SpellboundGirl

Worried About Stretching Pouch

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Does anyone else worry compulsively about stretching their pouch? I had RNY on 7/1/2010 and I worry CONSTANTLY, to the point of not wanting to eat, about stretching my pouch out.

I've been overweight since I was about 11 and this is the first time in my life I've been able to lose weight and I am terrified that I am going to screw this up. Also, I haven't lost any weight for the last 2 weeks and it is really bothering me.

Any words of wisdom?

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Stick with the programme sweetheart.

I'll be 3 years out next week and I still measure/weigh my dense foods. 1/4 cup or 2-3oz of dense protein, beans, nuts etc. I don't measure my vegetables or fruit.

I steer clear of the starchy, carb stuff - it has nothing to offer me cept make me want more and then I end up in a coma for a couple of hours.

I keep my meals small and eat every 2 1/2 to 3 hours. That's about 6 times a day.

You might want to run your food intake through something like FitDay - Free Weight Loss and Diet Journal or Free Diet Plans at SparkPeople or Free Calorie Counter, Diet & Exercise Journal | MyFitnessPal.com to make sure you're actually eating enough and that you're on top of your protein requirements.

And make sure you keep on top of your fluids.

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I feel your fright...I could have written your post!

CINWA's answer is not "easy" to hear - but I am sure it is the best answer we can get. The starchy/carb thing is SO true for me, and I am going to turn that around asap.

I would like to ease my mind with some empirical data on the subject of pouch stretching...any ideas on where to find it?

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I'm almost 9 months out and I sure wish I knew the answer to the question of pouch stretching. I worry about this constantly. I measure/weigh most of my food. But I still worry constantly. There are times when my husband tells me that my view on what I am eating is messed up. Even though I know I have the alloted amount of food on my plate I feel like a pig if I eat it all. I am absolutely terrified of eating too much and stretching my pouch. It still seems surreal to me that I am losing this weight and that I can keep it off. I keep waiting for the other shoe to drop so to speak. I think a lot of people worry about stretching and weight regain. I wonder if after you are so far out your brain is able to relax and just trust in the program and stop worrying so much. I sure hope so. In the meantime if anyone has any statistics on what percentage of pouches end up stretched out I'd sure like to hear it also.

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my nutritionist and doctor and program coordinator all say the same thing!!

its about an ping pong ball and naturally stretches to about a small baseball.

cinwa is right just measure everything and dont dread on it so much we dont want you being anorexic and unhealthy thats not the point for this tool

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I wonder if after you are so far out your brain is able to relax and just trust in the program and stop worrying so much. I sure hope so.

I am 2 1/2 years out and although I don't obsess over it any more, I still have a healthy daily consciousness of it so as to keep me in check. When I eat I pay attention to my pouch and stop when it's time to stop no matter how much I have eaten. And it can be different every time depending on the mood of my pouch. I pay attention but I don't obsess. I think it's a perfect amount of attention at this point.

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I asked my doctor about this before surgery and he said the pouch will never get bigger than 4 oz. he said what stretches is the opening of the small intestine, where it attaches to the pouch. he said when you stretch that, that is when you get where you can eat and eat. he said when people gain all the weight back after GBS, they have to go back in an have a band put around the opening to bring it back to the small normal size. he said he put this band on me so I wont have to worry about the stretching. I sure hope this is all correct... :confused:

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Wow..that's interesting...I will talk to my dr next visit about this....thank you so much...

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My doctor put the silastic ring around my stoma during surgery as well. After doing some research I believe the name for this version of rny is called the Fobi pouch. It is common practice with my surgeon and I'm personally thankful. Anything that can help prevent the pouch from stretching I'll do, it is one of my big fears as well!

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So first I started out after surgery worrying about springing a leak and now I worry that someday I will end up stretching it...these darn pouches are high maintenance lol...

I have seen lots on the board about carbonation stretching out our pouches. I plan on weighing foods and I am not as loyal about logging as I used to be but I am getting back i the swing of things. I use Nutrimirror to log. Can't wait to follow this thread and see what others think!

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I have definately heard that carbonated bevs are a no-no for several reasons. I went cold turkey just before my RNY, and have NEVER been back.

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I agree.......NO carbonated beverages.......I used to LOVE regular Pepsi AND regular Mountain Dew, but truly haven't missed 'em.

I always worry about stretching my pouch as well, but I'm trusting in the measuring/weighing thing and like others have said, I STOP at the first sign of fullness, whether it's after 2 tablespoons or 2 full ounces.........what a change, ha ha! In the old days, I'd keep on until the BOWL or PLATE or PLATTER was empty!

Nancy:)

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Wow..that's interesting...I will talk to my dr next visit about this....thank you so much...

Soooo....in the last week and a half....I have been bad... now I am really frightened of what I have done to myself... I have been carb loading - which has been KEEPING me constantly hungry....

Let us pray...

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Soooo....in the last week and a half....I have been bad... now I am really frightened of what I have done to myself... I have been carb loading - which has been KEEPING me constantly hungry....

Let us pray...

If it's just the carbs, just get back at it. Drop the carbs cold turkey for at least a few days. Then add only the right kind. It's tough the first couple of days but worth it in the end. You'll stop the cravings. And remember that most of it is in your head too so got to reprogram your head.

And if you also mean that you have stretched it and ate too much and feel that you have stretched the pouch because you are eating more at meals, try the 5 Day Pouch Test. A great way to shrink you pouch back down.

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Casey,

I don't think it is that easy to stretch your pouch, but I will tell ya...I am crazy about it. I can drink about 3-4 oz of water at a time. I never feel hungary and never feel full! This is so wierd, and it kinda scary because I never know when to stop. I might every now and then get a tight feeling but it passes quickly. So, I measure everything and eat only that.

Carbs were and are our worst nightmare because of the cravings. I am so sorry that you are going through this right now. Just remember, as with anything we have been through so far, the worst of it (cravings) are in the first 2 days. Then you won't even think about them again. It will be hard but rid yourself of them, but please do it for your health. We are all here with you...

You are in my thoughts and prayers :)

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If it's just the carbs, just get back at it. Drop the carbs cold turkey for at least a few days. Then add only the right kind. It's tough the first couple of days but worth it in the end. You'll stop the cravings. And remember that most of it is in your head too so got to reprogram your head.

And if you also mean that you have stretched it and ate too much and feel that you have stretched the pouch because you are eating more at meals, try the 5 Day Pouch Test. A great way to shrink you pouch back down.

OK - so this is about the fifth time I've heard the phrase "try the 5 Day Pouch Test" . . . so I took the universe's hint and ordered the book . . . the author's youtube videos are also pretty good to watch, it seems. I feel a sigh of relief already coming over me - albeit a reserved and tentative sigh of relief.

Fingers Crossed

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If it's just the carbs, just get back at it. Drop the carbs cold turkey for at least a few days. Then add only the right kind. It's tough the first couple of days but worth it in the end. You'll stop the cravings. And remember that most of it is in your head too so got to reprogram your head.

And if you also mean that you have stretched it and ate too much and feel that you have stretched the pouch because you are eating more at meals, try the 5 Day Pouch Test. A great way to shrink you pouch back down.

What is the 5 day pouch Test? How do you shrink your pouch back down is that possible.

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I'm almost 11 months out and I think about my pouch a lot. I don't measure, but I eat until I am satisfied. I can certainly eat much more than I could at the beginning, which is very normal. The amount will increase over time. As long as you stick to the program and don't overeat, you will be a success! :)

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Day 1 of the 5 day Pouch Test

I was busy from morning until night - which I think was my absolute SAVIOR for this (I mostly have problems when I am home over the weekend). Nothing but liquid - I didn't feel too hungry physically, but for the first time I actually felt the emotional urge to eat very clearly. I "wanted" carbs and started to crave them strong as soon as I got out of class (9:30pm). Instead, I tried not to think about it - raced home - took a hot bath - went to bed.

A "good" start, I'd say....on to Day 2...

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I asked my nutritionist about it and she said it's actually pretty hard to stretch your pouch out. She said you would have to eat to the point of being sick over and over and over for it to happen. I think if you just try to keep the program the best you can and don't worry so much you'll be fine.

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The fact of the matter is that it is pretty hard to stretch out your pouch. The pouch is made from the right side of the stomach, which is the less stretchy side. They used to make it from the left side but found that it did have the potential of stretching too much, thus the reason for the change. Over time the pouch will get some bigger. It's only natural. Your pouch is made from muscle and like any other muscle it gets a bit bigger with use. That doesn't mean you can eat all you want though. It is still smart to measure or at a minimum avoid over-eating. When you feel satisfied, STOP! You don't want to over fill it.

Now there is concern about stretching out the stoma. That new man-made connection where the intestines connects to the small intestines. This can stretch out over time. It too does it naturally but you can make it a lot worse if you frequently over eat. The other thing that can stretch it out is drinking with your meals. Fluid will push your food threw before it really is ready adding pressure on that connection. You stretch out that connection and you basically have increased your stomach size.

Once that stoma is stretched there are a few choices for surgeons to treat it. One is a revision. Going back in there and tightening it up. Some insurance companies won't cover that unless there is a medical problem, such as ulcers or a fistula. Another choice is Sclerotherapy. That is done with a scope. The doctor injects a chemical scarring the connection and tightening it up. If it is too stretched it may require having it done more than once. Most insurance companies will cover this. I'm actually having this done in a couple months once my ulcer heals up. Other choices are Stomafyx or the ROSE procedure. Those were the big thing a couple years ago but I haven't heard much about them since and I've heard they weren't as successful as they hoped. I don't know much about the silicone ring. The surgeons I work with don't use it.

So try not to obsess about it but be attune to how much you are eating.

Edited by MiladyB

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It is the opening from the pouch to the small intestine that stretches over time and allows most foods to pass through so you don't get the full/satisfied feeling when you eat. Some foods, like meat, that are harder to digest will stay in the pouch longer and will give you a full sensation. But, other foods like carbs are quickly passed into the small intestine so you can eat a lot more of this at a time. Another reason to eat your protein first and always measure the amounts before you ever put it on your plate. Had not heard about the band aparatus being used on Gastric Bypass patients to similate a pyloric sphincter (to help hold food in the pouch). I don't think you can beat the fact that with a VSG the pyloric sphincter is still intact and you, also, aren't left with a foreign object that could potentially cause problems in the future.

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its GOOD to worry about messing it up...i think to many go into this and think its a cureall and it ISNT! there is other issues that will cause weight gain besides food - and as someone who is almost 6 years out i have seen weight gained back all to often...most the members that were on here that gained most or ALL & MORE are of course gone & cant share their story - but ihave maintained friends on the outside of this site with a few - and i can tell you it happens!

so stay afraid - if you gain 5 pounds exercise harder! dont think or i just wont eat as much - you have to exercise! even if only 20 minutes a day my biggest mistake was not workingout and LOL drinking WINE... i was NEVER a drinker before but it took the place of the cake or ice cream everyone else was having and i quickly gained 5 than 10 pounds - luckily i weigh weekly & saw that and am back on track!

NEVER let your weight get above the 5 pounds is the best goal - losing 10 is so much harder than 5!

stay focused group and stay worried and you'll be fine!

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Does anyone else worry compulsively about stretching their pouch? I had RNY on 7/1/2010 and I worry CONSTANTLY, to the point of not wanting to eat, about stretching my pouch out.

I've been overweight since I was about 11 and this is the first time in my life I've been able to lose weight and I am terrified that I am going to screw this up. Also, I haven't lost any weight for the last 2 weeks and it is really bothering me.

Any words of wisdom?

I also worry about stretching my stomach (had the sleeve almost 8 weeks ago) and having too much to eat. I kind of get apprehensive at dinner, being hungry, yet worried about how much I can eat. I am eating about 500-750 cals per day when I add it up on the Livestrong website, so I am not over doing it. I am just afraiid of eating too much during this key loss time period.

-Marie

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