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Va And Lap Band Surgery


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  • HadIt.com Elder

What are the odds of getting lap band surgery at VA?

I would like to consider it for me. I have diabetes and since getting good control of Diabetes my weight is close to 300 lbs. I think it could help diabetes, depression wieight, sleep apnea and other medical problems.

I am also service connected for flat feet and I have neuropathy and take a lot of medication. I am 62 and would like to live to see my grand children marry and have kids.

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Pete, I don't know if all the Med Centers offer this surgery. Bay Pines in St. Pete was doing them about two years ago.They had very strict requirements to be a candidate. You had to be referred by your PCP, and have a psychological exam. Also you have to had tried multiple weight loss strategies,( if you are like most of us you won't have a problem with this one)I have done lots of research on bariatric surgery, and the experts seem to believe that it is a really valuable tool for folks with diseases that are exacerbated or made worse by being overweight. You might want to call your closest VMAC to see if they offer it.

Take care of yourself and the grands!

Pearl

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Peter

I think if would be worth a try. You would want a doctor to write a statement saying that your weight was a serious threat to your life and that if you did not get the surgery you would have a premature death. If the your VA primary care doctor would weigh in on this and say something similar it might help. I am just guessing because I have never heard of the VA doing something like lapband surgery. You know that they are going to try and tell you that you should handle it with diet and exercise. It might be easier through medicare but I don't know if medicare would pay. It seems like they should if it is a life threatening condition. I think I would call medicare and find out if they might do it. I bet the weight lose would really help your feet. I gained some weight and I found that the weight gain made my feet much worse. I think the terms "morbid obesity" would be the key to getting the surgery and getting medicare or the VA to pay.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Pearl and John:

I really appreciate your feedback and kindness. I am digging into this as I think that if I go ahead and do this I probably will have a better quality and longer life. Even my wife wants me to do this and she is a dietician.

I was really down about gainig 40 lbs after working so hard to get better control of diabetes. When I weiged 250/260 even though overweight I could still buy clothes off the rack and I had a lot more energy.

Reasons I want it is to better manage by diabetes, sleep apnea, respiratory problems, flat feet, high blood pressure and probably a few other things I am overlooking.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.f...p;dopt=Abstract

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Pete, my wife had that procedure done and as I suspected she has started gaining her weight back after an initial loss. She has an eating disorder that can't be solved by surgery unless it is a connection of the esophagus to the anus.

The small pouch that is constructed by the sugery can be expanded with a little effort until you get back to a large pouch. She can now out eat me.

I said before the operation and will continue to say that a person has to deal with the reason for overeating through therapy or other alternative procedure.

This procedure will only work for those folks who really want to lose weight and don't over eat but still can't lose. If it is expected that the operation will force one to eat less it will only work for a short time.

Hope this helps. My suggestion would be to see if your eating habits can be altered before resorting to surgery...

Edited by Moe
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  • HadIt.com Elder

Moe

What are the medical risks of lap band surgery? Is it major or minor surgery?

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  • HadIt.com Elder

It takes some major motivation and although lap band is not as effective it is for 50% while the old surgery is 86%. I am sorry for your wife but I am pretty sure that there is more than meets the eye in almost any case.

Lap Band is a risk in the first place and there are several complications but at least it can be reversed. Of course the other alternative is to do nothing. As simple as it sounds most who eat less do not end up being successful in a long weight loss program although I personally know three or four who were my weight who have.

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Pete

One thing we know is that many medications for DMII cause people to put on weight. There are risks with the surgery but there are risks with being signifcantly over weight. If I weighed 300 pounds and I was not over eating or had an eating disorder I would consider the lap band. Just about all anti-depressants cause weight gain. When I go to the VAMC I see lots of guys in wheelchairs who are very over weight. I think one thing leads to another. The extra weight puts stress on the feet and the knees and this is how some of these guys end up in the chair and they never get out again. Not all ,of course ,but being in the chair can be a death sentence. If you can stay mobile you will live longer even if it hurts. It is hard to stay mobile when your feet and knees go out from extra weight. I know I have gained some weight and my feet are worse for it.

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Moe

What are the medical risks of lap band surgery? Is it major or minor surgery?

The risks are minor. She had five 1/2 inch incisions and it took about fort five minutes. I took her home the next day. She was sore for about two weeks.

If a person will truly eat less this procedure is a good assist.If the person is addicted to food it won't work.

I would suggest that a person work on the mental desire for food first.

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  • HadIt.com Elder

Well the VA is out. I have it on good authority that I will be approved by my Medicare HMO. My cost will be $ 100 and a few Doc co-pays of $ 25 each. Time frame is 30 to 60 days and I am starting to get very ansey.

I typed something evil but I erased it. I used the VA for 15 years and some was good and some was bad. I am just glad that I got Medicare and a HMO so I will make more room for other Vets at VA.

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  • HadIt.com Elder
What are the odds of getting lap band surgery at VA?

I would like to consider it for me. I have diabetes and since getting good control of Diabetes my weight is close to 300 lbs. I think it could help diabetes, depression wieight, sleep apnea and other medical problems.

I am also service connected for flat feet and I have neuropathy and take a lot of medication. I am 62 and would like to live to see my grand children marry and have kids.

Pete ( and anybody else who is diabetic and overweight ),

My wife is a diabetic ( and had a weight problem, that she is now getting over ). Her endocrinologist (sp) has started her on a drug for diabetics called Byetta. She has lost 40 lbs and has 30 lbs more to go. I don't know how it works, but it does:

BYETTA (bye-A-tuh) is the first in a class of medicines for type 2 diabetes called incretin mimetics. BYETTA improves blood sugar control in adults with type 2 diabetes and is used with pills like Glucophage® (metformin), and/or a sulfonylurea like Amaryl® (glimepiride), Glucotrol® (glipizide), Micronase® (glyburide), and others.

BYETTA is unique and works in a different way than pills or insulin. By helping your body produce the right amount of insulin at the right time, BYETTA helps take the guesswork out of type 2 diabetes.

By exploring BYETTA.com, you can find information about how diabetes affects your body, how BYETTA helps control your diabetes, and how to use BYETTA and the BYETTA Pen. To begin learning more about BYETTA, click here.

For important safety information, click here.

BYETTA is a registered trademark of Amylin Pharmaceuticals, Inc. All other brand names are the property of their respective owners.

She calls it "lizard spit", for it is manufactured from the saliva of the Hila Monster lizard or some such creature!

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  • HadIt.com Elder

This is just something that I found that I thought y'all might find interesting:

c. In the largest obesity prevalence study to date (a review of 1.8 million veteran medical

records) in VA, the study found that “Obesity among American veterans is highly prevalent.”

Specific findings included the following:

(1) “Of the 93,290 women veterans receiving outpatient care at VA medical facilities in

2000, 68.4 percent were at least overweight (31.0 percent were classified as overweight, and

37.4 percent were classified as class-I to III obese).”

VHA HANDBOOK 1101.1 March 27, 2006

(2) “In the 1,710,032 men, the combined prevalence of overweight and obesity was 73

percent (40.1 percent were classified as overweight, and 32.9 percent were classified as class-I to

III obese).”

d. The estimates of overweight and obesity in this study and other recent estimates suggest

that the enrolled veteran population shows a higher prevalence of overweight and obesity than

the general population.

e. Obesity contributes to the development and/or worsening of many conditions, such as

diabetes, heart disease, and sleep apnea. VHA’s mission is to provide quality, cost-effective

medical care to all eligible veterans through its comprehensive, integrated health care system.

(1) In testimony before the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs on March 17, 2005, Jonathan B.

Perlin, MD, PhD, MSHA, FACP, then-acting Under Secretary for Health, stated, “VA’s

approach to the provision of health care, in general, is guided by an emphasis on the principles of

health promotion and preventive care.”

(2) In April 2005 at the Strategic Planning Summit, Dr. Perlin addressed this epidemic of

overweight and obesity as a priority, considering all aspects of care including treatment and

prevention of disease. “VHA will improve its enhanced preventive health with MOVE! to

combat the epidemic of obesity (and diabetes).” Failure to assist veterans in managing weight

and sedentary lifestyle affects current treatment and future demand for VA health care services.

f. Currently, there is no standard VHA weight management program. In accordance with its

mission, NCP has assessed the status of overweight and/or obesity in VA and has developed a

comprehensive, evidence-based, population-approach, tiered, multidisciplinary weight

management program tailored to the VA population, based on the National Institutes of Health

(NIH)-National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute Guidelines for Identification, Evaluation and

Treatment of Overweight and Obesity in Adults. NOTE: A detailed description of MOVE! can

be found at: http://vaww.move.med.va.gov/.

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