Donna has kept the weight off more than 10 years after laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery at Silver Cross Hospital.
Donna Morris is still hiking more than 10 years after her bariatric surgery at Silver Cross Hospital. Once obese at 226 pounds, the Marseilles mom has kept most of the weight off and continues to live life to the fullest. After losing 100 pounds, her extremely high blood pressure, asthma and back pain are completely gone.
“Since my weight loss, I have more energy to travel and even participate in activities like hiking and parasailing that I never would have dreamed of doing before,” said the 51-year-old mother of three daughters.
“I often wonder if I didn’t have the weight loss surgery if I’d still be alive 10 years later,” said Donna. “My improved health made so many personal milestones possible – my husband Brian and I have celebrated 34 years of marriage and we’ve been blessed to watch our beautiful daughters grow up.”
At 226 pounds, Donna had high blood pressure, asthma and back pain before her weight loss surgery in 2003.
First Laparascopic Bypass Patient at Silver Cross Hospital
Over a decade ago, Donna was the first patient of Dr. Christopher Joyce, a board certified bariatric and general surgeon with BMI Surgery at Silver Cross Hospital, to undergo the new minimally invasive procedure called laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery. Dr. Joyce performed laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery on Donna on Nov. 4, 2003, which was the first laparoscopic gastric bypass at Silver Cross Hospital as well as in Will or Grundy Counties.
During laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery, Dr. Joyce uses a series of small incisions to gain access to the abdominal cavity in order to reduce the size of the stomach by creating a pouch about the size of an egg from the top of the stomach. He then divides the small intestine and attaches the lower part of the intestine to the stomach pouch. Dr. Joyce calls gastric bypass the “gold standard” of bariatric surgery, because it has the highest success rate in terms of weight loss.
Donna less than a year after her surgery in 2004.
“The change helps patients lose weight because the stomach can’t hold as much food,” Dr. Joyce says.
There are several benefits of using the laparoscopic technique including:
- a shorter length of stay in the hospital (usually two nights)
- quicker recovery, less time off work
- and cosmetically more appealing scars.
In the past, these operations were done through larger incisions using traditional techniques. Now virtually everybody is a candidate for the laparoscopic approach.
Favorable Odds for Losing Weight & Keep it Off
Peak weight loss occurs 12-18 months after the gastric bypass. Patients at Silver Cross on average lose 81% of their excess weight at that time. At 5 years after the surgery, the average excess weight loss remains high at 78% indicating the durability of the surgery.
Donna contributes her successful 10-year weight loss to the fact that she still routinely meets with Dr. Joyce and his team at BMI Surgery, exercises regularly and makes healthy food choices. “Even through all these years, Dr. Joyce and his staff have been a great resource of support for me,” said Donna. “I do admit that I enjoy desserts only much smaller portions. But for the majority of my meals, I eat healthy foods,” said Donna.
Are you a Candidate for Weight Loss Surgery?
The American Society of Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery defines the morbidly obese as those with a body mass of 40 or above, or, for a normal height woman, being more than 100 pounds overweight. Patients with a BMI of 35 and higher, are at a higher risk of mortality and such extreme obesity puts people at risk for life threatening disease, including heart disease, stroke, cancer and diabetes.
To find out more about the bariatric surgery program at Silver Cross Hospital, attend a free informational session.