The Positives Of Bariatric Surgery
Friday - March 17, 2010
Christi Keliipio, 53, has struggled with weight issues almost her whole life.
Four years ago, at 285 pounds, she underwent bariatric surgery on the Mainland. Her stomach was made smaller, reducing the amount of food she can eat and the amount of calories her body can absorb. She has since lost 130 pounds, and gone from a dress size 26 to 8/10.
“I decided to do the surgery because my hips, ankles and knees were sore,” says Keliipio, a registered nurse with a master’s in nursing. “And I knew that if I didn’t get the weight off I would probably need early surgeries - hip replacement or knee replacement. I was frustrated and I was tired.
“Also, I had gone on some cruises with my husband and they had weight limits on the activities. I couldn’t go horseback riding because I was not within the weight limit. It was devastating because I grew up riding horses, and to have somebody tell me I’m too heavy to get on a horse - it’s probably one of the most demeaning things when someone tells you can’t do something because you’re overweight.”
Throughout her life, Keliipio has tried many different diet programs and pills. She says her weight would go down, but only for a little while before going back up.
With bariatric surgery, the amount of weight you lose and the amount of time it takes to lose it varies from person to person. For Keliipio, she noticed the changes within a month. However, there still needs to be responsibility for what you eat and exercising.
“Bariatric surgery is not the magic bullet by any means,” she says. “There are stages of weight loss, and one of the hardest things for me is maintaining my weight because I’m feeling comfortable.”
Keliipio, who serves as the bariatric program coordinator at Kapiolani Medical Center for Women & Children at Pali Momi, shares her success story at a free information session April 28 from 5 to 6:30 p.m. in the Pali Momi Diamond Head conference room. To register, visit http://www.kapiolani.org/palimomi/health-services/BariatricSurgeon.aspx.
There are different types of bariatric surgical procedures. Pali Momi offers the Lap-Band and Roux-enY Gastric Bypass options.
“Anybody who is dealing with weight problems or just tired and wants to be healthy is invited to come and listen to what the options are,” says Keliipio. “We’ll also have a surgeon there, and he’s very candid regarding the pros and cons of doing the surgery, and at the end we put it out there for questions.
“For me, I had the opportunity to have bariatric surgery, took it and I never regret it.”
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