Thursday, February 17, 2011

Weight Loss Surgery Affords Stafford Mom a Healthier Life

Melissa Ndebe (pictured), a busy Stafford mother of three, came to terms with needing help to lose weight after thinking long and hard about having weight loss surgery. Now, 230 pounds lighter, she’s living a much healthier and happier life.

Standing at a loooong six feet, two inches, Melissa was used to being one of the tallest people in the room. But after having kids and living a very busy life, she wasn’t only the tallest person, but the biggest.

“My weight really started to balloon after I had my kids,” says the Stafford mom of three. “At my heaviest I was 415 pounds. Frankly, the weight was holding me back. Many people suggested that I have weight loss surgery but I was really skeptical. I didn’t want to admit that I couldn’t handle my weight problem myself."

“Mrs. Ndebe came to our office with diabetes, liver problems, high cholesterol and severe sleep apnea,” says Dr. Denis Halmi, medical director of the Weight Loss Surgery Center at Sentara Potomac Hospital. “Those conditions are all gone now – along with the 230 pounds.”

On a scale from one to 10, Melissa rates her quality of life before the surgery a four and after – a 10.

“I didn’t realize how much of life I was missing until now,” she says. “When you’re that big, you tend to adapt, but after losing the weight I can really look back and see that adapting to life is just not enough. The healthy lifestyle changes that I’ve made have been passed on to my family. In fact, my husband has lost weight and my kids eat healthier as well.”

For those facing the struggles and frustrations of living with obesity, get your weight loss surgery questions answered at our free seminar. Learn about Sentara Potomac Hospital's surgical solutions to weight loss including laparoscopic gastric banding, gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy, and revisional procedures.

Also, find out more about insurance coverage and the Sentara Potomac Hospital weight loss surgery team at this free event on Thursday, February 24, from 7:00 to 9:00 p.m.

Register online or call our Health Connection at (703) 221-2500.

Sentara Potomac Hospital is designated a Center of Excellence by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery. The ASMBS Center of Excellence designation recognizes surgical programs with a demonstrated track record of excellent outcomes in bariatric surgery.

Visit for more information.