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About kmsbanr

  • Rank
    Advanced Member
  • Birthday 08/21/1953

Contact Methods

  • Yahoo

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
  • Interests
    The delightful things my grandchildren do and of course my kids. Anything with animals. Listening to birds sing in morning and owls at night.
    My new interest is exercising to get healthy and spur on my weight loss. For the first time in my life i am taking care of me. My surgery date is my new b-day!
  • Age


  • Surgeon
    Ioannis Raftopoulos MD PHD FACS
  • Hospital
    St Francis Hospital's Bariatric Center, Hartford CT Now at Holyoke Hospital, Holuoke MA
  • Height (ft-in)
  • Start Weight
  • Current Weight
  • Goal Weight
  • Body Mass Index (BMI)
  • Surgery Date
  • Surgery Type
    Gastric Bypass

Recent Profile Visitors

1,658 profile views
  1. Thank you Kio I appreciate it very much. I am tough but have pretty much reached my tolerance limit.
  2. Hi everyone, Its been a long time since I posted here after GBS RNY 4/12 and I am sorry this will be long. I am most likely facing a Revision soon after 4 years of ulcers and pain. The last 4 years has been challenging but I believed by following orders I would go back to how I felt before my first ulcer. I did great and felt wonderful post bypass! After my surgery I lost all excess weight in 6 months and felt wonderful. I expected to continue in that manner. In 2014 I was diagnosed with Primary Parathyroid Hyperplasia and had 31/2 glands removed. I had reviewed my labs after my cardiologist advised me to see my endocrinologist due to ca 10.7 and mild aortic calcification. I found elevated calcium levels going back ten years which my pcp did not address. My calcium levels are normal now and the Osteoporosis has slowed using Strontium. I initially thought it was from my calcium intake but that was not true. My endocrinologist was worried about the drastic change bone density so July'14 she and my pcp worked out how to slowly wean me from ppi to H2 blocker when with the study that PPI's worsened bone density. Fosamax etc not great for pouch and I did poorly with Prolia side effects. Everything seemed ok until Nov I started to have issues with flank and abdominal pain, nausea, occ vomiting and trouble eating and drinking. I was sure I had a kidney stone but ua's were ok. It made sense with the parathyroid disease. My surgeon was no longer in the country and I had not chosen a new one and was getting labs by pcp. I did email him and he said I needed an Endo but it didn't make sense to me that I had flank pain so pcp increased H2 blockers. It did help some but in Jan. 15 the abd pain intensified where I had to lie on my left side after eating and the pain would go away. I was losing weight only tolerating liquids. By mid Jan I couldn't take it anymore and was in severe pain even when not having intake so went to pcp sure it was kidney related still. After CT I was diagnosed with Renal Nutcracker Syndrome. Radiologist brought me into a room showed me the CT and drew pictures to explain and said there was a procedure to relieve it. Good news and no ulcer! Went home with my pain pills but did not get any better and actually couldn't get anything down. It came straight back up. Was in touch with pcp daily and after 4 days she said I should go to ER for pain control. I agreed to go the next day if no better. Woke to a blizzard and no better. Almost passed out walking downstairs and fell. I was in denial I guess and still stayed home but called my clo-rectal office and the covering MD after listening to the story and reading ct report said he thought I also had Superior Mesenteric Artery Syndrome due to the weight loss. He had seen it during his bariatric rotation and it could be fixed with surgery. With the blizzard I wanted to wait till next day and he said to sip my shakes to keep up my protein and call pcp in am. I did that and after plowed out next day went to ER. After 6 hr wait was finally seen asa I became more distressed and anxious. I thought it was from the pain and vomiting but after labs were done found out my Hgb was 4 points lower since the last week and in 1/2 hour was down to 7s. I had an ulcer missed in the firast reading and the revised was not seen by my pcp. After 4 day admission with blood transfusions started on ppi's again and an Edno that showed huge 4cm ulcer around the anastamoses and it was 3 cms deep. They did not however find an indication of bleeding but had waited 2 days to do it. The area showed multiple sutures and surgical clips even in the apex. They did not remove them. I would later learn that it was advised to remove them to prevent future ulceration. Found a new practice and follow up Endos showed remarkable healing but GI's would not remove suture or clips. Inflammation and pain with eating and drinking with the same abd. pain continued. MD said after 6 months that if continued he would do exploratory laproscopy exam but before that he remove the suture in the apex because he said when I had intake it was being pulled on. After endo he had removed it but none of the others even though I had begged him to and remove the clip. His reasoning was there was no inflammation around them. Over the next 2 years I had multiple endos with continued inflammation and pain. 2/17 he found a 2 cm ulcer at a suture and removed suture and the apex clip fell out with the endo. He thought I would do well. After 2 years on 40mg Protonix bid it had failed to prevent ulcers. I had had a TIA the previous Aug and my daughter was very concerned with the AHA report showing high dose PPI's esp Protonix showed high first time strokes. Md agreed to me trying H2 Blockers again. 11 days later I had intense spasms and the all too familiar left flank pain relieved by left side lying. I went to see if I could get an antispasmodic so I could eat and drink. PA was worried that I might have Pancreatitis and sent me to ER. My h&H was below my normal level so with the pain I had a CT and was admitted. Labs were done bid and were dropping slowly. I was too scared to take Protonix IV my only choice from the formulary but did take IV Pepcid. GI team came to my room 2nnd day and were excited to say they believed they had identified source of flank and abd. pain. Angle of SMA to Aorta was 7 degrees with 25 degrees the low normal value. In their minds it proved Wilkies Syndrome (Superior Mesentery Artery Syndrome). This to them made sense with the lowered angle and the fact that I had had treatment for Renal Nutcracker Syndrome. I was so glad because after over 2 years of pain an answer and it could be treated . However bariatric team said not possible because I had GBS-RNY even though there was documented medical literature and videos of surgeries. The next day due to rectal bleeding at night I had another endo with another ulcer but again no active bleeding site or clot. I eventually agreed to Prevacid which I have continue to date but still have continued with multiple ulcers. I left that practice when they said they had no help for the pain with eating and recurring ulcers even though GI MD said I needed a revision. My GI Md followed me with endos and it took the ulcers from February to Sept. to heal. I was still having serious nausea and pain and weight loss. I was taking routine Zofran 8mg bid every day to help control nausea and Prevacid 30 mg bid. GI MD advised me to find a new bariatric doctor because he was concerned I could hemorrhage again from a perforation and not make it to a hospital.and pcp started process to have me go out of network to see my original surgeon who was practicing again in a neighboring state under an hour away. In the mean time I was accepted into a large bariatric practice with a surgeon well known to my original surgeon. His first step was to do an endo and remove every foreign object in my anastomosis because it would continue to cause ulcers. He found "tons of tiny ulcerations in my pouch and another ulcer in my jejunem. He removed the only suture left the others had fallen out and thought I would get better. Stopped ASA for stroke prevention and no new anticoagulant still and continue Carafate suspension. In follow up he advised me to see my original surgeon because he knew me better than anyone else and would be the logical and best person to do any surgery if it was needed. He wrote a letter to my insurance advising that was best for me. I did get permission to see my surgeon and have been being treated by him since 2/18. My ulcers had healed with my first endo in march and he didn't see any new sutures though there was still a lot of inflammation. He was surprised with the excellent healing which actually surprised him after how bad my original ulcer was. All of my ulcers have been in the jejunum and there was good mucosa not scar tissue. He took me off all my supplements etc leaving me on only necessary meds. to see if it improve. We eventually stopped the Carafate due to nausea. Have been eating soft frequent feedings with increased protein by shakes. He also reviewed all of my records from the time I was seeing other doctors in every specialty. Because what he saw he did not want to rush into any revision surgery even though he knew how much I was struggling because of the seriousness of the procedure. He wanted more time to follow me with endos and his dietary plan etc. This has been hard because The pain and difficulty eating etc but I also understand his perspective. In April the inflammation was still there and a biopsy of a black area he suspects may be a new suture coming through came back positive for candida he didn't want to treat. I am having an endo on the 24th this month and if there is another suture he will remove it and then we will decide where I want to go from here. He does not want to leave me to suffer the rest of my life but he also doesn't want to cause me harm either which I appreciate. I know he is looking out for me. Two plus months for him even though over 3 years for me. However I am totally fed up with the pain, filling up after a few bites even though I am hungry and want to eat and lousy quality of life. It is a struggle to keep my weight up and I will admit I am doing it by eating high carb foods after threatened by g-tube in the practice I left. I hate that because it is not a healthy practice but I am down to 121 and if I have surgery I know I will probably lose weight after. My surgeon said that if I have surgery there is no guarantee i won't keep having ulcers. He suspects it is from the non absorbable sutures he was transitioning from at the time I had my surgery but it may not be. He said there is no way to just remove them so he recommended removing my pouch and connecting the jejunum to my esophagus. I had wondered if I could be converted to a sleeve but he said no. He told me that it is a big procedure and much more risky than my original bypass which I am fully aware of. Both of the last two surgeons say that a reversal will probably not work and I am afraid of that because I was a diabetic and know that re-connection will probably reverse my remission. Even though I have had these problems I do not regret my decision to have my gastric bypass. It seems many people have had revisions but I don't know if they have had problems from migrating sutures and if it took care of the ulcers etc. i just can't stand this any more! Every swallow of even water is barely tolerable never mind food. I just want to be back the way I was before my first ulcer but there are no guarantees. If anyone has had this problem and would be willing to share I would appreciate it so much. Also if you had a revision for ulcers that would be good to know. I want to make my best decision based upon other's experiences, his experience and my options to be better. If it is unlikely I could get better somehow I would have to try to find a way to live like this but that option brings me to tears. As for the Wilkies Syndrome I can't get any movement in a bariatric doctor to believe it exists. If anyone has had experience with this I would be appreciative knowing how it was handled. Thank you and again I apologize for the length.
  3. Losing that hormonal furnace is the worst part of winter. I found a few things that helped like CuddlDuds, fleece pjs and fleece bed socks. Not romantic but since having GI bleeding from ulcers sleeping in my plush comfy robe over everything else has helped me survive but couldn't tolerate temp below 62 day or night when not hving anemia issues was fine at 58. I had to resort to a oil filled radiator heater this year.
  4. yes it really does happen and show fast. The more you can do if medically ok the faster it goes. If you aren't doing it already try interval training on the treadmill. It really accelerated my weight loss when i understood what my MD meant. Lost more than when i exercised at higher speed and for longer. Keep up the great work!
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  6. Don't feel badly about being upset or wanting to know every day where you are in weight loss. I was a scale stalker and there were in fact many times early out I did freak. After all we go through this surgery with weight loss as our goal. So when the ridiculous happens the first thought is"What the ---- is going on?!!!"... you can fill in the blanks with whatever term you used. It's ok! I have realized that there is no rhyme or reason to weight loss post gastric bypass and I'm a nurse . Before RNY when I dieted I could lose an ounce or more a day so I freaked out feeling OMG I lost weight better before than I am now. WHAT DID I DO? How in the world,scientifically speaking, or even logically can your clothes be getting big but you don't see the scale budge a bit or in fact it goes up? I don't know the answer but it seems to be the frustrating norm. Even now that I have reached my ideal weight (and prefer not to lose any more )I can see the change in my clothes and in my face before the scale drops. So when you gain weight and you're hardly eating enough to keep a bird alive or you don't lose weight for a week or more the important thing to remember is it isn't your fault and although you may feel many things..disbelief, anger ..maybe rage...frustration, fear and disillusion I can totally promise you that the scale will go down and you will lose almost every one does. I might suggest that if you see this happen a lot you may retain fluid even without salt intake as I did. My surgeon kept me on the diuretic part of my BP med for this reason. So maybe you could talk to your MD and see what he suggests and can give you for answers. Mine pushes interval treadmill programs (and weights when cleared) because you can lose a great deal of weight early. I know following that advice and exercising almost every day until near the time I reached ideal weight when I needed to exercise twice a day to lose weight, is a big reason was able to reach my personal goal. Use positive affirmations and tell your body it's ok to lose weight and you know it is in shock ...I know it sounds weird but there is so much literature and research into the mind body connection. You will be fine just be kind to yourself and your body you both deserve it. BTW my surgeon trained and worked at UPMC before heading the Bariatric program at the hospital I had my surgery at. We've talked a little about how the departments worked together to safe guard their patients health. So much of the research and current treatment came out of research done there. Best of luck to you we are here pulling for you.
  7. Your surgeon has chosen higher protein foods. Mine has very strict guidelines we are expected to adhere to and those guidelines are to help you lose the weight as quickly as possible while still getting your protein needs met. I don't know what mushy foods you want to have. Carbs interfere with weight loss so they are not allowed on his plan until you have lost all your weight and then very limited thereafter. You can lose a great deal of weight in the first six months by controlling carbs and exercising strenuously when allowed by your Dr. My DD is shorter than you and weighed 220 when she had her surgery sticking to his plan she reached his goal for her (ideal body wt of 120) before 9th month. She weighs 114 now. I weighed 196 when I had my surgery am taller than you and I reached my goal weight (ideal wt of 130 ) in less than 6 months. So if you do what she says and work hard you can strive to reach your ideal weight easily in the first year. I figured once I lost all my weight then I could enjoy an occ healthy carb. which I have done and continue to lose weight. Remember why you are doing this. You have eaten lots of different foods in your life and you have a window of time before your body remembers how it used to be and gets back to normal. Good luck and speedy recovery!
  8. As said no milk sugars in eggs they are mainly albumin and other nutrients. BugdocMom is right. Just give it a try. My DD loved eggs before surgery and even though she has tried they make her sick. She's almost hitting her 2 year surgiversary date.
  9. I know how frustrating it is to be in a stall but you are still in the weight loss (honeymoon) period. What has your surgeon said about this? You need to kick start things again. Evaluate honestly what you are doing now and change it since it isn't working now. If you usually eat all your meals and have snacks you could try doing 2 meals as high quality (whey isolate) protein drinks in skim milk or protein bars ( as long as not too much sugar). Be very mindful of how much you are eating and what you eat. In our plan no carbs other than veggies advised forever but certainly not until all weight is lost. If you aren't measuring or weighing your food so you know exactly what you take in. I still usually only eat one meal a day and if I eat twice I miss my shake. Are you still eating your protein first? You should get a minimum of 109 gms of protein a day. See this study it was done by my surgeon and team and I know it has helped me and others in his practice reach our ideal body weight. I still get 100gms a day and my protein levels are normal. I feel so much better when I get this much. Add things to your shakes to make them yummy like sf pudding mix. Also you need your fluids if you aren't getting 48-60 oz a day minimum up your calorie free fluids. At my 2 week appt my surgeon told me an exercise program he wanted me to do which I did but had misunderstood him. I was supposed to start at 2.0 mph and each min increase .1mph for 10 increases then go back to starting point. Do this 3-4 times. Each week increase starting speed by .1 - .2 mph. I did an incline but he didn't care about that(he does now). It worked so much better than what I was doing. I had been walking more than 1 1/2 miles a day at 3 mph but when I did this I lost 15 lbs in about 3 weeks. My surgeon would love your attitude! He gets upset when new patients come in and their surgeons didn't have their ideal body weight as their goal weight. I know you are feeling discouraged but I hope you feel proud of how far you have come. You started out at a high weight. I'm sure you feel a lot better physically and if you want this don't give up it may take a little longer but you can get there! If I had more to lose I would still be doing what my md said and not eating anything with high calories or snacks. My best friend had me doing a mental imaging daily that was about what I expected my life to be like after I had reached my ideal weight. Whenever I wanted to mentally beat myself up I thought of it and as crazy as it sounds I began reassuring my body that it was ok to lose weight and I understood how it was scary because it was so traumatized. It helped a lot and I'm sure it worked. Stress holds back your weight loss so changing how you react mentally can aid in weight loss. Heck they say your mind can cure cancer so why not use it to beat the pounds! Good luck you will get there! Try to keep your spirits up and be good to yourself.
  10. AWESOME! So glad you are feeling better.
  11. How are you feeling today? I hope you are feeling a little better every day. Let us know how you are doing. The beginning is a big adjustment.
  12. I was so relieved to read in the blog you just had your surgery Sarah. I remember my first weeks of early post op period as being totally dedicated to getting my fluids in my practice limlts us to clear liquids for the first week. It is hard with being sleepy from pain meds etc.but so important to flush ketones by products of anesthesia, keep you feeling well and your systems moving. Sip, sip, sip was all I did being sure to get in 48 oz minimum in 24 hours . It wasn't easy but I did it. My NUT had me use a 30ml medicine cup or you can use a drink jigger(more fun) We also have a paper we can use to check off each 30 mls taken in every 15 mins this was a must because I could never have remembered what I had. For me it was easier to take in flavored ice cubes I made from sugar free drinks (Crystal Light or any other is fine) made into ice cubes that got kind of melted. Popsicles weren't bad either I let them melt a bit too. Water was difficult at first. I couldn't go to bed for the night until I had all my fluids my rule. My surgeon kept us on the 30ml regimen for 2 weeks even when protein shakes were added but they counted toward our totals. Even now I count my liquids up mentally just to be sure I keep hydrated as well as making sure I get about 100 gms protein every day. It is hard in the beginning but so important to your recovery and weight loss. Welcome to the other side of the journey and I wish you a speedy, uneventful recovery.
  13. I use a tens unit for pain and Salon Pas and both work well but believe it or not when I had tennis elbow an anesthesiologist I knew from the pain clinic I worked in told me about therapeutic magnets. I tried it and it worked! A chiropractor that uses kinesthesiology and gentle manipulation can help as does acupuncture, I've done all of that to get me through injuries and chronic pain from fibromyalgia and a rheumatoid disorder both of which are in remission now. I used to take Ultram but my body became dependent on it so I stopped it and use only Tylenol since the surgery with those other methods. Hope you get better soon.
  14. Are your nutritional values being monitored? Bugdoc Mom is right it doesn't seem you are getting the right supplements or enough of what you are taking other than the B12 which seems like a lot. I only take 500mcg every other day and my value is still high. Do you take B1 if not you can get serious neurological problems. I only eat one meal a day but get about 100 gms of protein with the addition of shakes. I hope you are drinking shakes or eating protein bars. You should get a minimum of 1 gm protein for every kilogram of weight which is 106 min. according to the weight you have posted.
  15. You did great resisting. I can forgo anything like that now even though doughnuts were my fave before surgery. I wonder what the future will bring but this year not one Halloween candy even though I used to eat 2 or more bags a week My downfall is the allowed popcorn. It is a trigger for me. I have trouble controlling the amount so no more in the house. I still miss it even though it made me feel sick. Eating crunchy apples instead.