For people with weight problems, surgery may be the best option, but it is by no means an easy path. According to Valley Doctors և Valley resident’s, this is a change in your lifestyle.

Chris Nagy, from Mifflinburg, was older all his life, but with mild hypertension and high blood pressure, he was in good health.

In fact, he said. “Doctors have always called me one of the healthiest fat people I have ever seen.”

His wife, Wendy, a registered nurse, also supervised him.

But all of a sudden, two and a half years ago, in the mid-1940s, Nagy was at work when he felt very dizzy, disoriented, and began to grow gloomy. He was rushed to hospital, where an ambulance worker told him his blood pressure was so high that it was surprising he was still alive. He was also diagnosed with diabetes.

Two weeks later, his family doctor looked him in the eye and said without any uncertain conclusion that if he did nothing to control his weight, he would have died at the age of 55.

It’s a wake-up call և Nagin launched a program at Geisinger in September 2019. He was 430 pounds at the time.

After a few months of weight loss program, she dropped 3 380 և and was approved for the Biliopancreatic diversal with duodenal switch (BPD-DS) procedure, which reduces stomach size and allows food to bypass part of the abdomen. small intestine, thereby reducing the amount of calories absorbed. He underwent surgery on June 29, 2020, and within two months he was out of all his medications.

“I switched from about eight pills a day to just one vitamin,” Nagin said. Today, the 48-year-old man weighs 228 pounds. 5XL shirt և 58 pants when he entered the program. He is now wearing a large shirt with a size 36 waist.

“When you think about it, I lost a man,” he said, adding that there were times when people did not recognize him. “It was surreal.”

Who is it for?

2003 The Evangelical Community Hospital has performed more than 1,000 bariatric surgeries since the average of about 50 a year, says Dr. Christopher Motton, director of surgery at the Evangelical Bar Association.

In the past, gastric bypass surgery was the most common type of weight loss surgery, but Motton says there has been a national trend toward gastrectomy over the past decade, which he says has proven to lead to longer-term success.

But much of the success lies in how medical institutions select and train the right patients.

“The real long-term success is behavioral changes, a healthy diet, increased physical activity,” said Motto, adding that surgery should be avoided if possible. However, for patients who are clinically obese, there are several other options.

After receiving a referral from a patient’s primary care physician, Motto said he and his nurse meet in their office to provide an overview of the program. The patient must meet certain BMI criteria to be insured – over 40 or over 35 – with comorbid conditions such as diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea and osteoarthritis.

Evangelical patients are required to undergo a six-month process prior to surgery, during which they will meet with a dietitian, psychologist, begin a healthy diet, and engage in physical activity.

Motto said they could see that surgery was not an easy solution, that weight loss was a lifelong endeavor. և When they do, “surgery will be just a tool to help you save your life to the end.” He demands that his patients lose about 10 percent of their weight before surgery.

In addition to the benefits of insurance coverage that limit surgery to those who are truly qualified, Dr. Anthony Petrick, director of Geisinger Bariatric and Foregut Surgery, said: High enough benefits for those whose BMI is usually below 35.

Over the past 20 years, Geisinger has performed more than 7,500 bariatric surgeries and is one of the national leaders in the field. Prior to surgery, patients are evaluated by nutrition and weight management specialists for three to six months. Behavioral health professionals also work with the patient to address any addictions or other problems that may keep them from developing healthy habits after surgery.

Benefits:

Despite significant national traces of Geisinger’s bariatric surgery program, Petrick said they still account for only one percent of eligible patients.

“Both the medical community and the population need to know more about the potential benefits,” he said. Overall, better health overall.

As for Petrik, studies have shown that patients with such a BMI և medically live four years longer if they do not have the procedure than those who do not. They use less prescription drugs, and all the risks of diabetes are “significantly reduced.” Cardiovascular risk is halved, and health care costs are reduced.

And here is the “generalized quality of life,” said Petrik, for example, to finally travel by public transport, to walk better, to have a better self-image.

Motto agreed, saying that patients often feel better and have more energy.

“I like to see people coming out of blood pressure medications, type II diabetes being treated, how they are getting rid of sleep apnea devices,” he said. “It takes some time after surgery, but it happens with the right patients.”

Commitment to life

Nagin keeps watching what he eats.

“My body does not allow me to eat too much,” he said. So whatever little he can eat, he makes sure it is as healthy as possible. He should also be sure that he is getting enough fluids, proteins and vitamins, as his absorption from food is now significantly reduced. Receives vitamin injections every three months.

Now he runs regularly և participated in about 5 thousand kilometers, in which there were more on the calendar.

“My ultimate goal is when I turn 50, I want to have my first half marathon in books,” he said.

She also goes to the gym and works out three to four times a week.

“Nothing is easy in this matter,” Nagy said. “This surgery is not an easy solution, no matter what surgery you may have. It is a tool … It requires a lot of dedication and discipline. ”

Especially in a society where cheeseburgers are readily available for 99 cents, when gluten-free bread is harder to find, it is much more expensive.

Fortunately, they can get support from the medical community.

“All our patients understand when the procedure starts, our expectation is that they will follow us for the rest of our lives,” said Petrik. Often their specialized services can solve health problems that a family doctor may miss.

Petrik also said that if the patient was struggling with depression before the operation, it may still exist, as “depression is an organic disease” չէ not related to weight loss և its benefits.

Motto said patients are required to follow a strictly regulated diet for about eight to ten weeks after surgery, but once they recover, they can return to normal. But they are still watching closely.

“They often meet with me, a nutritionist, a nurse,” he said, adding that support groups are available to them before and after surgery.

Inspiring others

Nagy’s success prompted his wife, Wendy, to reconsider a failed stomach operation in 2013. Over time, his weight began to rise, his blood pressure and diabetes returned, and he was ready to do something more drastic. She joined the program last fall at Geisinger, which weighed about 235 pounds when she performed the procedure in April. So far, his recovery is going well, he has dropped to և 200.

“I have noticed many other positive changes,” he said. “The clothes fit better, I feel better. I do not take any other medicine. “

Both have undergone surgery, and Chris and Wendy are perfect partners for accountability.

“We can really support each other, do everything as a team,” Wendy said. “Now we have the same eating habits.”

They also train together and enjoy regular family hikes.

“It was really good for us as a couple, as a family.”

The couple adopted their now seven-year-old grandson, Aiden, about a year and a half ago, which also helped them stay healthy. Although they admit that it is not easy at all. There was a lot of pain after the operation, it requires patience.

“You have to be patient to realize that you did not gain that weight overnight,” Wendy said, “so you will not lose it overnight either.”

Nagin said it was not just weight loss but “small-scale victories” that he found particularly motivating. How to buy a pair of roller skates at Wal-Mart: Finally.

They said that their Christian faith also strengthened them in their struggle for better health.

“I believe we are made in the image of God,” Nagin said. “I felt like I was falsifying that image all that time.”

But now he is committed to continuing to live his life with gratitude.

“Life is what you create from it,” Nagin said. “Second chances are good if you have the opportunity to have them.”

This is a message that The Nagys announces on their Facebook page: “From Fat Arp to Mrs. Swag. A family journey through the ages. ” Nagin said he knew of at least 15 people who had surgery in the past 11 months because of his success story.

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