Two RNYs and further complications…

Question Below Submitted By:  

Anne_Hedonia (a patient from Madison, VA, USA)

I had a full RNY bypass in 2002. Lost 100 lbs, surgeon left area without references for aftercare. Gained it all back plus more. Had a revision RNY in 2006, lost about 70 lbs plus much more. This practice also moved without warning or referrals. In the middle of all this, I was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia, Scleroderma, and Raynaud’s disease. I am a wheelchair user and can’t walk the 2 miles a day that was recommended for consistent loss, plus the chronic pain makes daily functioning very difficult.

In early 2016 I had severe nausea and vomiting on a daily basis. I didn’t want to eat from the nausea, and when I did eat I vomited most of it. I went to my general MD numerous times, and each time he told me to seek a mental health practitioner. I lost 65 lbs in 8 months. During my second ER visit for pain, they did a CT scan and discovered that my stomach had herniated to above my diaphragm, and was being squashed every time I breathe. The ER doctor was personal friends with a Bariatric surgeon, and referred me to him.

I’m finally having surgery to put my stomach back where it belongs. The Dr says he’d like to do it laparoscopically, but due to the amount of scar tissue from two bypasses he may have to go open. I’m very relieved to be having it fixed, and very annoyed that I had to go through the majority of last year sick and vomiting. Even if my primary Dr ordered me an upper GI just to get me out of his hair, this could have been addressed many months ago.

When I had my bypasses, these surgeries were being given out like candy. The real, lifetime consequence of surgically altering your digestive system was really not discussed, nor coping mechanisms for the basic mourning of food that happens psychologically. I understand they are much, much more stringent and more planning goes into considering gastric bypass surgery now. I’m the failure statistic that no one wants to hear about when they are desperate to lose weight, desperate for this surgery. Being stuck in your own head is a major part of recovering from this surgery, especially if you have chronic depression to start with like I did. I’m sure my case is like a tenth of a tenth of a percent chance of happening, but it has. Would I do it all over again? No. I would work very closely with a doctor, dietitian, and counselor without resorting to surgery, especially in light of the multiple autoimmune issues/disabilities I now have. Your results may vary.

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