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Everything posted by LoriBecky

  1. LoriBecky

    Packed and ready

    Paula - you'll do GREAT The recovery isn't too different with the band removal - revision at the same time - except for the drain! Not a fun part of the surgery, but a vitally important part to help detect a leak. OCC has NEVER had one, but we are always cautious with our patients! Enjoy some downtime while you are there, get plenty of rest and stay hydrated Let me know how you are doing!
  2. Paula - keep me posted on how you are doing - and you can even call me from the phone in your recovery room! Yes Pammie, I've been thinking about it this last year when I started having some band trouble and I finally just jumped in.
  3. as far as weightloss, statisically sleeve patients lose the most - very similar to bypass without the malabsorption and the problems that go with that. statisically - band patients lose 50% of their excess weight - plication patients lose more like 60 - 70% and sleeve lose 70-80%+. Bypass patients will lose weight a bit quicker in the first months, but sleeve patients keep it off better. For revision - we recommend the sleeve. Sleeve revision patients do better then Plication Revision.
  4. I got back home late yesterday afternoon. So happy to be home with my kiddo's! While I was in Tijuana my husband and I celebrated our 27th wedding anniversary - I told him I was getting the PRP and Botox as a gift for him... not sure he bought it, but oh well Before I forget, let me say that I have had botox quite a few times, in the US and with Dr. So at OCC/The Ariel Center - and Dr. So is the BEST! Never any bruising, never over "toxed" - I still look like myself, have great expression, but wrinkleless in all the right places! Very anxious to see how the PRP rejuvenate's my skin... I'm already noticing a hydration difference, and I'm told within the next few months I really start to see my skin changing... I'll keep you posted and I'll try to remember to take pictures! OK... back to my sleeve revision. I really didn't have much pain at all - I did have some discomfort and really most of that came from the drain. Since I'm a revision patient I had to have my drain in a day or 2 longer then a "virgin" sleeve patient. I will tell you that within 5 minutes of having that drain removed, I was feeling sooooooo much better! The drain removal wasn't fun, but not nearly as bad as I thought. A few deep breaths and it was out - I kept waiting for it to hurt, but it didn't - it just felt strange. I actually worked quite a bit while I was there. Monday had surgery, Tuesday went in for a drain check and met with the doctors. Wednesday I was at OCC having meetings with the doctors and staff, Thursday I recorded videos and did some video interviews of other patients. Friday I had a couple of other meetings then went back to the hotel and answered phone calls and emails (actually I was answering emails everyday except Monday & Tuesday). We left early Saturday to miss border traffic and head home. I'm working on sipping liquids all day to make sure I stay well hydrated. Warm tea seems to go down better then something cold - although a sugar free popsicle is fabulous! I have been having a drinkable yogurt a day. I tried the Activia but there is so much sugar in those, that I felt lousy, so I switched to Trader Joes Greek liquid yogurt. I had picked some up on my way to OCC and tried them after the Activia I had bought there was an epic fail (stomach cramps and a mad dash to the restroom). I would say if you can't get your hands on the Liquid Greek Yogurt, when you are home buy some plain greek yogurt and blend it up with some milk or Lactaid and use a shot or 2 of the sugar free Torani syrups or even some reduced sugar jelly/spreads to flavor it - or even some honey... whatever you like. Too much sugar so soon after a sleeve can cause a bit of a "dumping". Another tip - and this one you can take with you when you go for surgery, if you have a Target, look in the aisle with the Crystal Light mixes for the Archer Farms brand Simply Balanced drink mix - box of 8 little pouches to dump into a water bottle (10 calories). They have electrolytes and vitamins (basically they are a cheaper, portable version of the Sobe Lifewater. My favorite is the Pomegranate Yumberry, but the Blackberry Blueberry is really good, too! I got a wee bit tired of Chicken Stock (even though the Lucerna's is really good!) remember, my surgery was Monday and I didn't leave until Saturday. Miso soup was a really good alternative for me. My husband went out to a local Japanese restaurant (you can ask at OCC for the good ones - ask Gloria - she recommended a great one). I just avoided the Tofu and the seaweed in the soup - you could probably ask for it strained, but I didn't think of that ahead of time- it was a great alternative to the Chicken Stock. I also drank quite a bit of warm tea. If you have favorite tea bags - take them with you. You can use the coffee pot in your room to heat the water and then brew your tea. If you like your tea sweetened, take some splenda or stevia with you - the only thing in the condiment pouch was sugar. I admit I over did a bit last night, unpacking, laundry, etc - and I did start to feel a little pulling pain, so PLEASE follow the guidelines and don't lift or bend too much so soon after surgery. I know this all sounds a bit boring, but I figured since I had some questions about how a sleeve revision patient may feel after, I thought I'd share this part of my journey with you as well. You know how to reach me if you have any questions! 1-866-376-7849 ext. 81
  5. If you had surgery with us, please call Dr. So or Dr. Martinez at 1-866-376-7849 ext. 5 and speak with one of them. It sounds like you may need a bit of a touch up to your plication to tighten it up a bit. This can happen sometimes, but unless you call and let us know, we can't evaluate the issue Call tomorrow morning and speak with one of our doctors so they can determine if this is what is needed!
  6. I had my sleeve revision surgery yesterday and so far so good. I had a minor issue with the drain in the afternoon, but Dr. Martinez fixed me right up. Dr. O said my stomach tissue was in great shape and he could tell I had not abused my band at in the past - i never had issues with PBing or forcing my band. Like I've said in prevous posts, for over 5 years I had a great relationship with my band (june would have been my 6th year bandiversary) - you can read some of my previous posts for what brought me the to the decision to have a sleeve revision. I don't have much pain - some tenderness at the drain site where I needed a couple of extra stitches. I'm back at the hotel now, and having been walking some, sleeping a little, and staying hydrated. Even with the problems I was having with the pre-op diet shakes, I still managed to get off 10 pounds before surgery - probably one of the reasons my surgery went so smoothly, I did exactly what I was told to do to prepare for surgery! (How can I tell my patients what to do, if I won't do it myself!) I'll keep posting to the blog to let you know how I'm doing. Right now I'm really happy that I have my sleeve, but I am still mourning my band. For a split second I was going to ask if I could keep it, but I have no idea what I would have done with it LOL So... i'll always be your band budy, but I would also like to get to know some sleeve sisters too, so we share our experiences! If you have any questions you can email lori@obesitycontrolcenter.com
  7. I found this quote today in an interview with Carnie Wilson. She recently had the Band Over Bypass surgery. Dr. Ortiz actually pioneered this type of surgery and has been performing for years and has performed hundreds of these! I think for anyone that is hesitant about finding out more about a revision surgery, this will hit home! "My message to people is you have to help yourself and when you're ready to change something, then you're ready. Nobody can do it for you. Don't hide out by yourself and feel ashamed, like a failure. You have to reach out and get help to do something about it. " Carnie Wilson If you are struggling with a failed procedure, we can help!
  8. LoriBecky

    Soy Protein

    Woohooo.... i'm so relieved (literally!) the Soy Protein seems to be making me feel better (read my last post about Whey protein and it being a milk derivitive). I started on the EAS Soy Protein (chocolate flavored) last night, mixed with some light chocolate soy milk, with a spinkle of the PB2 Chocolate Peanut Butter Powder (if you haven't heard of PB2 you really should look it up, you get the flavor of peanut butter without all that fat! - I get mine on Amazon, but I've heard some Wal-Marts carry it) Anyway... I had a shake last night and one this morning and so far... no "issues" My tummy feels better, my intestines are not screaming, and well, I'm not getting as much exercise as I have been the last few days - if you don't understand what I mean, just think about it LOL I leave tomorrow to head to the hotel then get an early start on Monday for pre-ops & surgery. I'm nervous, excited, nervous, excited... but most of all, I'm ready!
  9. sure! oh and I checked my Whey shots and they are lactose free - woohoo, so those should be fine for after surgery. I still plan on spacing them out throughout the day. I bought EAS Soy Chocolate Shake, so I'll report back later today and let you know how it goes...
  10. Ksanford, i don't think you meant bypass, we didn't do a bypass on 3/30. It is not uncommon to not see a large drop the first couple of weeks after surgery, because you will retain some fluids and swelling shortly after surgery. You should see a loss coming shortly. You should still be on the liquid phase, so even if you aren't seeing it on the scale, you should be seeing it in your clothes. Even after I had my original band surgery, the first 10 days I only dropped a pound, but as I headed into the end of the 2nd week and into the 3rd week it really started coming off. That is pretty normal. Dr. Miranda is in her office right now so you should give her a call 1-866-376-7849 ext. 86. Don't get discouraged! You should see the weight coming off any day now!
  11. Well... I've been suffering, how shall I say, with bathroom problems from the protein shakes. I know I'm lactose intolerant so I've been mixing my shakes with Soy Milk or Almond Milk, but still, its been brutal. I did some research today and discovered that my protein shakes are Whey based and Whey is derived from (drumroll please) MILK! good grief! So... today I'm off to purchase some soy based protein shakes and try to calm my poor gut down a bit! I'm guessing these protein shots I bought for after surgery are going to be a problem as well, since they are Whey shots. I think I may do OK with those because I plan on spacing each shot out all day - it is 42 grams of protein in each 3+ ounce shot - so I'll put some in my water or crystal light or tea once I'm back from my sleeve revision surgery to make sure I keep up my protein intake. So here is the tip... if you suffer from lactose intolerance, or find yourself having trouble with your protein shake, you may want to switch to Soy based - or vice versa - and see how that goes! I'll let you know how the switch goes I leave Sunday to head to TJ for my Monday morning surgery! I will have my computer with me so I'll blog from there!
  12. Hi Paula, the pre-op diet getting ready for a revision surgery is tough! The protein shakes are doing a number on my gut (I have IBS and the protein shakes seem to give me trouble). Its tough to go through stress AND a pre-op diet at the same time - my husband was let go from his job almost 2 weeks ago, so this is a very stressful time right now, and the head hunger - or rather for me, chocolate hunger, is sometimes so loud I think others can hear me crying out for it. I'm trying to look at it like this, there are so many things going on in my life that I have zero control over, staying on my pre-op diet is one of the only things I CAN control. I keep telling myself Just Do It... I think I'll blog on this a bit later.... if you need some support, just call me
  13. Hi Bree, Dr. Ortiz actually pioneered the band over bypass procedure that was recently performed on Carnie Wilson. I had actually emailed Carnie about the surgery over 3 years ago! The way the bypass surgery is done makes it very easy for the stomach to stretch out. Dr. Ortiz has been putting bands over bypasses for years to give that restriction back. Our band over's are very successful! If you want more info - you can email me at lori@obesitycontrolcenter.com or call me at 1-866-376-7849 ext. 81 and I can try to get you in touch with other band over patients. Weight loss is hard, and your "tool" isn't performing like it used to, don't let your weight get really out of control before you reach out for help!
  14. LoriBecky


    You are doing GREAT! As for the extra skin - if you do have a problem with that, which not all patients do, we can help you with that later... for now just focus on getting healthier and getting to your surgery date! I'm excited for you! I'm excited for me, too
  15. Paula - its tough when we make a decision that we know is in our best interest, and we are going to a well known and trusted facility, and someone hears "mexico" and makes an assumption! You know your body better then anybody does, and you have done your research. Rest assured in your knowledge and not the misinformation of others. We will take great care of you
  16. Hey Paula - we are in this together! We'll take this journey and share our experiences! I would suggest doing a blog, it has been very helpful to me to voice my thoughts, fears, and soon my triumphs. Instead of Band Buddies, we'll be Sleeve Sistas! Call or email me anytime!
  17. Thanks Buffalot - its been a very cathartic experience for me. I know this sounds silly, but I have a personal relationship with my band, and I will miss her (yes, my band is a girl LOL) I'll keep this going after my surgery too so you all can come with me on this journey.
  18. I think we all reach this stage in the pre-op diet where we start to think maybe I don't need to do this surgery, I'm losing weight OK - can't I just keep going and FINALLY keep this weight off all by myself? Well if 35 years of history tell me anything (yes, dieting in some shape or form since age 12) the answer to that question is NO! For some people, keeping off the weight hasn't been a problem. For 95% of us, that is the biggest problem. It has never been about losing the weight for me, its been the long haul keeping it off that has eluded me until I got my band in 2006. Now I'm on the pre-op diet preparing for my band removal/sleeve revision surgery, and those same questions are starting to haunt me... I'm doing it, I'm losing weight again, do I really need to have this revision surgery? The answer is YES! I know I do. I'm no longer having success with my band, if you've read my other blog entries, you'll know we've been besties for a long time, but the relationship is strained now, due to injury, accident, medications, stretched pouch, port pain... its time for a change. And I know that without this revision surgery, the weight will continue to creep on, and this loss I'm having on the liquid diet, will be short lived. I don't have consistent restriction with my band anymore, in fact, I really don't have much restriction at all. (for all your bandsters doing so well, please don't be scared about my experience, I am not the norm for a bandster!! Keep on keepin' on!!! and yes, I will miss my band!) So, for all of us that struggle with the question, do I really need that surgery when i'm doing so well on the pre-op diet, the answer for most of us is, YES!!!!.. to help me keep up with the loss, and to keep the weight off... YES! I need it, and i'm not ashamed to ask for and get the help that I need and want to get healthier, and stay that way long term!
  19. And so it begins.... the liquid only phase of the pre-op diet that all sleeve revision patients that still have their band must endure. Its not too bad, of course, it is my first day. I don't have to be on it quite as long as others because nothing gets stuck at my band right now, and In the almost 6 years that I've had my band, I haven't PB'd - so the liklihood of inflammation is reduced. My husband is blending up some fabulous high protein shakes. I'm using the whey protein powder and mixing it with Soy Light Chocolate Milk - that reallly helps with the flavor, as do the Torani Syups! A splash of the sugar free peanut butter flavor in my chocolate shake goes a long way to making it taste better and gives me some variety! I'm still a little nervous about surgery, but if you've been following my blog, you'll know that is just my process. I'm really excited and just anxious to have it done! My port has been bothering me a bit lately, maybe its psychosomatic, my body's way of telling my worrying brain that this is OK, this is the right time for a change, and to quit questionning my decision. My husband is really on board at this point, he had his moments of wondering, but the more research he does on his own, the more he is really excited for this change as well. He has seen this last year of my struggles with my band, my fighting to keep it and then the resolution that its time to move on as my body doesn't seem to want to cooperate with the band anymore. Maybe its me mourning my band. We've been great friends for quite a few years now. I thought I'd have it forever. I wanted to have it forever. Most of our patients will! But for some of us, either a life change, an accident, illness, medication, a slipped band, insufficient weight loss - whatever it is, it changes our perspective and our relationship with our band, and we have to make a decision. I know without a tool, I will surely gain back the weight I've lost. Even though I have changed my habits, I do eat better than I did before, I know how easily those habits return, and I need a tool. In order for my body to stay at a lower weight, I have to eat less than many people at that weight would eat. I can't be as active as some are. So this is my decision to stay healthy and get even healthier. I'm ready for what's to come. I truly hope that, as in most cases, Dr. Ortiz and Dr. Martinez can remove my band and perform the sleeve revision during the same surgery, but even if it has to be a 2 step process, I'm ready.
  20. I had a question from a band patient about medications and what started me on this road to a sleeve revision, so i thought I would post here about my experience. Remember, this is just MY experience. Everyone reacts differently to medication. Believe me, I'm on a LOT of medications (mostly due to pain), but here is what happened to me... I was on a long term antibiotic therapy - CIPRO - for an intestinal issue (nothing to do with my band) that caused inflammation in the lining of my stomach - so that caused inflammation under my band. As soon as Dr. O heard what I had been on he told me to stop taking it immediately and gave me some alternative names of meds to choose. Dummy me should have checked with OCC before my US doc started me on this - but my US doc knew I had a band - I guess the inflammation doesn't happen with everyone, but I had been on this medication for 6 months, so there in lies the problem. It is possible for any medication to cause inflammation - but usually you aren't on them long term. OCC doctors had me start a regimen of anti-reflux meds - because they help to protect and heal the lining of the stomach, but the stretched pouch had already happened, and it doesn't seem like that ever healed. If it has been stretched for too long, scar tissue can form, holding that stretch in place, and that is probably what happened to me. Doesn't happen often, but looks like that is what happened to me.... If you are going to be on any long term medication, just call Dr. So at 1866-376-7849 ext. 5 and review it with him and he can give you some pointers! And as always, if you notice any difference in the restriction of your band that doesn't settle down within a few days, CALL!
  21. Is it crazy that I'm a little nervous about my sleeve revision surgery? As the days go by I kind of just wish it was already over. The reason I ask, "Is it crazy" is because, I'm the Patient Coordinator. I'm the one always reassuring patients, explaining the details, and helping them through the process. I know everything will be just fine, I really do. But, this is my process, about everything. Turning it over and over, questionning my decisions, wondering if I tried hard enough or should have tried something else. Is that a "woman" thing? I've thought about this for quite awhile now, and I know the sleeve is where I want to go and I'm excited about it. I'm ready for a change! I'm in a bit of a catch 22 because of some physical limitations, I can't exercise my way to a healthier weight, at least not yet, but with the loss of more weight, my physical activity will improve, my back will improve, even recovery from my 2 foot surgeries will improve as I decrease my weight. If anyone else is going through this, I'd be happy to discuss it with you. Review your options with you, and reassure you about your choices. I'm excited about what the future brings, but, as always, I will continue to question myself.
  22. I've been debating on this for almost a year - to keep my band and see how it goes, or revise to the sleeve. I had a GREAT relationship with my band for almost 5 years. Did really well, got the weight off and kept it off. But in February of last year, I started developing some reflux, not bad, but went in to get a check up and discovered I had a stretched pouch. Some of the medication my US doctor has started me on was causing inflammation under my band, which has caused some over restriction, which caused the pouch dilation. I had all the fill removed from my band for quite awhile, then got my fill again - but didn't have much restriction. Then I had to have a surgery, so I had to get unfilled, then had an accident and severed the tendon in my foot (end of July 2011) - had to have surgery on that, got another fill - was too much, had a bit of an unfill - not enough, had to have yet another surgery to repair my foot in December 2011... so here I am, can't find the sweet spot with my band, still taking lots of medications, and now its March 2012, and I've been non-ambulatory for 8 months +. Yes, 8 months. I just got permission to start walking a bit last week. Finally out of a cast, step on the scale, and let's just say, I'm not pleased with what I find. I was expecting it. Basically I've been in bed for 8+months now. Only getting around using a scooter. I'm up 20 pounds and not happy about it! I never got all the way down to my goal, so this 20 pounds, really adds up to me needing to lose 40 to really be where I'd like to be! I'm not blaming my band. There have just been a combination of events (including a lot of really good - church lady delivered meals - and me with not enough restriction and being completely sedentary) - that have led to this decision. I feel like I need to "step it up a bit" since I can't get to that sweet spot, the scale is going in the wrong direction. And I seriously need to get the weight off as that will help my physical therapy for my foot (and my back!) if I can be at a healthier weight and not have the back and forth of the band. i've spoken with MANY sleeve revision patients at this point and most are so thrilled with their sleeve revision (i actually got a bit jealous!). So far, I really only know of 1 person that has really struggled after their revision to the sleeve. I know everyone is different, so my experience will be my own, but the purpose of starting this blog is so you can follow how my experience goes. My sleeve revision is currently scheduled for April 16th and i will keep you posted on my journey I'm excited and of course, a little nervous, but I KNOW i'm in the best hands! I've worked with Dr. Ortiz and Dr. Martinez for almost 6 years now and I absolutely trust them with my life! Its why I work for OCC! I'm always a patient first with them. You know how to reach me at OCC 1-866-376-7849 ext. 81 or lori@obesitycontrolcenter.com if you have any questions about my journey or are considering a revision surgery of your own. stay tuned....
  23. If you want more information on the different surgeries we offer or pricing call or email me 1-866-376-7849 ext. 81 or lori@obesitycontrolcenter.com.
  24. Its not too late to get in on some of our March specials, if you book now, I'll hold the pricing through April procedure dates! You can schedule these while you are down for a surgery, a fill, or just want a day of pampering! Email cosmetic@thearielcenter.com for a full menu of services available! PRP Facial Regeneration (with growth factors and stem cells present in your own blood plasma). PRP special for $350! OR choose either PRP/Botox or PRP/Juvaderm special for $575 ($850 value!) or our non-surgical facelift which includes up to 30 units of Botox and 1 syringe of Juvaderm for $549 ($649 value). Ask for a consultation and schedule an appointment today! (Prices are cash price, credit card incurs additional fee) 1-866-376-7849 ext. 85 or cosmetic@thearielcenter.com www.thearielcenter.com www.thearielcenter.com
  25. We are so excited that Gloria from Obesity Conrol Center and The Ariel Center is in labor with her first child, a little boy. Please send up your prayers for a safe and healthy (and quick) delivery! I will update when he arrives! So excited about the newest member of our OCC/TAC Family!
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