Weight Loss Surgery - I have lost 185 pounds. Why don't I feel better?

03-25-2014, 11:06 AM
Hi Folks,

I had to check in with how tired I feel. I have lost a considerable amount of weight. I notice that my mobility is greatly improved, but my fatigue level is about the same, maybe even worse. I feel tired most of the time. I am 7.5 months post op and have lost 150 pounds post op. My iron is actually high. I eat according to the recommended guidelines, take my vitamins and sometimes do not drink quite as many fluids as I should. I am very discouraged about my fatigue level. My doctor says to give it a year. I had a duodenal switch. They found a bacterial infection in my 6 month check up. I am now on antibiotics one week a month for the next 6 months. I am really too tired to do my life. I keep cutting back but it never seems enough. thanks for listening. Any ideas are appreciated.


03-25-2014, 11:28 AM
I remember your posts from before your surgery, I'm glad you are doing so well weight loss wise. I have no thoughts on the fatigue but I sure hope it gets better soon.

03-25-2014, 12:08 PM
Dehydration causes fatigue. Also, I see no mention of exercise. Exercise actually gives us energy.

03-25-2014, 02:38 PM
I'm going on the assumption that you have had a complete blood work done including thyroid function because hypothyroidism can cause fatigue. Now this may be kind of out there but seeing that you are in an area that has had a really long winter, same as me, could some of this be seasonal affective disorder? Sometimes just not being outside and getting sunshine etc really affects us in many ways that we aren't aware. It's something to think about, you might feel better in the next couple of weeks as we (hopefully) move into spring. Lastly how about exercise? I see that you have posted about having mobility problems, are you increasing your exercise? Exercise released 'good feeling' neurotransmitters. Any of this help?

03-25-2014, 02:59 PM

03-25-2014, 03:05 PM
I second having your thyroid panel done, and also have you checked your B12? You can be fine on iron and low on B12 and get symptoms of anemia.

03-25-2014, 03:22 PM
First off all i have to say is WOW! 185 lbs is a monumental achievement! That is just amazing! Second, yes it's true that seasonal weather can bring your good emotions down and increase your depression levels, because winter causes our brain to think that it's night time since there is no sun. So winter increases our melatonin for being more tired and losing energy easier, so were more prone to depression, fatigue, and feeling sleepy. You could also be dehydrated, try drinking powerade, there are no calories in this and no aspartame! This will help you feel refreshed and also help replenish your electrolytes you may have lost through fatigue. Also, your body could be trying to get used to your new level of mobility, because you probably had little to non before, and your body is trying to figure out what to do with it, because it is not used to all this extra mobility you have gained. Give it roughly a month or more, your body will soon sync up with your pace and things will start moving smoothly again soon. Alos, make sure to exercise! Even if your tired, try to do at least 20 minutes of exercise everyday, this improves your feel good hormones and chemicals, called endorphins and makes you more energized. Sorry this reply is so long, i just wanted you to know that all this fatigue is only temporary and that it will pass. Hope this helped!

03-25-2014, 06:38 PM
hmmmmmm. let me just toss a few thoughts out here. first of all, anemia. did you know that the 'warning' level that should make docs take a look at what's going on is a decrease in 2 g/dL in your hemoglobin? that could EASILY put you still in a normal range, but dropping.

I also have to say that there have been times since my surgery that attempts at exercise, no matter how gentle, have sent me to bed for a nap. I don't really know why, but when I don't get some sort of energy boost [or at least no change], pushing myself doesn't help at all, and makes it worse.

vitamin deficiency? electrolyte imbalance? i don't know... really - i don't.

the other thing is that you've lost a huge amount of weight - your body has gone through a lot of metabolic changes and might be catching up and adjusting.

Now, I don't really want to bring this up to scare you, but have you seen a cardiologist? i'm asking because i developed a stress-related arrhythmia that can exhaust me. one of the cardiologists said that WLS increases the risk of some electrical problems in some people's hearts.

all i can say is: rest when you need to, keep on with what you're doing, exercise when you can, and make sure to get your labwork done regularly, and keep an eye on it. small changes, especially with a smaller body, can make a difference

03-25-2014, 11:48 PM
oh sorry just thought of something else. sleep apnea. have you had a sleep study done? normally losing weight helps with sleep apnea but anyone can get it. sleep apnea will leave you feeling exhausted most of the time and able to fall asleep at the drop of a hat.

Well everyone's come up with a number of things that could be the problem or part of the problem! don't be scared though of all these things being tossed out there, we are just brainstorming. I hope though that you are feeling reassured because often I think the average person thinks that overwhelming fatigue is 'just something in your head' and not a real condition. Likely there is something going on, just need to narrow it down. With sleep apnea the major symptoms are waking up in the morning feeling like you didn't even sleep, snoring loud enough to wake another person, stopping breathing during sleep (if you have a significant other they might be able to identify this) and falling asleep easily during the day. My husband has sleep apnea, he is only about 20 lbs overweight. It is usually easy to diagnose with a sleep study and you wear a mask during the night that helps with breathing. Most people find it works wonders and they wake up feeling like a new person. Just a thought.

03-26-2014, 01:40 AM
Adding to the brainstorming -- Have you had your Vitamin D checked? I felt so sluggish and foggy and depressed, and it was my Vitamin D level. It was about 16, and should've been around 60. Once I got the level up, I felt much better - amazingly so! I take Vitamin D every day to maintain the level.

04-09-2014, 10:07 AM
I know this reply is a little late. And it is actually my first post here though I've been lurking for a while. But one thing to consider is depression. For many people (including me) depression manifests as tiredness rather than sadness. I have no idea if this is something you've considered already or if you are already being treated for depression, but I wanted to mention it because it is treatable, but without treatment can be debilitating for some.

04-09-2014, 08:37 PM
Try drinking all of the liquids that you're supposed to, and see if that doesn't help. It may not be the answer, but it's worth a try. When I feel sluggish and tired, it's almost always because my fluid levels are down. Just a thought. :)

04-10-2014, 10:19 AM
Having JUST gotten home from emergency gall bladder surgery last week. it looks like there's been something brewing for quite awhile that could have explained much of the fatigue, foot intolerance, and so on that i'be been dealing with for so long. We simply might not react as planned to a variety of physical issues.... don't give up!

04-20-2014, 01:04 AM
Thanks to all of you for brainstorming. I really appreciate it. And the winner is... Hypothyroidism! I was just diagnosed a few days ago. You were all winners really: I am a regular exerciser, use a BIPAP for sleep apnea, sit in front of a SAD light most days, have had heart surgery for heart arythmias (I was really worried it might be this), See a therapist for depression (has not been much of a problem for several years years) I am going to check with my doctor on the D and B12 levels. Thank you for the reminder to drink plenty of fluids. Even before WLS, I noticed how tired I got if I did not have enough fluids.

Besides the hypothyroidism, I am on antibiotics 1 week out of the month for a bacterial infection that resulted from my surgery, I am taking plenty of probiotics but notice my energy really nose dives when I start the antibiotics and nose dives again close to my next dose. I see my doctor this week and she is going to send me to an endocrinologist. I will let you know how things go. Thanks again for all of your suggestions.


P.S. I am 2.5 pounds away from having lost 200 pounds. I am THRILLED!!!!

04-20-2014, 01:52 PM
so glad to hear this!!!!!

04-20-2014, 05:17 PM
Hugs! I am so glad you finally have an answer and are on the way to a solution. You deserve so much better than to feel tired all the time! Good luck!

05-09-2014, 11:20 AM
Good you have found the explanation for your fatigue.

05-09-2014, 11:50 AM
good news that you have a diagnosis!

05-14-2014, 06:54 PM
Hi there!

I have hypothyroidism also. I found that out when blood work was ordered about 10 years ago for my fatigue. I take a low dosage of a thyroid hormone and it helps. Occasionally, I get my thyroid levels checked, blood work and I should do it more often. Fortunately, my levels have been good but it does contribute to low energy. Take care!


05-25-2014, 02:13 PM
The beat goes on. I got diagnosed last week with Grave's Disease. It is an autoimmune disease where your body attacks your thyroid. Right now I am in remission and feeling somewhat better. I have to be monitored every 4-6 weeks. I am choosing not to treat it right now. The medication my doctor suggested has a rare but real side effect that requires a liver transplant!!! No thanks!!!

Now that I am in remission, the weight loss will slow down. A very small price to pay for feeling better.

I was recently displaced from my home due to water damage. I am living in a hotel, eating out, and looking for a new place to live. Also, I am taking my landlords to court. Way stressful!!! Went out last night and got some healthy snacks for my in room fridge. today I am going to by another food and exercise diary today. Trying to get back to "normal" one step a t a time.


05-26-2014, 04:00 PM
good grief. you just can't catch a break, can you? but at least you have a diagnosis, and that's a big step. hope your housing woes get resolved soon...