It took eight people to get Renee Williams, a woman who weighed 850 pounds in and out of the ambulance. She is the largest female patient to undergo laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery.
Williams has been overweight since she was a child. Her parents were heavy too and in the seventh grade she weighed 299 pounds. Regardless all the nutritionists she had seen and all the diets and pills she had tried, she couldn't lose weight.
She gave birth at 16 and passed 300 pounds around that time. 300 never went down and her second pregnancy brought another 100 pounds.
Three years ago, she was hit by a drunken driver who crashed her leg and put her to bed for three years within which she gained additional 450 pounds.
She consulted many surgeons but no one wanted to take her case. The surgery and the hospital stay should cost between $100,000 and $150,000. Dr. Younan Nowzaradan accepted to operate on the woman at the Renaissance Hospital. Some of the total sum will be written off by the hospital while the rest will be covered up through a trust fund set up from the settlement.
Her doctor is optimistic about her weight to drop to as low as 200 pounds in two years.
Bypass surgery is a surgery for obese patients only, who have BMI over 35. In the procedure, the stomach becomes smaller and a part of the small intestine bypassed, which results in a patient who feels full more quickly, has less of an appetite and absorbs fewer calories.
Renee Williams needed two tables for the operation that lasted over 5 hours. Typically, the procedure lasts three or four hours less. It took them an hour to figure out the best spots to make incisions and used a special orthopedic lifting device to raise her abdominal wall.
Renee is about to lose 60 pounds in the first 90 days as her metabolism improves. Her recovery will have to be followed by proper dieting and exercise and she may weigh 200 pounds in two years.
These kinds of surgeries certainly carry a risk to the patients but the benefits outweigh the risks. With so many pounds, there's a 100 percent chance a patient would die in 5 years.