Weight Loss Surgery - Do you think I would qualify? What is it like to see a Doctor?

09-24-2005, 07:04 PM
I am sick of being overwight and have been for a long time.
I dont know if I would qualify though. my BMI is 35.6
What is the differnce between Lap-Band and Gastric Bypass. Is the LapBand Permanant-would you always have to get the filler filled and drained or can it stay one way all the time?

I am depressed about this weight and I have kinda high blood pressure but its not BAD. I am an adopted child so I do not know if and what runs in the "family"

What do you think? I have been on

weight watchers 3 times
Medifast -too $$$
Atkins too many times
Pill- too many to name

Anyone know anyone is INdiana that may accpept me?

what is it like at a consulataion, do they basically tell you YES or NO if they will do the surgery to you, or do they make you try a Diet?

09-24-2005, 11:07 PM
I too have considered having gastric bypass....it is a scary thought though for me. You normally have a consultation and have to pay a fee that isn't covered by insurance then you meet with a nutritionist and then you have several tests done. I think your BMI has to be over 35. They do ask you what kind of health problems you have due to your obesity and they base their decision on that....Your health, BMI and insurance. I live in Alabama and with Blue Cross Blue Shield here you have to be on a supervised diet for 6 - 12 months (that includes WW, nutritionist, Jenny Craig, etc...) The diet does have to be documented.
Right now I am just trying to take one day at a time and eat healthy and exercise and hope and pray I don't have to make the decision to have the surgery. A friend of mine had it without any problems. Hope this helps.

09-25-2005, 08:11 AM
Hi!!!! hmmm. you're just starting out, i see. first things first. you need your regular doctor to support this plan. if you've gone through this doctor for weight loss programs, like medications, it often counts towards the insurance requirements of a 'supervised diet.' have you two talked? you should be able to get a recommendation for a surgeon as well. i know that there are major programs in fort wayne and in indianapolis, and there must be others.

and then, even before you find a surgeon, it's a good idea to check with your insurance company to see what their rules are. different companies have different rules, and they change the rules often! <awful, isn't it???>

in the meantime. BOTH OF YOU - please remember that whatever you do NOW to control your eating and to get some exercise is absolutely the right thing to do, whether or not you have the surgery. although we eat 'weird' for the first year or so after surgery, we become quite normal afterwards, and we still have to do what everyone else does:

controlled food intake

but we get to add
extra protein
lifelong monitoring

to that list.

stick around, ladies! we're glad to have you!!!!

09-26-2005, 03:34 PM

Jiffypoo, as always, has given you good advice. The first things I would do would be to talk to my regular doctor and to call my insurance company to see what's covered.

I have the lapband and am very happy with it. Some insurance companies are still spouting the line that it's "experimental" and won't cover it, even though it's the preferred surgery in many parts of the world. I've found that lots of primary care physicians know very little about it too, so it's up to you to do research on all types of surgery. You need to be a very informed patient. Google is a wonderful tool!

With a BMI of just over 35 and assuming you have some comorbidities due to weight, (keep in mind I know nothing about you other than that), the band would usually be considered a good option. You still have to work to lose the weight (as you do with any WLS), but the difference is that it's a whole lot easier and the weight actually stays off if your band is properly filled.

I've been banded since April, 2004 and have had five fills. With the first few fills, you're trying to reach the "sweet spot" with restriction, so the band is effective. I've found as I've lost weight that I need to get adjusted from time to time because the band loosens a little as you lose fat around your stomach. Fills are easy and almost painless.

Ask away if you have any more questions!


10-01-2005, 01:18 PM
Jennifer....I had the surgery last May 2004. I live in the Pittsburgh PA area and went to a hospital here . The docs were absolutely wonderful. On my first visit I found out whether or not I could have the surgery ...our BMI had to be so high..and I just made it by one point...at that time that was a good thing :D ...any other time that would have been a bad thing.. :( After that I had to visit a psychiatrist, a dietitian, had to have a list of things that the doc (my personal doc) and I had tried in order for me to lose weight. You know, a history of your attempts at weight loss. Then I went back to my gastric bypass doc and he took all the time in the world with me..making sure my husband and I both understood what was going to happen.. Then they sent in the insurance papers...the docs office did..thats the longest weight ...waiting to see if your insurance company will approve you. Not everyone can have this type of surgery.
The biggest misconception about this surgery is this...for the most part...people will think that you took the easy way out to lose weight...Believe me this is not easy. Every day is a challenge..I still will throw up if I eat too fast or not chew enuff. I very seldom go to restaurants ..not worth the money...no matter what the cost..I eat maybe a $1.00 worth of food...no matter how badly I might want more...I just cant have it.
Then you have to be aware that because you lose weight quite quickly ..your skin will sag...big time...and the only way to remove that is thru more surgery. All the exercising in the world doesnt reduce that skin, and its not pretty... :lol: but, no matter what....I would do it a hundred times over again...What I wanted was no pain, from my knees hurting and my hips hurting and my back hurting...today I have NO PAIN!!!! I didnt feel this good at 21. Oh,...one other thing....you MUST once you have this surgery take vitamin pills...People will tell you no you dont...but please..only listen to your doc cause it is your health and not theirs....but thats about it...for me it was a God send...I would never tell you to have the surgery....you need to make that decision on your own...Talk to your doctor ..listen to what he has to say and then make your decision....

10-02-2005, 10:23 PM
janet - it's real nice to see you around these parts!!! and you're doing so great!!!!!!

i'm with you on the vitamins. and everything else. wls, no matter what kind a person has, requires commitment and work. we're not excused from gym class, are we!!!