Friday, June 12, 2009

There but for the grace of God

Today I spent 9 hours having tests and seeing Doctors--well, at least I was in their waiting rooms. I saw the surgeon, the dietician, and the anethesioligist's nurse practitioner with a brief talk with the anesthesiologist.

Taking medical histories has become quite time-consuming. Hippa may be partly responsible for that. You have to give the same information over and over again.

The low-carb liquid diet I'm on has already made me lose 5 lbs. It's supposed to shrink your liver prior to surgery so that the Dr. can do the surgery with only 1 incision. This incision will then become the port to adjusting the band as the stomach shrinks.

The way in which I eat will change drastically. It seems counter-intuitive to all the diet advice out there. Although I'll need to drink plenty of liquids, I'll have to refrain from drinking for 30 minutes prior to eating a meal, take 30 minutes to eat my meal with no liquids, and wait 30 minute to drink again.

Liquids make the food drain out of the stomach faster and make you hungry quicker. You also have to avoid high fiber and breads because they expand with liquid and could expand your stomach. Pop bubbles can do the same. You want to keep the new stomach pouch created by the band small so the feeling of fullnes will occur quickly and last.

I saw a mother with a 4 yr. old in the Dr.'s waiting room. She appeared to have lost a lot of weight and now had skin sacks that still had fat in them hanging down to her knees and underarm skin hanging half-way down her arms. She'll need surgery to remove all that. This addiction does tremendous damage and I feel so grateful that mine has not brought me to that point and at such a young age. There but for the grace of God go I.

As it is I am on 3 blood pressure meds, and 4 cholesterol meds. But there are people much worse than I. If it weren't for my co-morbidities I'm not even heavy enough to qualify for the surgery.

If it weren't for the line-up of meds on my counter, the borderline diabetes, and my rapidly deteriorating joints and constant pain exacerbated by the extra weight, I would not be doing this surgery. I would still be trying all the ineffective methods that only ever worked for a while and despairing of ever getting this compulsion under control and out of my head.