WLS Center E-Newsletter

A FREE publication from


Hosted by Barbara Thompson
Author of:
Weight Loss Surgery:
Finding the Thin Person Hiding Inside You.

Issue #90

April 1, 2006

Hello Everyone,
“Looks like we made it” sings Barry Manilow! The snow and cold weather are almost gone and we are well into Spring. These are the days when I am reminded just why I live in a place that has 4 seasons. When winter is over, it is glorious!

I have this Dave Clark Five song going through my head, “Here comes summer. Almost June the sun is bright….” Remember it? It prompted me to think about “post-op” preparedness which I talk about in the article below.

This is definitely a time for holidays – religious and secular alike. It is April Fool’s Day, one of my least favorite days of the year. You will read why below. For those of you who are Christian, I wish you a very Happy Easter. And for those who are Jewish – I wish you a very Happy Passover.

In This Issue

* Here Comes Summer
* Medical Coverage Following Surgery
* Alcoholism Following Surgery
* Attention Nurses
* April Fools
* Recipe: Tomato Tortellini Soup  
* Success Story: Annette Moore

Here Comes Summer

There is a commercial that seems to be brought out of the film vaults every year.  It always makes me smile because I know when I see it that Summer is on the way. It is a commercial for yogurt and features a girl with a little yellow bikini hanging up in her bedroom and in the background the song, “She Wore an Itsy, Bitsy, Teeny Weenie, Yellow Polka Dot Bikini” plays. She is starting to get ready for summer.

Yes, this time of the year we all start to think about warm weather coming and start to get concerned how we’ll look with fewer clothes on. If this is a concern to you and over the winter months you have started to put on pounds, look into my Back on Track Internet Mentoring Program.  There is a whole community of support for you

Jeanne wrote:

Hi Barbara,

I don't know what I would have done without you and the Back on Track Program.  It provides me the ongoing support that I will need throughout my lifetime.  This is critical to my long term success.  I don't know where I would be without that.  Surely I am not alone in this.  There must be countless others whose program either does not offer adequate support (this was the case for me) or whose program dissolved altogether.  You are providing a priceless service. 


Click here for more information and to join http://www.BackOnTrackWithBarbara.com  

Medical Coverage Following Surgery

This is the 2nd email that I have gotten on this topic in a week, so I thought it best to address this subject here in the newsletter.  

Hi Barbara,
I have heard that once you have weight loss surgery, no company will want to give you health insurance and that scares me to death. Not that they would insure a morbidly obese person with co-morbidities. I am presently on Cobra which will expire soon. Can you tell me if you think it is possible to obtain insurance post-op? Thank you very much!!


Hi Edyth

You can certainly obtain health insurance coverage.  Most people have no problem what so ever.  However, there are a few insurance companies that are denying coverage. Yes, you are so much healthier following surgery; you have a new way of life and will probably live a much longer life. However you have a much higher chance of being hospitalized in the 3 years following gastric bypass surgery than normal.  That is the reason that a few companies are turning gastric bypass patients away.

In a study reported in the Oct. 19, 2005 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association*, there was a higher than normal incidence of hospitalizations reported following weight loss surgery. The study included 60,077 patients who were followed from 1995 to 2004. In the year before surgery, patients averaged hospitalizations 8.4% of the time, but the first year after surgery hospitalizations increased to 20.2% of the time. In the second year it was 18.4% and in the 3rd year 14.9%. Before surgery, hospitalizations were for obesity related conditions. In the 3 years afterward, hospitalizations were for conditions related to surgery such as hernia and gastric revisions. From the stand point of a few insurance companies, you may be seen as high risk, even though you are much healthier.

* Zingmond, David, et al. “Hospitalization Before and After Gastric Bypass Surgery.” JAMA: Journal of the American Medical Association. Oct. 19, 2005, Vol. 294, p. 1918-1924.

Alcoholism Following Surgery

Do you sometimes feel that since your surgery you have traded a food obsession for an alcohol obsession? If so, email me your story so that I can share it. My email address is Barbara@WLScenter.com.  You aren’t alone.

Attention Nurses
If you are a nurse and would like for me to speak on patient satisfaction and obesity sensitivity for your State Nurses Association, please have the conference planner for your State Association contact me. I have a corporate sponsor who will pay my fee and expenses so it is free for your Association. I also speak for many hospitals on the same topic. 

Contact me at Barbara@WLScenter.com or 412-851-4195.

April Fools!!

Discrimination against the obese is the last remaining tolerated prejudice. And it seems to be tolerated especially on this day – April Fool’s Day. You know what I mean.  You’ve been there. “Let’s play a joke on the fat kid!”

Please don’t accept discrimination against the obese by being silent when someone makes either a joking comment or a serious insult. Your silence is acceptance. After I lost weight, it surprised me how many people shared insulting comments with me about people who were obese, not realizing that not that long ago I was that same size. I have created many awkward and uncomfortable moments for people when I expressed my lack of appreciation for their comment and pointed out that obesity is a disease. Speak up and speak out. Never forget the burden that you bore being morbidly obese. Speak for those who are still morbidly obese who are filled with too much shame to speak up for themselves.


Tomato Tortellini Soup

Thanks to Joyce Stewart for submitting this wonderful soup recipe for all of us to enjoy! It’s a great recipe for Lent.

Tomato Tortellini Soup

2 cans Progresso Tomato Basil Soup
1-16 oz. can diced tomatoes
1-16 oz. can Veg-All brand Cajun vegetables –w/sauce*
1-16 oz. can cannellinni beans, drained
1- 4 oz can drained sliced mushrooms
1/2 cup chopped onions
1-8 oz pkg. fresh or frozen 3 cheese tortellinis

Assemble all in a heavy pan – simmer until the pasta is tender. Serve hot with either fresh grated or shredded Parmesan or Mozzarella cheese sprinkled on top.

Joyce Stewart
Dennis, MA 

* In some areas of the country, Cajun vegetables won’t be available.  Use mixed vegetables with Cajun seasoning added to taste.

If you have a recipe that you would like to share in future issues of this newsletter, please send it to me at Barbara@wlscenter.com

Success Story:
  Annette Moore

I want to offer a special thanks to Annette Moore. Here is her story:

My name is Annette and I am married with two children. I have been overweight all my life. My weight had been spiraling out of control for far too long and I reached a point when it was time for me to get my life back!

Before my surgery, I had feelings of despair and I suffered from depression. I had cut myself off from my church, my family and friends and did not want to leave the house. I had even tried to commit suicide. I was in this deep dark pit with no light at the end of the tunnel, so I thought.

One day the Lord touched my heart and told me that I had work to do! The Lord touched my life and delivered me from the dark pit of depression and despair and told me I needed to get my life together.

I had always dreamt of being smaller but when I dieted, I never really reached my goal. I had tried many diets over the years only to gain weight back plus some. When I say I have tried every diet, you can believe it. I have tried everything from Weight Watcher’s to diet pills, diet teas, laxatives and even binging and purging. I am not proud of the damage I did to my body. I did not love myself enough to stop the acts of self-destruction. The Lord stepped in right on time and put me on a path that I never even thought about before, weight loss surgery.  

At first the thought of such a drastic step was just out of the question. I was once one of the skeptics that thought it was the “easy way out,” but, who am I to judge? The more I read, the more I learned that it’s not the “easy way out”. This surgery is just a “tool” to assist me in weight loss and I will have to work almost as hard as someone who has not had weight loss surgery. This is a “lifestyle” change. This is for life!!

One day, I finally broke down and went to the doctor. I had always stayed away from doctors in the past because of shame. I would only go when I absolutely, positively had to go. I explained my situation to my primary care physician. I told him I wanted to get control of my weight. I told him I was considering weight loss surgery and wanted to know what I needed to do. He stated he supported me 100%. He explained the process and the insurance requirements and told me the whole process would take about a year.

I had gastric bypass surgery November 1, 2004 and my life has totally changed physically, spiritually and emotionally for the better. I am now able to run and play with my two children without gasping for air. Eight months after surgery, I was taken off my blood pressure medicine. God is so good!

My energy level is unbelievable. I am part of life again. I enjoy going to my water aerobics classes everyday.  I can buy clothes off the rack in stores, cross my legs, and wear high heels. My ankles and knees have stopped hurting. Most of all, I LOVE ME!! God has given me my self love back. He allowed me to have this surgery and to share my story with others. He uses my life as a testimony to others. He is using me to help and encourage others. If I had it to do over again, I would have the surgery again in a heart beat!

It has been a little over a year since I had weight loss surgery and to date, I have lost 158 pounds and I’m still losing! I am 24 pounds from my personal goal. Losing weight truly takes you on an emotional, physical and spiritual journey and I am definitely not taking anything for granted. I take one day at a time!

Annette Moore

Congratulations Annette

I love good news.  If you have good news, a success story to share, or inspiration, please send it to me at Barbara@WLScenter.com so that I can include it in future issues.  

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Reprinted from Barbara Thompson’s free e-newsletter featuring helpful information and research material to help patients succeed following weight loss surgery.
Subscribe at http://www.barbarathompsonnewsletter.com/

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Weight Loss Surgery: Insurance Secrets
  – New e-Book

Discover the Insider Secrets to Getting Your Insurance Company to Pay for Weight Loss Surgery!!

Learn how to ask your insurance company correctly to pay for weight loss surgery and see results.  Learn how in this brand new e-book by Craig Thompson (no relation!!). There is a “secret language” that Craig teaches as he takes you step by step through the process,  Craig guarantees that your surgery will be covered within 3 months or he will refund your money and you get to keep the e-book. What do you have to lose (except weight)!!

Please Note:  This is an eBook that you download onto your computer and read with Adobe Reader.

Click Here for more information and to order.

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