Connie's Story

Read Connie's story about Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy.

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Out of the Weight Loss Woods

By weight, 158-pound Connie Stout is less than half the woman she used to be.

But on the way to shedding 166 pounds, she’s shed more than weight.

She’s shed the need for two diabetes medications and the use of a C-pap machine for sleep apnea. And she feels good enough that she can laugh about those last three stubborn pounds that stand between her and her 169-pound weight loss goal.

Before seeking help from Premier Weight Loss Solutions, Connie weighed 324 pounds and knew she was in trouble, but felt like a woman hopelessly lost in the woods without a compass.

“I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t walk very far,” Connie said.

Other problems associated with morbid obesity also came calling.

“I got sleep apnea, I got diabetes and all kinds of problems.”

It’s not that she hadn’t tried.

“I took diet pills,” she said, but ran into their limitations.

“You can only take them so long, and then, when you quit taking them, you go right back where you were – and then some.”

The diet pills came after exhausting “almost every diet program on the market.”

Although she could read her scales and do the math, her resolve began to crumble under the weight of enormous frustration.

“There’s a point in time when I really didn’t care. All I wanted to do was eat. It didn’t matter.”

It began to matter when one health problem started piling up on the other.

At a PMBA seminar on weight loss surgery held at Miami Valley Hospital, Connie connected with the knowledge that helped her find a way out of the weight loss woods.

“I was afraid (of the surgery) before,” she said, but after seeing those who had had the surgery – “and, boy, they looked great” -- she chose her path.

 “They said the gastric sleeve (surgery) would be better than the bypass because I was short (4’11’’) and very heavy. And so they did the sleeve and I followed the directions. It’s not always easy-easy, but it’s good.”

There was a special two-week diet to improve her liver function, a test to make sure her heart was strong enough for the surgery, and the important check with her insurance company to make sure she was covered.

With all that done, “I came to Miami Valley Hospital on Dec. 23, 2010.”

She was home Christmas Day, read her list of instructions, and checked it twice.

The work was made easier by her treatment team. Because the protein powders were available at the office, “I didn’t have to run out to the store (and) start looking for the right thing. They had it right there.”

Progress came quickly.

Halfway through her two-month surgical recovery, she was taken off her diabetes medications. Six months after surgery, she turned her C-pap machine down and four months later, turned it off.

All that time, her meal schedule evolved. First she ate every hour, then every two, then every four. She’s now into a routine of eating something every five hours. And, in contrast to sometimes complicated diets, she follows a simple principle.

PMBA surgeon “Dr. (Donovan) Teel said I could eat anything I want, just stay in portion control,” said Connie, “So that’s what I do.”

In a poem, Connie, wrote, “I felt like a fat old woman …. Now the fat on this old woman is history. The fat is gone and I no longer feel old.”

She’s now out of the woods – except for those last three pounds.