Weight loss surgery offers new outlook on life

Brenda BeforeAndAfterBrenda Bryson knew she needed to regain control of her life and her health.

The weight had been piling up for years, and by early 2013 the scale read almost 300 pounds. Despite being on six different medications, Brenda’s blood pressure and blood sugar levels were dangerously high. Chronically weak and lethargic, the Madison resident was forced to quit her job.

She couldn’t even summon the energy to get out and have fun with her husband and two children.

The final straw came when Brenda’s family physician wanted to start her on a third blood pressure medication as well as insulin. She was a prime candidate for a heart attack or stroke.

“I knew that I was going to die if I didn't do something,” Brenda says. “I asked God why this was happening to me. I cried and asked Him to help me.”

Brenda never had that insulin prescription filled. Instead, she called Huntsville Hospital’s Center for Surgical Weight Loss and made an appointment with bariatric surgeon Dr. Ravindra Mailapur.

On April 15, 2013, Brenda had gastric bypass surgery to create a smaller stomach pouch that fills up quickly.

As the weight began to disappear, Brenda’s health improved. Quickly.

A week after her surgery, Brenda was able to stop taking medicine for both high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes.

“The blurred vision, the tingling sensation, the frequent trips to bathroom, the fatigue – all those diabetes symptoms are gone,” she said.


Meanwhile, her energy levels rebounded. Four days after surgery, Brenda joined a water aerobics class at Huntsville Hospital’s Madison Wellness Center.

In just nine months, she dropped from 297 pounds to her goal weight of 125. Brenda now jogs or walks three miles a day and co-owns a campus grill at Athens State University.

“Bariatric surgery may not be for everyone, but it is for anyone looking to a better quality of life from obesity,” Brenda said. “I wasn’t even able to say the word ‘obesity’ before, but I can now because it no longer describes me. From the day I came out of surgery, I have only looked forward to living life to the fullest!”

To learn more about weight loss surgery, visit our web page or call (256) 265-4373.


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