Bariatric Surgery = increased likelihood of ALCOHOLISM.

Timely, as nearly one thousand of us descend upon Las Vegas today through the weekend for a weight loss surgery related event.

I am already seeing the alcohol posts on Facebook IN. THE. AIRPORTS.

Hello, my name is Beth, and I don't have a problem with alcohol (…and I thank my lucky stars every single day…) however, I AM SURROUNDED BY ALCOHOLICS AND OTHER ADDICTS POST WEIGHT LOSS SURGERY.

In full, from Medscape

May 15, 2012 (Lyon, France) — Bariatric surgery is associated with an increased likelihood that patients will report and be diagnosed with problems related to alcohol consumption. Different levels of risk are associated with different gastric surgery procedures, Per-Arne Svensson, PhD, from the Sahlgrenska Center for Cardiovascular and Metabolic Research at the University of Gothenburg in Sweden, reported here at the 19th European Congress on Obesity.

Rare Genetic Disorder After WLS

I have copied and pasted this article in full, because I think we need to see all the details of this story.  I have never heard of this issue before, "Urea Cycle Disorder" in gastric bypass patients.  Hilary Lane,  a young vibrant music teacher passed several years after her gastric bypass surgery due to this rare genetic disorder.

I do not post this to frighten anyone, it's just somethng that interests me greatly since I am also a medical mystery since my gastric bypass.

20/20 Interview Confessions

I am aware that I did not share the details of the interview with 20/20 this week in my previous post about the show.  I wasn't purposely keeping anything from you, in fact I wished I had documented the process as it happened, but I only had a phone and it happened so. very. fast.

American Broadcasting Company

That time MM was on 20/20.

American Broadcasting CompanyAmerican Broadcasting Company (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I'm going to be on TV.

I'm going to New York City next week to film an interview with ABC's 20/20.    

Then, because of the way things go:  I am going to the neurology inpatient unit for 7-10 days for video EEG monitoring, coming home, and flying to Vegas for the WLSFA Event.  Because.  It's all or nothing for me. 

PS.  Send clothes.  OMG.  I have nothing to wear.  And I need a haircut.  Save me. 

What?!

Yes.  I agreed to go.  You know I am terrified of Such Things as Being On Camera, and I have said no a couple times before to things like this.  There are people in my life who feel that I can't possibly have stage fright because "REALLY, YOU!?  Attention WHORE!"  But I am typically scared shitless, you just don't know that.

But this opportunity feels different.  It's 20/20.

I WATCH THIS SHOW.  OMG.  I'm going to speak with Deborah Roberts.  OMG. 

I spent one and a half hours on the phone today with a ABC producer, and I taped it.

Why did you TAPE yourself, Beth?  For one thing, I have had more than one seizure during Important Phone Calls that I do not remember HAVING.  (Sorry, Chike Protein, and whomever else I've done it to.)  Knowing the call would be long, I figured it was a possibility and I wanted to remember what I said.  It didn't happen, but now I have this record of my half of the conversation, I figured I would share it.

This is completely unscripted, random and much of my off the cuff thoughts.  Please do not judge too harshly.  I did not prepare anything because I had no idea what she was going to ask and what the topic was.  As for the actual show topic, I figure it will be loosely connected to the things she asked in this interview:

 

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Eight Years Post Op – And I may NEVER QUIT.

 

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Eight years post op

Eight years ago today I had roux en y gastric bypass surgery.   Do not say it.  I already made that clear in my previous post.

Since then it’s been a whirlwind of ups and downs — but mostly — it’s been good.  I often refer to my life as a country song.  Because it is.  

But you know what?  Regardless of the roller coaster of life —

Intervention – Terry – Gastric Bypass – And a realization…

I fell asleep last night before catching all of last night’s episode of Intervention, however, I saw about three minutes in the middle and said: “This woman is a WLS’er.”

I have a sixth sense about other post ops.  It’s bizarre.

I did not know, in fact, until I just got a Google Alert for this episode in my email from Google due to the words “gastric bypass.”

I am telling you alcoholism post WLS is RAMPANT.  And, hidden.

You can have as many chicken – egg conversations about it –

  • What Caused “Us” To Gain Weight?
  • Is It The Same Problem That Causes Us To Drink – Drug – Party – Etc. LATER?  
  • Often, yes.  Directly related.
  • It’s not always about liking food too much.

Mr. MM looked at me and said, “You know, I’m lucky that isn’t me.”

And he’s right.  If he did not EAT – even now at eight years post op food is his drug – he’d drink.  It’s in him to be addicted to something.  Anything.

And that is a VERY FRIGHTENING REALIZATION that is VERY REAL.   This stuff often isn’t realized until YEARS post op.  It’s true — he had no idea why he ate too much.  We’re only just scratching the surface now — in 2012.  

Sigh.

TV Replay –

A&E saved one of the most heartbreaking stories yet for the season finale of “Intervention” (Mon, 10 p.m. ET on A&E). Terry’s descent into alcoholism was easy to understand as her story unfolded. She was pressured to be beautiful by her mother. She even went into modeling, but gave it up after her mother and the agency suggested diet pills.

So Terry turned to food, gaining a tremendous amount of weight, before gastric bypass surgery and ultimately alcoholism took over. Even during the taping of this show, her mother said, “I think appearances do make the person.” She also refused to believe her daughter about an earlier molestation from a family friend.

So starting from a young age, Terry felt like she was never quite good enough for her mother. In a society that puts an undue burden on women in regards to appearance and beauty, Terry’s burden was even heavier because it was her mother telling her she wasn’t good enough the way she is. By the end of the episode, though, her mother had apologized and Terry had found sobriety, so there may yet be a happy ending to her story.