“I feel fantastic”
Suzanne is an Administrative Team Leader at Spire Edinburgh Hospitals. On 21 October 2010, Suzanne underwent weight loss surgery (bariatric surgery). She was 24 stone 1lb. In the eight months since having surgery, she has lost 7.5 stone and now weighs 16 stone 8lbs.
“I had no big scars, just five small incisions. People are amazed at how little scarring there is.”
Suzanne, Spire gastric bypass patient
Why bariatric surgery?
“I had thought seriously about losing weight for about six months before my surgery. This was mainly because I started to experience health issues – breathlessness and some chest pains.
My GP suggested seeing a dietician but I had tried many diets already – everything from cabbage soup to an egg diet (eggs for every meal). I knew I needed to do something radical so I thought about weight loss surgery.”
Chosing the right bariatric surgery: Gastric bypass
“Lorna (the specialist bariatric surgery nurse) was great, she explained everything. We discussed my eating habits, lifestyle and discussed what would be the best option for me.
The next step was to meet my weight loss surgery consultant, Mr Andrew de Beaux. He explained the different options again and I decided to go with a gastric bypass.”
Wider implications of bariatric surgery
“Prior to the operation I also came in to see the psychologist, Carol Sunderland. She talked me through the pros and cons of the operation, and explained that some things may change after weight loss surgery, like my confidence.
She wanted me to understand that people may have a different view of me once I lost a significant amount of weight.”
Weight loss surgery: before and after
“I wasn’t nervous before the operation. I already knew all the nurses and staff as I work with them everyday. The operation itself took less than two hours and as I had laparoscopic surgery (also known as minimally invasive or keyhole surgery), I had no big scars, just five small incisions. People are amazed at how little scarring there is.”
Recovering from weight loss surgery
“I was uncomfortable for a few days after surgery but was up and about by 9.00am the following morning. I was determined to manage without a catheter and with a little help from the nurses I managed to get to the bathroom.
On the second morning I managed a shower by myself. Three days after the operation I went home. I wasn’t hungry for the first few days which made the diet of water and jelly a little easier to handle. I was surprised that the effect on my appetite was so immediate.”
Advice about bariatric surgery
“Over the first few weeks you have to relearn how to swallow and chew. It’s a little like being a baby again. I moved from jelly and water to baby food, followed by soups, vegetables, eggs and mashed potato. The weight dropped off. During the first four months I lost over 4 stone. Now it’s plateauing out and I lose 1 to 2lbs a week and I feel fantastic!”
Read more patient stories about bariatric surgery.
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