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Weight loss/gain and hernia repair Weight loss/gain and hernia repair

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Unread 11-15-2002, 03:57 PM
Weight loss/gain and hernia repair

I have gotten such conflicting opinions regarding whether or not I can continue to lose weight after surgery for ventral (incisional) hernia repair. Some doctors tell me to get down as far as I am going to go before surgery because I shouldn't lose any weight afterwards or the mesh won't 'fit' right. Some doctors tell me I can have the surgery at any weight and I'll lose weight easier afterwards because it will be easier to walk and move (right on!!)

I have lost about 40 lbs now and want to lose another 20 but I don't think I want to wait that long for surgery. I'm getting REAL uncomfy and the hernia is growing. What has anybody else been told about weight loss after surgery? And what about weight gain, heaven forbid? I don't know where I'll be able to maintain my weight, it's been so long since I haven't been overweight.

I see yet another surgeon on the 27th and will probably get yet another opinion, so I'm wondering what anyone else has been told or has experienced. I sure don't want this to happen again!!

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Unread 11-15-2002, 05:40 PM
Weight loss/gain and hernia repair

Hi Joselle,

From all that I have read and from what my surgeon said, a hernia should be repaired as soon as possible to prevent it from getting larger. Though I am overweight, my weight was never even discussed for the hysterectomy or for the hernia repair.

When I went in for the 5 day Post Op from the hernia repair, my weight was mentioned for the first time. My surgeon said that the repair would do better if I did not gain any weight. I told him that I would like to lose about 25 pounds. His reply was that would be even better for the repair. I don't see how weight loss could possibly hurt. But, your surgeon can tell you more about his procedure and the effect weight loss would have on the repair.

I called my WONDERFUL surgeon today about some pain that I am still having. He reminded me again that this was a complicated major repair and that the pain is normal. I see him again on Monday. I will ask about the weight loss then.

Unread 11-15-2002, 08:26 PM
Thanks, Rayna

I'll be interested in hearing what your doctor has to say about weight loss, Rayna. The doctors who told me that I should maintain my weight after surgery said that even though the mesh is in the fascia, if fatty tissue underneath and on top of it is lost, the whole area could shift a bit and result in discomfort. This seemed to make sense. Now my GP is saying that now that I've lost a significant amount of weight I should just maintain whatever weight I am when I have the surgery so that it can heal well and then go ahead and lose the rest of the weight. I wish I could have had the surgery sooner, but nobody would touch me until I had a colonoscopy because I have colitis. The colonoscopy is scheduled for Monday. I have no idea what the waiting period will be for the hernia repair. One doctor said six months but I never heard from him again. I wouldn't have had him do the repair anyway. The last doctor I saw said six weeks wait. I'll see what this new one has to say. I think it's time to get this scheduled. I'm tired of the darned thing!!!!

I'm kinda feeling sorry for myself. Can you tell? How dumb is it that half a dozen doctors didn't know that it was a hernia in the first place??? I had to get busy on the web and diagnose myself and then go back and ask to be referred to a surgeon. I hadn't even been told that it was a risk of having abdominal surgery at 200 lbs. Geesh. I'll NEVER weigh 200 lbs again, I swear!!! That's a whole other story . . . . I just hope my experience with the surgery is as positive as it sounds yours has been. I'm glad I've lost the weight, but the pros of losing more is being outweighed now by the discomfort of this growing bulge. I look like I have a lopsided pregnancy for goodness' sake. Never mind what I FEEL like!

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Unread 11-15-2002, 08:40 PM
Weight loss/gain and hernia repair

s Joselle,

I am so sorry that you are having to go through this. But, you have a lot going for you. You have lost weight and after this stupid hernia business is over, you will regain your confidence. Poor body image just blows away our egos. Those nasty gross hernias don't help the situation at all.

Before my hernia surgery, I felt like my body was so gross looking. Now, though I need to lose some weight, I know that I don't have this horrible kangaroo pouch growing on me.

I will be sure to ask SUPER on Monday. You have got me curious about all of this. Just Wednesday, he acted like a 25 pound weight loss would be great. Now, I am a little worried. But, since he tightened my ab muscles and removed the excess tissue, I really thought about getting really thin and having liprosuction (sp?). I think I will ask about that as well.

Take care. You really will feel so good after that hernia is repaired.

Unread 11-15-2002, 08:45 PM
Hi Joselle,

First of all.., and congratulations on your weight loss, that is quite an accomplishment! I am sorry that you are feeling so low, but I know hard it can be to keep your chin up at a time like this. Hang in there!

I have seen so many dr's since my hyst in June that it's just not funny. Every dr I went to complaining about constant abdominal pain gave me the shrug off and acted like it was all in my head. They almost had ME convinced that it might be. I think it's a crying shame that they are able to do that to us.

I finally found a dr (had to go out of state to find him) but found out yesterday that not only am I having problems with a cyst on my left ovary (which I already knew) but also that I have a femoral hernia which needs to be repaired. I also will be very interested in what the other docs have to say about the weight gain/loss issue. I would like to lose about 25-30 pounds but feel like that wont be possible until after having surgery due to feeling bad now. I added that question to my list for my dr next time I see him.

I too am a little (well maybe more than a little) scared about having this done. If you'd like to email me sometime, feel free to and maybe we can compare notes.

And by the way..........WE care how you feel. Keep us posted.

Love and 's


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