"I was a “fat girl” most of my adult life. I had been diagnosed with diabetes and hypertension. I was in pain from my knees, hips and lower back. I had been on every diet imaginable, only to lose some weight and then gain it all back plus more.
Then in 2001, I heard about the Lapband. I researched on the internet for a year before deciding I would have it done. My insurance did not cover weight loss surgery and it was very expensive in the USA, much more than I could afford. One name kept popping up in my research and that was Dr. Ariel Ortiz in Tijuana, Mexico. My best friend, an LVN, was very skeptical about the whole thing, especially having surgery in Mexico. So, we made the drive to Tijuana to talk with Dr. Ortiz and see the hospital and "check things out." He put us both at ease and spent a great deal of time explaining everything and answering all of our many questions. With my friend’s blessing, I had my lapband surgery on 10/5/02, and to date have lost 103 lbs.
My knees and joints do not hurt anymore, my blood sugars became normal and I was able to go off my diabetic medication. To this day, my diabetes remains in remission, my blood pressure and cholesterol are within normal limits. My primary care physician is amazed.
But, my story does not end here. I kept the weight off successfully for 6 years. I guess I got complacent about healthy eating and over the next 2 years, I gained back about 30 lbs. and I couldn’t seem to get back to where I had been. Dr. Ortiz was now doing other weight loss procedures such as the sleeve and plication. I made the decision to have the lapband removed and do a revision to plication. I did not have a 100 lbs. to lose again, so I went with the less invasive procedure, the plication. This brought me back close to my goal weight, which has been maintained.
Dr. Ortiz and Dr. Martinez have been the most caring, professional doctors I have ever met. They have given me a new, healthy life for the last 17 years. I have gone from a size 22 to a size 10-12. Weight loss surgery was the best thing that I ever did for myself and I cannot express the confidence and joy that I feel. I hope that my story will give someone else the courage to move forward and be helped by these wonderful doctors and life changing surgery."