Diagram of Operation

Diagram of Operation
My new tummy arrangement after gastric mini bypass

Thursday, 7 July 2011

One week to go before I go into hospital for my mini gastric bypass

Phew! I can hardly believe that it's only seven days, seven nights and a week of meals before I go into hospital for my mini gastric bypass.  I am equally excited and frightened.  No that's not true.  I am 90% frightened.  I worry about surviving the anaesthetic and I worry about surviving the operation itself.  

I have no need to worry about the anaesthetic, as only thirty-seven days ago I was in the same hospital having a parathyroid tumour removed under general anaesthetic and obviously survived.  I have faith in the hospital, Yves le Foll in St Brieuc, Brittany, whose staff are efficient, kind and respectful.  I also have faith in the surgeon, who is Dr David Le Chaux.  He removed my gall bladder in the last week of November 2009 and I had no problems at all post-operatively.  He removed my gall bladder by minimally invasive surgery, via five portholes, which is the way my mini gastric bypass will be carried out as well.

I am sixty-four and today weigh 142.8 kg - 22 stones and 7 pounds - 305 pounds.  In future I shall deal in kilograms, as that is the unit for being weighed here in Brittany, France.

Here are four photographs which were taken six months ago at Christmas in England

I don't normally wear t-shirts with text, but when I saw this in Asda it looked appropriate for the photographs.

If you want to click on the photographs you can look at them in a larger format - if you can bear to!  I am a couple of kilos heavier now than I was in the photographs, but I look pretty much the same.   When I can lay my hands on a tape measure, I'll take measurements of my bust, waist (if I can find it), hips, thighs and calves. 

I haven't always been fat.  When I got married in 1966, aged 19, I was slim - 46.3 kilograms - 7 stones 4 lbs - 102 lbs.  I am now three times this weight.  This isn't a clear photo, but it is possible to see how slim I was.  Some people said I looked like Audrey Hepburn, and that was a real compliment!

In January 1974, I weighed in at 9 stone during a medical for a new job.  I gained weight in 1978-80 while I was working and living in Belgium and Holland and when I came home to England in July 1980 I weighed 12 stones and 8 pounds.  I lost three stone during the next six months with a Slimming Magazine Club and then gained weight with my first son who was born in January 1983.  I gained again with my second son, born in December 1985 and yet again with my daughter, born in October 1987.  I was 15 stone 11 pounds when I went in to give birth to her and never really tried to lose weight after that, gradually getting heavier and heavier as the years went by.

I've never worried about what I look like, but doing things became difficult.  Bending, kneeling, carrying, moving all became harder with each gain.   In 1996, I moved with my children and my mother to Cornwall.  On 13 April 1997 I started a very low calorie diet, using Lipotrim through my general practitioner's surgery.  I lost over 3 stone in three months, but was soon eating again and put all the weight back on.  I joined various slimming clubs, tried different diets, but ultimately I regained the weight I'd lost whatever I tried. 

In April 2006 I moved to Brittany and after my gall bladder operation in 2009, the surgeon suggested I might like to consider bariatric surgery.  I refused.   In January 2010 I saw Dr Le Chaux again as the results of a test after my gall bladder operation showed that I had fatty liver disease.  Again he offered me bariatric surgery.  I refused as I was booked into an eating educational clinic for three weeks in February 2010, but couldn't stick to the regime once I returned home.  In March 2010, I had to see Dr Le Chaux again.  He explained that if I didn't lose weight then I was in danger of developing cirrhosis of the liver.  I said that I would think about the mini gastric bypass.  Finally, in September 2010 I agreed to have the operation.  I was told that if I was approved then the operation would be in about six months time.  This set in motion a series of appointments with psychiatrist, dietician, cardiac surgeon, lung consultant, endrocrinolgist and a gastro consultant   - who performed an endoscopy to ensure that the part of my stomach which would no longer be easily accessible, had no infection or cancer.  The health system is thorough in Brittany!  All of these people then sent in reports to Dr Le Chaux and a meeting was held to decide if I was a suitable candidate and if so the date for my operation. 

In December 2010, after a routine blood test, it was found that my calcium levels were abnormally high.  I had a follow-up test in February 2011 and they were still high.  This indicated a tumour on one of the four parathyroid glands.  After further ultrasound and nuclear based tests, it was confirmed that I had an almost certainly benign tumour.  I had to see the endocrinologist and then the surgeon involved.  They said that the tumour had to be removed before I could have bariatric surgery.

My date for the mini gastric bypass came through as 28 March, but I had a date of 1 June 2011 for the parathyroidectomy, so I had to defer and wait for a date after I had recovered from the tumour operation.  Finally, I got my date for the bariatric surgery.  Go into hospital at 16.00 hours on Bastille Day, 14 July 2011, and have the operation the next day.

Yesterday I met a previous patient of Dr Le Chaux.  She has lost 64 kilos and is just a lovely weight now and a really  lovely person.  She was very helpful and gave me lots of confidence to face this new part of my life. 

So that is where I am at the moment - seven days away from changing my life for the better.  Seven days away from changing my life so that I can be here longer for my children and so I can have the opportunity of watching my grandson grow into a man.


  1. Looking forward to meeting the new slimmer you but you are beautiful as you are.

  2. Thanks, Sally, she said, blushing ... I suppose it will be about six months before there'll be a real visual difference - hard to know.