Saturday, May 22, 2010


So I spilled the beans last post about deciding to do the lapband surgery. Right now, I don't know when it's going to be. I'm hoping it's not too far away, but a lot depends on insurance and when they get approval.

You get to go through a whole plethora of tests when preparing for something like this. Be prepared to be poked and prodded and stuffed into things. I've spent more time in doctors offices the past couple months than I probably have in my life. I've had more blood taken out for this that and the other thing. The only thing that hasn't been required is a cardio workup, my other consultations have cleared me on that fortunately. But it's quite a process.

Basically they want you to get psychological clearance and then a pulmonary workup. Thank goodness for good insurance eh? In some ways I'm glad I'm doing this now instead of when some of the new health care policies kick in because I wonder in a few years if I'd be able to get in to everyone as quickly as I could. Anyway, the psychological clearance was pretty easy. The pulmonary -- wow what a work up. I'm not sure I can remember all the tests - I got stuffed into a glass cube for a breathing test, had x rays and sonograms and electro cardiograms and some other tests that I can't quite remember all of them. It's been an interesting experience -- all of the pulmonary stuff was done at Jewish National Health, which is the top rated pulmonary hospital in the country so I'm guessing they know what they're doing eh?

I learned a couple new things. I found out I have pulmonary hypertenstion -- a slightly enlarged pulmonary valve that is pretty normal with obesity and/or with severe sleep apnea. I have both, so... surprise! The XRays also showed I have a hiatal hernia where my stomach is trying to escape out my esophogus or something like that... after all the abuse I put that thing through over the years I can't blame it for trying to escape. So then they have me do an upper GI exam where you drink this nasty chalky stuff and they take pictures of it as it goes through you. Really fun stuff. It's been fascinating, I'll say that much.

The thing about this is that it has helped me understand even more that this is the right course of action for me. Not so long ago I though okay, I'm healthy but overweight. Now I find out I've got diabetes, arthritis, pulmonary hypertension and a hiatal hernia. Fortunately none of these are to the point where I'm needing severe intervention, but.... maybe it's time to give my body a break and take some steps to help me get there?

And oh yes... I'm going to start training for a half marathon.

What??? Haven't I learned my lesson from the October jogging fiasco that's still giving my knees fits? Okay, it's not that crazy... just partially so. My wife's the crazy one. In October there's a group in our church putting together a team to run in a marathon and half marathon -- not sure if it's the actual Denver Marathon? Might be. Anyway, my wife's done a couple of half marathons but hasn't for a bit and has been thinking of getting back into one soon so she mentioned maybe training for that one. So I foolishly spout out... if you do the half marathon then, I'll walk a half marathon then, how's that?

She's holding me to it.

What was I thinking?

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