Personal Experiences of Surgery

This site is all about sharing information; here we include real experiences of surgery. We want to hear from people who have undergone bariatric procedures who are willing to tell how it has changed their life – for good or bad. We have included these experiences as an informative source only and Big Matters does not endorse any procedure or surgeon. These comments are those of the individual only, surgery will always carry risks and you should discuss these with your consultant after initial consultation with your GP. You will see we encourage people to update us over the years so the ups and downs are seen over the long term. We look forward to adding your experiences, or if you are wawiting surgery why not contibute tby keeping a journal ?


Duodenal Switch



Gastric Bypass


Cynda Marie




Gastric Banding



Personal Journals of Surgery

We are looking for people who are due to have surgery as well and we will follow them in sharing their journey through surgery and are happy to include journals on the site. To read about Deborah click on this link . please mail us your journals to

Jane DS update March 2008

Where has the time gone! In May it will be 6 years since I was wheeled into theatre for my Duodenal Switch.

The past years have seen me living my life to the hilt! I'll never forget those morbidly obese days I lived through, how tired and depressed I felt. For the first 2 years after my surgery I made BIG milestones and had moments of great excitement...the first pair of boots that fitted, shopping in any clothes shop, fitting into any chair! My first run! Being able to walk miles without perspiration and feeling I would collapse. Fitting in airplane seats with space to spare (and not having to ask for the dreaded pregnancy safety belt!). Climbing flights of stairs with ease. I had so many moments of elation as my weight fell off me. Now, I have less of those, but everyday I still find some reason to celebrate the chance I took back in 2002. I live with a quiet but solid sense of gratitude.

I currently weigh 54 kilo's. I started out at 120 kilo's - I have lost an entire person! I've gone from size 26-28 to a size 10. That's 18 dress sizes down! I am maintaining well. Food is not an issue for me. I still eat a lot of protein daily (Seafoods, steaks, cheese, eggs, any meat, milk etc) and plenty of veggies. I still eat butter, cream and have full fat yogurts - in fact I have whatever I like in moderation.

People sometimes ask me if I eat chocolate which makes me smile - but if you are wondering - yes I do. A few times a month. I could eat a little junk food and simple carbs if I chose, but I lost my taste for them after my DS and seldom eat them. I eat around 80% of a 'normies' plate of food. It's a lovely aspect of this particular surgery - I never feel like I am being deprived in any way. My diet is so healthy there are times I look at it and I could cry with relief! (It is high fat but my fats are from natural sources and as the DS malabsorbs iro 80% of the fat I eat, I probably have an intake on par or less than that of a normal person). All those years of food torture are behind me. I'd like to put on a little weight now (never thought I'd say that in a million years!), but if I don't that's fine too. My focus is much more on my health than my weight.

So has it all been perfection? No, of course not. Life is not like that. In March 2006 I had a bowel obstruction caused by a hernia. It was a shockingly painful and scary thing to have gone through, but I am still very much here and have recovered fully from it. Both DSers and RNYers run a risk of this happening. It is around 2-4% in the data I have read. It could happen from any abdominal surgery.
People ask if I had known it would happen would I have had the DS? I point out that I did know it could happen. Before I had my DS I was fully cognisant of all the risks involved as I spent a lot of time researching it. I still have no regrets about my decision at all.

I have had the odd vitamin deficiency. Some deficiencies such as zinc and iron deficiencies come and go. At the moment zinc is revisting, but I just take my supplements and know it will resolve. I do however take a load of vitamins during these phases - on top of my usual 12 daily. I knew before my DS this would be a trade off - vitamin & mineral compliancy in return for no more obesity. It's been a great 'swap' for me. But bear in mind not all Dsers feel this way, some struggle with this aspect. Anyone researching the DS should bear this in mind. Not being compliant is outright risky, this surgery is major and it is a powerhouse. It will give a lot, but compliancy is not negotiable. If anyone considering the DS feels they can't do this in addition to getting yearly blood labs - better not to get the DS imo.

I'm still optimistic about my future. I feel I would not have had such a high quality of life without my DS. It's my best friend. I love it! It gave me back the body I should have had years ago, a body that is no longer cumbersome, that is despite the deficiencies and the obstruction, in so much better health than it was when I was morbidly obese. I have no sleep apnea, no stage 4 fatty liver, no aching joints and swollen feet. No breathlessness. My asthma resolved, my acid reflux resolved and I have'nt had one episode of the frequent bronchitis I used to have. Infact I cannot recall getting the flu! It's raised my confidence levels and enabled me to be an active participant in life. My family say I am a much nicer person to live with now. It's doing a fine job of keeping my weight off. I can't complain. I have a lot to be grateful for. :-)

Jane - DS original article submitted 2004

We all deal with morbid obesity differently. The Duodenal Switch procedure is a masterpiece in my book, taking weightloss surgery into a new age, but for some it is a terribly difficult thing to come to terms with and it's certainly not for everyone.
Please read my story remembering that it is my experience I am relating. Never go blindly into something as big as surgery. Please take your time to do the research. There are other surgical options available and although they were not for me - they might suit others better. At the bottom of my story I include my website address, the Duodenal switch USA website and the link to a support group for those in the process of undergoing surgery.


2 am January 2002 - I sit up in bed plastered with perspiration and gasping for breath. I also have an acrid taste in my throat - arrrgh it's the dreaded acid reflux again. It progresses to a solid burning sensation. I get up and take various self prescribed meds to ease it. They appear to work...well, for now anyway.

4 am - again I awake in a sitting position - I am having difficulty catching my breath but am too tired to care much, I roll over onto my other side and fall asleep.

5 am - usually I love birds but right now I could murder the twittering lot outside. I am upright again only now getting back to sleep is not easy because of the bird choir. But I manage to doze.

7.30 am - jolt again - gosh I am so so tired but it is time to get out of bed. I can barely do it. It is going to be one long , loooong day.

My nights are like this most of the time. I have been obese for 20 years incrementally gaining – I am now morbidly obese and I know it is just a matter of time till I am super morbidly obese. I'm an expert in diets and nutrition and quick fixes. I have tried drugs & counseling too. Nothing has worked.
I just keep going even though I am exhausted a lot of the time. I am ashamed to admit now that I actually thought this was normal and I never went for medical help. I just thought it was part and parcel of my life really. I adapted by being able to get back to sleep very quickly (usually) and never knew I had sleep apnea. It can be life threatening and there are treatments for it, but I never knew until it was diagnosed by hospital staff just after my surgery. I accepted it much the same way I accepted I would always be overweight and much the way I accepted my ongoing heartburn and my aches.
I thought I would just have to grin and bear it and in between hope to get temporary relief by dieting. I could generally get some of the weight off but keeping it off was my problem.

Then things suddenly got bad. Overnight I could no longer garden and my physical activity level plummeted. I had an experience that scared me where my heart raced and I thought I might be having a heart attack. My knee began to ache badly, in fact my entire body was full of overwhelming aches and pain. Exhaustion and depression consumed me. I had already been told by my endocrinologist that I had a protein breakdown in my cells and that I had mild pcos. He felt I was heading for type two diabetes. I puffed and panted walking only a few meters. I developed a horrible ruddy colour that I know was consistent with a system in distress. My eyes lost their light and became a nondescript muddy green colour. I felt very very afraid.

A little later on we went on a holiday during which I suffered emotional trauma because of my weight. It just took away all the joy of what should have been a lovely time. I felt I could not interact with others. I also could not participate in most things with my family and I realised that mine was a 'sideline' life. I was an onlooker not a participant - and I so badly wanted to be participating!

When I returned from this holiday caring for myself physically was getting very difficult. I had an epiphany. I knew I was NOT going to live like this any longer. I knew I was not going to beat this with another diet - I had not even one more diet left in me willpower had all been used up. I knew I would search in earnest day & night if it was required, until I found a cure for my disease.

I looked through all my other surgical options but they just did not resonate with me. I was looking for something that would not leave me struggling with deprivation feelings - I'd had enough of that! We often go out and entertain so the idea of not being able to eat a decent meal was highly disturbing to me.
Then at last late one night, I stumbled upon a website all about the Duodenal Switch procedure. At first I discounted it - I was put off by the stomach being partially removed & I went back to looking at the RNY for a few months - but then I re-read about the DS and discovered how the stomach is left vaguely intact with a fully functioning pylorus- and how eventually it stretches out to almost be back to a normal size. I also realised that the intestinal part of the procedure is actually reversible in case of a dire outcome & I thought 'YES!'

The DS is primarily a malabsorptive-restrictive procedure. The restriction is intense initially allowing minimal intake of food but unlike other surgeries it slowly allows less restriction enabling me to eat a good plate of food and to feel very normal indeed.
Mind you I could most certainly not have 'seconds' without a wait - my restriction would immediately come into action and I would be most uncomfortable indeed. The nice thing is I am satiated for the first time in my life. I know what it is to be satisfied and I very very seldom have wanted second helpings of food.
Currently at 2 years out the malabsorptive aspect has come into play. I have no fear of major regains because of it. It will keep my weight relatively stable in the years to come.

On May the 2nd 2002 I had my surgery in Germany. At the time the DS was not being done here, but now we have several dedicated surgeons in the UK doing it. It is becoming a very popular choice of surgery as it offers not only superb quality of life afterwards but also much less late regain than other procedures. My surgeon remains my hero. Once he opened me up it was apparent I was in a bad state. He repaired two hernias, removed countless adhesions on my bowel & intestine, removed my gallbladder and appendix. He did a very good DS surgery on me. He worked deftly despite a liver that was extremely fatty and distended filling my abdominal cavity.

When people said to me 'oh my gosh isn't that a bit drastic to have surgery ' I would think 'if only you knew just how drastic my life has been without surgery.'

Two years on I firmly believe that for me not to have had this surgery that has swung my whole life around so positively - well, to have remained in my prison of morbid obesity, that would have been devastatingly drastic for me.

After surgery, it was an adjustment because it is a major surgery. At first it is rough - naturally it hurts - there is discomfort and one can tire quickly. It is not a picnic. This is major, major surgery. Only knock on this door if you have exhausted all other options for yourself and are desperate.
I had to learn from scratch how to look after my DS optimally. On the positive side for the first time in my life my body started giving me signals - real signals and I had to learn to interpret correctly. There are many emotional adjustments too.
Nutritionally I make the effort to know what is good for me. There are blood labs to be done and occasional deficiencies may have to be corrected by supplementation. I have to comply daily with vitamins. I take 12 of them a day but now I barely think about it, it's become a habit and I feel it is a small price to pay.
I also have to eat 100grams of protein a day as DSers malabsorb proteins as well as fats. That sounds like a curse but I enjoy fish, eggs, cheese, milk, meats and vegetable proteins abundantly....I also never worry about fats - I have butter if I please, cream if I want it and full fat tasty yogurt. These are delicious, healthful foods and I am grateful my surgery lets me enjoy them freely.

Too often words fail to express my delight that I am so very nearly a normal weight person. I am deeply happy and would have been had I only lost 70% of my excess weight as opposed to the 97% that I have.
For me this has been transformative. I'd do it all over again if I knew what a profound difference it would make to my life on so many levels - from the emotional to the physical.

The Duodenalswitch procedure is a process. Really I am a work in progess! I am by no means finished with my learning curve but I am optimistic for the first time in a very long time that I have a future! A future in which I get to enjoy my grandchildren. A life that is full and possible, was once just a dream for me. Here I am running up stairs, canoeing, swimming, snorkelling, travelling the world in a celebration of being released...

Nowadays I sleep right through the night. In the mornings I awake refreshed.
Do I have bad days - of course I do, just like any other person I have challenging times - I live with my DS daily & sometimes I do have to manage the occasional symptom.
Then I think about it and it makes me smile again -
I have no apnea, no acid reflux, no joint pain, no aches, no swollen feet, no more summers spent hanging drenched over a fan, no hysterical insatiable appetite, no ongoing exhaustion, no breathlessness, no pcos, no weeping myself to sleep every night, no avoidance of others, no displaced limbs, no continuous awful dieting, no deprivation, no constant inflammation, no asthma, no backache, no longer term health risks, no fatty distended liver, no deep aloneness, no depression, no constant excuses not to go out sitting on the sidelines wishing wishing wishing with all my heart I could join in...

Wendy - RNY

March 2008

Hi ive lost 14 stones so far i feel great a bit upset about the amount of loose skin i have but im healthier

June 2007

Hi just to update you on how im doing. i saw my surgeon this week and to my shock found out i weighed more than what i thought i did when i first saw him about the surgery, i was 27 stones 8 pounds over 2 stones more than what i thought i weighed, and im now 14 stones 9 pounds i was pleased in a way i suppose, now i have a big problem and feel i should share it with others who are considering weight loss surgery and its NOT to put them off but to simply make them aware of what they will probably be told by the NHS after the weight has gone i was PROMISED a tummy tuck as part of the deal ,now i saw my surgeon this month and he informed me that i was not going to get the tummy tuck i was assured i would get when i started my journey with the gastric bypass, he told me at the time that it was part of the package of having the surgery done, can you imagine my dissapointment in this here i am nearly half the woman i was and i get told i cannot have the tummy tuck which by the way would remove at least nearly a stone in weight from my stomach according to my surgeon, i am absolutley devastated by the fact that there is no funding for this, if i were to have taken the decision not to have weight loss surgery and stay severely obese in the long run i would have cost the nhs a lot more money than it will cost to fund a tummy tuck. i.e the very high risk of diabetes, hip/knee replacement asthma not to mention countless other illnesses that come with being overweight, surely you see my point , i have to tell you that when i was at my heaviest i could undress in front of my husband but now im the weight i am and because of all the hanging skin i cannot undress in front of him i have all on looking at myself in a mirror, i know i am healthier for loosing the weight but the way i look can be just as mentally damaging as being severly obese, i dont know what i would do if i have to spend the rest of my life living with all this hanging skin, im sure you know that excercise will not get rid of it no matter what i do i excercise everyday and go swimming 3 times a week and have done for a long time and i know it will not shrink from the size it was to a normal type of shape only surgery can help me,lets hope the NHS change their minds and realise what people like myself are going through it not fair when you make a decision to have surgery that could kill you so you can loose weight so you DONT die from obesity, its a brave decision to make i should know, thanks for reading, kindest regards wendy.

Update - Jan 2007

Thought you might like an update on how i am doing ,well have now lost 10 stones and thought you might like a before and after picture of me from a happy wendy.

Wendy - orginal article 2006

I'm 35 years old have 3 boys aged 18/17 and 11. i married my second husband in 2001 i have been overweight all my life it started to pile on from the age of 7 i remember weighing myself on those enormous scales they used to have in bus stations when i was around 9 years old and i weighed 11 stones, i was pit on a special diet then i was at school but it didnt work, i went up to 24 stones when i had my second child then hovered around 22 stone i was always miserable with my weight i did try all sorts of things to loose weight but after a couple of stone shifted that was it no more would come off unless i starved myself and then it stopped, last year my weight ballooned up to 25 stones it was probably the highest weight ide ever been at and i could tell, i was having problems turning over in bed, walking, sitting, sleeping and worst of all i stopped going out, i became a prisoner in my home i was scared of going out because of what people would think of me, my husband django has always been supportive of me whatever i look like he loves me anyway i am,but i was not happy about myself, so i looked up on the internet about weight loss surgery and decided that it was the road i was going to go down it was for me, i saw my gp and he referred me to a surgeon who does this type of surgery at my local hospital and thank god i had nhs funding,but the ultimate decision was made for me when 2 weeks after i had seen the surgeon my auntie was in hospital she had always been overweight i think her top weight at one point must have been over 35 stones i always looked up to her ,we had a connection and i loved her,she had developed diabetes due to being obese and this in time caused problems with her kidneys and liver and she died 2 days after her 54th birthday, i saw her at the hospital lying in the bed fighting for breath and i saw myself there in a few years time and i would not allow myself to get like her,i have always said i would rather die trying to do something about my weight then die doing nothing, so i had my open RNY surgery on 11th december 2005 and am nearly 3 stones down now and feel great and i havent looked back since its the best decision i have ever made for myself ( © 2006) Wendy







Jo-Duodenal Switch Update 2006

I'm now 20 months post opp DS lap and at my goal weight of 11st 4. A comfortable size 14.
Earlier in the year me and my husband discuss plastics for a tummy tuck and a boob lift as my breasts had just completely disappeared.
So, in October we decided to go for it!!!
i priced up surgery here and it was just too expensive and i had been given a great recommendation from Prague, so we booked 17th Oct to go to Prague and Ihad breast augmentation with lift and implants and a full tummy tuck.
total cost for both £4,000.
However, before leaving Prague they found a blood clot in my left breast and Ihad to be re operated on, i flew back later in the week.
Then once home more problems and Ihad to be rushed by ambulance to Leicester Royal as another blood clot emerged.
all was well with the tummy it was just the breast, for some reason i just wasnt healing well and kept getting infections too.
After another infection set in I spoke to the surgeon in Prague and decided to go back and let him 'sort it' and he did, he re operated again (opp number 4!! in as many weeks) but touch wood im ok now.
well, yes, if I knew what i know now i would not have had both operations together, i think it put too much strain on my body, i should have maybe had the tummy then gone back later in the year for the breast surgery.
i truly believe the malabsorbtion element of the DS stopped me from healing as well as a 'normal' person would.
to recover from surgery you really need all your vitamin levels to be at their best.

My life has been transformed since my DS, at goal weight now i play with my 2 toddlers and generally enjoy life much more. I don't regret having the plastics done just wish i had not been as impatient.

The only issue my husband and I face is paying for it all now, over the last 19months ive spent so much on surgery and im not done yet, i would still like to have my 'bingo' wings done as they are really bad and its still a massive tell tale sign of my previous weight.

but im all fit and well now and have the boobs of an 18 years old..... it feels great.
my tummy is still at bit swollen but im sure it will go down over time, its only been 3 months since the operation.

Jo-Duodenal Switch - 2004 article

“I’ve always been a big girl, I left school at 18 stone!! I was at Weight Watchers at 17 years old, then Cambridge diet, Slimmers World (where I lost 3 stone),
soup diet. You name it – I’ve done it, plus I’ve always been a member at gyms. I consider myself to be fit and healthy and have had no co-mobilities related to my weight.
My weight has probably been the biggest issue in my life constantly battling. Losing a stone here and there, then putting back 2 or 3. Each year I was heavier and heavier.
I grew up in a big family with 2 brothers and a sister, my sister had anorexia as a young woman age 15-18 and went down to 6 stone, I would be praised as a good girl for eating ALL my dinner and even hers!! She's still tiny at only 7 stone but she’s only 4ft 10, I’m bigger totally at 5ft 7in. At 13-15 I started to get much bigger than my older sister, but wasn’t worried at that stage.
I always had loads of boyfriends as a young woman so weight wasn’t a really big issue for me, until I hit my 20's, I tried everything but the bottom line is 'I just love my food
I knew I had to so do something drastic when I had my kids, I had two children jst a year apart, so very close and its such hard work, especially being obese.
My weight soared to 23 stones whilst carrying the babies and my blood pressure rose, plus I had gestational diabetes, which I was told many times was a serious warning sign.
But the hardest times are when I’m playing with the kids, I got so tired and couldn't bend easily, plus taking them to the park was always a chore, I wanted to go down the slide and in the pool with them, but hubby always played as I watched on the sidelines making my excuses. I would dream of them getting older turning into beautiful young woman with a fat mum that looked and acted and dressed twice her age! It scared me..
So in Jan 04 I spoke to my GP about it, thinking she would just dismiss it, but she listened and advised me to do my research, so I did.
I decided the DS duodenal Switch was the best option for me as it was the most effective at weightloss, the least likely to regain weight and it was permanent unlike the others I had read about. This operation is mainly focused on malabsorbtion of calories and food stuffs, so I have to take many Vitamins and minerals daily, 75% of my stomach has been taken away (but should stretch back over time) and my priority is to eat proteins (as they are malabsorbed) rather than Carbs.
The operation took 6 hours and cost about £10K, I decided to have it done at Leeds Nuffield Hosp, and after speaking to the secretary in Feb she booked my 1st appt with Mr. Dexter and my OPP date for 3rd April 04, it was that quick.
My husband has been very supportive all the way and he's just amazed how good I look now, I met him at 19.5 Stones and now I’ve gone from almost 22 stone to now 16st 10!! I haven't been this weight for years. My main support has also been the Weight Loss Surgery site at its given me support and guidance throughout this tough time.
I’ve much more energy and self-confidence and I feel wonderful. My eating habits have changed- food is not a major player in my life anymore I eat purely to function now, I can eat most things, still in small quantities, but I actually enjoy my food more. I’m really starting to enjoy life, and just wish I’d done it years ago, but at 32 years old I’m hoping that next year when I’m 33 I’ll look younger than I did at 23!!

( © 2004) Jo, 32

Stephanie My story.The crux came for me at size 32 and 20stone 4lbs (BMI 50.4).I was in so much pain an couldn’t even get upstairs to the loo without feeling like I had run a marathon by the time I got up there !

Diet after diet and struggling with exercise due to the amount of weight that I was hauling about with me and that’s without all the bad feelings I had about my appearance and me. I was desperate ….desperate for help. I spoke with my GP about surgery and he told me that there was in fact a surgeon here in Taunton!!!! But he only did private work………….I was gutted. Turns out my Gp were wrong and referred me via NHS to the Surgeon. Whilst waiting for my first consultation I researched and researched even more .I saw each person in the MDT (Multi Disciplinary Team) over a period of time and then my case was heard.

WOW I got funding!!!!!!!!!!! This was sooooo exciting.I wanted to know as much about what was going to happen as possible and set to finding out even more. The internet is a great tool, I spoke with people In South Africa /America/Canada that had undergone WLS .

November 04 (remembrance day to be exact.)

Oh boy was I scared but had done every bit of research possible and now the time was here. Well the surgeons did me proud and I thank every one of them involved for such a wonderful job.This is being typed at 15mths of me being the new me J Im now 11stone 4lbs and size ……………………. 14 top and 14 bottom Goodness never thought I would ever be this size (BMI 28)

My life has become more enjoyable; my eating is very different (everything is fresh!!) I am lucky enough to have a very supportive partner who will go the greatest lengths to prepare foods just for me (my own personal Chef ) Hmmm money making idea wonder if I can hire him out ? JI suffer dumping very easily so stay away from sugar glucose and fructose.


So keys things I would like to get across really are: Do your research, then go and do more … you can never do enough.Go out of your way to find and chat to others that have had the surgeries.Pre op diet is there for a reason, please do it (you will only be cheating yourself if you don’t)Accept the new you, when people say “wow you look nice” say thank you and accept it with a smile, this is something I have had to learn but you know what ……it feels good.This is no miracle cure and certainly no an easy way out, if you are thinking it is then sorry to disappoint. I now have my own online support group that is free , I enjoy helping others through the process email me if you want to join apply to join. I am happy to help just email me

Stephanie update 2 years on.............

After my Gastric Bypass in November 2004 life has been a bit of a rollercoaster.(Pre op 21 stone.)Health Various health issues have arisen but thankfully now all sorted (thyroid cancer , hernia and gall bladder) as I say now all under control.I feel fitter and healthier than ever. I am now 11Stone !!!!!

Media well as helping people on a daily basis via my own support group for pre and post opers and people trying to gain funding or just trying to find out more, I have been in the Mail on Sunday Newspaper re Obesity/weightloss surgery and also on the Trisha Show.

All quite good fun but the buzz for me is helping others.Surgery is not for everyone but until its explored as an option how does anyone know , research is the key.If i just help 1 more extra person in life I am satisfied ..........This is what i plan everyday.My motto in life is ... ‘A stranger is a friend just waiting to happen’

Me ......Im getting married next June wooooohoooo ,I have been with my fiance for over five years and whilst we were on holiday he popped the question. He has been such a gem and without him I would never have managed surgery and life since ,he deserves the biggest gold medal ever.

Image...... wow Im impressed that I have shed over 10 stone changing from a size 32 to a size 12. ( well thats when ive stuffed all the excess skin into whatever im wearing)This is the part of my image im struggling with.In the beginning I was assured by involved in my surgery that the excess skin would be sorted ive been turned down three times!!!! I could go on forever and bore you so I wont. Stay tuned for further updates.............. ( © 2006) Stephanie


Cyndamarie - Gastric By Pass

Hi , My name is Cyndamarie I had weight loss surgery Oct 8th 2004,by Mr Dexter in Leeds , Nuffield hospital. I am writing to you a week later. I weighted in at 132 Kilograms, and I now weight in at 128 Kilograms. Whoohooo a 4 pound weight loss in just a week.

I had the PCT of Milton Keynes paid for my surgery, due to many health reasons. I wish to start a weight loss support group in the West Anglia region but unsure how to begin.

I have been overweight since I was 16 and due to mobility problems after a light stroke in 2002. I became obese. I tried fad diets, I tried exercising and eating less. It just doesn't always work.

This surgery is not a cure it is a Tool for weight loss surgery. I think it is important that the NHS wake up to the idea of this surgery. They treat drug addicts, they treat drink Addicts..why not treat food addicts too. The eat less, exercise more idea , is just that an idea. it doesn't work for everyone. People with disabilities do gain weight and not always can they exercise to burn calories.

I did this surgery to GAIN my life back..and I am pleased to say now I AM ON THE LOSING SIDE.

( © 2004) Cyndamarie

My website is

2006 update Cynda has set up a support group in Milton Keynes. This group is open to those who have had Gastric Bypass Surgery or are wanting this type of surgery to gain more information You can contact her at



Sept 2009

I initially weighed in at 22 stone before my gastric banding. In September 2008 I was down to 13 stone. However just after returning from holiday in September I developed a problem and was taken in to the local hospital with dehydration as a result of not being able to swallow anything. The local hospital transferred me to QMC in nottingham as the consultant who had done my banding privately also worked for the NHS there. After tests my band was deflated and I regained the ability to swallow things down again. In seeing the consultant as an outpatient, I was informed that the band had slipped but as he did not perform this procedure on the NHS I would have to be referred to Derby. Derby had to apply for funding from my local PCT. However whilst waiting for this, in April 2009, I developed the problem of not being able to swallow again. I contacted the emergency doctors who asked me to visit them at the local hospital. I was seen by him, who ordered an x-ray and it showed I had an obstruction again. I was admitted into the hospital and given IV fluids. Following further investigations, it was found that my band was causing the obstruction and the only way to solve this would be for me to either have emergency surgery there to remove it, or transfer to Derby for it to be resited. I asked for it to be removed as I so fed up feeling as rough as I did. Once I had consented this, during a pre-op chat with the surgeon, I found out that the consultant in Derby was on leave until the following week anyway so I would have had to wait to have the band resited!

The surgeon had tried to remove the band with ke-hole surgery, but as the band had slipped so much, he had to open me up! Having had the band removed, I had problems with the healing process. I had an infection and then the wound would not heal properly. In total I was off work for two months.

Before the band was removed, My weight was down to 12 stone. However I have gained 3 stone already, partly because I was unable to exercise as a result of not healing well then and also I have just had another bout of surgery to remove my gallbladder because of developing stones, and also having PCOS.

I don't regret having the band done because it helped get rid of the majority of the weight. However I am now finding it very hard to loose the weight and do feel depressed about this, but am trying my best to do what I can. I would not have it done again because I would have the fear of the same thing happening again. I also have the financial burden of having a £9000 loan to pay off which I took out for the surgery because the local PCT could not fund the procedure at that stage.


I am a 31 year old female who had gastric banding surgery done privately in April 2006. To date I have gone down from nearly 22 stone to 18 stone. I still have a long way to go and perseverance is the key thing . One side effect I have developed is that I have problems swallowing, although this is being investigated in case it isn't from the banding procedure. I suffer with acid which I was informed could happen. My diet is limited to wheat free and now I cannot drink milk. I do lose faith sometimes and my loving partners always reminds me he loves me no matter what. I am looking for inspiration and guidance on my journey to a slimmer, healthier me

Fiona - RNY

I had an Open RNY in August 2005 and since then I have lost over 8 stone, I was 23st9lbs the day before the Op and I am currently 14st?lbs.(I weigh myself no more than once a month). I am living in Ireland and I had the surgery in Belgium, I am finding it quite daunting as there are no professionals here with experience of the procedure. Still, I am happy because Its working for me and I hope it continues to do so.






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