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Is Weight Loss Surgery for You?

Attend a free seminar at Saint Mary’s to learn more. Call us at 203-709-7722 or register now.

If you’re considering weight loss surgery, you may be inspired by the stories of other Saint Mary’s Surgical Weight Loss patients, who may share some of your same concerns. As Dr. Richi, a board-certified general and thoracic surgeon and Vice Chairman of the Department of Surgery, says “When patients choose us for their surgery, they become part of the Saint Mary’s family.” 

Naliza Barbosa, a patient with Lupus and resident of Waterbury, CT, wanted to change her life and her weight. She sought out Saint Mary's Hospital, and bariatric surgeon Dr. Shady Macaron. Watch her inspirational story here.

A Life-Changing Decision

Christopher Rush


Chris, before and after gastric bypass. 

"Many people get stuck on numbers, but it’s 
really about getting healthy."

I am 33 years old and I had gastric bypass surgery in May of 2005. This hard but necessary decision truly saved my life. I was 406 pounds with a 62-inch waist. If it was not for Dr. A. Aziz Richi, his staff and the wonderful staff of Saint Mary’s Hospital, I don’t know if I would be alive today.

This is not a diet you can go off of. With gastric bypass surgery you learn to change how you think about food and how you eat. Many people get stuck on numbers, but it’s really about getting healthy. I joined a gym and go six days a week.

If you are considering gastric bypass surgery, do your homework. Get the facts. Then make your own decision. There is not one day that goes by that I regret making mine.”

The Changes Last Your Whole Life

Amy Fasano Before and After

Amy, before and after gastric banding
“When you’re willing to change your whole life, the 
changes will last your whole life.”

Amy L. Fasano

For many people, weight is a life-long battle. For me, it was a battle I just wasn’t winning. I tried many different approaches to weight loss, including a variety of diets, and working out in a gym five days a week. Every time, and with every approach, my weight always plateaued. At 5’ 4”, the consistent plateau of 200.7 pounds was not something I could live with, literally or figuratively. By age 30, I was borderline hypertensive and taking five different asthma medications each day.

After I turned 30, I knew I needed help. I turned to my mother, an Operating Room nurse at Saint Mary’s Hospital. She helped me research options, which led me to Dr. Shady Macaron. Talking to Dr. Macaron was like talking to a friend. It can be difficult to talk about weight, but Dr. Macaron’s wonderful bedside manner made it easy and comfortable. Together, we decided that gastric banding surgery was right for me.

A year after surgery, I am down nearly 100 pounds from my highest weight. My blood pressure is excellent, and I no longer need most of my asthma medications. I am careful about what I eat; I know, now, what feeling good feels like, and I know that if you eat well you feel well. I learned that I enjoy hiking and running, and can do both without the stress on my knees that the extra hundred pounds brought.

Gastric banding surgery is the best thing I ever did for myself. And with Dr. Macaron, I was in very, very good hands.”

I'm Able to Resume My Career

Joel Winter

Joel Winter

Joel, before and after weight loss

“My life expectancy was highly limited.”

“As I got older and my weight increased, my diabetes got worse,” said Winter, a professional musician who took medications for asthma and hypertension and used an insulin pump to control his diabetes. After learning about the Surgical Weight Loss Center at Saint Mary’s Hospital, he met with Dr. Aziz Richi.

“Because of my surgery, the support I’ve received, and the results I’ve had, I’m able to continue pursuing my career,” said Winter, a former principal horn player of the American Philharmonic, who lost 140 pounds and no longer uses his asthma medications and insulin pump. His results are not uncommon.

“Co-morbidities, especially diabetes, hypertension, and sleep apnea, are resolved in most patients after weight-loss surgery,” Dr. Richi said. “Patients are surprised by the amount of energy they have, and they are extremely happy as they begin to enjoy their new lifestyles.”

I've Never Been Happier

Sharon DelBianco

Sharon DelBianco Before and After

Sharon DelBianco, before and after lap band

“This is the happiest I’ve been in a long, long time."

“Weight became and issue for me as an adult; in high school I was relatively thin. As my weight changed, so did my health, beginning with the onset of diabetes over 10 years ago. By early 2009, I was taking insulin and pills for my diabetes, I was being treated for high blood pressure and arthritis in my knees, and my thyroid was borderline inactive. I knew I had to do something, and I knew I couldn’t do it by myself.

My endocrinologist explained that for my health to improve, I needed to get my weight under 150 pounds. I read a pamphlet for lap band surgery in her office and thought it seemed right for me. She referred me to Dr. Shady Macaron. Together, they changed my life.

It has been over a year since my surgery. I have lost 87 pounds and am off all of my diabetes medications. The arthritis in my knees no longer restricts my activities. In fact, I walk four miles on a track four to five times a week. Overall, I feel great!

Dr. Macaron is a fantastic surgeon. When people who haven’t seen me in a while comment on how good I look, I always credit Dr. Macaron. When I tell him that, he says it is not what he has done, but what I have done that has changed my life. I know that I couldn’t have done it alone, and that he is the one who helped me get to where I am. For that, I will always be grateful.”

Accreditation Logo

A Bariatric Center of Excellence

Saint Mary’s Hospital has achieved Comprehensive Center accreditation from the American College of Surgeons (ACS) Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS).

This designation places Saint Mary’s among an “elite group” of accredited centers in the U.S. Our facility is listed on the ACS website and is one of just nine accredited programs in Connecticut.

Learn more here.

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