From Chronic Health Issues to Fit and Healthy

May 03, 2018
Nancy Weist, 62

"I did this for myself and nobody else!" - Nancy Weist

Ask Nancy Weist, 62, what a difference a year makes and she may tell you 112 pounds. That’s how much she lost in one year following laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery. Prior to weight-loss surgery, Weist had high blood pressure, high cholesterol, arthritis, two knee replacements, a shoulder replacement, and was taking many medications for her arthritis and pain.

“I was in a lot pain and it was difficult to get around. I had no energy and I finally decided that I was going to get as healthy as I could,” says Weist. “So I started gathering information on bariatric surgery and learned about Valley Care Clinics Weight Loss Surgery Center. I thought this could help me achieve my goal.”

Weist says education is part of the program and makes a big difference. “Do your homework and don’t be afraid to ask questions. There was great support from office staff - they always had time for me,” she says.

Bariatric and General Surgeon Luis Reyes, MD, FASMBS, FACS

Bariatric and General Surgeon Luis Reyes, MD, FASMBS, FACS, performed Weist’s procedure at McAllen Heart Hospital. One week after her surgery, she went off all prescriptions except for her thyroid medication. “I have more energy and am able to care for my mother. I can bend down and do my gardening, and no longer have days with pain where I can’t move,” says Weist. “I had to do this for me – not my children, my husband or anyone else. When you’re doing it for you, you’re more inclined to stay with it because you want it. Many people make light of bariatric surgery because they think it is an easy fix, but it’s not. It was an aid for me, and I had to work hard at it and learn a new way of healthy eating.”

Weist takes advantage of the monthly support groups and finds them extremely valuable. “This is a journey and it is great to be supported by others on the same journey. We all help each other along the way,” she says. “And Dr. Reyes is never too busy to speak with me. He takes the time to be with his patients. If you are considering bariatric surgery, I highly recommend him and the program here at VCC. Before I had surgery, my mind would say, ‘Yes, I want to go to the mall,’ but my body said ‘No.’ Now, my body says ‘Go!,’ and I go!”

Individual results may vary. There are risks associated with any surgical procedure. Talk with your doctor about these risks to find out if bariatric surgery is right for you.