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Monday, November 23, 2009

69 Year Old, Over 300 Pounds, Making a New Life: Overcoming Morbid Obesity with a Lapband

A 69 year old friend who weighs over 300 pounds has decided to start a new life by getting lapband surgery for weight loss. Crippled by overweight, his bad back is so painful he barely moves around. He describes living with his overweight as being like carrying a 100 pound of cement. Simple actions like trying to stand up or walk a few steps are so difficult he uses a stool with wheels, a scooter, and a variety of mobility aids.

He's contacted a company that takes care of doing the paperwork and getting the appointment. One night he stayed up until 3 am reading about lapbands on the internet. Sometimes people go home the same day, other times they stay in a hospital overnight. The person uses a liquid diet for awhile, and then a soft diet before making a transition to other foods.

Coverage by insurance such as Medicare is based partly on the Body Mass Index, BMI, and on other chronic conditions such as diabetes. He's done his homework and the consultants have said he is indeed covered by insurance for this.

The lapband can adjusted by using a syringe to increase or decrease amounts of saline that are in the band, loosening or tightening it.

For my friend it is a turning point in life, a decision to meet a challenge and overcome it.

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