Thoughts on My Annual Physical Exam

Child’s drawing of a doctorI hate having a physical exam and today’s was hard since I barely know the doctor – and I knew I’d gained weight since last August, which is the only time I’ve ever laid eyes on her. It didn’t help that I had a big bowl of soup and a drink immediately before going over. Getting on the scale was not happy thing and I could feel my stress level rising as I pushed those little weight things along the sliding scale to rack up the evil total. Miraculously I’ve only gained 12 lbs since August, though it seems like much more.

I was armed with a piece of paper with all my current meds and the questions I wanted to ask about assorted body parts, from the sore foot (x-rayed to see if there’s a stress fracture), unhappy knee (referral to orthopedics), to the sleep problems (arrange to have the CPAP data faxed to the doctor). Fasting bloodwork will come later this week.

And I couldn’t keep myself from raising the weight thing, my frustration at having gained and feeling a bit stressed at work. To her credit, she didn’t tell me I was an evil fat person who was going to die soon if I didn’t crack down and lose the extra pounds. She did ask if I’d considered gastric bypass or the lapband surgery, both of which are performed at our hospital.

I’ve always said flat out that I wouldn’t consider either of those options but lately I admit that the lapband one has been surfacing again. Whether it’s physically an option or not, I don’t think that I’m able to manage the mental part. Until I really get that sorted out, I’m not sure I’d have the motivation to eat the more restrictive foods and amounts. Hell, if I can’t even do the WW portions, why would I think I could do the other?

The doctor was supportive and didn’t insist, although she did tell me that if next year I want to talk about it, to think about a decision based on current research and not comments from people who had the surgeries a while ago. Things have changed dramatically and both surgeries are now performed laproscopically in 95% of patients.

The motivation has to come from somewhere, though, and if I can find it again, there’s no reason I can’t lose the weight without the surgery. I’m really relieved that there isn’t medical pressure to go another direction.