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Saturday, May 3, 2014

Stretch Armstrong?

Remember that toy?  Stretch Armstrong?  The last name was a pun--he had strong arms!  But the important part of it was that he could be stretched and stretched--across a room!  

When I first had this surgery, nearly three years ago, people, being the doomsayers they are, told me that they knew people who gained all their weight back...and MORE.  Everyone had a sad story to tell about someone they KNEW.

Hearing that story freaked me out, so I asked the nurse practitioner in my surgeon's office if she had experience with people who gained all their weight back.  She told me that in her seven years of working in that office, she had NEVER seen anyone gain ALL their weight back. Yes, people gained back 10-15 pounds over a few years, but she had never seen ANYONE gain all their weight back.

So why the naysayers?  Can it be that people just don't WANT to admit that this surgery WORKS?  Last week's Grey's Anatomy mentioned a patient who had had gastric bypass surgery but that the stomach pouch and intestine had stretched out and needed to be repaired.  However, the show didn't mention WHY his pouch had stretched, and nothing more was mentioned about that patient.  I was hoping that they would expound on the subject, but they did not.  I'm not sure why they didn't address the issue--perhaps there was pressure from the bariatric surgical community.  Perhaps they didn't want to dump more fuel on the fire. Perhaps they didn't want to further the idea that everyone who has the surgery gains ALL their weight back.

I definitely can eat more today than I could two and a half years ago.  But I still can only eat a very small amount.  About half of a half of a chicken breast.  If I have one more bite than I should, I get sick.  One bite more.  How on earth could I possibly gain ALL my weight back?  On any given day, I weigh between 158 and 163...depending on intestinal issues more than anything else.  Maybe it's a surgical problem?  Perhaps the people who are "gaining back all their weight and then some" are doing so because they have inept surgeons?

I don't have any answers, and I can't speak for everyone.  Personally, I don't know ANYONE who gained back all of his or her weight.  I DO know that I'm still about 145 pounds down from where I started nearly three years ago--and I don't imagine that I'll be STRETCHING anytime soon...

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