Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Pre-op doctors appointments are finally a thing of the past

I can officially now say I've completed all of my pre-op requirements in regards to doctors appointments! Hallelujah!

As I mentioned in my last post, I squeezed in two appointments today between sales mtg meetings -- a serious trick in itself. The esophagram was first thing in the morning, and then a standard Rx refill at lunch to make sure I'm covered while I'm out of commission post surgery.

A highlight of my day however was being grouped with other bariatric patients when I went to have my esophagram. All three were in various stages of post-op. Two lap-bands and one gastric bypass. It was interesting to sit and chat with them about their experiences. The woman who'd had the gastric bypass was maybe a year out and was thin! Always a big motivator.

She said she chose the bypass, which is less popular these days, because there is less intensive follow-up (no fill every month) and because her mom had done it and been successful. People with the bypass do statistically lose more weight.

Otherwise, a few general impressions from our conversation...

First, it was very supportive as it was an open group of people willing to talk about their experiences.

I was surprised that they all mentioned that the 5-year requirement was a challenge. Most if not all of the insurance plans require that you have been a certain amount overweight for five years. So that this is a major, ongoing problem and not just something new someone is looking for a quick fix for.

I guess I just take for granted that the people having this surgery are mostly people who have been overweight most of their lives. Since there are so many of us! But for this group, I don't think that was the case...

They all also talked about being happy with their decisions, although the other two band patients were less than a month post-op.

One had trouble throwing up post surgery, the other didn't. They both had trouble with the gas they pump into your stomach during the surgery. It's supposed to cause quite tremendous shoulder pain. Fingers crossed I dont have such a bad time with that...

Overall, I'm still optimistic about the surgery itself and counting down until Tuesday! 5 days left...

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