Read an Excerpt
From the day I first heard about the gastric bypass procedure to the present I have kept a journal detailing my personal journey. I am a very private person and it took a great deal of soul searching to decide whether to write it for others to read or to try to forget about all that has happened. I know others who have gone through a difficult experience with their Weight Loss Surgery (WLS) and wish to remain private, and I respect that.
I began writing about my experience with the gastric bypass surgery and the reversal procedure for my own healing process, which includes the mind, body and spirit. There are others that have gone through what I have and could relate to my journey. My intent is not to persuade others to "have or not to have" a WLS, but rather to provide important information before they make a life altering decision.
At the time I began researching the gastric bypass surgery I believed the information provided by my doctor's office, people on a calling list provided by my doctor, and some of the online support groups, was sufficient enough to make a decision. After having the surgery and going through many problems I soon learned that I wasn't informed enough, or I would have never decided to have the gastric bypass surgery. The doctor's office I went to gave me a list of a few problems that could occur but left out so much information. The doctor minimized any problems that might occur by saying that I didn't need to worry about these, and that they seldom occur. I felt betrayed after learning there is so much more that could go wrong and that I had been misinformed about this from those I had spoken with before surgery. Anyone considering the gastric bypass surgery or any other weight loss surgery has a right to be informed of all the risks associated with these procedures. WLS patients deserve access to data on all the choices of weight loss surgeries. This information is not always available and some doctors may be reluctant to disclose statistics about complications and death rates.
Some patients have a good experience while others do not with the gastric bypass surgery. There is no way to tell ahead of time which category you will fit in. For myself, I feel the gastric bypass surgery gave me the ability to starve myself, and almost to death. I also ended up with multiple physical and emotional problems after the surgery that I never experienced before.
I am not a doctor, nor do I profess to know all about the medical pros and cons to the gastric bypass surgery or any WLS. If you have any medical questions you should always consult your doctor. I only know from my own experience and what I have learned from many others. I quickly learned that I was not alone with deteriorating health problems due to the gastric bypass surgery.
I wanted the gastric bypass surgery to work and did everything I was advised by the doctor who performed my surgery, but could not pretend my health was going well any longer. Several months after having the gastric bypass surgery my health had deteriorated to the point I became clinically depressed and contemplated taking my own life to end the suffering. Additionally, I experienced chronic vomiting and nausea, causing malnutrition which can lead to an early death. My family physician told me that I had 5 or less years to live if I did not have my surgery reversed.
At my lowest point I could not see a way out of the downward spiral that my life had taken. With the help of family, friends, and a strong will to never give up, I made a decision that would turn my life around for the positive.
The first step was to look within myself and make the choice to live or let life go. I chose life; I wanted to live and would fight to regain control. The second step was to seek help to see what options I had available and how I was going to go about making them happen. I sought help from my family physician; naturopath, psychologist, and a surgeon who would help me obtain a reversal (or takedown) of my gastric bypass, the RNY/Fobi with a silastic ring.
I reviewed all the options available and came to a very important decision to have my gastric bypass reversed. It was time to put balance back into my life, to enjoy doing activities with my family, and most important was to be physically and emotionally well. I do not believe there are mistakes, only opportunities to learn and to move forward. Having my gastric bypass reversed was a long and thought-out decision and by no means taken lightly. I did not want to go through another surgery, but under the circumstances with my chronic problems it was the best choice for me.
There are those who have had the surgery that would sacrifice anything in order to look better, and that was never my goal. I had the gastric bypass surgery to improve my health, not to just fit into smaller clothes. The gastric bypass did not improve my health and quality of life, but rather caused all aspects of my life to deteriorate. Losing 130 pounds was not worth what I had to go through.
There are people who are satisfied with their gastric bypass surgery, and their stories are out for the public to read and watch on television programs. What I found missing is any downside to the procedure and felt it important that people considering this surgery have both sides of the surgery, the pros and cons. There are positive results regarding the gastric bypass surgery on the internet, doctor's offices, testimonials from people, and on-line support groups. My story will reveal what happens when the gastric bypass surgery does not work and what I went through to get my health back.
The names I use in my story are not the real names of the doctor's, friends, family, or others to protect their privacy. I will use names that I feel reflect the energy of the person. The doctor who performed my gastric bypass will be called Dr. No. I gave him this name because he had told me that the surgery could be easily reversed if I changed my mind or required the procedure. After having the Roux-en-Y (RNY) surgery and becoming very ill, Dr. No refused to even talk about reversing my gastric bypass. My story is more about the fact that this very invasive serious surgery of the gastric bypass can affect individuals differently. Some can have a great experience with it and others, like me, can find themselves, pretty soon in the game, slowly dying from it.
Integrity and honesty is very important to me so the truth will be told about my experience and from those who wished to share their stories.