Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Nut, The Surgeon and the Shrink

So I had the last of my pre op testing and consultation this week. I met with the nutritionist Monday. I expected a lot of talk about diets and food choices but she was more interested in talking about the surgery itself and why I was doing it, I thought I was at the phychiatrist. Lasted about 30 minutes, it was painless and my inurance didn't pay for it so out of pocket I paid 55.00. At least it wasn't hundreds.
I had my consultation Tuesday. I have heard so many good things about Dr. Enochs, I was excited and nervous. My mom and daughter went with me so we can all have as much information as possible. The receptionist took my 400.00 consult fee...ouch! and a 30.00 co pay. This surprised me because I thought the point of the consult fee was to cover their costs in case you ended up not having surgery and got no money from the insurance company, which is why I didn't mind paying the consult fee but if I had to pay a co pay, that means they billed my insurance too. So they do get paid. I guess I should have asked but I was just so excited to have come this far in the process. I guess in the end, it really is all about money. My appointment was at 3:00, we arrived at 2:45, we were finally called back at 3:45, then sat in the room until 4:45..2 hours! I was irritated! I kept saying I hope they are having an off day because I would hate for them to be the top bariatric office in our area and this is how they operate. The nurse came in to take blood pressure and stuff and ask me what surgery I was looking at and I said possibly lap band or...and she jumped in to say "Your insurance won't cover lap because your BMI is too high" What??? What if that was the ONLY surgery I was willing to have? That would have been a good thing to tell me BEFORE I paid 400.00!! I said or the sleeve...she said oh they might do that but usually they only cover RNY. Well I don't want RNY. Why does it matter, it is my body! This just infuriates me. WLS is a choice I feel for lower BMI's but I think oncve you surpass 50, WLS is a necessity and it bewilders me how the insurance companies can look at it any other way. So Dr. Enochs came in and he was warm and friendly, made me feel very comfortable. He wasn't rushed even though he had to be somewhere by 6:00 and we were pushing 5:30. He skimmed over my chart and said he would recommend the sleeve for me as a surgeon because I don't really have many co-morbidies..I am somewhat healthy for a fat person! I do have a slight hernia and slight acid reflux and a fatty liver. The hurdle will be the insurance company. I know if they deny it, I will appeal...beyond that..I might push for lap band. I don't know what I will do. Try on my own once again I suppose. I didn't get to ask him all my questions, since most of them were surgery related I decided to wait until I was definately going to have surgery, plus he had to be somewhere so I thought I would be nice and not hold him up even though I had to wait for 2 hours but whatever, I am not bitter. LOL Really I'm not. I was a little irritated that day but Dr. Enochs was so nice, I got over it pretty quickly.
I met with the psychiatrist yesterday and she was super nice as well. I might have to meet up with her again. She specializes in bariatrics so I might need her down the road. I had to do a questionaire that asked questions like do I binge, do I closet eat, make myself throw up. Then we talked about the different surgeries and she said she has a lot of patients that are disappointed in their bands because they can cheat it and a lot of RNY's losing hair because they are not following the rules so she emphasized the importance of protein and eating right, lifestyle change. I know all these things but I think it really hit me for the first time in her office. I have just been so excited about what could be. She also helped me confirm my thoughts about not telling anyone at work. She said she has a patient that did tell everyone at work and they are not losing weight and people keep asking why isn't it working or can you get a refund. I don't want to face that pressure. I won't be lieing if they ask how I have lost weight and I say I watch my portions and excercise. A lot of people have surgery or get on medications to help cure a medical problem and end up losing weight. She asked if I was scared and if I thought about the changes I was going to have to make and I said I know the changes but I really don't feel I have a choice, it is kind of like if I had stomach cancer and they had to remove the cancerous stomach. It's a have to for me so "just jump" and figure out the rest later. She wanted to make sure I wasn't obsessed with being skinny...what did I want to weigh? I don't really care what I weigh...I just want to be healthy, to feel good, to be able to walk without hurting, to be able to really clean my house without relying on others, to be able to go places and have fun with my children, go on vacations and not stay in the hotel room or sit on a bench while everyone else around me is living. I want to live!

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