Visitors to The Hospital Group’s flagship Birmingham clinic will recognise Paula Frisby as our Head Receptionist. Paula has gained weight over the last couple of years and while she is not obese, she is heavier than she wants to be.
Having seen our patients’ success first hand, she has chosen to have the Gastric Balloon herself as an accelerated weight loss tool to get her weight back down over the next 6 months. Paula is sharing her story for the benefit of other patients. Follow her story in words, photos and video here!
WHAT IS THE GASTRIC BALLOON?
The gastric balloon is a 7 month programme. It is a non-surgical procedure and patients remain awake while it is being fitted. The balloon is filled with saline and sits inside the stomach for six months, meaning that you are less hungry and therefore only eat small portions which enables patients to reeducate their dietary habits with expert support so that they can continue the weight loss when the balloon is removed*.
LOOK AT ME NOW! “Two and a Half Stone Lighter!!”
Just over a month after the balloon was fitted the weight loss has accelerated further and Paula has reached 2.5 stone weight loss in just over a month.We had a photo shoot to celebrate her new look – and she looks totally fabulous! And yes, that blue bikini DOES now fit again – and Paula is rightly proud to show off her new body in it!
As well as a healthy diet, Paula has also managed to give up alcohol – this isn’t essential, but Paula recognised that too many glasses of wine were adding far too many calories. Many of our patients do have a specific weak spot – whether it’s crisps, chocolate, cheese, alcohol or fizzy drinks – identifying and eliminating it is a lot easier with a gastric balloon in place and the support of our expert dietitians.
She has also taken up exercise to help her lose weight and keep trim – just 30 minutes on the cross-trainer 3 times a week which she can do in front of the telly so it’s quite easy to fit into her schedule.
Paula says “The only problem is no clothes fit me now… so it’s gift vouchers for Christmas!”.
Enjoy the shopping Paula and well done!
INTRODUCTION – ‘I don’t want to be a fat 48 year old’…
“How has this happened! I am now 2 stone heavier. 47 years old and getting bigger and bigger, I seem to be wearing leggings most of the time now! At work, it’s size 16 dresses, but only 2 years ago I was in size 12 pencil skirts…
I KNOW I can diet as I did lose 4 stone 5 years ago, but how long is it until the other 3 go back on again… I do diet, but I soon drift straight back into the lazy old ways. I need some serious help. None of my clothes fit me. I don’t want to be a fat 48 year old, I want to be how I used to be, 2 stone lighter and a lot happier.
I feel now instead of strutting my stuff I am back to hiding in my clothes. My friends say you look lovely, but it’s not so lovely when you’re red in the face trying to pull a pair of jeans over your knees…
A gastric band? No, I don’t want to be reliant on one of those and I’m pleased to say I’m not heavy enough. A gastric balloon? YES – that’s the kick-start I need to get back on track and get back into good habits.”
CONSULTATION – 15th October 2010 – ‘I am an ideal candidate!’…
“Great news. I met Dr Ngatchu at his evening clinic and I am an ideal candidate for a gastric balloon. So now I have hope. This will be the help I need to retrain myself and get back on track and stick with it! I’m still disappointed with myself that I’ve let my weight creep up so it’s up to me to stop it getting any worse. Now I have help!
My procedure is booked for 29th October and I can’t wait! I’ve agreed to be filmed so you’ll see it all happen on this website.
PHOTOGRAPHY – 13th October 2010 – ‘How embarrassing!’
“So that everyone can see how good I look after the gastric balloon, I have to be photographed before…
We have taken a selection of photos for the whole world to see why I’m having the procedure – So you can see me struggling with my jeans which fitted great 2 years ago. The one in the bikini is going on my fridge door to remind me why I’m doing this… I just can’t wait to have the photos done again in a few months – watch this space!”
GASTRIC BALLOON DAY – 29th October 2010 – ‘I can’t wait!’
“So my day is now booked. I’m having the gastric balloon fitted on 29th October. I know that I’ll have to follow a special diet after, liquids only for the first 3 days, then soft foods, but after a week I’ll be back on a normal diet. Just with the balloon, I’ll be satisfied with less food and that’s how I’ll lose weight. Bring it on!”
WEEKEND BEFORE GASTRIC BALLOON: ‘Last blow-out before op!’
“Well I’ve just had my last weekend before my gastric balloon, and I made sure I enjoyed it! My lovely boyfriend took me out for dinner on Saturday night and then on Sunday he cooked me a beautiful Sunday roast…it felt a little like my last supper! Sunday night I checked when I needed to move onto soft foods and then onto fluids to get myself mentally prepared for my new diet! Just 4 days to go and I’ve stuck my FAT photos on the fridge and emptied the cupboards of naughty treats, not long now!”
DAY OF OPERATION: ‘It’s here at last!’
“On the morning of my gastric balloon I didn’t feel nervous at all. I was looking forward to seeing Dr Ngatchu, and after hearing such good reports about him I felt safe in his capable hands! I do remember feeling hungry though…but that was soon about to change! I can honestly say I didn’t feel a thing, and didn’t have any recollection of the procedure. I felt a bit groggy, and sleepy when I got back to my room, and did feel full which was so strange as I hadn’t eaten a thing! I went home that evening, and went straight to bed”.
THE FOLLOWING DAY: ‘The beginning of my gastric balloon journey!’
“I was in bed for most of the day, and was sick quite frequently throughout the day! I was expecting this as I’d been told that the stomach tries to reject the balloon, and therefore creates more stomach acid. I took an anti-sickness suppository and this thankfully worked!”
TWO DAYS POST BALLOON: ‘I’m feeling much better!’
“I’m feeling much better today, and have kept down a yogurt and a cup of tea! I’m moving around quite slowly and still taking it easy, but I feel much better in my myself! I still can’t get over how full I feel, its great!”
FIVE DAYS POST BALLOON: ‘I’ve turned a corner!’
“I’m really getting to grips with how the balloon works now, and feel like I’ve turned a corner! I’ve realised dairy isn’t suiting me at the moment so I’m sticking to water based CliniKcal shakes and feeling good! I’m going to try some pureed fruit and vegetables as I need to start easing myself onto soft foods. I do feel really positive now, and know the weekend was my biggest hurdle to climb, and I’m over the worst of it now!. Bring on the baby food!”
FIRST DAY BACK AT WORK: ’10 days post balloon and already lost 11lbs!’
“I went back to work today, and my uniform felt quite a bit looser! I’m back onto solid foods, for example steamed fish and vegetables, fruit and cereal. The one thing I’m still getting to grips with is portion size, I still can’t quite believe how full I feel, after eating such small portions. If I over-eat, the balloon soon lets me know, as it feels really uncomfortable! Its all a learning curve, but I’m getting there!”
4 WEEKS POST BALLOON: ‘Weight loss is now 19lbs!’
“4 weeks into my journey, and I must admit it hasn’t been easy, but I’m thrilled with my weight-loss to date. Unfortunately I’m still struggling with solid foods so I’ve gone back onto soft foods for a while. I’m having 2-3 small meals a day, and still having my multivitamin drinks. My boyfriend likes it at the moment, as I’m a real cheap date to take out…its saving him a fortune! People are noticing how much weight I’ve lost, and keep saying how much slimmer my face looks! I’m loving that I can now fit into clothes which I haven’t been able to wear for 2 years, and now I can’t wait to go shopping for more “smaller” clothes!”
ONE MONTH POST BALLOON: “Two Stone!!”
“I couldn’t believe it this morning when I stepped on the scales – 2 stone lost in a month! My clothes are looser and my face and body are slimmer all over. Here’s the video that was made on the day I had the procedure – I can’t believe how fast the month has gone.”
*There is no guarantee of specific results and that the results can vary.
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