Irina, Pre OpIrina, Post Op

"Last year, about one week after my 26th birthday, I had Gastric Bypass surgery. It was the scariest and most exciting decision I ever had to make. I say 'had to' because I could not go on living that way any longer. I had spent my entire life existing as an obese person and on the day of surgery I weighed in at a whopping 319 pounds, my heaviest ever. I was a slave to food and I was only getting bigger. I tried almost everything to gain control and lose the weight but was unsuccessful time after time. Finally, I gained the courage to admit that I couldn't fight this battle without some serious medical help.

Last week, I celebrated my 27th birthday. Unlike past years, I also celebrated my re-birth this year! I have lost about 140 pounds so far and have gained so much more than a scale could ever measure. I have a new body, a new outlook on life and a new confidence in myself. Words cannot explain the difference this procedure has made in my life. Medically, physically, emotionally and mentally, I am like a new woman! Thanks to the Columbia University Center for Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery, Dr. Bessler, Lorraine, Nancy, their incredible staff and my courage, I have been given the gift of an amazing 'tool' with which I have finally succeeded!

I can sit here and type hundreds, if not thousands, of pages on my experiences as a morbidly obese person but I won't because all those who seriously consider obesity surgery already know the pain, hurt, shame, ridicule, anger and heartache first hand. However, I will say that if you are considering weight loss surgery, please know that the Columbia University Center for Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery is the place to go for help. I cannot imagine having these kinds of results without the undying support and unsurpassed care I received, and continue to receive, at the Columbia University Center for Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery. If you want the best for yourself, you have to go to the best to get it!

I wish you the best of luck in your journeys and please remember that it is possible!"

— Irina