Tracy Williams’ Gastric Band
Tracy Williams was content; she had a loving fiancée and was preparing to get married before falling pregnant. After giving birth to her son, Tracy found it extremely difficult to loose her excess weight, ballooning to a size 22. She was classified as severely obese, with a BMI of 39.7kg/m².
Children: Ellis, 2 yrs.
Operation: Gastric Band
Pre surgery weight: 17st lbs ( kg)
Post surgery weight: st lbs ( kg)
Height: 5 foot 5 inches
Dress size: Was a 22, now a size 14
When Tracy met her future fiancée, Matthew, she was 5ft 5in and a size 14. But as they grew closer and formed a long term relationship, Tracy grew more and more content and the extra pounds started piled on.
Then Tracy fell pregnant. Both Tracy and Matthew were delighted. She revelled in being a mum to be but her weight went up to 17st.
When their son Ellis was born, weighting 7lb 7oz Tracy was determined to lose her extra pregnancy weight and joined a slimming club. She managed to lose a stone but the new regime of caring for a baby meant that having the time to focus to lose weight wasn’t realistic.
Tracy said “When I could, I went to the local gym to exercise but I struggled to keep it up. I even tried slimming pills but they didn’t make any difference. It didn’t help that I loved food. I would gorge myself on chocolate and crisps and when it came to serving up dinner, I’d pile the same amount of food on to my plate as Matthew. Matthew is a builder so needs to eat enough to maintain his energy levels, as part of his job.
I thought to myself, ‘I have to do something’. I owe it to Ellis and Matthew.
We’d been engaged for four months, when I had fallen pregnant so we’d postponed the wedding until after Ellis was born. Now I was so fat, there was no way that I wanted to walk down the aisle. ‘When I’m slimmer’ I would say”
When Tracy returned to work after Ellis’ birth, she was cutting a clients hair, when she saw that she was reading Sharon Osbourne’s autobiography. As an avid watcher of the X Factor, Tracy was keen to know more and the client offered to borrow the book to her.
Tracy said “As I read about Sharon’s battles with her weight, her words rang true.
Then I read that she had had a gastric band fitted to help her lose weight. That’s what I need, I thought. I’d considered surgery before, but Matthew said it was too expensive and I didn’t need it but I was determined. I knew that I needed help”.
Tracy researched weight loss surgery and contacted SMG for more information.
Tracy said “I rang and made an appointment for a consultation with SMG at their Manchester clinic. I received through the post a HADS form and Patient Questionnaire, which I had to complete and take with me to my consultation.
I attended my consultation, alone. The staff at SMG really put me at my ease. After meeting with my Patient Co-ordinator, we then went through the HADS form and completed Patients Questionnaire, just to check my health history.
The Surgeon explained that the gastric band would reduce your stomach and limit how much food you could eat. He also explained what would be involved, how soon I could have the operation and highlighted any associated risks and the cost of the procedure itself.
And he confirmed the cost of the procedure was £7500. I knew I had to have the operation but where would I get the money from?
That night, I confessed all to Matthew. He hadn’t realised how unhappy I was and reassured me to stop worrying, we would find the money”
Within a couple of days, Matthew had organised a bank loan for half of the cost and agreed that they would use some of their savings for the other half of the cost.
Tracy felt guilty about using the money on herself but she couldn’t see any other way of losing the weight.
With the finance for the operation secure, Tracy booked the operation.
Tracy said “And we started to plan for our wedding, in a year’s time as this would give me enough time to lose my weight and find the perfect dress.
The next few weeks were a blurred, as I counted down the days to my operation.
On the day of surgery, I gave Ellis a huge hug goodbye and Matthew drove me to the clinic.
Once in theatre, I was given a general anaesthetic. The surgeon cut five tiny holes in the skin of my stomach then put a silicone ring, around the upper part of my tummy to make it smaller.
When I woke up after the procedure, I was given a dose of morphine to ease the pain and I kept dozing in and out of sleep. The next morning, I woke to see Matthew sitting beside me.”
When Tracy returned home, she followed the liquids only diet and she felt full after just a couple of slips of fluid.
Just weeks later, her size 22 jeans felt looser and when she weighted herself at home, she had lost a stone. This was just the boost and motivation she needed. For the next couple of weeks, she progressed to pureed food. By the fourth week, she was tucking into mashed potatoes and carrots.
Look, mummy is eating like you I said to Ellis as I tucked into a baby portion of mashed carrot”.
Gradually, Tracy introduced different foods, but never pigged out like she use to do. She had come so far and invested so much into her surgery and aftercare, she didn’t want to do anything that could ruin it’.
Tracy Said “Each week, I lost a couple of pounds and within 10 months, I’d lost four stone and was a size 14.
Matthew and I can’t wait for our big day. I’ve bought a beautiful white wedding dress but every time I go for a fitting, it hangs off me’.