Ann’s Story

“I have given back to the universe (I refuse to say “lost”) 138 pounds to date, down from 302 lbs. pre-surgery. The medications I take for high blood pressure and high cholesterol are very small doses. My doctor tells me one day very soon I can be taken off all medications.”

My weight loss story is not too different from that of others who have wrestled with weight gain throughout their life. I am 68 years old. I have been fat since I was a teenager. Throughout my life I made lots of excuses for my weight gain … puberty, relationship problems, my job, stress, menopause, “I just love food” (that’s my favorite!). I had great difficulty admitting that I had an eating addiction.
Over the years my primary doctor never cajoled or criticized me for being grossly overweight. She just continued to give me the facts about my health … blood pressure too high, cholesterol too high, arthritic joint pain, blood sugar level indicating that I was dangerously close to diabetes. Then one day I asked to read my chart. Her description of me was “morbidly obese.” The term had a shocking effect on me and I asked her about the possibility that I might be a candidate for bariatric bypass surgery. I had lots of questions and lots offear about the risks of surgery. I had three friends who had had the surgery and I bombarded them with my questions as well. My doctor said she would support my decision but she would recommend only one surgeon, Dr. Emma Patterson.

Several days later I read the web site for Oregon Weight Loss Surgery. After three months preparation (my insurance carrier mandated that I needed 3 months psychological, nutritional and physical therapy counseling prior to a release for surgery) I made the initial appointment with the weight loss clinic. The time prior to my surgery allayed my fears, answered all my questions, and gave me the time to come to grips with my responsibility for being “morbidly obese.” Like my Weight Watcher’s facilitator is fond of saying, “We didn’t get this way eating lettuce.” I shall never forget Dr. Patterson’s words as she met with me prior to surgery, “I can operate on your stomach, but not your brain.”

It has been 27 months since my surgery and I have had no complications. I have “given back to the universe” (I refuse to say “lost”) 138 pounds to date (from 302 lbs. prior to surgery). The medications I take for high blood pressure and high cholesterol are very small doses. My doctor tells me one day very soon I can be taken off all medications. As long as I continue to eat slowly, put my fork down between bites, chew my food thoroughly, listen to my body when it tells me I am full, and regularly attend weight loss support group, I shall continue to lose weight and feel younger, healthier and more agile. I am indeed grateful to Dr. Patterson, Dr. Raum, the great staff at Oregon Weight Loss Center and all the friends and neighbors who have supported me on this tremendous journey.

Update April 10th, 2014

“I reached my weight loss goal yesterday, I weighed in at 159lbs for a total loss of 143.8lbs so far!!! Thanks for the new life you have given me. I SHALL maintain my goal and do even better.”

—Ann Duffy

* Please note – Results and individual symptoms may vary.

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