Lap Band Patient Story: Segment 5
Guest: Beth Treado – Lap Band Patient
Host: Dr. Linda Austin – Psychiatry
Dr. Linda Austin: Welcome to an MUSC Health Podcast. In this series, we’re following the experience of a very special young woman, Beth Treado, as she undergoes Lap Band surgery as the cornerstone of a weight loss program.
I’m talking with Beth Treado today who had Lap Band surgery just a little over a month and half ago. Beth, today, you met with Dr. Morgan who is the surgeon that performed your operation and she gave you your first fill for the Adjustable Gastric Band (AGB). How did that go?
Beth Treado: It went great. It took a little longer than we expected. She thought she could do it without putting me under fluoro but realized, after poking around for a few minutes, that she didn’t want to continue doing that, so she went in, put me under fluoro, and got it on the first time.
Dr. Linda Austin: And, fluoro? What is that?
Beth Treado: It’s basically an x-ray machine they set up to find the band, find the port, so she can insert the needle.
Dr. Linda Austin: And then after they find the port, what do they inject?
Beth Treado: They’re actually inserting saline. She goes in with a needle, punctures the inside of the band and fills it with saline, which was 1 cc; I have a 10 cc band. The goal is to be at 9 cc, if need be, over the next year.
Dr. Linda Austin: Now that you’ve had the band filled, what does that mean for you? Will your diet change, or will you notice that the band is filled?
Beth Treado: What I’ve been told by Dr. Morgan and the dietician is that my stomach’s going to be where it was right after surgery, where I feel fuller faster, my hunger is controlled for longer periods of time, there’s no snacking, really, between meals. I had gotten to the point where I was getting really hungry in the afternoon. And that’s because my band, before yesterday, had no saline in it.
Dr. Linda Austin: You’ve had some time to adjust to having the band in place. What has this adjustment period been like for you? Have you gotten used to your new eating habits?
Beth Treado: Yes, very much so. There have been times in that last week or two, before the fill, when I felt like I was eating normally again. Before that, I really noticed my portion sizes decreasing, and my activity level has increased.
I’ve been choosing a lot of different vegetarian options on menus. I just find that I crave the vegetables. I’ve stayed away from red meat, and things like that, just because the consistency scares me. I’m thinking it’s gonna get stuck, but it probably would not. I’ve brought bread and pasta back into by diet. I’m able to keep those down, as well as peanut butter.
Dr. Linda Austin: I know the surgery was minimally invasive and you were out of the hospital within 36 hours, and back to work within a week. What’s been the biggest challenge for you? Have you had any discomfort or trouble eating, or heartburn?
Beth Treado: Actually, I’ve had a lot of acid reflux. I did go in to meet with Dr. Morgan, probably, three weeks ago. Since then, I’ve been taking some over-the-counter medications which are controlling it and now I don’t feel like I have it at all. We did do a test, a barium swallow, to make sure the band had not slipped. Everything’s completely fine. It’s basically my new lifestyle.
Dr. Linda Austin: And that feeling of heartburn? Is that common?
Beth Treado: It is. I actually suffered from it prior to having surgery. A lot of times, once you have the surgery, it does flare up.
Dr. Linda Austin: It hasn’t all been hard, though, because you look fantastic. How much weight have you lost?
Beth Treado: I’ve lost 22 pounds and I hope to lose at least 5 more by my birthday, in September.
Dr. Linda Austin: That’s incredible! And did Dr. Morgan say if that amount of weight loss is normal, or are you ahead of what you had expected?
Beth Treado: I’m actually ahead at this point. I went in yesterday and was named the Superstar. So, we’ll see.
Dr. Linda Austin: What have you done to lose the weight? Is it just changing the amount of food you eat, or have you also changed the types of food that your eat? And, are you exercising?
Beth Treado: I think it’s a little of both. Within the last week, I’ve become obsessed with exercising, which is very shocking for me. I’m in the gym, probably, four days a week, in the mornings, working out, doing cardio, lifting weights. I’ve been playing racquet ball, riding my bike, things like that, you know, as well as eating less, of course, and not eating fried foods, and staying away from red meat and things like that.
Dr. Linda Austin: So, what’s next?
Beth Treado: I’d really like to lose five pounds in the next month. I’m taking a trip to New York and I’d definitely love lose, like, five extra pounds.
Dr. Linda Austin: Well, Beth, it’s been great talking with you. And, like I said, you look wonderful. I look forward to seeing you again in a month, when you get your next fill. Keep up the good work.
Beth Treado: Thank you.
For more information about the MUSC Bariatric Surgery program, you can call our Medu-line at: 792-2200, or long distance: (800) 9922-5250. Please remember that these podcasts are just about the experience of one person and are not meant to replace a conversation you should have with your own physician.