Thursday, May 28, 2009

It's Official...

glitter -

My surgery date is officially on June 18th, 2009! YAY!!!

Here is my VERY busy upcoming schedule:
TODAY 5/28 - Got work approval for all time off, confirmed dates w/surgeon's office
5/29- HOPEFULLY get surgeon's packet w/the paperwork needed for the tests I have to have done before the 3rd (yikes...that's really pushing it) & Behavior Mod. session w/psychiatrist Dr. Garcia
5/30-Find a fax machine if I still haven't gotten packet
6/1-Go have all tests done in AM before work (still not even sure where to do that!)
6/3-Go to Pre-Op class and pay the fees that the hospital will be charging (Yikes, have no idea how much that is going to be!)
6/5- Behavior Mod. session w/Dr. Garcia
6/9- Pre-Op appointment where I meet with the actual surgeon Dr. Blackstone (She's the ONLY female bariatric surgeon in the state and one of the few in the country) I also have to pay the surgeon's fees at this appt...$1500! Seriously that's a GREAT price!
6/12- My LAST behavior mod. session w/Dr. Garcia :) YAY!
6/18-THE BIG DAY! SURGERY DAY! Surgery will be at 11am, I have to be there 2 hours early at 9am. Surgery is only about 45 minutes, I'll be passed out and drugged the rest of the day...woo hoo! lol, jk. I will be staying overnight and released home after testing on Friday.
6/25- Post-Op class, not really sure why I have to do this, but I'm sure it's important as it's mandatory.
6/26- Post-Op appointment to get my first fill. That will be exciting because the real weight loss comes after getting a fill :) Then I'll go back in one month to check my fill and maybe get another!

So...busy, busy, busy! I am not scared yet so don't try to freak me out.
The day before surgery I will post all of my pre-op photos so that we have something to compare to :) That should be fun.

Stay tuned!

I've decided to start this public blog for everyone to see, if they want. I am just about to begin my new life and wanted to share my experiences with everyone!

Having been obese most of my life, I decided to have Lap-Band surgery. For those of you who don't know what that is:

So I started this whole process almost a year ago. First I was just doing research and learning EVERYTHING that I could about the procedure and everything involved with it. I strongly advise that anyone who is looking into this procedure spend MANY hours really researching this. Some of the best sites to do so are:
I started a journal to write down everything I needed to know and wrote down every single question I could think of. Next I researched surgeons. I origianlly decided on Dr. Schlesinger. But after a series of un-fortunate events with their office (including me driving over an HOUR to his office for a seminar that I had scheduled with them, and they confirmed, only to find that no one was in the office, it was closed. Then the receptionist said that he wasn't doing seminars anymore and that must have been a mistake.) I decided to look for a different surgeon. I am sure that Dr. Schlesinger is a very capable surgeon, I've heard wonderful things about him. But his staff doesn't seem to be on top of things. And when I'm trusing someone to take care of my life, I have to trust that they're on top of everything. At the recomendation of my very good friend, Victoria, I decided to look into Scottsdale Bariatric w/ Dr. Blackstone. Wow. I have to say I LOVE Scottsdale Bariatric. Because they are so wonderful, you can expect to wait a little bit to get everything going, but it is more than worth it. They have the highest success rate in the state of AZ and it's because they are so thurough.
Here is the timeline of how everything went:
*July 2008- started looking into lap-band and seriously researching everything about it
*August 2008- found out if husband's new job offers insurance that covers the surgery (VERY IMPORTANT) ...found out it does and I just had to wait for his 90 day waiting period.
*September 2008- Joined support boards to start hearing people's stories and experiences
*October 2008- Insurance started. Called to confirm bennifits and was mailed a packet that went over requirements.
*November 2008- Started setting up primary care doctor's appointments since I needed an official referral from him. That's the very first step for the insurance approval. I also attended the required seminar from Scottsdale Bariatric (I did mine online, soo thankful they offer that option!)
*December 2008- Waited...not really much that I could do, just waited for appointments.
*January 2009- Signed up for Weight Watchers on-line so I could start working on loosing weight and also prove to the insurance that I was trying. My insurance required SOME form of medically supervised diet, so I told my PCP that I was doing this, he notated it...and it became medically supervised :)
*February 2009- Got my New Patient Packet from Scottsdale Bariatric! Oh gee, it was only a good 14 pages!
*March 2009- Got official Dr's referral :) YAY! Then I had my Pre-Op appointment. O....M....G!!! That was the LONGEST appointment of my life! It was literally 5 hours long! I'm not embellishing, it really was that long. But it was great.
April 2009- I had to work on getting my things done so that my insurance paper work could be submitted. Blood work, H-Pylori testing, PAP, etc.
May 2009- FINALLY got insurance approval!!!! Also got surgery date scheduled!! But as of right this second, I can't announce it yet since it's not 100% official, it's only 99% official yet.
SO! That's it so far! :) If you want to know more, please let me know. I'd be more than happy to tell you ANYTHING, I'm not shy, lol.