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Patient Stories

Weight Loss, Family Style
By Healthy Life 2008 Spring/Summer

In 2005, Kevin Miller of Ipswich decided his weight problems were more than he could handle. At 345 pounds, Miller, 43, was having trouble waking up and getting out of bed. “I used to love fishing, hiking and camping, but because of my weight it was tough for me to even get off the couch,” explained Miller. Suffering from Type II diabetes and already on insulin, Miller met with Frederick Buckley, M.D., a surgeon who specializes in bariatric (weight loss) surgery at North Shore Medical Center, to see what his options were.
NSMC offers a comprehensive surgical weight management program that encompasses a thorough evaluation process, a choice of surgical procedures and an extensive post-operative program involving medically supervised cardiac risk reduction and nutrition education, exercise and peer support. Miller decided on a minimally invasive, laparoscopic gastric bypass and within four days after the surgery his diabetes had improved so much he no longer needed an insulin pump.

His results from the surgery were so good, his wife Martha, 34, started looking into it too. At 265 pounds, she knew her health was at risk. “I was very reluctant for a long time,” explained Martha. “I was borderline diabetic, my blood pressure was up and I finally said to myself, ‘I have to do this now before it’s too late.’” Martha met with Dr. Buckley in September 2007 and he performed the same minimally invasive, laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery. To date, Martha has lost more than 90 pounds, and her weight is still dropping.   “This surgery is just one tool to help you control one aspect of being heavy—how much you can eat. To be successful, a complete lifestyle change is necessary. No more late-night food. We watch portion sizes and we’ve added a lot of exercise, too.”

The healthy changes that Kevin and Martha have made are affecting their two young boys, Tim and Scott. “It’s amazing how much of an influence parents can be on their children,” said Kevin. “Because we’re eating right and exercising, now they are too. Our kids are in much better shape now than they were a couple of years ago.”