The Weight Is Over 2012 (2 of 3) - Penn State Hershey Surgical Weight Loss

Uploaded by PennStateHershey on 03.12.2012

>> You're watching The Weight Is Over: Exploring Surgical Weight Loss on abc27 brought to you
by Penn State Milton S. Hershey Medical Center.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Welcome back. A Lancaster County woman finally through in the towel.
She knew something had to be done about her weight. [Background music] Sixty-two year
old Carol Ann Zahedi is on the move. She is in shape and she wants to stay that way. There
was a time not so long ago when she wasn't.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: I weighed 215 at my highest and I'm just under 5-3. Stanley, hi honey.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Carol Ann remembers gaining weight when she turned 30.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: I wasn't being aware of how much I was eating and how little I
was exercising. So, I started gaining weight, a little bit every year and it started stacking
>> Debra Pinkerton: The pounds really added up during a very sad time in Carol Ann's life.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: When my son died at age 22 in ‘95 and I noticed I started using
food for comfort, a lot. It was my drug of choice, so to speak. You can be in your home
when you're depressed and just sit there and eat a whole container of ice cream or a whole
pie or a whole batch of cookies when no one's around.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Along with the added weight Carol Ann developed high cholesterol and sleep
apnea. She knew something had to be done. Lap band surgery was her answer.
>> Dr. Rogers: She came to me and she wanted to have a band put in. And at that time I
was doing a lot of bands, so it seemed to me like a perfectly reasonable choice and
that's what we went ahead and did.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: I started losing weight. It seemed to be going pretty well, but as
time went on I developed a problem called esophageal dysmotility.
>> Dr. Rogers: Basically that means that the swallowing tube is not able to properly propel
food into the stomach. It's trying, but it's hitting up against this plastic object.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: In the middle of the night I'd wake up throwing up and as soon
as I told my surgeon that that had been happening, she said oh, it has to come out. That's very
>> Debra Pinkerton: Carol Ann chose to give weight loss surgery another try and this time
it would be gastric bypass. First, Carol Ann met with psychologist Dr. Andrea Rigby.
>> Dr. Rigby: I'm involved from the very beginning because patients talk to me about their psychological
history. They talk to me about their family history. We're talking about their eating
habits and we're talking about lifestyle issues.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: She helps you figure out why you want to have the surgery, what
you expect to get out of it and whether or not you're willing to make the changes.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Carol Ann was willing and ready.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: I really wasn't nervous for-- I don't know why. I just was determined
it was the right thing to do and I prayed about it too. I really felt that I had peace
about this decision.
>> Dr. Rogers: Her surgery was not easy. There was a lot of scar tissue in there that was
being caused by the band, so we had to work very carefully to get the scar tissue out
of the way so we could find the band, get the band out safely and then go ahead and
do the gastric bypass.
>> Debra Pinkerton: The healing process took some time, but Carol Ann stuck to the plan,
eat right. Now Carol Ann knows how to control her food intake no matter she eats, like yummy
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: My portion sizes are very different. My stomach is a lot smaller
and so I make sure what I eat is healthy. I have lots of fruits and vegetables. I have
protein. I have fiber. I have fats. I don't deny myself anything really that I want, as
long as I eat in small portions and a variety.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Exercise is a big part of her life too.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: I like to run. I've run five 5Ks this year, which is a big deal to
me. I mean that I'm fast, but that I cross the finish line.
>> Debra Pinkerton: A real winner all around. Carol Ann now wears a size 2 and weighs 130
pounds and couldn't be happier.
>> Carol Ann Zahedi: I feel younger. I feel a lot younger. I'm not saying I'm going to
live forever, but however long I live I want to be healthy. You know I just want to be
healthy and experience life.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Carol Ann exercises four to five times a week and she says she feels
great, Chuck.
>> Chuck Rhodes: And she looks great too, Debra. That's really nice to see that. Now
doctor, Carol Ann was 59 when she had that surgery. Is there an age limit where you don't
do this anymore?
>> Dr. Rogers: Most programs have an upper limit around 65. Insurances do not list an
upper age limit, but we've operated on patients as old as 74. We look at patients over the
age of 65 pretty closely to make sure they're going to be able to tolerate the surgery.
>> Chuck Rhodes: Now, patients that have say diabetes, high blood pressure, what happens
to all that after the surgery? How does that affect that?
>> Dr. Rogers: This surgery, especially the gastric bypass is very good at clearing up
the medical problems that go along with weight. Somewhere around 60 to 80 percent of patients
will see their diabetes either cured or much improved and that's true for sleep apnea,
high blood pressure, high lipids.
>> Chuck Rogers: Now say, let's say a patient had previous surgery, had a hernia and so
on, does this create a problem with this kind of surgery?
>> Dr. Rogers: It can make it a little more difficult. I would say about two thirds of
our patients have had previous abdominal surgery, so--
>> Chuck Rhodes: Two thirds, wow.
>> Dr. Rogers: We frequently have to deal with scar tissue, hernia and other things
like that. We're generally able to work around it and still do a laparoscopic procedure.
>> Chuck Rhodes: Every now and then a headline you'll see a celebrity that's had bariatric
surgery and it gets a lot of headlines and then you see them later and they re-gain the
weight. How common is that and how can they avoid that?
>> Dr. Rogers: Yes, I've seen those celebrities. Most patients if they follow up and stick
with the program and stick with what they've learned will maintain their lost weight. It's
the patients that stop coming back for follow up. We're worried about what's going on and
it seems like they may be re-gaining weight. But if they come back we can usually help
to get them back on track.
>> Chuck Rhodes: Is plastic surgery, is that a factor for patients that lost a lot of weight,
maybe some loose skin. How often do they resort to that?
>> Dr. Rogers: Actually seldom. It's actually the vast minority of our patients that end
up having body contouring. Some of them do when it's a health issue, but most patients
look pretty good under clothing.
>> Chuck Rhodes: That's it.
>> Dr. Rogers: Yep.
>> Chuck Rhodes: You can dress them-- and also they feel better about themselves, take
care of themselves. Alright, let's go back to the abc27 Call Center, Debra.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Thanks Chuck. Jackie joins us to talk about the support group that's
available for surgical weight loss patients.
>> Jackie Van Arsdale: We have an awesome support group with some really exciting events.
One of the ones we've recently had is called, "Drop your Drawers", which was a fashion show
for some of our post-op patients. They brought their largest pair of pants from when they
weighed the most and then they dropped their old pants and revealed their new bodies. It
was an awesome opportunity for pre-op patients to ask questions of post-op patients and as
well for post-op patients to share secrets, recipes and some of them even brought produce
from their own gardens to share with each other. It's really a great chance to connect
and we want everyone to leave feeling like they're truly supported and part of a community.
>> Debra Pinkerton: Okay, thanks so much Jackie and stay with us. We will be right back. [Music]
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