Mom Says ‘Goodbye’ to Heart Medications After Robotic Weight-Loss Surgery

Adrienne A with her husband on their wedding day

August 03, 2022

Adrienne A. had high blood pressure ever since she was in high school. After she had her second child in 2014, her cardiac condition had progressed to heart failure, she had a health scare that resulted in a two-week hospital stay, and she required several daily medications to manage various health conditions.
 
It was also around this time that Adrienne reached her highest-ever weight of nearly 300 pounds. She didn’t have the energy to enjoy activities, such as going to the beach, with her kids.
 
“I knew I had to do something, because my medications were increasing and the weight wasn’t coming off,” Adrienne says.
  

Exploring Options for Better Health

Adrienne attended a free weight-loss surgery seminar with Anish B. Nihalani, M.D., FACS, a bariatric surgeon at JFK University Medical Center.
 
“When I told Dr. Nihalani that I had a heart condition, he said, ‘I think we can take care of you,’” Adrienne says. “It definitely gave me some options and made me feel comforted, but I was still a little scared.”
 
After a consultation, Dr. Nihalani recommended a robotic sleeve gastrectomy procedure.
 
The surgical system has several robotic arms that hold small surgical instruments and a high-definition video camera. During the procedure, the surgeon inserts the surgical instruments and camera into the body through several half-inch incisions. The camera projects a real-time, 3-D image of the surgical area onto a video screen on the surgical console, where the surgeon sits and maneuvers the robotic surgical instruments to perform the procedure.
 
“Enhanced 3-D visualization allows us to clearly see the surgical area, and when combined with the robotic surgical system’s precision and range of motion, this reduces the risk of injury to important body structures and other complications,” says Dr. Nihalani, who specializes in robotic bariatric surgery.

On October 10, 2019, Dr. Nihalani performed the procedure. Adrienne spent one night in the hospital and was back on her feet in just a few days. “Most bariatric surgery patients go home the next day,” Dr. Nihalani says.
 

A Journey, Not a Quick Fix 

Within the first six months after surgery, Adrienne lost a significant amount of weight and began to feel more like herself. For the first time ever, her blood pressure decreased and she was able to stop taking her heart medications.
 
By the time Adrienne was planning her September 2021 wedding, she lost so much weight that she ended up buying two dresses several months apart. The first dress was a size 8/10. The second was a size 2, which she wore with confidence.
 
Adrienne has been maintaining her weight at around 130 pounds for several years, and she is thrilled that she is now able to be an energetic, healthy, fun mom and wife.
  
“This was definitely more of a health journey than a quick fix,” says Adrienne, who recently celebrated her 41st birthday by going dancing with her husband. “Before surgery, I felt so removed from life because everything was just so exhausting, and now I have a chance to go back and live the part of life I was missing.”

Next Steps & Resources:

 
The material provided through HealthU is intended to be used as general information only and should not replace the advice of your physician. Always consult your physician for individual care.

 
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