11 November 2016

Bariatric Patient Weight Loss Story, Michele | UnityPoint Clinic Weight Loss

Learn more about your options from our Weight Loss Specialists and from Michele, our patient, as we follow her along her weight loss journey. Are you ready to ...

so the patients who tend to be most

successful with are ones who really take the preparation to get ready for surgery so they have started the process of evaluating their life currently and looking for areas that may be a barrier to success after surgery and then starting to work on those areas now that may be related to their diet and may be related to their exercise but it were maybe related to other things entirely such as with their work schedule or with managing anxiety or depression so those early steps in preparation for surgery really set people up for success I talk a lot to people about practicing for success because bariatric surgery is about an entire life change not just about having surgery so bariatric surgery really is treating a chronic disease obesity is what we call a chronic progressive disease and so surgery doesn't actually cure that but it's a fantastic treatment for it but surgery alone won't get us where we're trying to go we need the surgery along with the diet changes along with the exercise changes yes a lot of times changes in patients lifestyle in general finding times to do

the right things and life happens to all of us so how do we manage those down times when life gets difficult maybe there's a job change or a death in the family or your kids are stressing you out or your boss is stressing you out we want to develop life skills of how to deal with the challenging times too so patients who tend to be successful are ones you've really put in the preparation effort and then they're more likely to come back for their follow-up visits we understand this is a journey it's more like a marathon and not like a sprint so we are here to help those patients every step of that way and it's going to be some ups and some downs and we're going to be walking with those patients along the way so being nervous is very common for our patients and what I would say to them is that you know we're helping them deal with a chronic disease and we want them to be successful and we want to help them be successful so most patients are nervous about surgery because it seems very extreme and I tell people it is a significant treatment for a significant disease what we want to look at is what is the alternative and so the

alternative for many of these patients really is chronic disease that's disabling and will shorten their life so really our goals ought to make them Flynn our goals are to make them healthy and help them live longer lives and really more high quality lives to be able to go out and do the things they want to do that's really what we're shooting for I have two friends that have done this and I've seen them struggle with their weight and one of the girls that I work with I've followed her story for the past two years so in struggling with my weight I began to talk to her about the benefits some of the challenges and things along that line and she knows that I have tried every diet Under the Sun medifast cabbage diet Jenny Craig Weight Watchers all of them so in speaking to her she said we should just go check it out so that's what I did I have always struggled with my weight since I was little I've love to eat you know if I could have a job doing that I would be very wealthy so as a kid it was the getting teased because you're heavyset you know and then not having a lot of friends so then you'd go when

you'd benj and you do all the weird diets to hopefully get you back into a crowd where your weight wasn't a factor and so then going into college as a young adult I went back after I was in the military I got down to what was my goal weight at 145 but I spent three to four hours every week in the gym and as a single parent it was not sustainable so I was looking for alternatives to to become healthy at my age I'm also raising my granddaughter so she'll be six in November and I've adopted her so I've had her all but about two weeks of her life and it's getting to the point now with my medical issues that I'm having I have to get healthy if nothing else for her this is obviously for me but part of it is for her as well there's nothing Michelle can't tackle in life I mean she's been through ups and downs and every aspect of life the problems she's had with her heart through the oblations the pacemaker I mean if you want somebody go through something like that you can't believe she doesn't have the strength to go through a minor surgery like this you know when you do that comparison the times that she has battled the weight

loss in Concord it but then only to have the weight come back on again and there's just a lot of things like parenting children everything that she's done with her kids you know it you just look at people as a whole I regress in her professional field you know there's nothing that she hasn't done that she hasn't conquered and an excellent high level well oftentimes it's a matter of attacking their behavior that's probably led to the obesity so we try to strive to do small changes oftentimes we meet with patients on a monthly basis so we will maybe on one month work on being more physically active and throughout the time period we're working with patients we might also work on just a healthier diet eating less processed food eating lists fast food eating more natural food eating more fresh fruits more vegetables more lean proteins than people normally eat so it's a step-by-step process we also work with them on stress management a lot of times people eat because they're stressed so we kind of work with them on developing healthier habits that what can you do besides eat when you're stressed so we

just it's a process people can't change behaviors usually in one month it usually takes time to do that we help them through that it's hard work no doubt about it it's not a piece of cake and the surgery isn't magic it's a lot of hard work to maintain healthy eating habits to maintain good exercise habits it's we do see a lot of successful patients but it's not because it's easy it's because they work really hard and they're determined to do it the right way my involvement with the patient starts right from the beginning I teach an education class before they even come in here for an appointment I see them in the consultation go over the diet what it looks like before surgery after surgery I meet with them when they come in to schedule surgery also do more education I see them in the hospital post up I see them here in the clinic right away two weeks post-op and we constantly follow them every three months until a year post up and then yearly just saw one recently that worked with our healthy lifestyles program that lost 50 pounds prior to surgery working

wasn't doing a whole lot of exercise at that point or before he started with the healthy lifestyles program is going to the gym regularly has made changes with his diet has started journaling working with his physicians to get his blood sugar under better control so really motivated before surgery makes a big difference after surgery phenomenal phenomenal from the very first meeting that I went to which was totally informative in nature to coming here then for the actual the first engagement with this staff has been it's been great if I have questions I call they answer them they don't make me feel like I'm any more or less normal than the person walking on the street you can tell when you walk in here that they don't look at you as if you're fat and lazy and unable to lose await yourself they look at you as somebody that needs help unitypoint is the center of excellence and through my insurance company united healthcare they will not approve the surgery unless it is with the center of excellence so the standard and the rigor that is applied to determining that this is a facility that they'll support has

already been done so when they told me I needed to come here I was happy to do it plus my two other friends have come here as well so we do provide lifelong care for our patients and what that means is there's going to be a time after surgery where they don't have a surgical problem but they still need support treating this chronic disease that they have and so in our program we provide a comprehensive approach to the patient's care and that includes dieticians who obviously work with their dietary habits exercise physiologists that help them with their exercise program we also have mental health professionals which are important as well I tell our patients you know many of them have a lifetime of baggage that goes with this disease and we can change their bodies much quicker than we can change their minds and the other pieces of this disease that have come with them it's really not just about behavior there is physiology involved there's actually a very complex disease and we're going to help them each step of the way there will continue to be advances in treatment of this disease it's one of the exciting things about my

work is we really learn more everyday about how to help patients with this disease and so we're going to continue to help them down the road to as we get more and more advanced in our treatment yes I I am excited so we took my daughter to school this morning and she's very excited for me she cried a little bit in the beginning because she did she says mommy you're going to lose your your cush so but she's excited and then the friends that I've shared this with they've been texting me all morning you know sending me prayers wishing me good luck asking me to get ahold of them when I'm out so they know how excited I am so they're on board with me and being pain-free this hopefully will eliminate a lot of the medical issues that I have so to prepare for the surgery you have to really think about not only your physical state that your mental state you've got to go through psychological evaluations there's obviously testing you have to go to informant information sessions where they talk to you about just how much her life is going to change I just looked at weigh the benefits over

where I am now and it just was a no-brainer for me and talking to the doctor and the thing that I think that it's most important about this especially with unity point you can't just come in and say hey I want to get the sleeve done I feel I'm overweight I feel in this or on that you have to qualify and you have a team a dedicated team of surgeons and and folks that will help you through that qualification process so unity point isn't just going to do surgery on you you have to be qualified and this is the center of excellence and I think that's so important to to reiterate that this is a great team and they won't do it if you don't need it hello hi good morning good morning how are you I'm good really good excited I am so what questions do you have for me I don't really you guys have done such a great job but part of me and all the information that I've gotten up until today I have no concerns knowing thigh be great and it's ready to go wonderful Ryan it's okay if I visit with your family will loot liya alright so for you it can feel like a long time because I don't start right when she leaves your

sight right so you have to get her back there we get her asleep we positioner than I work with vinegar up we take her recovery room so for you blink of an eye for you it can feel like a while I look like something so it's gonna take us an hour now who take up to three hours just depends what we find on a minute one yep so don't be worried it doesn't mean anything bad we're going to take great care of her and we will take whatever time you need to take for her so this is a very emotional journey many patients will go through a phase where they actually have almost regret and they all say oh my gosh what have I done that's really about ninety-five percent of patients will do that and it's not because they weren't ready it's not because they're having pain it's not because they're not eating but there's a major life change and they go through an adjustment period and with that it can be really very significant for some people it's as significant as if they lost a family member so some people just feel a little out of sorts maybe not themselves some pork crying for week and they don't know why and really it's because there's this major life change

going on there are a lot of body changes going on hormonal changes but it really is more of the life adjustment of they wake up and they're different and there's really no going back and so there's always an adjustment period so we try to warn people about that and their families because otherwise their families are like what's going on you are the one you wanted this you're the one who is so excited now you're wondering if it was the right choice so I think it's better when they know one it's normal to it's going to get better so I feel really good very excited woke up from surgery no complaints nothing been up walking around drinking my water doing everything they're telling me to do breathe drink walk so yeah excited to go home and get this new lifestyle started guys this facility is awesome all the way from the cardiac people to the nurses intake everybody is amazing here so please just remember that this is a center of excellence so if you get it done I would definitely recommend coming here and I had dr. lemasters and she's phenomenal I am almost at wait 60 Thursday will be week six for me I'm down 32 pounds the

lifestyle changes have been not challenging so much as you have to be dedicated to it so what I've noticed is when they tell you to make sure you feel fine and not full feel fine and not fold there's a definite difference being able to look at the portions of my food compared to where I was before huge difference looking at how I need to get my nutrition in along with my all of the vitamins that I need to take had no idea before how big of a role food played in your body when it came to that the easiest part of this was being prepared the team has done such a great job of preparing me you know I have a pacemaker so I had all of my care was up at Mayo Clinic I switched all of that here so from my cardiac folks to to doctoral masters to you guys to my dietician to the exercise physiologist the easy part is that i have this team that no matter what they're here for me the hardest part is breaking away from the mental images the mental records that keep going in your head about your fat you can't do this you failed so many times before that that has been the biggest challenge for me and i have a wonderful therapist it's been helping me through