“I now have two birthdays; the day I was born and the day I had gastric sleeve surgery!”
I struggled with my weight my entire life. Growing up, I was constantly ridiculed because of my weight. And the heavier I got, the more I noticed that people didn’t really look at me when we met – they looked at my body. And the heavier I got, the more I noticed that people didn’t really look at me when we met – they looked at my body.
“After bariatric surgery, your life will be just beginning!”
- Mary “Mike” Hatcher
In 2001, I elected to have gastric band surgery in Houston because I was extremely overweight. My mobility was challenged. Aches and pains were part of daily life for me. Food was a very important thing in my life, but exercise was not.
After gastric banding I lost an extreme amount of weight. I was dehydrated and had developed an ulcer in my esophagus. I was pretty much unable to eat without vomiting. Banding is extremely restrictive. I could only eat minute portions of liquids or liquid foods. I just wasn’t feeling good, so I got the band removed.
“Bariatric surgery is the best decision I’ve ever made in my life!”
I looked into bariatric surgery because my life was severely restricted by the poor condition of my health. I had high blood pressure, and was on medication for that. Plus, I took a medicine every day for acid reflux. My knees were so bad it hurt to do most everything.
“If you’re able to use this tool for weight loss, I tell everybody they should take advantage of it.”
- Katie Clement
I am only 21-years-old, but from the age of about six or seven, I’d always been overweight. It wasn’t until I started to become progressively unhealthy in high school when I began to think twice. Then, seeing how weight had affected my parents’ health, I knew I didn’t want to follow in their footsteps. But that was before my Mom had the surgery. Seeing the difference it made in her, my Dad and I decided to do the same thing. So, then I suppose, I did want to follow in their footsteps!
“Feeling good about what you see in the mirror. It’s worth the investment today to preserve your quality of life tomorrow.”
In my life, I’ve had the experience of caring for loved ones who have had suffered from obesity, and I remember clearly telling my wife one day, “I don’t want to be that kind of burden to my children some day.” The problem was I was well on my way to becoming that kind of problem. In 2010, I decided that it was either budget for the recommended surgery now or prepare to pay the cost in poor health later. So, I chose the former.
“Most people are stubborn. But if you’ve got the mindset to change, you can. I did.”
- Beldon Sprouse
Weight has always been an issue for me. I’ve always been big pretty much my whole life, and although I worked to get things under control from time to time, I always seemed to end up right back where I started, only bigger and larger. As the years added up, so did the pounds – more than about 360 at the top end – plus I was starting to lose energy and developed type 2 diabetes.
“I did it more for the health benefits. Not being a type II diabetic anymore has been amazing.”
- Tommy Clement
My struggle goes back to being a young kid. I had a period where I kind of grew out of it. But in my early 40s, I was diagnosed with Type II diabetes that steadily grew worse until I was unable control it. I tried diet and exercise, every fad diet you can think of, but nothing worked. I finally asked my family doctor, “What can I do about this?” He suggested the weight loss surgery, so I decided to follow-up with Dr. Mason.