rp76

Picking a Dr in Mexico

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Hello everyone. Anyone recommend a Dr. in mexico performing the Single incision gastric sleeve procedure?

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There are several recent posts on Mexican weight loss surgeons on this Doctors and Hospitals board - including this one:

And this one:

And this one:

As I did not have my surgery in Mexico, I have no idea how accurate these postings are.

 

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My daughter went to Mexico to have gastric bypass at 36 yo. She died five days later. She left behind three boys Stephen (15), Timothy (13), and Brandon (11).

Those who lost loved ones in Mexico never talk about it because they are so devastated by the horrible tragic, unnecessary loss. 

She was beautiful, giving, amazingly talented. She was the most loving person I have ever known. She loved her children emormously and was usually seen with one of them in her loving embrace. Her laugh was infectious. She was inspirational, amazingly creative in business, crafts, and art. She was the peace maker in our family. She was my “go to” person for business or creative advice. She was my daughter, she was my closest friend. I miss her every day. 

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I am so incredibly sorry for your loss. If you are at a place to share, I think it would serve a lot on this forum. Many many people here have had successful surgeries in Mexico. 

Are you willing the share the surgeon/ hospital, when and where?

was she still in Mexico when she passed or back home?

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I too am very sorry for your loss.  Weight loss surgery has very real risks (including death in a very small percentage of cases) and very sadly those deaths can occur to nice people who deserve much better.

WendyH likes this

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I had surgery in 2006 with Dr Lopez-Corvala in Mexico (lap band). I had it removed in 2009-2010 for normal complications (band erosion). Now I have regained the weight and am going back to the same doctor. The same hospital.

I read in many places about people going to Mexico for surgery and later dying. It is the saddest thing.

I believe all surgeries have a level of risk. I am paying about $7,000 for my revision surgery (band to sleeve) with Dr Corvala. Its expensive but I think I'm making the right choice. The first time I was there for my lap band, the hospital was starting operations. I think now is about 10-12 old but I know is one of the few hospitals in Mexico that follow the recommendations of the Joint Commission International and meets US standards. I have done a lot of research, as I have helped some family members and a few of my friends, decide whether to go to Mexico or not, and which doctor to choose.

I remember when I was researching for a doctor (I had no insurance back then, and I could not afford out-of-pocket prices in the US, just as 1000s of people can't), I was afraid. Back then I was part of a group who were organizing go to Mexico for weight loss surgery, mainly lap band. I ended up going to a different dr: Dr Lopez-Corvala.

I had the best experience! He has these bedside manners! I loved him. I met him in his office first and he took the time to answer personally all my questions. I was impressed once when I saw him walking around the hospital surrounded by drs. I remember I asked a nurse who were those doctor and why were them all around him, and she said they were students from around the world who were there to train on lap band, sleeve, etc. That even gave more security and I felt more at ease.

I think when people are really hesitant to go to another country, it mainly has to do with them not really doing their research. Perhaps basing their decision only on price or on looks of the doctor... but I believe mainly on price. It took me a few years to save the money I'll be paying for my sleeve, but it will be worth it. I know I will be in the best of hands, in the best hospital... I think I can ask for no more.

Honestly, I did search for a good price, but everything I found were mostly doctors who looked pretty young, inexperienced... with these profiles making them look as movie stars with great, white smiles... didn't convince me. There were prices less than $3000, for a sleeve???? I started to wonder what I was getting :S Weight loss surgery is expensive. My sleeve would have cost me up to $18,000 in the US and that did not include hospitalization!!! I started to wonder if these "surgeons" were even surgeons and if they were, what could they be doing to save so much and be able to offer a sleeve at such low prices!!! I'm afraid I won't be getting a sleeve, or if I do, what kind of staples will they use on me? Recalled? Black market? Dear God...

I know price is a big part when someone lives check to check. It is a big part to me. An obese person has a choice to make. That is my own personal opinion. An obese person has to decide: (1) to continue to get heavier and heavier by the day with all the negative impact that will have in one's entire aspects of life; or (2) "take the risk" and give it a chance to a better, longer life. If I do not "take the risk", obesity is going to kill me sooner or later.

Having said that, I am ready and have made my choice. I will go to Mexico for the second time! :)

WendyH and ThinCVT like this

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6 hours ago, TheSleeveLady said:

I had surgery in 2006 with Dr Lopez-Corvala in Mexico (lap band). I had it removed in 2009-2010 for normal complications (band erosion). Now I have regained the weight and am going back to the same doctor. The same hospital.

I read in many places about people going to Mexico for surgery and later dying. It is the saddest thing.

I believe all surgeries have a level of risk. I am paying about $7,000 for my revision surgery (band to sleeve) with Dr Corvala. Its expensive but I think I'm making the right choice. The first time I was there for my lap band, the hospital was starting operations. I think now is about 10-12 old but I know is one of the few hospitals in Mexico that follow the recommendations of the Joint Commission International and meets US standards. I have done a lot of research, as I have helped some family members and a few of my friends, decide whether to go to Mexico or not, and which doctor to choose.

I remember when I was researching for a doctor (I had no insurance back then, and I could not afford out-of-pocket prices in the US, just as 1000s of people can't), I was afraid. Back then I was part of a group who were organizing go to Mexico for weight loss surgery, mainly lap band. I ended up going to a different dr: Dr Lopez-Corvala.

I had the best experience! He has these bedside manners! I loved him. I met him in his office first and he took the time to answer personally all my questions. I was impressed once when I saw him walking around the hospital surrounded by drs. I remember I asked a nurse who were those doctor and why were them all around him, and she said they were students from around the world who were there to train on lap band, sleeve, etc. That even gave more security and I felt more at ease.

I think when people are really hesitant to go to another country, it mainly has to do with them not really doing their research. Perhaps basing their decision only on price or on looks of the doctor... but I believe mainly on price. It took me a few years to save the money I'll be paying for my sleeve, but it will be worth it. I know I will be in the best of hands, in the best hospital... I think I can ask for no more.

Honestly, I did search for a good price, but everything I found were mostly doctors who looked pretty young, inexperienced... with these profiles making them look as movie stars with great, white smiles... didn't convince me. There were prices less than $3000, for a sleeve???? I started to wonder what I was getting :S Weight loss surgery is expensive. My sleeve would have cost me up to $18,000 in the US and that did not include hospitalization!!! I started to wonder if these "surgeons" were even surgeons and if they were, what could they be doing to save so much and be able to offer a sleeve at such low prices!!! I'm afraid I won't be getting a sleeve, or if I do, what kind of staples will they use on me? Recalled? Black market? Dear God...

I know price is a big part when someone lives check to check. It is a big part to me. An obese person has a choice to make. That is my own personal opinion. An obese person has to decide: (1) to continue to get heavier and heavier by the day with all the negative impact that will have in one's entire aspects of life; or (2) "take the risk" and give it a chance to a better, longer life. If I do not "take the risk", obesity is going to kill me sooner or later.

Having said that, I am ready and have made my choice. I will go to Mexico for the second time! :)

Here is another post on your Mexican surgeon.

 

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I went with Dr. Ariel Ortiz at Obesity Control Center.  Besides online resources, I enlisted the help of a friend that lives near the border and is familiar with Mexico's health care system.  Here are the main points of why I chose him.....

Credentials..... Dr. Ortiz is a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons. He is a Bariatric Surgeon of Excellence, as is his partner, Dr. Arturo Martinez.  Dr. Ortiz has proctored dozens of surgeons in the US and Canada in laproscopic techniques. He has performed over 16,000 bariatric surgeries with a complication rate of less than 1% (which is 1/10 that if the US). He helped pioneer the lab band and the gastric balloon and performed many of the initial trials required for FDA approval. I could not find a single case of a leak, infection or stricture with any OCC patients.

Facility.....OCC is a Center of Excellence. This means it exceeds quality standards of most US hospitals. It has a fully equipped and staffed ICU. It is a bariatric surgical center, rather than a general hospital so the staff is specifically trained and experienced in caring for bariatric patients and there is no mingling with hospitalized "sick" people which could increases your chance of infection. Everyone speaks English so there's minimal chance of miscommunication. They do no more than 5 surgeries/day, 4 days/week, so you get very personalized attention. It's not an assembly line, mass quantity operation. The equipment and supplies used are state of the art and all FDA approved (I even checked lot numbers and expiration dates). They have a nutritionist on staff that is available for consultation for as long as you need, both pre and post op.

Other..... You deal directly with OCC and its staff, not a third party medical tourism company. Postop communication is excellent. I have everyone's email addresses and the doctors have always returned my calls/emails within 24 hours. I had no complications or problems, but it was nice to be able to ask them questions along the way.  While researching options prior to surgery, one of my deal breakers was whether or not I could speak directly with the surgeon.  I figured if I couldn't access them preop, they sure wouldn't be there for me postop. 

 
My overall experience was incredible and everyone was friendly, skilled and helpful. I woke up from surgery with no pain and no nausea, as did the other 4 people that had surgery the same day as me. We were out shopping and sightseeing the day after surgery.

Dr. Ariel Ortiz is not the cheapest Mexico option, but I have found very few others that match his qualifications and experience.  I found so many complications and deaths associated with the other, cheaper surgeons discussed on other forums. I wasn't about to risk my health just to save a few bucks. I have lost over 100% of my excess weight and kept it off for over two years. My PCP and OB/Gyn are both so impressed that they are now referring other patients who's insurance doesn't cover WLS to Dr. Ortiz and Obesity Control Center.
 
Actually, Dr. Corvala, mentioned by TheSleeveLady would have been my second choice.  The deciding factor between the two was the facility.  I personally preferred a surgical center over a hospital (as I do in the US as well).  Good luck with your decision.
sprocket likes this

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PS.  I just saw you were looking for a surgeon that performs single incision surgery.  I don't think Dr. Ortiz does.  But just FYI, all of the incisions he makes are below your belly button (except one tiny one about at your bra line).  I have a hard time even finding my scars at this point, but even if I could see them, they would all be covered by any clothing except the skimpiest bikini bottom. I've seen so many others with scars all over the middle of their abdomen.

sprocket likes this

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