Leanne’s story: 'All new me' after weight loss surgery

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

By: Melissa Barth

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Over the years, Leanne Hansen easily put a mental check by several milestones in her life: Become a pastor, check; become a hair stylist, check; attain motherhood, grandmotherhood and great-grandmotherhood, check, check and check.


The one key area that consistently eluded a check mark was weight loss. For years, that area received an incomplete.


“Through my lifetime, it was losing weight, gaining, losing, gaining, and never being able to maintain a weight,” she says.


Leanne had battled weight issues since she was 5. She tried to lose weight through dieting and exercise, but found it difficult to permanently keep the weight off.  At one point, she says, she felt as if there were no viable options left for her.


That’s when her general practitioner recommended she see an Aurora BayCare bariatric surgeon for weight loss surgery. It was an option Leanne hadn’t considered.


“It was something I was more afraid of,” she says. “She said, ‘Here’s her name, call her, and see if you can get in.’ I got in the next couple weeks and started the process.”


Leanne had Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery done in January 2017. During her surgery, doctors reduced the size of her stomach to restrict the amount of food it can hold. Roux-en-Y patients notice that they feel full faster.


Leanne noticed drastic changes immediately following surgery.


“They gave me two ounces of cream of wheat, and I went, ‘What, this is all I get to eat?’” she jokes. “I had a teaspoon and a half and I was full. I went, ‘This can’t be true! I’m always hungry!’”


Leanne was back to her normal activities six weeks after surgery and has made great progress in her weight loss efforts.


“I’m at 126 (pounds). So, from my heaviest being 255, I’ve lost more than I weigh now,” she says.


Leanne encourages people to consider weight-loss surgery if they’re struggling to lose pounds.


“Do all that you know to do, and if you can’t do anything more, then you need to have somebody help you through it,” she says. “It’s not a cure-all. You still have to make choices, you still have to choose to do the right things. I think this has been such a big help for me.”


She’s especially thankful for the life she has now.


“I had my two great-grandbabies here the other day. I spend a lot of time with them. I went to Disney at Christmas time with my other great-grandbabies and walked all over Disney,” Leanne says. “It’s like an all new me.”


For appointments with an Aurora BayCare bariatric surgeon, call 877-677-5384 or request one online.


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