Alabama Weight Loss Surgery
Success Stories

What our Gastric Bypass patients are saying.......

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S. Wallace

My life has changed so drastically since 2003.I hardly know where to begin to explain the changes. When I weighed 310 pounds, I was unable to ride my beloved horses, something I grew up loving. I even met my husband while horseback riding, so we shared a common love, but for 20+ years we were unable to ride together. Since my surgery I have retired from my 30+ years of being a sedentary public school librarian. I now follow my husband all over the lower United States. We have a horse trailer with living quarters and we try to ride in as many states as we can, particularly during the colder months. Before the surgery I could not to do the things I wanted to with my grandchildren, now I can keep up with them easily. We try to attend their sport events, school events, and even take vacations with them during the spring and-or summer break. This summer we toured the western states by car with some youngsters with us and THEY couldn’t keep up with me! We have gone on a cruise together to the Caribbean Islands, something I never thought my husband would do!! We have taken romantic carriage ride through old St. Augustine, Florida: ridden our horses along a sandy beach on the Atlantic Ocean, and seen two of the major rodeos in the United States, all things that were on my “bucket” list. Now we’re planning a trip next summer to see another rodeo on my “bucket” list: The Calgary Stampede in Canada! We still have lists of things we are planning to do, now that we can do them together!!!

C. Kornegay

I owe my life to Dr. Lee Schmitt and the wonderful people who work with him. I owe God my life as well and the praise for my doctor who did not give up on me when everyone else had. Dr Schmitt is a Christian man and a great doctor. If I hadn’t already had gastric bypass I’d do it again today! I’m just so blessed to be alive that anyone who wants this surgery or any weight loss tool can call me and I’ll be very proud to tell them all* *I know that the gastric bypass has done for me. Even though I had in the beginning planned to do the Lap-Band, but I have systematic lupus (lungs and kidneys) so God and Dr. Schmitt knew what I needed to live and that’s all I asked for. Now I got much more in return like: 1. losing 2 people I didnt need off of my body. 2. I can live and enjoy my life now- But I knew I would be alright the first time I saw Dr. Schmitt. 3. Dr. Schmitt told me what and might possibly happen because it was a major surgery, and I already had 3 strikes against me without any help, he did help me and he will help anyone.

K. Henson

Presurgery I weighed in at 288 pounds. I had to rest between aisles in Walmart. My goal was to weigh what my driver's license said I weighed! I did that and more. Now I can walk all over the store without even stopping at all. I lost a total of 150 pounds. My life has changed for the better. I thank God that he gave me the opportunity. Dr. Schmitt and the staff are wonderful. They are very thorough and very supportive through the whole process.

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G. Hayes

My top weight was 425 pounds. I was unable to take care of myself or do any housework. I had both knees replaced in 2002 due to the pain in my knees and in my back. Now that I had R-Y gastric bypass, I can take care of myself and do the things that need to be done. I also can take care of my parents and go grocery shopping. I walk everyday and eat healthy. Dr. Schmitt is an excellent surgeon. He is very encouraging for his patients and he listens to what you have to say. The surgery changed my life. I do not know why I waited so long to have the surgery.

H. Jones

I've always been obese and I was always told that I could be a model, but I knew they meant “could” if I were skinny. I once lost a job mainly due to my weight. My twin sister is a juvenile diabetic and doctors always warned me that my weight is a dangerous additive to my family’s health history. So here I was, overweight, unhealthy and miserable in my own skin. I had nothing to lose- but a TON of weight. And so began my weight loss journey with Alabama Weight Loss and Dr. Lee Schmitt. It’s been a journey that has changed and saved my life!

Dr. Schmitt has been open, honest and kind through my entire process. The Alabama Weight Loss practice as a whole has been phenomenal from the nurses, nutritionist, receptionist and doctors. They gave me every bit of information needed to make my life changing decision and an easy and wise one. Everyone at Alabama Weight Loss aided in making me the happiest and the healthiest I have felt in years and for that I am eternally grateful. I have been thoroughly pleased with my process from the introduction meeting, nutrition course, hospital stay and support group meetings. Everyone I have encountered has been incredibly kind and informative for each stage of the process. I feel so blessed to have gone through Alabama Weight Loss for my procedure and consider each person to be a true friend.

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C. Parris

I could not walk for without breathing hard. I was on hand fulls of medicine; I took 10 different pills for my sugar and 2 different pills for my stomach. After surgery I am off my stomach meds,my high blood pressure meds and diabetic meds as well. My blood sugar went from 259 on a good day to 80-100 after surgery. This saves me close to $2000 a year in co pays and meds. I can now outwalk my oldest son and I am able to keep up with my grandchildren. It has been a long time since I could do this without huffing and puffing. Would I do it again? In a heart beat! Dr. Schmitt is extremely good at his profession. He is very helpful and is concerned about his patients. He does not rush you in or out but he listens to you and your concerns.The after care is terrific. Always keeps in touch with you and any problems you may have.

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Veronica Patterson

Veronica Patterson's life changed on 9/13/2004 with gastric bypass.

Lea Ann Henderson

Dear Dr. Schmitt I wanted to thank you sincerely for taking the time, skill, & expense to perform my gastric by-pass surgery without the option of using blood or blood products. Your willingness to take the extra care necessary to operate on a patient who is one of Jehovah's Witnesses speaks a lot about your skill as a surgeon & your care for your patients. Please accept my heartfelt appreciation.

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Laurie Banks

I just wanted to say; a year ago I thought my life was over at 26. I couldn’t sleep well, I hurt all the time, and I was severely depressed. I have always had a problem with my “body image.” I’m a generation x’er. What do you expect? I learned to hide behind humor, always thinking that if I said it first it wouldn’t hurt so badly when someone else told me I was fat. I am only 5’3”. Any weight is a lot of weight. But at 309 when considering surgery I was miserable. I did loose some weight before surgery but who didn’t? The day of surgery I weighted 272.0 lbs. Today I weight 158lbs. and I love it. I love the fact that Dr. Schmitt agreed that this was the right weight for my body type and he didn’t expect me to come in looking like a playboy model. This year however…….. I love life!!!! I love the way I fell inside and out. It feels like I finally fit the mental image I have had for so long. I tell people all the time when they don’t recognize me that it’s because I am smiling. And I do smile all the time. I sleep all night long and hardly ever wake up in the middle of the night anymore, and my husband can’t keep his hands to himself. I love it. Ask me if I would do it again. A thousand times YES!!! God used Dr. Schmitt to not only change my outside body but also made me realize that sometimes someone else might know the right things for you to do. If you are considering surgery the only advice I can give you is don’t be pig headed. It will only make you sick. The surgery was surgery. The nurses at MCE were fantastic. My after care at home was great. But I did everything, from start to finish, by what Dr. Schmitt said. His way or the highway back to FAT!

K. Henson

Presurgery I weighed in at 288 pounds. I had to rest between aisles in Walmart. My goal was to weigh what my driver's license said I weighed! I did that and more. Now I can walk all over the store without even stopping at all. I lost a total of 150 pounds. My life has changed for the better. I thank God that he gave me the opportunity. Dr. Schmitt and the staff are wonderful. They are very thorough and very supportive through the whole process.

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Brenda Jones

Brenda Jones is a year out from surgery and has lost 125 lbs.! Her high blood pressure, reflux, and high cholesterol are cured and her joint pain is greatly improved.

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Douglas and Melanie Brown

Douglas Brown has lost and maintained 135 lb. weight loss. His hypertension and joint pain have resolved. Melanie Brown has lost 125 lbs and all of her pre-operative co-morbidities have been cured.

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Leyann Bennett

Dr Schmitt,
I hope this short note finds everything going well for you! My Mom (Pam Yancy) asked me to drop you a little note and a few pictures of my husband and I. Even though Dr Miles performed both of our surgeries, our lives have been directly affected by not only Dr Miles, but by you, Lisa, and the entire staff in your office! You performed both my parents WLS (on the same day!) and as an only child and a WLS patient myself, it was an incredible task for me to place them in your hands! Anyway, I wanted to let you know that Chad and I are doing wonderful! I am now 3yrs 3mths and 3days out and have lost 154lbs! Chad will be 3 yrs out in august and has lost 144lbs! Which means total we have lost 298lbs which ironically is the exact amount Chad weighed on the day of his surgery! Its amazing the changes we have went through both physically and emotionally! When we go to our closets now rather than finding the 26-28 I wore and the 48-50 he wore, we are blessed to find size 3-4 for me and size 30-32 for him! No longer is chasing our boys (ages 8&5) a chore, its now a huge joy! We are a more active family now and are truly enjoying life to its fullest!

We are regularly asked about our WLS and our response is always the same "WE WOULD DO IT AGAIN TOMORROW!" As a matter of fact, when I think about the greatest things I have done in my life WLS ranks 3rd! With #1 & #2 being marrying Chad and having my boys!!!! We have had such a great success with WLS that NUMEROUS patients have came to you and DR Miles because of the affect your expertise has had in our lives! I LOVE to talk about my surgery and have spoken at one of the support group meetings and would broadcast it from the rooftops if I thought anyone would be there to listen!!!

When you put it all together, the four of us have lost 533lbs! Can you imagine???????!!!!!!!!

I write all this simply to say THANK YOU! From the bottom of our hearts my entire family thanks you for giving us back our lives! I attached a couple of pictures of Chad and I before and after. I hope when you look at them that you will take a moment to REALLY think about what your knowledge actually does for entire families! God Bless you!

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Mike Wheeler

I was 56 yrs. old in August. My life has changed forever. I had the gastric bypass surgery on 02Nov04. Prior to surgery, I was taking 6 prescription medications. 2 were for blood pressure. 3 were for reflux and irritable bowel. I was taking 400mg of Cellebrex for the arthritis in my right knee, which needed to be replaced. I now take only one prescription and it is for something unrelated. I weighed in that morning at 430 lbs., in my birthday suit and hospital gown. I went through the operation and post-op recovery without a single complication, medical or physical. I have never even had dumping syndrome. I followed to the letter, the guidelines set out in the literature given to me . I take my supplements daily. I use the protein mix that is offered in the apothecary in the hospital. I have never had much willpower. I had always said if you could measure mine, it would show up as a negative number. I have been very fortunate because until last month, I had very little appetite, so it was easier to adjust to the smaller portions. I am still learning to take very small bites. I guess some old habits are harder to break than others. I have learned to live without Advil or other OTC meds. I came in for my 3 mo. checkup and had lost 84 lbs.

I called my orthopedist the first of March and told him I had lost 100 lbs. and wanted to proceed with the knee surgery. He put the paperwork into motion to get insurance approval and on 29Mar05, I had a total right knee replacement, also without complications. I had lost an additional 22 lbs. by the day of knee surgery. When I went to my primary care physician, in August, for my annual checkup, he acted like the nurse had put the wrong patient in the room with my chart.

This morning, 02Nov05, before coming to your office for my annual, I weighed 250.6 lbs. (birthday suit, no gown). What a difference a year makes. The only thing I can still wear from before are my shoes and socks. I have gone from size 60 slacks to a size 42. My shirts have gone from a 4XL to XL. I even had to have my wedding band resized. I have a real sense of feeling healthy for the first time in over 20 years. I have 5 beautiful grandchildren that I plan to continue to spoil at every opportunity. My wife & I have planned an Alaskan cruise for next June.

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Selina Drewry

After almost a lifetime of being obese, years of yo-yo dieting, and reaching a new high of 314 pounds, at 48 years old I realized if I didn’t do something I was going to have a very short life. On August 28, 2003, Dr. Lee Schmitt performed my gastric bypass surgery. I quite literally put my life into his hands and in return, he provided me with a tool that has enabled me to have a life I never dreamed I could have. Two years later I weigh 136 pounds for a total weight loss of 178 pounds! I no longer suffer from arthritis pain in my back, knees and ankles, and I no longer have high blood pressure or cholesterol levels that were off the charts. Just as important, I no longer suffer from the crippling depression and emotional anguish that goes along with being morbidly obese. In June of this year I took a 10 day vacation to London, England and Paris, France – something I would have never even considered at 314 pounds. I would have never had the energy and stamina to take the trip and to walk that 7 or 8 miles every day. I have also traded in my big SUV and I now drive a Mini Cooper with a 6 speed manual transmission. TOO MUCH FUN!!!!! Life after gastric bypass is not without its challenges but I am healthy, happy, and continue to feel blessed and amazed each day with just how good life can be. It just doesn’t get any better!

Hi Lee,

Well, August 28 will be the 7th anniversary of my gastric bypass. I am GREAT! Had my checkup with my primary care physician this morning and I am freakishly healthy. BP was 90/64, cholesterol was 175, all my vitamin levels are great. My pre-op weight was 314 and this morning I weighed 149. At almost 6’ tall, I still come in officially ‘skinny’ (YAY!). My total re-gain has been only 11 pounds. The only issue I have is being hypoglycemic and some very selective acid reflux. I am attaching a picture from Christmas – not the best but just haven’t had any occasion for a picture lately. You can at least tell I am still a pretty skinny old lady. Am also attaching the pre-op picture for you again for comparison. I have come a long way since the 314 pounds I weighed the first time I came in to see you. I still believe gastric bypass saved my life. Looking back through my chart this morning, Dr. Wilhite said I very likely would not be here today if I hadn’t had it.

So obviously, ‘thanks’ doesn’t even come close but it is all I can say. So from the bottom of my heart, ‘thank you’. I promise to make it to Birmingham sometime just to drop by and say hello.

Take care and God bless.

Tommy D

Making an appointment to see Dr. Schmitt was the best thing I have ever done to improve my health.

I was a high school athlete, but over the past ten years I struggled with my weight and my health suffered. I developed high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and severe sleep apnea and I am only 35 years old. I spent thousands of dollars on Weight Watchers, Medi-Fast, and the Atkins diet without long-term success. I found hope at Dr. Schmitt’s seminar. It’s been over a year since my surgery and I look and feel great. I have a 30 inch waist and I no longer suffer from high blood pressure, high cholesterol or sleep apnea. Weight loss surgery was the right answer for me. If you think it could be right for you, I can highly recommend Dr. Schmitt as a skilled and caring surgeon.

Christy W

Hello, my name is Christy. I am 31, married with one child. I had WLS on March 18, 2002 with Dr. Miles at Medical Center East. As of today, August 19, 2002 I have lost 85 lbs! And I feel incredible!

Before my surgery I felt there was no hope for me. I had tried everything, then feeling like a failure... I gave up on myself. I almost never left my house. Then a friend of mine put me in touch with Dr Miles and all of a sudden there was hope for me. I am so grateful to Dr Miles, his staff, Rona and all my new family from the F.A.C.E.S. support group. If you are reading this and feeling like there is no hope for you please don't give up on yourself just yet. Talk to Dr Miles and see if he can help you change your life. I did, and I would do it again, over and over. I haven’t regretted my surgery for one second! I admit I was nervous, but I thought "What do I have to lose?" And the answer was 85 lbs. (so far!) Thanks Dr Miles, you have helped me live again! And my world doesn’t revolve around food.

Kristy B

WLS has changed my life in so many ways!!! First my health has greatly improved. I was a really bad diabetic and had really high blood pressure. After my 2nd post-op month I was off all medications except vitamins and calcium supplements. I can do so much more with my 9-year-old son. The energy level is just amazing.. Life just couldn’t be any better.

My surgery experience was great with no complications. I had my WLS 8-01-01 and have lost 195 lbs in 1 year a few weeks. I had my gallbladder out a week ago. I would have WLS again in a heartbeat. It has truly saved my life...Thanks Dr. Miles!!!

Lisa R

I had WLS on December 11, 2001, I am 8 months out and as of today I am down 73 pounds. I could never have stuck to losing weight for this long and kept it off without WLS, it has not only given me my life back, but I am experiencing life all over again with my wonderful husband Wes.

My surgery experience was wonderful. Dr. Miles is the best. He is very compassionate and caring, he doesn't treat you like a morbidly obese person. He truly wants to help you become normal. I would do this surgery over every year if I had to.

Sherri M

Well first of all, WLS is the very best thing that I have done for myself. It has changed my whole life!!! I would do it again in a heart beat. Don't get me wrong it was not a breeze; it has its ups and downs. But, the ups outweigh the downs by a long shot!!! I had RNY lap with the wonderful Dr. Miles, on 11/05/01and as of today 08/19/02 I have lost 98 pounds and a whole lot of inches. I was in a size 24 and now I am in size 16, some size 14's. Isn't that just great??!!!

I have so much energy, I feel like a teenager again, and I turned 35 yesterday!!! Today because of WLS I feel like I am a better mom, a better wife and also a better person all together!!! I thank GOD everyday for WLS, Dr. Miles, Rona, and all the wonderful friends that I have made through my WLS journey! Isn't life just grand?

Happy thoughts always.

Connie B

My laparoscopic Weight Loss Surgery was on 05/22/02. I have lost 70 lbs. in 3 months! Amazing!! Although I had an ulcer and a stricture in July and had to have a subsequent (open) surgery, I can honestly say that prior to the first surgery, had I known all that I would have to deal with in the first three months, I would have STILL had the surgery. I feel like I am BRAND NEW! I still eat very small amounts of food, but I don't miss the things or the quantity that I cannot consume now. I'm content drinking water!

Dr. Miles is a very caring and attentive surgeon and I cannot thank him enough for the care he and his staff have provided. Having a surgeon who is up front about possible risks, side effects, etc. made it much easier for me to reach a decision about having the surgery as I knew that he would be open and honest with me.

Terri H

I had RNY surgery with Dr. Miles at MCE just over 5 months ago. Since surgery I have lost a total of 136 pounds. My surgery went great, I have had no complications and would do it again in a heartbeat. Although I had no major health problems before surgery, I know that my health would be declining in the near future if I didn't get the excess weight off. Although I still have a long way to go, I know that my future is much brighter.

In just a few short months things have changed so much in my life. I now can go into a store and find clothing that is too big for me, when I used to just hope to find something that would fit. I can now comfortably sit next to my husband in a theater seat or sit in a booth and not have to worry if I will fit. I am now looking forward to my son's football games instead of worrying about how far I may have to walk to get to the stadium. Although these things may seem small and trivial to some people, most if not all morbidly obese people can understand and have had to deal with these kinds of problems. Dr. Miles and RNY surgery have given me the chance not to have to deal with these problems and so many others. I now have the chance to live my life.

Dott C

Weight Loss Surgery (WLS) has been the best thing to have happened to me in years. I use the analogy that the WLS has been like a rebirth. I have rediscovered parts of my personality that were forgotten. The layers of timidity and shame have been removed and replaced with a level of confidence and self assuredness that I thought I could never posses.

As a 48 year old, I have lost a total of 125 lbs 10 months. I look forward to the remaining weight coming off and toward the reconstructive surgery that needs to take place. I am very happy with my new look -- so is my husband. Thank you Dr. Miles for being there and for being God's instrument to so many hurting people who had no where else to turn.

Susan O

Hi. I am six months out from surgery and have lost 75 pounds. I have been able to come off my diabetic, cholesterol, and incontinence medication and no longer need to sleep with a CPAP machine. This surgery is something I would do over again in a heartbeat as I consider it a true gift and a second chance to lead a wonderful, healthy life.

Dr. Miles took a chance on me because of my age. I knew he may have to do "open" instead of "lap" but he hung in there and I am one grateful person today. I know that as Morbidly Obese people we say we are the same when we loose weight, but now I know we are not. Of course I still have my value and moral system that my parents gave me, but now I am so much happier with myself and show it. My coworkers and friends all say I am much more outgoing and I seem happier. I move!! Yes, I can move. And my granddaughter is finding my lap.

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