Hospital:

Donna: A Success Story

January 6, 2020

In November 2016, I went out to dinner with my family to celebrate my birthday. We had the server take our picture. When I saw it, I was shocked and embarrassed. I was not okay with how I looked. That’s when it hit me – I needed to make some serious changes.

Two of my friends suggested seeing Dr. Louis Balsama, as they both had a sleeve gastrectomy and had wonderful experiences. I signed up to attend one of his seminars at Jefferson Health NJ. I had SO MANY questions, all of which were answered. I decided that it was for me, and in no time, planned my surgery.

While preparing, I gave up caffeine and made other essential dietary changes. I knew how important it was to start eating how I would be eating for the rest of my life. As a result, I lost 40 pounds, prior to surgery!

Now, two and a half years after surgery, my life has changed in so many ways. I’m down a total of 113 pounds. I am a gym rat; I work out almost every day, some days, more than once! I have a new hobby: climbing light houses. I can ride my bike for 15 miles without feeling tired or having to quit. When my friends and I go out to eat, we often share a meal and sometimes still have leftovers!

Jefferson Health NJ offers so many beneficial resources to their bariatric patients. I’m an avid attendee of the support groups and exercise classes, which help me stay on track with my weight loss and hold me accountable. I would miss everyone so much if I didn’t go; they’re like my second family. We all pay it forward to each other, giving advice and sharing stories. It’s difficult to go through this alone. Having people by your side who know exactly what you’re going through is incredibly helpful.

I will keep fighting the good fight, knowing that I am winning the battle. I am not alone in this fight. I have many people by my side, who I could not have done this without. I sincerely thank Dr. Balsama, Kathy, and Chris for all of their support and encouragement. Without them, and the help of my wonderful family, my life would not be the same.

To read more stories like Donna's, and to learn more about bariatric surgery at Jefferson Health New Jersey, click HERE.