaller pouch as well as the bypassing of the section of small intestine that would normally absorb calories and nutrients, there is less absorption of calories and nutrients. Additionally, the food stream produces changes in gut hormones that promote satiety, hunger suppression and reversal of the primary mechanisms by which obesity induces type 2 diabetes.
Most patients lose 50% to 70% of their excess body weight after surgery. The surgery is considered a success if at five years post-op 50% of the patient’s excessive body weight has not been regained.
Bariatric surgery is not only for the benefit of weight loss, but can also be used as tool to assist with improvement and/or resolution of many co-morbidities.
The most common co-morbidities includes type-2 diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, added wear and tear to joints as well as decreased mobility. Additional risks of obesity include sleep apnea, respiratory problems, gastroesophageal reflux, urinary stress incontinence, gallbladder disease and high cholesterol levels, Obese women have a higher chance of irregular menstruation and infertility as well as an elevated risk of uterine, gallbladder, cervical, ovarian and breast cancers. Obese men have an increased risk of colon, rectal and prostate cancers.
While the weight reduction following surgery is impressive, the reduction in obesity-related illness is more so: 80% of type-2 diabetes are cured with post-operative weight loss, hypertension is so dramatically improved that close to 50% of patients become normotensive and are able to reduce or discontinue use of blood pressure medications as a result. 75% of sleep apnea cases among bariatric surgery patients are cured with weight loss and an equal percentage of patients with general respiratory problems see improvement.
Although there are known risks and side effect to this surgery, for me, as well as for many, the benefits outweigh the risks.
Prior to my surgery I had experienced much illness due to many years of being obese.
From 2008 through 2012 I...