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Got on the bus to Duodenal Switch Town and ended up in Gastric Sleeve-ville

Thursday, January 23, 2020

Went to Charleston (West Virginia) for my surgery consult for weight loss surgery on Tuesday January 21st (2020). While I am getting used to the outcome of the visit, I am not really happy right now.

Most of you know I wanted the duodenal switch surgery. It is by far THE most effective weight loss surgery there is. Dr Shin says NO. He thinks I have too many health problems to survive the surgery (the surgery would be 4 hours) and all he is willing to do on me is the gastric sleeve. (about 1 hour surgery) The sleeve is actually the “top” part of the duodenal switch, but he will not do the “rerouting” part. That is the malabsorptive part and the reason the duodenal switch is so very, very effective. And it is the only surgery shown to put diabetes type 2 into remission.

Dr Shin says after a couple of years if I show “great” weight loss he will consider the second part. Ok, so there is hope, the only problem is the gastric sleeve is not very effective in the vast majority of people, with most regaining the weight in a couple of years, so that this is probably a pipe dream.

Will I still have the surgery, Yes I will. I don’t feel I have a choice at this point.

The person I spoke to in the waiting room had the sleeve. She lost 100 pounds, but had regained a significant amount of weight. I probably have zero chance at putting my type 2 diabetes into remission. This was my main goal. I have a great A1c (5.8 – up from 5.2 last year) but it comes at a very high physical cost of 2 different insulins and pills. I take over 60 units of long acting insulin, up to 100 units of fast acting insulin, and 2000mg of metformin a day. I “pass out” at least once a day from high sugar. (I have an appointment with a new doctor for that in March.)

Dr Shin says people who do not do well on the sleeve “cheat”. Says if I do what he says I will lose about 150 pounds and be able to keep it off. I WILL try my best. But I honestly don’t know if I am so “special” as to do so much better and different than everyone else that has the surgery. He says I AM that different because I lost over 100 pounds on my own and have kept most of it off for 4 years. I hope he is right. He said he simply does not see that in his practice.

I really will try. I am trying to console myself with the fact that probably no other doctor would even consider the sleeve with my medical issues and Dr Shin IS willing to do that one. I really do intend to throw myself into this process 100 percent. I just really needed to explain my feelings on the whole thing. My husband really is a good man but when I tried to explain the feelings I was having he just got mad and said “so you are not even going to try are you?” I just told him that was not what I was trying to say and I just quit talking about it and have bottled it up for 2 days.

So, I will probably try to blog my journey with this. I hope you all don’t get tired of hearing about it! This is the last blog (at least that is my intention) about not getting the switch. From here forward I will concentrate on what I CAN have instead of what I can’t. I hope to blog in a few days about all the processes I have to do in the next 4 months to get this done! Boy there is a whole bunch of stuff to do!


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Member Comments About This Blog Post
    I had the sleeve in Jan. I think a lot about keeping weight off in the long run. People who stay on their plan keep the weight off. A lot of people quit tracking and following program, and gain weight back. My Fat Brain is always obsessing about food, so the surgery doesn't get rid of the mind games I play on myself. Every day is a day of shucking off the mind games and keeping to my program. I'm evolving and working every day to make this work, especially in the long run.

    With all that said, I'm so glad I'm finally losing weight, something I could not do on my own.

    There's a team on this website called Gastric Sleevers.
    94 days ago
    Oh my - I hope all is well with you - it must be better if you're back on Spark.

    And I so recognize the fear in your DH's response

    And your reaction so resonates with me. It is extremely good that you came here and spit it out. I only wish I'd seen it earlier so I could have given you cheers and support last week. You really MUST talk it out and work it out and come to terms with yourself and oh ... all the other things that are part of processing. Because the more processed, ready, prepared, acknowledged, and accepting you are - the more successful you are going to be.

    This is a hard decision that will leave you with a heavy load to carry - even if that does sound like a pun. It is the load of responsibility and commitment - but I believe you are strong enough to carry it AND that you will see a vast improvement in your diabetes and a diminishing of the # of meds you'll need even if you don't actually reverse it.

    Honey - anyone who took of 100 lbs and kept most of it off for 4 years IS special. You are special. and you're in my prayers
    123 days ago
  • JUNEAU2010
    Cheering you on! This is a powerful blog. Reread it when you need to remind yourself of today's determination. You CAN do this!
    127 days ago
  • FRANKIE2019
    I will be praying for you. Your doctor is right about eating the right food. You can not go back to eating junk food. You will gain back what you lost. Keeping off 100 lbs for four years I feel you can do this. Wishing you all the best.
    128 days ago
    I am wishing you the absolute emoticon
    130 days ago
    Knowing this is not what you initially wanted, try to see in part the blessings still ....it gives you a chance, a chance that very well may be on the winning side of those statistics and have a great outcome. I will be praying for you and I know you can do this! emoticon
    130 days ago
  • JAMER123
    Wishing you the best with the sleeve. I do know a couple people that have had the sleeve done and they have done well.
    131 days ago
    Maybe you are sent in a different direction for a reason.
    You can do this! Stay strong and know that it will all work out.

    131 days ago
  • LINDA!
    Good luck with your surgery. Wishing you complete success. emoticon
    131 days ago
    I agree with Retiredgma, if you've lost 100 pounds on your own and kept it off, there's no reason this surgery won't work. Your doctor has confidence in your ability to follow his directions and be successful. Positive thinking will carry you through this and beyond.

    Spark is the safe place to vent and share your feelings and frustrations. There are always the naysayers (jealous of any and all successes, they usually have their pages set to private so you/we can't defend ourselves or our opinions), but just ignore them. Your friends are here to provide a listening ear, strong shoulders, support, and love as you face this unknown territory and challenge. Keep the Faith!!

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
    131 days ago
    I hope everything works out for you.
    131 days ago
    I am sorry that you can not have the desired surgery but I do appreciate that the doctor was honest about the danger of having the more invasive surgery. It is hard for them to say things that their patients do not like but they do need to tell all the risks and possible outcomes. It is a matter or attitude in how well you will succeed. My friend had the sleeve and has kept her weight off for quite a while. She is very careful to follow the dietary guidelines suggested to her. My son-in law had the more invasive surgery and has gained back the weight eating junk food and refusing to eat healthy fruit and vegetables. It is so sad to watch. You can do this!! I believe in you.
    132 days ago
    I will be praying for you. emoticon
    132 days ago
    you can do this. you have been through so much stress and you got through it as you are a strong person. i know 2 people who had the gastric sleeve. one is regaining because she is eating all the wrong foods. she even admitted it. the other is doing so good on this and has lost and is keeping it off. it will help if you can find a support group to help you.
    praying for you and your hubby as you go through this next step in your life. anxious to hear your progress.
    132 days ago
    I have to say, those I know who've had the sleeve and gained weight, did not psychologically 'buy into' the way they have to practice their nutrition. That really does make a huge difference. And have to just say, with the weight loss you will have after the sleeve, I would bet your type 2 WILL be at least lots better, if not in remission. Stay positive, vent here (we 'get it') and do your best to follow the guidelines.

    Wishing you success. It's always difficult when we have our Plan A and have to go to Plan B!
    132 days ago
    I know people that have had the sleeve done that lost large amounts of weight and have kept it off for years. Your doctor is right, if you stay on the program the weight will stay off. People who regain weight after any weight loss surgery are not staying on the plan.... they return to old habits. Good luck with your surgery. emoticon
    132 days ago
    I am sorry your hubby doesn't understand your feelings. When you are looking forward to something and then find out you can't have it you some times need to mourn that loss before moving to the next step. You can do this!
    132 days ago

    Wishing you the very best !!!!
    132 days ago
    Writing things down is a great way to vent and sharing them on a Spark blog gets you support ~ win-win!

    I do not know how the procedures are different as is it not something I am looking at doing but be thankful your doctor is concerned about the immediate outcome from the surgery.

    I look forward to following your journey ~ emoticon emoticon
    132 days ago
    Good luck!
    132 days ago
    If you have managed to keep 100 lbs off for 4 years I am sure you will be able to follow your doctor's orders. It is good to be able to vent with a blog.....
    Good luck.
    132 days ago
    emoticon I know it's cliche but "there is no TRY! There is DO or DO NOT". YOU can DO this!
    132 days ago
    All the best in your efforts to be healthy. Stay safe & well
    132 days ago
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