Belfast mum warns of travelling abroad for weight loss op: ‘Your life will not be the same’

A west Belfast girl has pleaded with anybody contemplating gastric band surgical procedure abroad to “please guarantee it’s what you wish to do” as she talked about her restoration from the process.aoimhe Shannon underwent a gastric sleeve op in September after years of scuffling with an consuming dysfunction.
But the 25-year-old mom warned it was not a “fast repair” for these desirous to lose weight.

She developed a fancy relationship with meals and had an consuming dysfunction as a teen.

She later started to overeat following the beginning of her son.

“I used to be severely underweight as a youngster and after I had my son I turned to binge consuming and regardless of how a lot I attempted to lose weight, it simply grew to become a relentless yo-yo with my weight,” she defined.

Caoimhe tried the whole lot to shift the kilos she was uncomfortable with, trying excessive diets and programmes like Slimming World, in addition to hiring a private coach.

“It really obtained to some extent the place my medical doctors had been involved why I wasn’t really shedding weight, and I needed to get my thyroid checked to see if there was an underlying concern, but it surely got here again clear. I used to be struggling a lot,” she stated.

She routinely sought medical recommendation however was instructed her weight was under the threshold for remedy by way of the NHS and she or he wouldn’t qualify to be thought of for gastric sleeve surgical procedure (sleeve gastrectomy).

The process includes a big half of the abdomen being eliminated — usually solely 15% of it’s left behind, that means you eat considerably much less, resulting in weight loss.

The ready checklist for those that qualify for the operation in the UK can be as much as 5 years.

The mum-of-one determined to look into having the process abroad after feeling she was “getting nowhere”.

She selected a hospital in Kusadasi, Turkey.


Illustration of feminine abdomen and small gut

Illustration of feminine abdomen and small gut

She defined: “I didn’t go into this blind-sighted.

“I researched the surgical procedure and clinics for a full 12 months earlier than making any selections.

“I wished to be educated about all of it and each side of what it concerned.

“I had dangerous anxiousness over it, and my mom and household all stated they didn’t need me to go and get it completed.

“But I believed of all the execs and all the cons earlier than deciding.”

Travelling abroad for surgical procedure is now frequent amongst individuals in search of to keep away from rising NHS ready lists.

Procedures, together with dental remedy, can even be 1000’s of kilos cheaper. Gastric sleeve surgical procedure prices as much as £10,000 in the UK.

However, professionals have repeatedly warned “medical vacationers” to think about the dangers concerned.

According to the NHS, problems with gastric sleeve surgical procedure can embody hernias, bleeding and gastroesophageal reflux.

In November a mom in her 30s from Dublin died after present process the op in Turkey.

The Republic’s Department of Foreign Affairs later stated a “quantity of individuals” had died after travelling abroad for surgical procedure this 12 months.

In September a girl in England warned these contemplating surgical procedure abroad to consider carefully after her 25-year-old son died throughout an operation, additionally in Turkey.

Initially instructed he died of a coronary heart assault throughout the process, Julie Thornley stated son Joe really died of mass inside bleeding in the theatre.

Caoimhe says she was fortunate and her process went nicely, with no problems.

She was in Turkey for 5 days earlier than heading house to recuperate.

She stated that was made harder after pulling a muscle in her abdomen.

But the side she finds hardest is the utterly “completely different life” she now has to steer.

She defined: “After you’ve had it completed, individuals want to understand your life isn’t going to be the similar once more.

“I’m glad I did it, however I don’t suppose individuals recognize the impact it could have in your psychological well being and physique.”

She praised the medical doctors and employees at the hospital for being “beautiful and so respectful”.

She stated anytime she felt anxious they might “actually maintain her hand” to assist consolation her.

She added: “The restoration interval is admittedly troublesome.

“You’re on a liquid weight-reduction plan for two weeks, then a puree weight-reduction plan for the subsequent two weeks, after which gentle meals for two weeks.

“Only after the six weeks have handed can you might have common meals.

“I don’t suppose individuals realise the small issues… going to the cinema, you’d usually have one thing to eat and drink, however you possibly can’t do this anymore.

“There is not any level going out for dinner as a result of you possibly can solely have a small portion.”

Caoimhe continues to wrestle with physique dysmorphia, even after the op.

“I nonetheless have a look at myself, regardless of shedding virtually 4 stone in simply three months, and suppose I’m nonetheless massive,” she revealed. “It’s issues like this that folks simply want to understand.

“Food was my consolation earlier than, and now it could’t be — my consolation has actually been taken away from me.”

Caoimhe thought lengthy and laborious earlier than present process the surgical procedure.

She now desires to assist and advise others who might be contemplating having the process abroad.

“I simply need individuals to know that is not the simple method out,” she added.

“I went in understanding all the results it will have, and it’s nonetheless been a lot for me.

“Please analysis it and know what you’re in for.”

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