"NOTHING CHANGES IF NOTHING
CHANGES,” said CVMC gastric bypass patient Jennifer Lane. “You can’t
keep doing the same things and expect different results.”
By age 25, Jennifer had been struggling with her weight for years and there
were already signs it was affecting her health – she had developed
arthritis in her knee and was taking prescribed medications to help manage
high cholesterol, triglycerides, and blood pressure. Then she got the
diagnosis that changed her life – diabetes. Faced with taking daily
shots of insulin, she decided it was time to take control of her health,
and she explored the option of having surgery to reclaim her life.
Jennifer had tried many diets, but her weight would yo-yo. She could lose
weight but couldn’t keep it off. She made attempts to exercise but
explained how muscle cramps impaired her ability to push her body beyond
the limited level of activity her body could sustain. With her weight
reaching an all-time high of 299 pounds, she said cramping after exercise
made it impossible to do anything.
“I felt like I was on an endless loop of poor health. Looking back—I
just didn’t realize how bad I felt.”
Her weight was taking a toll on her not only physically, but also emotionally.
Everyday actives became a source of anxiety and she was rattled by uncertainty
about whether she would even be able to fit in a restaurant booth at dinner
or squeeze into a seat in the movie theater.
Jennifer attended a free bariatric surgery seminar, offered by CVMC to
explore the various options available. After learning that gastric bypass
surgery has a 97% resolution rate for diabetes, she knew this was her
best option for a chance at a healthy life. Having had several minor procedures
at CVMC before, Jennifer felt confident about the healthcare system’s
commitment and accountability for high quality care.
“It really wasn’t a hard decision to make, especially after
hearing about the extensive support system that the staff offers to accompany
the surgery,” Jennifer explained. “The system that is set
up is a total care package. Activities before, during, and after your
surgery are outlined on how best to succeed.”
And succeed she did! Four years post surgery, Jennifer has achieved:
- Sustained weight loss of 120 pounds
- Cured diabetes; declared immediately following gastric bypass
- No longer needs medications to manage cholesterol or blood pressure (both
are within healthy range now)
- Enjoys exercising – especially without arthritic knee pain aggravated
by the accumulated weight she carried prior to surgery
- Greater confidence in social situations
Before surgery the thought of walking a quarter of a mile seemed impossible,
now she walks at least two miles every morning. She attributes her success
to the quality of the program, her own tenacity for sticking to it, and
her husband’s unwavering support before, during and after surgery.
As a part of our surgical weight loss program, CVMC offers a support group
that meets monthly. Attending the group has been key to Jennifer’s
success. She says that she looks forward to attending the meetings where
she gets to hear about the progress others share as they experience different
stages in their journey.
Jennifer encourages potential surgical weight loss candidates by sharing
her story at the informational seminars. Speaking from a patient’s
perspective, she tells about how the surgery so drastically improved her
life and uses her success to mentor new patients.
“The life I live now has nothing to do with the number on a scale
or what size jeans I can get into. It has everything to do with keeping
myself healthy and happy,” said Jennifer.
If you are interested in the CVMC Surgical Weight Management Program, consider
attending a free information seminar where you can meet our surgical weight
loss experts and inquire about whether or not your health insurance covers
a procedure you are considering. Accredited by the American College of
Surgeons’ Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality
Improvement Program (MBSAQIP), CVMC continues to build on an impressive
legacy of quality outcomes and patient safety. View the schedule of our
upcoming seminars and events or call Libby Shaver, Bariatric Program Coordinator,