I am writing my first ever blog to try and get the message out to as many gastric bypass patients and soon to be patients – Be Careful. The surgeons aren’t giving you all the information and most of the websites are populated with people who (like me) are in their “honeymoon period” and so excited to share their happiness and success with others.
The dirty little secret they aren’t telling you is that an alarming number of people who have the Roux-ex-Y procedure (a bariatric procedure that bypasses a significant portion of the small intestine) are succumbing to alcoholism, depression, peripheral neurapathy, addiction, suicide and other “unexplained” deaths. Once you start googling it and know what you are looking for you may be astonished.
For a variety of reasons and lots of study, I believe it has something to do with the bypassing of the intestine. So many stories were similar. The “troubles” didn’t start right away, but well after their followup with their surgeon (ie., after the first year). Made me think, it was related to exhausting nutrient reserves. A friend had the lap-band and didn’t seem to be experiencing any of these problems, while all of my friends with Roux-en-Y were experiencing some type of problem.
I think this problem is vastly under-reported as well. The ones that actually report experiencing “alcoholism” or “addiction” are the extreme, but I think there are far more struggling silently in between. Not talking to their doctor, not understanding what is going on with them – that something is wrong, why they don’t feel right?
Many physicians self-admit their lack of nutritional knowledge – that they received very little education in med-school and they wouldn’t necessarily recognize an overweight “malnourished” patient if one presented.
If you think any of this applies to you, please contact me. I’d love to hear from you.