Weight Lost: 105 Lbs
Excess Weight Loss: 50%
Procedure: Gastric Sleeve
My name is Paul Rodriguez and I had the gastric sleeve procedure in August 2016; I lost 74 pounds. I've struggled with my weight all of my life. I think it's probably more pronounced since college.
He was very upfront about the commitment that I needed to make and the work that I was going have to put in. The surgery is not a one day event - it's something that you're going to have to deal with the rest of your life. And I thought he did a really good job of framing that up for me and gave me confidence.
I've been 50 to 80 pounds overweight for a significant part of my life. I think the tipping point for me recently has been that I had a lot of issues sleeping. I was diagnosed with sleep apnea. I had reached over 300 pounds, which is one of the heaviest I've ever been in my life.
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I'm getting older, and it was more difficult to keep weight off. I had gone through a number of weight loss diets. I had lost weight, gained it back, and it was just a constant struggle over the years. And I had conversations with my doctor - he said, ‘look you're getting older and it is not going to be easier for you to lose. You’re more likely to gain weight than to lose it over the years’. And I just wasn't feeling good anymore. It was getting difficult to do my daily activities; I knew I had to do something different.
I chose Dr. Ganta based on his credentials. The amount of work that he had done in this field before; recommendations from previous patients, reading through different recommendations people had posted online. I came for a consultation and met with him. I like to say he has kind of a quiet intensity about him, and I found that I kind of had that connection with him. I thought that he was very honest about the procedures what my expectations should be - he wasn't trying to oversell.
He was very upfront about the commitment that I needed to make and the work that I was going have to put in. The surgery is not a one day event - it's something that you're going to have to deal with the rest of your life. And I thought he did a really good job of framing that up for me and gave me confidence. When you talk about possibly cutting anything out of your body it's a scary thing. It's permanent. So I had a lot of concerns about what procedure would be would be right for me.
Initially I was thinking about doing the lap band because they were not permanent. In talking to my primary physician and also talking to Dr. Ganta, we decided on the gastric sleeve. But I mean I had prior concerns that everybody - just number one, die on the table you know. Is this going to work? What is my insurance going to cover; what do I have to take care of, and this is something that's going to set me back physically or mentally?
I've read a lot of things about the potential adverse effects that I got and the staff did a great job of walking me through what the process was. And I think that reassured me because they had a tried and proven system down and they had experience. They had worked with hundreds of patients - I think it's probably several thousand that that Ganta has done. And so that gave me confidence in the fact that they knew what they were doing. They had a process in place that I followed and I committed to the work. I think I've gone through a lot of changes. I can tell you being here for me… I wouldn't have considered anything like this, ever. I didn't like taking pictures; frankly, I didn't even realize looking in the mirror. It's changed the way I look at myself and my confidence level. I've always been somebody that's projecting myself, and I've always been in a job where I'm in front of people, so, you know my weight is always kind of been a burden that I've carried emotionally. But I feel better. I have that additional confidence. People who haven't seen me in a year are like, ‘wow, what happened to you?!’ The public almost wouldn't recognize me. And it's a good feeling. It is. I feel good about making this decision. And I have more energy.
I don't have to use a more to sleep app anymore to sleep at night. I get up in the morning and I feel refreshed - before with being so heavy, I never felt well rested. And every task was difficult to do. I'm confident about going out in public, I feel confident about wearing different types of clothes. I used to wear a lot of black before - my wife says, ‘welcome to colors!’ It's been different but it's been a positive life change for me and my family.
I recommend it because I think this is a solution that is more permanent. That's what I was looking for. The weight loss that I had before I always came back. And I always felt like it was just me trying to get it done. Having the surgery done gives that gives me an additional advantage. I feel better, I think I look better. It's giving me confidence. And not only that some of the medical issues I had, like sleep apnea, high blood pressure - all those things have improved. And it was not just feeling better for myself but for my family. This is something that I've made a decision with my family – I sat down with my kids and my wife and said hey this is what I'm thinking about doing, and it's going to take all of us together supporting me to get this done. But I'm doing it for us. I want to live a longer life. I want to live a healthier life. And I want to be here for my kids and my family. And I think if I would have continued with my weight issues that was going to take years off of my life. But doing this is going to improve that for the long term.