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Archive for the ‘Lap Band Weight Loss Stories’ Category

Day 19. Still Not Hungry.

Posted by Lori on September 29, 2009

Dr. Ortiz keeps his patients on liquids for the first three weeks. He says that if you lose your pre-surgical weight and stick to liquids for three weeks, you can hope to lose between 30% and 50% of your excess weight in the first 8 weeks or so. And since I want to lose 100% of my excess weight, I have been almost perfect on this diet. I will admit to crushing three bite sized pieces of pineapple in my mouth, chewing them and swallowing what was left. So, I did cheat a little.

I am getting healthier. It’s an amazing thing. I’ve always been someone who walked a lot and I try and walk between 3  and 5 miles most days. But for the past several years, it’s been very difficult to do and I’ve had to stop and rest along the way – sometimes several times per block. Three nights ago, I walked 2.7 miles, stopped to rest maybe twice for only a few seconds, and covered the distance in 72 minutes. Pokey, it’s true, but gratifying nonetheless. The next night, I walked the 2.7 miles in 66 minutes and didn’t have to stop and rest even once. Last night, I walked it in sixty minutes. That was a real delight. Still, I should be able to cover a mile in under 15 minutes, so I have distance to go. But it remains, that 19 days after Lap Band surgery, I can do something I haven’t been able to do in years. And I’m 54 years old so that impacts the equation. I’m getting healthier already.

I feel fine. Today, I  forgot to eat anything besides my chicken broth. I’ll have to make up for that when i get back from my walk. I don’t have cravings. I don’t miss eating. My husband fixes himself dinner right next to my work space and it hasn’t been an issue in the least. I do avoid the grocery store because of the aromatic roast chicken that they have, but other than that, I haven’t given food much thought. I had been worried that I would have the worst case of munchies known to human kind, but no, no munchies. I’m so happy to be free of hunger that it’s just natural  and effortless to avoid food.

I haven’t weighed myself yet. I weighed 225 in clothes and shoes the day of surgery. This Thursday, on my 3 week anniversary, I’m going to weigh myself to see how much I’ve lost. I can tell you that my jeans are looser and a neighbor who didn’t know I had surgery commented that my face was changing and that I looked thinner. I’m hopeful that I have lost more than 5 pounds, but we’ll see. I’m trying to concentrate on the process rather than the scale.

I live right around the corner from Los Angeles’ Hugo’s Tacos. Some of the taco blogs consider them among the best tacos in LA with amazing light, crispy shells. So for my coming out dinner, I am going to have one taco. I have a very slender girlfriend and she and I went to Rick’s Tacos and Burritos in Pasadena one day. I ordered three tacos. She ordered one. She got done eating and pronounced herself stuffed. LOL Now, I get to be one of those women who can eat one taco and be satisfied. Yahoo.

Next on my list is ordering Bodylastics Bands to work out with. They’re pretty inexpensive but business is very slow right now so I’ve put off buying them. My dream is to get a Concept II rowing machine but right now, I’m not sure where I’d put it. I do have to figure out a way to work out during the rainy season.


Posted in Lap Band Basics, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories, My Lap Band Experience, Weight Loss Surgery, What You Can Eat With A Lap Band | Tagged: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Another Great Male Lap Band Blogger

Posted by Lori on August 5, 2009

When I first started doing this, there were hardly any men talking about their experience with the Lap Band. Robert Morgan’s poignant tale of morbid obesity and 250 pound weight loss was close to singular. Today, I was checking the new blog entries and found a new writer on the block – Aaron Grossman. He has two blog entries up at Lap Band Talk – the most popular of the Lap Band forums.

In Entering The Lap Band Zone, his first blog post, he does a wonderful job of sketching out the differences between gastric bypass and gastric banding and he explains the reasons behind his decision to have weight loss surgery. He starts post-op at his surgeon’s office:

I got on the examining room scale which is connected to a device that measures weight, body mass index (BMI) and whatever else you can obtain from stepping on a scale. The nurse and I both looked at the weight reading. Her eyes widen. My eyes tear up. My wife high-five’s me. I had lost 14 pounds in 8 days.

Lest you think I just came out of the hospital after a debilitating illness, let me clarify; I had Lap-Band bariatric surgery a week before the weigh-in.

And then his reasons for deciding to have a Lap Band procedure:

Anyway, you get the idea. I went through the other pre-operative protocols which included an Upper GI series, stress test, Colonoscopy, Endoscopy, Echocardiogram and several other procedures. I attended support groups of both pre-op and post-op Lab-Banded patients. I reached out to friends of friends who had the procedure. I spent untold hours surfing the web and reading community board posts by pre-op and post-op patients. I wrestled with my diet demons.

And then, a really close friend needed quadruple bypass surgery. He’s fine now, 6 months later. But that was it for me. I don’t want to have my sternum cracked open. I want to minimize or eliminate my risk factors. I want to live and return to “normal” eating. And, I decided that the only way a serial overeater like myself can do it is by banding my stomach down to a small pouch.

It’s a wonderful article. He talks about losing weight only to regain it – something that we have all experienced.  And he covers his diet in the first few weeks post-op.

In Dealing With Civilian Responses To Lap Band Surgery, his second blog post, he talks about his success six weeks out with the Lap Band, and his response to people who say that weight loss surgery, is taking the easy way out:

To those who say it’s the ‘easy way out,’ here’s my reply: I went through both abdominal surgery and the attendant recovery from its unpleasant discomfort; I no longer drink coffee, carbonated beverages or distilled spirits; I will probably never again eat hard, crusty bread, well-done meat or anything else that can’t pass through an opening the size of a toothpaste cap in my ‘new’ stomach; if I do overeat, I’ll get sick, nauseous or vomit; in the worst scenario, I’ll be hospitalized from eating the wrong food or the wrong amounts. This is the ‘easy way out?’

On the other hand, in 6 short weeks, I’ve lost 45 pounds and have eliminated virtually all of my blood pressure medication; I can walk 6 ½ miles without getting winded or having to stop from joint pain; and, I am happy to do chores around the house again. I achieved this, in no small fashion, with the love and support of my family and, yes, relying on good old fashioned discipline to consume the right foods in the correct proportions.

At the end of the day, Lap-Band surgery has empowered me to take control of my food intake and regain my sense of self. It has not always been easy and it is definitely not for everyone. But it’s working for me right now. The very best part … and it didn’t happen as a result of the ‘easy way out’ … is hearing friends and loved ones tell me “Welcome, you’re back again.”

Wonderful stuff. I’m glad that he is writing about his experience and not simply shuffling it off as “diet and exercise”.

Posted in Lap Band Bloggers, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Lap Band Blog About Men

Posted by Lori on July 28, 2009

Most of the Lap Band blogs I find are written by women. Today, I found the Lap Band King – imagine that! This is from his “about” page:

I am Marcus. I am Male. I am 36. I have a wife. I have 2 girls and 2 boys. I have a big family. I have been over-weight for nearly 3/4’s of my life. I am not your normal guy. I run several companies including one multi-million dollar operation. I started in this venture in life a son a preacher man. I was raised in a small back woods town in East Texas called Votaw. Yeah thats right back woods. I was home- schooled for most of that growing up time. Thus my lack of knowledge in spelling. I was married at the age of 21. With no money in the bank. I never went to college yet, tried my luck in the pipeline oil and gas industry. I have had great success in this field. I have lots of friends that I love dearly. I am a giver. I believe that is how I am in this position in life. I have lived the American dream from driving a 74 ford to driving whatever I want to drive. THE ONLY THING I HAVE NOT OVER COME IS MY WEIGHT. In the start of my obsession to loosing and becoming the KING of my life my highest weight was 445lb. Thats a big SOB, If you know what I mean. So this site is dedicated to me and my quest to become who I see myself in the mirror – the person I really see. My day to day journey loosing weight with the help of the Lapband – I hopefully shall become the LAP-BAND KING. My surgery date was February 5, 2009.

Okay, that’s more than I can say for myself.  Anyway, here is his archive of video posts. He just seems like a fundamentally decent guy on a journey. Here is the episode from his birthday:

Also, if you’re new to the site, I want to encourage you to read Robert Morgan’s 250 pound weight loss story linked on the lower right column. It’s quite a long story, but he is a journalist and a wonderful writer. Here’s a sample:

I felt doomed to die of a heart attack by the age of 32, but I didn’t know what to do. I don’t overeat so I figured eventually it would all go away. I was certain that putting on a few extra pounds was something that happens to everyone when they hit their 30s.

It hit me like a ton of bricks this year, and I have one immature, rude, disrespectful Decatur High School student to thank for it. I was at my first volleyball game of the season in late August when I walked by the student body section. I noticed in my peripheral vision as I approached the group that one boy in particular kept staring at me. Just as my family and I passed, he quickly turned to two of his buddies and said, “Did you see how fat that dude was? What a freak!”

This definitely was not the first time I was stared at because of my weight. It happens all the time. When I see others in my same position, I notice they all get the same kind of looks I get.

Those words that boy spoke back in August are still ringing in my ears. I didn’t sign up for this, nor did I ask to be overweight.

To say I didn’t cry that night as my wife slept would be a lie. What I heard come out of that boy’s mouth cut like a knife. Of all the great kids I work with at Decatur, it took one inconsiderate teenager to shake my world.

I thought about it all night, the next day, and for the next week. I wanted to change overnight before the next person made fun of me. I see it almost every day now that my eyes were opened by this one person. People look at me differently every day, it’s just I can’t read thought bubbles as they stare when I slowly pass by.

Posted in Lap Band Bloggers, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories, Video Blogs | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Fab Lap Band Blog With Awesome Before and After Pics!

Posted by Lori on July 23, 2009

:: {she shrinks} :: – I can’t believe I’ve never found this Lap Band blog before. She has a series of side by side pics taken month by month. It’s so easy to see what she looks like as she loses weight. In her last post, she’s laying on her side in a bikini and she looks good. How many of us can do that?As to the beginning of the journey, she has her surgery in September of 2005, so you can go back in her archives to trace the whole process.

Here’s a link to the picture page: “a visual companion to She Shrinks, a weight loss surgery journal”. I’d post one of the pics here, but I can’t upload photos for whatever reason without crashing my browser. Bummer. So you’re going to have to conquer your link-o-phobia and just go to the blog.

You’re going to love this.

Posted in Lap Band Before and After, Lap Band Bloggers, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories, Weight Loss Surgery | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Lap Band Surgeon Dr. Ariel Ortiz’ Amazing Video Library

Posted by Lori on July 22, 2009

What I don’t like about most Lap Band videos is that they are too casual and ramble, or they are too corporate and don’t actual provide much substance. What I like about Dr. Ortiz’ videos is that he is very good at asking patients the questions that you want to hear answered. How much did you weigh beforehand? How much did you lose? How long did it take? How has it changed your life?

Here’s a YouTube clip of Dr. Ortiz talking about the difference between patients who are successful and patients who aren’t successful:

He has a lot of interviews with patients. This very pretty woman is one my favorites:

This young man had Lap Band surgery when he was fifteen. Dr. Ortiz is a big believer that we should take action with obese adolescents before their long term health is impacted:

Anyway,  there is a lot of information contained in those videos and that’s what it is all about. Also, you’ll see the quality of the people who come to Ortiz for surgery, and it makes it very easy to be confident that the level of care he provides is superior.

Posted in Bariatric Surgeons, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories, Video Blogs | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Before and After Lap Band Pics of Dr. Grossbard

Posted by Lori on July 22, 2009

I’m happy to announce that I’m going to be having Lap Band surgery with Dr. Ariel Ortiz in Mexico.  He’s wonderful. He’s brilliant. He’s experienced. He’s funny. And his patients are successful.

Since there is always so much consternation about going to Mexico for Lap Band surgery, I wanted to take this time to introduce you to Dr. Lee Grossbard of Zephyrville, Florida who had his Lap Band surgery performed by Dr. Ariel Ortiz in Tijuana. When asked his reason for going out of the country, this is what he says:

The primary reason today for Americans to go to Mexico is for a particular surgeon with much larger experience and numbers of cases. We are starting to see larger and larger numbers of patients that go out of the US because they want the lapband and their BMI is less than the requisite 35 for operation in the US. Also, patients below the age of eighteen are starting to make their appearance in other countries because of the FDA rules.

Dr. Grossbard, who can more that afford to have surgery in the US, went to Mexico to have the procedure done by Ortiz who has more experience than almost anyone else out there.

And he finishes, with this:

The lapband is a wonderfully simple tool, or aid, in weight reduction. I was an obese surgeon. My BMI was 44. I now have a BMI of 25. I had a lapband one year ago. I reached my goal weight after 10 months. I needed to lose over 100 pounds of weight now I personally perform lapband surgery.

The pictures are at the link because my computer keeps freezing everytime I try and link the pics or upload them.

Dr. Ortiz also has this wonderful testimony from Tim L. Hunter, a bio-medical engineer whose wife received a Lap Band. I’m going to put the whole thing in here because he says a lot of stuff that will put your mind at ease:

Recently my wife was banded by Dr. Ortiz. I’ll let her speak to her positive experience with Dr. Ortiz and the center but I want to say how impressed I was with the facilities in general and the operating room in particular.

I design medical devices and have been in many operating rooms in the States. I asked if it was possible to observe the procedure. I knew I would not be allowed to view my wife’s procedure but another patient at the facility, a nurse, said it was fine for me to observe her surgery.

The O.R. was state of the art, unlike some I’ve been in, in the U.S. I was impressed by the time Dr. Ortiz took to investigate the area where he would place the band until he found the most suitable site. In so doing he discovered and corrected two hernias the nurse-patient had. One was a very rare type, close to the heart cavity.

I discovered that Dr. Ortiz helped design some of his instruments so they would cause less trauma for the patients. I was also impressed that he used skin glue as opposed to other kinds of suturing. My wife had breast reduction 18 months ago in the U.S. and if, like Dr. Ortiz, they had used glue instead of old-fashioned sutures, I’m sure there would have been less scarring.


ny Americans have the idea that U.S. facilities are superior. Our experience shows us that’s not true. By the way, Dr. Ortiz didn’t charge extra for the hernia repairs which took longer to complete than the band insertion. Somehow I don’t think that would have been the case in the States. My wife and I agree you can’t buy better medical skill “at any price” than we received from Dr. Ortiz and his associates at the Obesity Control Center.

Tim L. Hunter

Dr. Ortiz has endorsements from several medical professionals who have had him perform their surgeries. You can read all of them here.

Dr. Ortiz wrote Lap Band For Life, one of the first books about Lap Bands. and it is available in the Love My Lap Band bookstore at Amazon. I’d encourage you to take a look around.

You should also know that Dr. Ortiz will donate 3% of every surgical fee to the Rady Children’s Hospital in San Diego. And considering that he is charging what everyone else is charging, that’s impressive. His own beautiful daughter is autistic and has received excellent care. He’s looking to make sure other children are as well cared for as his own.

Posted in Bariatric Surgeons, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Fabulous Lap Band Blog With Great Before And After Pictures

Posted by Lori on July 21, 2009

I’ve just found one of the best Lap Band Blogs ever – Chronicles From Lap Band Land! Catherine, the proprietress, is a smart, pretty, 38 year old attorney living in NYC and she can write. One of her blogs posts is a question and answer session with a friend of hers about food. Her answers are wonderfully informative.

My very good friend, Christina, just sent me an e-mail with some great questions about eating with the band. I thought I’d post them here, along with my responses. . .

What do you eat when you go out?
It varies a lot. If my band is feeling tight, I try to order something like soup or something mushy that will be easy to get down. Fish also is a great option, since most varieties are relatively soft in texture and easy to chew.

When you posted about sushi, you said that you didn’t eat the rice — why is that?
I was thinking of the rice as empty calories, and I wanted to be able to eat more fish, so I saved room by not eating the rice as well. I did eat a bite or two of it though, and it went down just fine.

What would you order in an Italian restaurant?
I went to a very nice Italian restaurant on Sunday night . . . Babbo (it’s one of Mario Battali’s places). I split an arugula salad with Erika (I just had a few bites) and ordered a small plate of gnocci with braised oxtail. It was DELICIOUS!

What would you order in a French restaurant?
Hmm. . I haven’t been out for French food recently, but fish is always good and is generally very easy to eat, so that would be one good option. I can actually eat most things, so there is never a problem finding something good on the menu.

How about Mexican?
I go to a Mexican restaurant for brunch most weekends. No problems there. I can have guacamole with a chip or two (not more because I get too full, plus, it’s fattening) and usually get either a quesadilla or carnitas (tacos with grilled pork — I only eat the pork and leave the tortilla).

Do you think you have already changed your eating habits?
Yes. Working with the band is not hard for me at this point — it has just become what I do.

You wrote what you do for breakfast, but what about other meals?
For lunch at work, I either bring a soup or I order food for delivery. I usually wind up getting soup, but sometimes I do sushi (would do it more, but it’s expensive), and I even get a salad once in a while. A few times, when I needed to get in more protein, I’ve ordered a tuna salad wrap and just ate the tuna. I keep my office door closed during lunch — that way if I get stuck, no one else has to know about it. (I kept my door closed during lunch before the surgery as well — that’s pretty common in my office.

Dinner varies a lot. If I’m home, I might make a scrambled egg (one egg. . a bit of cheese and some spices) or even have a low-calorie microwaveable dinner. If I’m feeling more festive, I might poach a piece of fish or cook some scallops.

Babbo’s gnocci with braised oxtail. I am drooling.

Do you ever fight against hunger?
No. I still get hungry when it’s time to eat, but I get satisfied pretty quickly. I eat whenever I am hungry, which is usually 3 times a day. Also, unlike before I was banded, I can’t really overeat anymore. I mean, I could, if I wanted to spend an hour or two trying to get down more food than I should have, but that’s a big time investment! 🙂 Before the band, I would often eat whatever was on my plate without stopping until I felt full (and by that point, I surely was overly full). Or I’d finish something because it was delicious, even though my hunger was totally satisfied. So, I was frequently overeating.

Do you think you really need the band to eat and live like that or is it mostly a mental help?
I do think that I need it to keep me on the straight and narrow. I think that if I did not have it, it would be very easy to slip into my old habits without really thinking about it. In some ways, the band is a mental help, but the biggest help is that it physically limits me from overeating and from eating whatever I want without thinking about it (how it will go down, whether it is what I want — given that I only get to eat a small amount each day, etc.) first.

I thought these were great questions — and hope it made for an interesting post!

Every single post of hers is informative and has substantive information about life with a Lap Band. For those of you who are still contemplating having surgery, and for those of you who are newly banded, this is a goldmine of comfort and information.

Her friend asks her if she “needs” the Lap Band. The answer to that question is that Lap Bands do more than simply limit the amount of food that you can eat. When you diet, your ancient body, fearing that you’re in a famine situation, turns down your metabolism so that more of the food that you eat is stored as fat. That’s why so many dieters find it necessary to cut back further and further on the food they eat to lose weight. In addition, your body will flood you with hormones that make you want to eat. You know that moment when you’ve been losing weight and feeling great about it, but now find yourself in front of the refrigerator stuffing down the left over chicken parmagiane that you were planning on having for lunch tomorrow? Pop psychologists will tell you that’s a moment of emotional weakness – that you’re sabotaging your weight loss because you’re afraid of success and need to get to the bottom of why you want to be fat. Bullshit. It’s hormonal and it’s normal. Inconvenient. Frustating. Infuriating. But normal. It’s a hormonal tsunami designed to get a starving cave man out of the cave to hunt down some fattened prey and it is almost as powerful as the need to drink water. It has nothing to do with your last lover or how your parents treated you.

BTW, Catherine had her Lap Band surgery in Mexico. For those of you who are contemplating the trip to Mexico, and for those of you whose family is discouraging you from making the trip, this is an incredibly valuable blog. Being able to afford a cash payment for surgery here in the US is very difficult for most people. And why spend $20k, when you can spend $8k and have surgery performed by someone who has literally done thousands of surgeries? There are lots of first rate medical facilities in Mexico, as Catherine demonstrates, and they have modeled themselves to attract American consumers.

Here’s the link to her first month of blogging and covers her pre-op routine as well as her surgery. I’d encourage you to read all the way through. You’re going to know a lot more about life with a Lap Band when you get through.

Posted in Lap Band Basics, Lap Band Before and After, Lap Band Bloggers, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Lap Band Weight Loss Surgery Covered By Medicare

Posted by Lori on July 9, 2009

Wow, this has got to be good news for a lot of people. Medicare is now covering Lap Band surgeries. Being a senior citizen and wrestling with obesity has got to be tough. Especially if you’re got grandchildren running around that you are dying to get down on the floor and play with.

I found this article about Tina Clark, who us 5 feet tall and at 39, weighed 235 pounds. To make matters worse, she was diagnosed with diabetes. And then:

In 2008, Tina was diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. She soon felt the nearly disabling effects of the R.A. medications that she was prescribed. The severe side effects included problems and pain with her knees and ankles. Although this autoimmune disease was unrelated to her weight issue, Tina knew that she needed to take considerable steps to increase her overall health, starting with her weight.

“I was only 39 years old, and I felt like I was 60.” Tina says.

Not that there is anything wrong with being sixty, still one hopes to be a bit more spry than that in their thirties.

Anyone she talked to a friend who works in the office of bariatric surgeon of Dr. Duc Vuong. Her friend invited her in for the seminar.

Ready for a fresh start, Tina began her educational period with Dr. Vuong’s office. She met with his dietitian and attended afternoon group meetings, learning about nutrition and what to expect both pre- and post-surgery.

Lap-band surgeon Dr. Duc VuongTina was delightfully surprised by the personalized and specialized service she received from the moment she walked into Dr. Vuong’s office.

She was also impressed that Dr. Vuong leads nearly all of the support groups himself. By the time she scheduled her surgery, she was very well informed of the many ways that the Lap-Band® procedure would positively affect her life, and she was involved in a support group that would help to keep her motivated and accountable.

“Our Program is very different from other clinics,” says Dr. Vuong. “I am becoming known as the ‘Support Surgeon’ because of all the personalized support I offer my patients.”

So, she had the surgery, and:

After her Lap-Band procedure, Tina started to see results immediately. She lost 2 to 3 pounds a week, going from 235 pounds to 180 pounds, and the weight is still coming off. She now eats smaller portions, chooses healthier options, and is proud to weigh in at Dr. Vuong’s office (all weigh-ins are private).

I love this:

“Dr. Vuong is one of a kind. His staff calls and checks on you even during hectic times, such as holidays or hurricane evacuations,” Tina says with a chuckle, referring to this past fall’s chaos. “He keeps in touch with his patients, unlike some other clinics.”

And the good health news:

Tina is no longer in the danger zone for diabetes, and she is off all of her rheumatoid arthritis medications. The only medicine she takes these days is vitamins!

These are the kinds of stories that you can find about Lap Band patient and I guarantee you that she loves her Lap Band. They make weight manageable. It’s not a miracle. It’s a tool. And if you’re wrestling with obesity, it’s a tool that you should look at very seriously.

Posted in Bariatric Surgeons, Lap Band Weight Loss Stories, Lap Bands And Diabetes | Tagged: , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

The Motherlode of Lap Band Weight Loss Stories

Posted by Lori on October 29, 2008

I was just speaking with True Results and wandered into their patient testimony stories – whoa! They have a lot of them. I’ve watched a handful, and this one is my favorite. Melissa tells a story of a physician calling her out on her obesity on the event of her mother’s heart attack.

The information here isn’t that dense, but it certainly gives you a very strong sense of how people who have Lap Bands feel about them. My experience, as the title of this page indicates, is that the feeling is overwhelmingly positive. This site came about because everyone I spoke with about their Lap Band said the same thing – I love my Lap Band!

When you have some time, I’d encourage you to watch the video clips. These are obviously smart, sober people who have had their lives changed by their Lap Band. They talk about how long they’ve been banded and how much weight they have lost. One of the women talks about how it’s a marathon and not a sprint. Settle in, learn to eat real food and exercise – you’ll lose the weight.

Posted in Lap Band Weight Loss Stories | Tagged: , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Karen Miller’s Lap Band Story

Posted by Lori on May 30, 2008

I can’t find the first installment of this series, but it’s about Karen Miller, a 26 year old woman, in Bridgeport, Connecticut who had a Lap Band procedure performed by Dr. Timothy Ehrlich. Like most future Bandees, she had lots of different health problems – frightening when you’re only 26. Those have gone away, and now she’s feeling (as a friend of mine put it) down right evangelical.

She said she’s actually had to stop herself from suggesting the procedure to others, for fear of seeming rude.`I don’t want to offend anybody,” said Miller, a law student at Western New England College in Springfield, Mass. “But I want to let them know that this is an option. Before I had the surgery, I didn’t even know it was out there. I wish I had known sooner.”

And her health problems are now better:

Her enthusiasm is understandable, given her response to the surgery. Before the procedure, she weighed 247 pounds. She also had Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, which led to a number of health problems, including high blood pressure, irregular glucose levels and irregular periods.

The syndrome also made it difficult for her to lose weight, even though doctors urged her to do so.

On the advice of a friend, Miller, who works in the medical records department at St. Vincent’s, decided to explore bariatric surgery. However, she wasn’t interested in the more highly publicized gastric bypass surgery. That surgery, made famous by high-profile patients such as “Today” show weatherman Al Roker, involves rerouting part of the intestine.

Unlike gastric bypass surgery, lap-band is minimally invasive with few risks. Gastric bypass surgery, on the other hand, is a more complicated surgery that carries more risks, including possible death. Another benefit to lap-band surgery is that, unlike the bypass, it’s reversible.

Miller was deemed a good candidate for the lap-band, which is most effective for patients aged 18 to 65 and having a Body Mass Index of 40 or higher. Before surgery, Miller’s BMI – measurement based on weight related to height – was 42. Her health problems also made her a good candidate for the surgery, so she signed up.

One year later, she’s lost 72 pounds.

Since the procedure, Miller has gone from 247 pounds to 175 pounds. That’s obviously garnered a lot of reaction — most of it positive — from friends, family, strangers.

And she finds herself being cheered on.

Throughout the past year, Miller’s life has changed in many ways, but the thing that surprises her most is how supportive everyone has been.

“People are getting more and more cutthroat these days,” she said. “But when people see me doing this, they’re just so encouraging. I’m very happy.

It’s a good story – always gratifying to see someone decent have things go well. In the last installment, she’s about 20 pounds away from her goal weight – and wouldn’t we all like to be there.

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Becca’s Lap Band Story Episode 4

Posted by Lori on May 28, 2008

Becca has now lost 60 pounds since February, and she looks fantastic. This clip is about how much her life as changed as a result of having Lap Band surgery. She rides bikes without worrying about the tires deflating, she plays the piano without problems and she can even cross her legs now and yes, there are some before and after pictures.

Anyway, good work, Becca! Congratulations on your triumphs.

Posted in Lap Band Weight Loss Stories, Video Blogs, Weight Loss Surgery | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Andrew Lost 260 Pounds With A Lap Band

Posted by Lori on May 27, 2008

It’s always easier for men to lose weight, we know. This is a video from True Results with their patient Andrew S. He’s being interviewed while a make up artist is getting him ready for a photo shoot. Anyway, take a look, guys. At the end of the video, you can see how trim he is now.

And for those of you who haven’t clicked on Robert Morgan’s 250 Pound Weight Loss story, do it now. He’s a sports writer, who weighed over 500 pounds when he finally had a Lap Band procedure.

And I got that way by following the standard American diet. With a busy family and a job that keeps me constantly on the move into the evenings on most nights, I ate a lot on the run – McDonald’s, Chicken Express, Wendy’s and other such food.

I remember there was a time when we ate out more than we did at home. And I remember thinking at one point that I was getting healthier because I switched to Taco Bell. At that point I was getting burritos with lettuce and cheese rather than quarter-pounders. And boy, I thought that was a huge improvement.

But deep inside I knew better. I could not stand the pain shooting up the heel of my foot or that I was out of breath walking back to the car after a football game. Better yet, I knew I was in trouble last April when I was at Odessa’s Ratliff Stadium for the regional track meet. This massive, college-size stadium has no elevator and hauling a wide load up 50 flights of stairs several times a day about gave me heart failure.

I felt doomed to die of a heart attack by the age of 32, but I didn’t know what to do. I don’t overeat so I figured eventually it would all go away. I was certain that putting on a few extra pounds was something that happens to everyone when they hit their 30s.

It hit me like a ton of bricks this year, and I have one immature, rude, disrespectful Decatur High School student to thank for it. I was at my first volleyball game of the season in late August when I walked by the student body section. I noticed in my peripheral vision as I approached the group that one boy in particular kept staring at me. Just as my family and I passed, he quickly turned to two of his buddies and said, “Did you see how fat that dude was? What a freak!”

Well, that would definitely be a wake up call. I got one of my own the other night. A young friend came by and saw a photo on the wall that my husband had taken about ten years ago. It’s a black and white shot of barefooted me in a long dress and denim jacket sitting on a stone bench. My hair is long and fluffy at the time. My hands are folded in my lap and my legs crossed. He looked at it for a second and said, “Wow, that could almost be you only much younger”. Ouch. Ouch. Ouch.

Savin’ mah pennies. Savin’ mah pennies.

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The Blog Roll of Lap Band Bloggers…

Posted by Lori on May 26, 2008

on the right side of the page, is filling up nicely. If you haven’t had a chance to do so, I’d encourage you to spend a few minutes today looking through. There is a tremendous amount of wisdom packed into the various blogs as to what the process of losing weight with a Lap Band is like.

For those of us here in the US, today is Memorial Day when we remember those whom we lost in war. To all of you who have lost someone in war, my kind thoughts go out to you today.

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Jaime’s Lost 50 Pounds In Just Over 2 Months!

Posted by Lori on May 11, 2008

Nice blog update. Jaime, of Jaime’s Journey, went to the doctor the other day and has officially lost 50 pounds! She started off at 350 and her doctor is now teasing her that she’s just melting away. She has before and after pictures up as well – pre-surgery, 1 month post and 2 months post.

Lise the Loser came back from her weekend at Langley, Washington to discover that she has officially lost 30 pounds and now weighs – dun da da da! – 199. She is in Onederland to stay!

Achieving Me has bought herself a fabulous black ruffled dress (it is dreamy) for the Winter Ball she will be attending this July! She got it in a size 8 (12 for our Aussie friends) so that it fits in a few months.

Lastly, I think Gwen has some new photos up of herself in her photo carousel.

Happy Mother’s Day to all. A documentary I co-produced a couple years ago on the training of opera singers is being screened for the board of the organization we worked for tomorrow night. I’m excited about that. My darling 29 year old son may, or may not, be aware of Mother’s Day but you know, a mother’s hope springs eternal.

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Great Before And After Lap Band Story!

Posted by Lori on May 7, 2008

This video is from a Fox News Affiliate in Florida with Dr. Joette Giovinco who is doing a weeklong series on weight loss. She’s profiling Lap Bandee Bette Gashler who has gone from a size 22 to a size 10. Best of all, Bette is now pain free. And in regard to the poll that I linked last night about whether bandees regret their choice, Ms. Gashler says she doesn’t regret it at all and that this is the smallest she’s been since her daughter was born. It’s a two minute video – very quick. It does have good, clear close ups of the Lap Band as well.

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