Dana Brown’s snooze button used to get a workout every morning.
“I used to wake up so tired I just couldn’t drag myself out of bed,” Dana explained.”I’d hit snooze two, three, sometimes four times before I was able to get up. Now I feel so good, I beat the clock almost every morning.”
Dana’s healthy get-up-and-go feeling is just one of the many ways the Bariatric Surgery Program at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin has changed her life for the better.
“I’d been diabetic for 10 years,” Dana said. “I had type 2 diabetes, and my condition became worse and worse over the years. I eventually needed an insulin pump. Things were very serious, and it’s almost hard to say now, but my life was at risk. I have a wonderful family, a son and a husband I love so much.
“I just knew I had to do something. There was no more time to put it off. Once I started to research gastric bypass surgery options, the Bariatric Surgery Program at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin kept coming up as the place people had the most positive comments about. I even talked to a couple of people about their specific experiences at Froedtert. I made my decision and then started six months of testing, plus physical and emotional preparation for the surgery.”
To help people considering bariatric surgery, board-certified surgeons, a nurse practitioner, dietitians, nutritionists and psychologists meet one-on-one with patients so they understand the requirements and responsibilities of undergoing the surgery.
The Bariatric Surgery Program at Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin provides comprehensive care and support for patients, with a team of experts who understand the psychological challenges and medical risks of weight loss. Team members collaborate and provide patients with the education and support they need to undergo gastric bypass surgery.
The team’s support continues for a lifetime, as they work with patients after their surgery to be absolutely sure they’ve achieved their desired lifestyle change. The Bariatric Surgery Program is the only one in eastern Wisconsin affiliated with an academic medical center, and it has been designated a “Center of Excellence” for Bariatric Surgery by the American Society for Bariatric Surgery.
“I think a lot of people misunderstand this kind of surgery and think it’s just about dropping a couple of dress sizes,” Dana said. “Of course, it’s fun to buy new clothes, but that’s not what this is about. This was about saving my life. For me, the surgery was nothing short of miraculous.
“Two days after the surgery, I no longer needed the insulin pump. It was almost unbelievable. I don’t even have to do a daily sugar check anymore.”
In fact, more than 85 percent of patients with type 2 diabetes see an elimination of the disease after bariatric surgery.
“It’s not just the weight that’s gone,” Dana said. “The endless fatigue I used to live with every day is gone too. The frustration of not being able to do things I want to do is gone. The old me doesn’t exist anymore. In fact, my boss jokes that every time he sees me, he thinks he’s hired a new employee and should reintroduce himself. He’s actually not that far off base. I am a new person. And the new me feels great!”
Last Review Date: Aug. 1, 2007
Online Editor(s): Christopher Sadler