Sunday, October 24, 2010

Process Part 2

So the next thing on the list to do was to meet with the surgeon about the operation.  At this point I had chosen Lap Band surgery.  I was nervous.  I have never had to meet with a surgeon before.  I mean I have never needed to - never been cut open!
My surgeon is Dr Atul Dhabuwala MBBS, FRACS.  A little Indian man who I had seen at the info seminar about a month before.  I had to do my research on the guy to know what he was about, and if any good or not.  This was what I found out:

Atul completed his medical degree in Bombay, India and started training in General Surgery. He moved to New Zealand, and had further training in General Surgery to become a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons in 2005. Following this, he did two years of Travelling Fellowship to centres of excellence in Germany (Heidelberg, Frankfurt, Essen and Cologne) gaining experience in Laparoscopic Gastrointestinal surgery, Upper GI and HPB surgery. He also acquired a Diploma in Laparoscopic surgery at the Louis Pasteur University of Strasbourg, France in 2008.
Since April 2008, Atul has been working as a Consultant Surgeon at Hutt Hospital with specialised interest in Upper GI and Minimally invasive surgery. Having had the privilege of training with two leading Obesity Surgeons in New Zealand, enthusiasm for Obesity surgery has been inevitable. He has been performing the Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding Surgery at Boulcott Hospital.
Special interests:
  • Laparoscopic:
    • Adjustable gastric banding
    • Hiatus hernia / Anti-reflux surgery
    • Bowel surgery
    • Cholecystectomy
    • Ventral hernia
    • Inguinal hernia
  • Upper GI tract and pancreatic diseases
  • Thyroid diseases
  • Pilonidal sinu
I has also read some of his research papers.  He seems pretty legit and capable :)  He has also never had issues with his lap band surgeries.  I'm fairly pleased about that.

During the conversation, I could not come up with reasons why I wanted Lap banding over gastric bypass.  It was like they were there in my head but couldn't put into words.  Atul went through both of the procedures, pros, cons, risks etc to give me all the information I needed.  Anthony was there with me, which was good. I thought (being female and getting my emotions caught up in it) that he was trying to sway me to the bypass, but no, he actually was just giving me all the facts I needed to make my own decision.

Leaving a bit overwhelmed, I chatted to the lady at the desk who has had the lap band.  Turns out she looked a similar size to me when she started, and looks awesome now.  After chatting with her, and doing some further reaearch on You Tube, books, and blogs, I was still definitely with the lap band, and this is why:

  1. It is adjustable.  If I start to feel hungry and eat too much, more saline can be added to control this, and vice versa.
  2. Gastric by pass interferes with the natural anatomy of the human body.  I feel we were given our stomach and intestines for a reason - don't mess too much with nature.
  3. Along with the second reason, I don't really want pieces of me removed.
  4. Gastric bypass is very permanent.  It can be reversed, but with great difficulty.  If it does not work - thats it tough luck really.  Lap band is easily reversed, and if something better comes along in the future, it can be a further option.
  5. Adjustable in case I do get pregnant - although have to wait at least 9 months after the operation to try.
  6. I have more control
  7. Don't have to take endless supplements to combat malabsorption
  8. Weight loss is slower, less likely to lose all my lean muscle mass, and after a couple of years works out the same rate as the gastric bypass.

Next stage - on to the dietician, counsellor, and nurse!

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