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 So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....

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smileychick
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smileychick

Female
Number of posts : 74
Location : Brisbane Bayside
Registration date : 2015-01-26

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyTue 03 Feb 2015, 11:49 am

Thank you to you all for sharing your experiences, I truly appreciate it! I've booked in to see a surgeon and due to my work commitments, they've given me a tentative date for surgery which I'll confirm at my appointment in a few weeks. 
Starting to get that nervous/excited feeling!

I've spoken to a few dieticians and basically most of them said to me that the pre-op diet doesn't have to be optifast - just something that is very low calorie diet.
Has anyone tried the other brands of meal replacements and preferred them better?

I love the Optifast chocolate bars but don't really like any of their other flavoured bars or shakes.

I've also started Optifast on my own before seeing the surgeon, as the tentative surgery date they've given me is just 4 weeks later.
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bringingbackme
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bringingbackme

Female
Number of posts : 55
Age : 37
Location : Brisbane
Registration date : 2014-04-10

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyTue 03 Feb 2015, 7:19 am

Hi, 

Just for my perspective. I had my surgery with Dr Bowden back in May. I found him great. He is quiet and won't bombard you with information, but answered all my questions throughly as did his nurse. Once I saw the nurse, I was able to book in a date, and got all the information from his receptionist.

He was great on the day, very reassuring, as was the entire team he works with. I had a great/textbook recovery, can basically not even see my scars, didn't bruise around the cuts at all (and I bruise easily), so he is a very gentle surgeon. A lot of the nurses said they think he is the best at the Wesley. 

I think out of pocket he was similar. 

At the end of the day, do your research and go with the person you feel comfortable that they will look after you well etc. as it is an ongoing relationship.
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~shelli~
Part of the furniture


Female
Number of posts : 291
Age : 49
Location : Brisbane
Registration date : 2013-08-15

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyTue 27 Jan 2015, 6:44 am

Hi smileychick

I had a similar start weight to you - 179kg the first time I saw the surgeon.

I've had surgery with Dr Bowden quite a few years ago and yes, found him aloof but he did my surgery and I had no problems afterwards - it was a hernia repair.  I've been hospitalised at the Wesley twice and had no problem at all with the service or the nurses either time. I looked at using Dr Bowden for the sleeve but he seemed to lean towards the lapband (from what I read - that might be different in reality) and was more expensive out of pocket than others.

I ended up going with Dr Greenslade at Greenslopes and couldn't be happier with him.  He didn't bat an eye at my weight and never suggested he wouldn't operate on me. I went through the same process as Wendy, one appointment with him and was given info and a list of dietitians. I saw a dietitian about 5 weeks before surgery and she put me on opti for 3 weeks. I lost 10kgs before surgery and the operation went ahead no worries at all. At my last appointment earlier this month I overheard the receptionist telling giving a lady her info pack and it seems the process has changed a little - they now have a dietitian who comes to the rooms once a week and also a psychologist. It seemed to be mandatory to see the psych at least once if not twice prior to surgery. I'm not sure if you are bound to use the dietitian there or free to choose another.

BUPA is my health insurer and we have Standard Hospital cover.  It covered all the in-hospital expenses, we just paid the excess on checking in on the morning of surgery. We had to pay the surgeon at least two weeks prior to surgery. You are able to pay Dr Greenslade in installments as long as the total is paid two weeks prior.  We also had to pay the anesthetist prior. The Assistant Surgeon is billed after the surgery. Edited to add: we also had to pay for take home meds, the hospital sent a bill later.

I hope that helps :)
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MrMick
Part of the furniture
MrMick

Male
Number of posts : 378
Age : 50
Location : Brisbane
Registration date : 2014-03-07

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyTue 27 Jan 2015, 3:51 am

Don't forget to let them know that you are available earlier if they have a cancelation ;-)
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http://www.lawnmowingbrisbane.com
smileychick
Newbie
smileychick

Female
Number of posts : 74
Location : Brisbane Bayside
Registration date : 2015-01-26

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyTue 27 Jan 2015, 3:45 am

Thank you Shriking Violet - I've sent you a PM :)
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Shrinking Violet
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Female
Number of posts : 125
Location : QLD
Registration date : 2015-01-10

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PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyTue 27 Jan 2015, 2:29 am

I don't know what Blair Bowden is like as a surgeon but he covered for my surgeon when he was away after my surgery and I found him rather aloof. I was NOT impressed with the Wesley one little bit and I've been to a few hospitals in my time. I spent two weeks in the Wesley due to complications and there was only one nurse that I can say actually went out of her way to make me feel comfortable. One of them even tried to aspirate my feeding tube instead of flushing it which is a real big no no. 

You can't get much better than Dr H.
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smileychick
Newbie
smileychick

Female
Number of posts : 74
Location : Brisbane Bayside
Registration date : 2015-01-26

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyMon 26 Jan 2015, 11:32 pm

Thanks MrMick, that's really helpful. I called Dr H this morning and the first appointment they have for the initial appointment isn't until the 30 April! Which is a fair time away, so I'm a bit disappointed about that. 

What a great idea about starting the optifast - I might do that to so I can get the ball rolling. On the plus side, I called BUPA and with my cover, I'm 100% covered for the surgery, so that's good. 

Has anyone been to see Dr Blair Bowden at the Wesley? If so, how did you find him and what were the costings like compare to the $3,500 out of pocket with Dr H's fee?
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MrMick
Part of the furniture
MrMick

Male
Number of posts : 378
Age : 50
Location : Brisbane
Registration date : 2014-03-07

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyMon 26 Jan 2015, 8:10 pm

Hi SmileyChick,


As long as you have a BMI over 35 you qualify, Dr H is great it took me 4 weeks to get the appointment but i was done 2 weeks after that because I started optifast on my own as soon as I was referred.


His website shows all costs but these links in my diary might help too (I do notice the price has gone up a bit over the last 12 months)



Timeline
https://docs.google.com/document/d/1SNtIMf4UWlrE1Okq3qHYGB3XFpOcXewTYGLR6QDwJCE/edit?usp=sharing


Costs


https://docs.google.com/document/d/1ZSJKiC90K2kAG7kzBCjg0mOVioqRTWXWzMDATB7F_dw/edit?usp=sharing
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http://www.lawnmowingbrisbane.com
smileychick
Newbie
smileychick

Female
Number of posts : 74
Location : Brisbane Bayside
Registration date : 2015-01-26

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyMon 26 Jan 2015, 12:06 pm

Thank you for that info, it's really helpful. I like the idea of 1 initial appointment rather than 2 separate ones. I'll give both Dr'a a call tomorrow and get some info ;)
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WondaWendy
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WondaWendy

Female
Number of posts : 1258
Age : 48
Location : Redlands, Brisbane
Registration date : 2014-04-08

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyMon 26 Jan 2015, 11:57 am

Hey SmileyChick,

I would concur on the reputation of Dr H - he was in my top 3 after much research.  I ended up going with Dr Greenslade though (also at Greenslopes) as dates worked out and he also has a great reputation.  When I saw him and he explained the surgery, I felt I would be in very good hands.   

In terms of the process, different surgeons offices work differently.  With Dr Greenslade it was one initial appointment with a thorough explanation, questions answered, some information booklets and a dietitian list to take away, then didn't see him again until I was in theatre.  I was 121kg and I was required to go on Optifast plus allowable other foods for 2 weeks. I am not sure if that would change to longer if you are heavier but I do know that there are other people on this forum (with different surgeons) that have had to do it for longer, eg; 5 weeks.

Wait wise, Dr Greenslade's practice manager (Brenda) made a tentative booking for me when I first called up as she said it would save some of the wait time (plus I needed it in school holidays).

Best wishes for your lead up and decision making process.  Sorry I can't help with BUPA.
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smileychick
Newbie
smileychick

Female
Number of posts : 74
Location : Brisbane Bayside
Registration date : 2015-01-26

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyMon 26 Jan 2015, 11:13 am

JThanks for taking the time to reply. I really appreciate it! I've got the GP referral & he's recommending I see Dr Blair Bowden at the Wesley. When making the appt I found the receptionist a bit cold. Their process is that I see a nurse first ($100) then they schedule another appt with the Dr Bowden to talk about anything further.

I've looked a lot over Dr H's website over the last few days & found that helpful. To be honest I'd rather have surgery there as it's about 40mins closer to where I live.

Did you have to be a certain weight to be accepted straight away? My goal is to have the surgery ASAP & I think I'd be very disheartened if I had to lose xx amount of kg's before scheduling. 

Also, do they offer a payment plan - as in paying for it gradually in the lead up so it's fully paid by the time the surgery is?

Many thanks for your thoughts :)
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Ness28
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Ness28

Female
Number of posts : 48
Age : 51
Location : Gold Coast
Registration date : 2015-01-04

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: Re: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyMon 26 Jan 2015, 10:43 am

Hi Smileychcik,
Welcome to the site.  I am from the Gold Coast and having my surgery in Brisbane at Greenslopes hospital at the end of March.

The first steps is to see your Gp to get are referral , my GP had me get a full set of bloods to make sure I didn't have any other major medical issues. once I got my referral I made an appointment with Dr Hatzifotis (he came highly recommended by a few friends). 

Once I had my appointment I was approved straight away, and the date was set on the spot. Part of his procedure is to have a dietician and Psychologist appointment. 


If you ring the office Jennifer the office manager is so helpful and will explain the whole procedure. she is amazing. Here is a link to the website for some more reading. http://www.surgerybrisbane.com.au.

There is a page about the out of pocket expenses. I have worked it out to be around $4500. I am sure there is a lot of other great surgeons in Brisbane but his site is a great starting point. The first phone call is the hardest and then it gets exciting. A journey to a new beginning.

Wishing you the best of luck and would love to hear how you go.
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smileychick
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smileychick

Female
Number of posts : 74
Location : Brisbane Bayside
Registration date : 2015-01-26

So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... Empty
PostSubject: So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss.....   So, I'm considering gastric sleeve surgery for weight loss..... EmptyMon 26 Jan 2015, 10:24 am

Hi everyone, 
Living in Brisbane, I've been trying to loose weight for years and not very successfully. I'm currently 170kg, down from 195kg within 18 months. My doctor has suggested I talk to a surgeon about gastric sleeve.
I have SO many questions from what surgeon I should choose to the out of pocket expenses. I have Top Hospital cover with BUPA, so hoping they'll cover the hospital stay. Is anyone else with BUPA

Can I ask what happens between your first meeting with the surgeon and the actual surgery. Is there an "acceptance" process that you have to go through? Do you have to be a certain weight before they operate? Is there a long wait between seeing the surgeon & having the surgery?

I'd really appreciate anyone's thoughts & opinions.
Thanks in advance!
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