Tummy like a Banana

Me and my vertical sleeve

Post-surgery appointment

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So, the appointment went well, aside from a little disappointment. As a patient of Dr. Foote, I have to go through the mush phase for yet another month. Other patients transition into the soft solid phase after 4 weeks, but apparently Dr. Foote makes a tight little pouch, mine is 34 bougie. I think he said to me that mine would be slightly bigger (so 34 vs. 32) because my BMI was “only” 43.

Explanation: bougie is the unit of measure for the circumference of the stomach. So, with a 34 bougie stomach, it means my stomach has a diameter of 10.82 mm. The bougie depends on the surgeon and is mostly determined if you have just the vertical sleeve (i.e. smaller bougie) or if you have it as step one of a duodenal switch where the stomach is left bigger to compensate for malnutrition.

Anyway, so my stomach pouch is tight, that’s reason number one. The other reason is because my practice holds a “leak rate” of less than 1%. The physician told me that some practices are OK with a leak rate of up to 4% in their patients (i.e. 4 in 100 can possible spring a leak in their stapled stomach). In order to make sure less than 1 in 100 patients damage their stomach pouch, my surgeon insists on continuing the mushy food period for an additional 2 weeks. Unfortunately, that means no turkey for Thanksgiving, but in all honesty – we are talking about my life here, so an additional week of mushy food is fine. I can still have mashed potatoes and gravy, sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, the “inside” of a pumpkin pie (NO CRUST FOR YOU!). What I’ll really start to miss is probably pasta and rice, but both tend to expand in the stomach and they don’t want to risk this. It seems they are overly cautious but again, 2 weeks vs. rest of my life. I also learned that I can have my beloved snack mix and protein chips again, 15 g of protein in actually pretty tasty chips, pretzels etc. so I bough 7 of those. I have to check online, because at $1.50 for a small bag, that’s quite pricey!

They also removed my incision tape, horray! After a good 2 weeks, those little tape pieces started to look really nasty and dirty. They were pealing off on the sides and were gray and generally not very nice looking. Now I can finally see the incisions, and it’s amazing. they are almost invisible, they have tiny little bumps underneath and the one where the stomach came out has a little bruise. I asked him about the bruise and he said that it is actually quiet small. Otherwise, I am doing good. I lost a little less than I was hoping for and I told the physician but he told me not to worry about it. As long as I stay within the guidelines which are 60 g of protein, less than 900 calories a day and plenty of water, the weight will come off.

Oh, I almost forgot – I had a blood pressure of 90/68. Amazing! He asked me if I take anything for my blood pressure and I told him no, and that I just rock my blood pressure. He asked if I was feeling light headed but if not, that this is actually really good.

More later, got to get ready for work!


Day summary:

  • walked 30 minutes on the Treadmill @ 3 mph
  • 40 oz. of water (this is so hard!)
  • 8 oz. of Nutrimed Berry Cream protein (15 g of protein)
  • Kay’s Natural Sweet BBQ Snack Mix – just learned that I can have those again! (15 g protein)
  • Simply Potatoes Sweet Potatoes (2 g of protein)
  • Mushroom Gravy with the sweet potatoes
  • GNC Pro Performance Amplified Wheybolic Extreme 60 Chocolate (30 g protein) <– more about this later

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