• Content Count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

About ArtemisDawn

  • Rank
  • Birthday 01/09/1992

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Cairns, Australia
  • Age


  • Surgeon
    Dr George Hopkins
  • Hospital
    Holy Spirit Northside Private Hospital
  • Height (ft-in)
  • Start Weight
  • Current Weight
  • Goal Weight
  • Body Mass Index (BMI)
  • Surgery Date
  1. Hi there! I am a post op with RNY Gastric Bypass from Cairns in Australia (If you haven't heard of Cairns, it has the best that the Great Barrier Reef has to offer and is a major tourist destination). I am 7 months post-op and already close to goal, but have only now had enough motivation to make a profile. Yes, I know that is strange but most of this time has been spent adjusting to the bypass, hibernating and staring into the fridge trying to decide on what to eat. My Story: The decision to have the bypass came from 3 medical conditions which caused rapid and uncontrollable weight gain in a short period of time, and the desperation to return to my happy, healthy and very active lifestyle after 5 years of failed dieting. I went from being a very athletic child and teenager (one that could place in the top 10 at school Cross Country races without training and an Air Force Cadet that was in the elite Weapons Drill Team for my state) to a teenager that struggled to walk 500m (546yd if that is the unit of measure for distance in USA?) without being a puffing sweaty mess looking for somewhere to sit down. At the age of 16 I started gaining weight despite eating a very healthy and balanced vegetarian diet (with suppliments and high iron/protien veg in each meal) and being very physically active, I was around 60kg (132lb) when the weight gain began. We tried to reverse the minor weight gain by using a Personal Trainer for an hour each day after school plus my usual high intensity weekend drill training camps with the cadets. Despite this, I was still starting to gain weight faster than the guy from SuperSize Me - which was confusing to say the least. We started seeing doctors around 6 months after I gaining 20kg (44lb) despite the healthy diet and exercise schedule. Nobody knew what was going on, the weight started piling on faster and faster until I was 125kg (275lb) at the age of 21. Around the middle of July, a general surgeon finally diagnosed what was going on - Fructose Malabsorption, Metabolic Syndrome and PolyCystic Ovarian Syndrome. That combination caused the uncontrollable weight gain and absolute refusal of the excess weight to budge no matter what I did. The Fructose Malabsorption was severe as I was unable to eat any salad, steamed veg and even diet products were off limits unless I wanted to inflate like a Sumo Suit and be in absolute agony - I was on white potato and lean meats (with gravy as my sauce) as my main meal for dinner, which drove me insane as I hated unbalanced meals. My metabolism had slowed to an absolute crawl plus the PCOS had rendered me infertile with the typical weight gain problems attached. I tried metformin to treat the PCOS with a low FODMAP diet for FM, with no luck in the treatment or weight loss areas - I was devistated. During the second last night of 2013, a close family friend and colleague of my mother invited us over to dinner (celebration of his daughter and I being accepted into Law School, despite the fact that we were attending different Universities). We talked about numerous things during that night when the topic turned to my diagnosis and how we were considering the lapband in an attempt to get the excess weight off. His family all had lapbands with minimal results, and his daughter having serious complications resulting in a conversion to the bypass. They talked us through the whole process and differences between the two, eventually referring us to their surgeon for a consultation about the bypass before the end of the night. We waited 4 months for the consultation, and before we knew it my mother and I were sitting infront of this amazing surgeon talking about my options and his recommendations. I had to do the weigh-in before seeing Dr Hopkins, and was breaking down into tears at the idea of standing on that scale - I didn't want to know how much weight I had gained in less than 1 year after diagnosis. Eventually we got through the weigh-in. I wasn't told what the scales showed until I had settled down but I knew it was signifigant, my mother was on the verge of tears after seeing that dreaded number. During the gap between the intake interview with the clinic nurse and consultation with the surgeon, mum told me what my current weight was - I had weighed in at 147.9kg (326lb). During the consultation we told my surgeon this exact same story and he was shocked. He put me on the intensive Pre-op Optifast diet effective immediately (except I was only having the 3 shakes without free veg thanks to Fructose Malabsorption) with a surgery date booked for 6 weeks after the consult. The Pre-op was tough, made little difference in terms of weight (grand total of 5kg lost in 6 weeks) despite sticking to it. Many tears of frustration were shed, but most of that would have been the fact that I was doing all of this with exams and my first ever surgical procedure looming within the same week. It probably didn't help that somehow my request to sit exams before the surgery was overlooked, my contract law exam had been scheduled for the exact same date and time as my surgery in a hospital almost 2000km (1242mi) away. The big day had finally arrived, It was 2pm and I was scrubbed up and in the OR ready for the biggest change of my life. I faced my greatest fear (the dreaded needle) with a brilliant team and an entire tube of numbing cream on both of my arms. With the help of the most amazingly calming nurse I have ever met, they got the needle in. After slowly counting back from 10 twice I was drifting off into what felt like a fade to black cutscene with soft ringing in my ears. My last thought was how strangely sweet scent of the gas is, and the fact that I must have sounded like drunken kitten to everybody. What felt like seconds later I was hearing the muffled words of my anaesthetist and focusing on the female voice telling me to nod if I could hear her then to open my eyes - how in the hell that felt like a battle was beyond me. My eyes opened for a few seconds then I said I wanted to go back to sleep, my eyes started to close and was held by shoulders and told to stay awake. I somehow managed but once I was starting to realise where I was and what I just had done, I felt the pain. I instantly went from lying down to almost sitting upright in less than a second while screaming, with everybody fighting to push me back down yet being delicate at the same time. My head touched the pillow and before I knew it I was asleep again. I guess that my morphine allergy made pain management a bit difficult, especially when the anaesthetist warned me that he would extremely careful with the substitute he was using. I finally woke up with nothing but a little ache and an annoying tube down my nose while being wheeled to my room, stayed awake for a few seconds after saying hi to my mother before falling asleep again - apparently it was already 8:30pm. I woke up and was feeling normal in terms of awareness just as my mother was about to walk out of the door and said "Where are you going?" with a groggy smile. All was well from this point on. By 6:30pm the next day I was already on my way home and had no desire for food other than my soon to be loved chicken stock. The weight loss was mind blowing as time went on and now I find myself at the 7 month post op mark and almost at my goal weight with so much loose skin that I can jokingly say I will fly away with my wings during awkward situations. I couldn't be happier with my decision to have this done and haven't regretted it for a minute (except for that moment where I was screaming, but that was pain rather than brain talking). So I guess that is my story, here are some post op photos to show my progress so far. 1 Month post-op: 3 Months post-op: 6 Months post-op: