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Back Home from Surgery in TJ on 3-18-10



I am not very good at giving a play by play action about my surgery...but here it goes.

For all of the people thinking of having this surgery, and ones who have a scheduled date, maybe this will help. As you see, my name on here is Apprehensive. That is putting it mildly. I have an anxiety disorder and without the help of my little pill when I need it I would have been a total basket case. I grew some bigger huevos (that is what my brother-in-law who is from Mexico calls BALLS), and I gathered the courage to have the surgery. I think the biggest help was from fellow "Bansters" and the information they were so kind to present on this site. So...thanks to all who answered my questions and offered suggestion. I would name the people but I am afraid I would leave someone out and I want everyone to know how appreciative I am.

I went to Tijuana from Kansas City. From start to finish everything went very well. The driver, Raul is such a nice person, so informative and his information made me feel more comfortable right away. We had absolutely no problems at the border, Raul took care of all of it and I did not have to do anything but sit there in the van. My flight came in after noon, so I went right to the Marriott. I receved a phone call from Michelle and she asked me to be in the lobby the next morning at 7am and the journey would begin. I went to bed at 10pm, again at mid-night, again at about 2:30am and finally stayed up at 4am. See where I am going with this? Yep, I had every thought about the what if's known to man (and woman...I want to keep this politically correct). Finally 7am arrived and I was in the lobby...really trying to talk myself out of doing this surgery. I reluctantly got in the van and off we went to OCC. I was greeted by such a wonderful staff. I had to do the bloodwork and the pre-op tests the same day of surgery because of the time my flight arrived. First was the blood work, Carmelitta was very good and it was nothing for her to have success on the first stick. Then I was taken to speak with Dr. Miranda...she weighed me and told me about the "diet" that I would be on. Of course I only heard about half of it because I was thinking about the surgery. She was very kind. She gave me a packet of information of what we went over which is helpful. Next, I went in to speak with the Cardiologist. He asked a few questions, had me do the spirometer (breathing effeciency test) which was no problem. Also did the EKG and then back out to the waiting room. I really do think they should call it the pausing room because the wait time was nothing.

Next,here comes Doctor So to take me back to the room where I will be staying for pre-op prep, explained to me what would take place and then the journey began. I was really tense and the nurse gave me sublingual pills (I was hoping for regular pills so I could have some water)...they are so efficient. The nurse then hooked me up with the IV... and again, no pain due to her ability to do the sticks so well. Before I knew it, I was taken to the O.R. in a wheel chair and the last thing I remember was the anesthesiologist asking me what hobbies I had..while putting the little mask over my nose and mouth...I told him I liked....and the next thing I remember, I was back in my room, and they asked me if I felt like walking. Because I wanted to go back to the motel so badly...I got up and was walking like a champ. The first walk was with Carmelitta (she was there for safety reasons...me just coming off of the anesthesia). The next time I was up and down the hall myself. I think they should make post-surgery walking an Olympic Game...I know I would be a contender for a metal.

With the I.V. going and me walking up and down the hall, they stopped me to ask if I wanted a popsickle. I immediately said YES...they were very good. Much better than the ones at the Motel...as you may see. I think I had three in total. Then Dr. Ortiz came in to answer any questions and to tell me a bit about himself...he is so nice and has a great sense of humor too. Dr. Martinez talked to me in length after Dr. Ortiz left. Then the I.V was finished and I was able to go back to the motel.

Now, I am at the motel wondering about the "diet". Room service knew the routine and brought me what I could have...denied what I could not.....lol The motel staff was so effecient, and I did not have to do anything but rest. Well, me rest? I made it through the night and only got up a couple of times...wondering why I did not have much pain. I was amazed. The next day however, I began having some pain in the abdomen....Naturally I thought...here comes the big one, I will kick the bucket and all of this will be for nothing. Well, I called the Doctor and he had the motel bring me in to see what what going on. This is at 6pm on the day after surgery. He took me to the room where they do fills and he had me swallow some liquid that allows him to see if the band was in place and to see what may be causing the pain. I watched it on the monitor. He said, see the band, it is perfectly placed. He then said "see the white contrast...and believe me there was alot of this. He said this is GASssssss. He then had the nurse give me two kinds of medications and told me I could stay at the clinic if I felt it was necessary but I did not have to. I went right back to the motel. I had already planned to stay a couple of extra days...just in case something was not right. During those days...I walked all around Tijuana, to the store to buy vitamin water, gas-x, vanilla because it is so inexpensive for the good stuff, and just checked things out.

On the 22nd, I came home. I am doing better than I ever thought I would. The pain is almost non-existant. I have no prolems sleeping or doing the typical things around the house. So...if you are sure about the safety of this procedure...trust me, they will take all precautions that any U.S. surgeon would. Being a nurse, I knew what to look for and what questions to ask. Other nurses will probably agree with me, NURSES make the worst patients! I am so glad I did this surgery. I am on the liquid post-op diet now. I am not really hungry but I do wonder about food. With all the good people on this site, I have been able to bounce questions and even answer some now.

If you are going for the lapband....go with Dr. Ortiz and his group of caring, professional staff. You won't be sorry. I am looking forward to the time when I can say.."I remember thinking a large pizza was two servings". So...good luck with your new and/or future lapband.

Again..Thank You to everyone who made my surgery such a success!


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I'm glad all went well for you. I also have terrible anxiety and almost talked myself out of the procedure. But I too have some little pills that help. And thank God they gave me that sublingual one just before hand too. I am wondering about the pain though. I have burning, like acid (which I didn't have before) and lots of soreness. Especially getting up from a laying position. I may call tomorrow morning, just in case and make sure it is all normal.

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