BMI Surgery Saves Patient’s Vocal Cords: Kelly’s Story

Kelly's Story | Gastric Bypass Surgery

Meet Kelly, a patient at the Arkansas Heart Hospital Bariatric and Metabolic Institute (BMI), who under went gastric bypass surgery with Dr. Fuller. 

“In my early 20s, I was diagnosed with Hypothyroidism after a 30-pound weight gain. From that moment on, my weight has been a struggle.  

After having two children, it became even harder to try to lose weight. I tried Atkins. I tried the HCG diet where I would give myself shots in my stomach every day and live on lettuce basically. You name it, I have tried it.  

With years of my weight yoyo-ing out of control, I just gave up. I didn’t deny my cravings. If I wanted it, I ate it. I didn’t worry about the consequences.  

By age 44, I was 266 pounds, living with high blood pressure, sleep apnea and severe gastric reflux.  

After having a scope seven times in a year, I was told that my reflux had done extensive damage to my esophagus. The acid from my reflux had also caused ulcers on my vocal cords which contributed to a sore throat 24/7 for months on end. And I could completely lose my voice forever. 

Making a Change

After my diagnosis, I decided I had to make a change. I met with Dr. J.D. Fuller, bariatric surgeon at the Arkansas Heart Hospital Bariatric and Metabolic Institute (BMI), to discuss having the gastric sleeve done.  

During my initial appointment, we discussed my reflux. It was at this moment I learned that gastric bypass can, in many cases, cure reflux 100 percent. Guess what — it did! My reflux was completely gone as soon as I woke up in recovery from my gastric bypass.  

Victories Beyond the Scale

Ten months post-op gastric bypass, my health and my life have completely changed. My blood pressure is better than it has been in over ten years, I no longer snore like a truck driver, and my reflux has been eliminated. I have gone from size 18-20 to size 4. My current weight is 131 pounds.  

My husband Timothy and I work out almost daily, and we participated in a 15-mile bike race. Tons of energy would be an understatement. I feel better than I did in my 20s.  

If I could do it over, I would have gastric bypass again. I just would have done it 15 years ago.” 


Kelly shares her story on THV11 The Vine.

Read Timothy’s story who was inspired to start his own journey with BMI after his wife’s success.  

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