Patient Stories: Bariatric surgery offers an active life with less pain
For patients struggling with obesity and its range of potential effects on health, life can become limited by pain, discomfort and increasing medical conditions. For Herb Garner, once highly active, he realized he was no longer able to move around without pain and had gone from easily walking four to five miles during his workday to struggling to manage more than one. While bariatric surgery wasn’t his first choice for a solution, choosing the procedure ended up changing his life.
“Family, namely my niece and nephew, are a major motivational part of my life and a major reason why I chose this surgery,” Garner said.
He met with Dr. John Scott at the Prisma Health Weight Management Institute, who spoke with him about ongoing problems not just with physical discomfort caused by his disease of obesity, but also his high blood pressure, prediabetes and reflux disease. While both gastric bypass and laparoscopic surgery were options, gastric bypass was chosen as the better option when his reflux and prediabetes were taken into account.
“Before undergoing bariatric surgery, I was almost always constantly in pain,” said Garner. “You just want to stop hurting, and you’re tired of always hurting. It felt like an endless cycle downward.”
Dr. Scott worked with Garner on understanding every aspect of his obesity. Options like nutritional counseling and advice on lifestyle changes are also an aspect of obesity treatment, but as Garner had already tried many different ways to lose weight, they decided that the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery would have the greatest positive impact and the highest possible success rate with the lowest number of risks.
The surgery was a success. Today, Herb is living an active life without pain and able to enjoy spending time with his young niece and nephew.