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Kira Graf - IWLS Testimonial

Surgery Date: 10/17/2022
Starting Weight: 335
Current Weight: 165

What made you decide to have weight loss surgery? I decided to have weight loss surgery because everything else I had ever tried hadn't worked or if it did work it was only a temporary fix. Even when I tried to lose weight on my own, I was never able to get past a certain weight and still was considered overweight.

How long did it take for you to decide to have weight loss surgery? I had been considering or at least thinking about weight loss surgery for a couple of years.  I would talk myself out of it, that I didn't need to do anything that "drastic".

Did anyone either encourage or discourage you from having surgery? Everyone around me who knew I was considering surgery was supportive of my decision.

What do you wish you'd known before the surgery? I wish I would have known how life-changing this would all be and that I would have done it sooner!

What things are you able to do now that may have been difficult or impossible before surgery? So many things! Sit cross legged. I am way more active with my kids. I am not tired all of the time. I am no longer embarrassed to be seen in public and no longer embarrassed to see myself in pictures. I can run. I can be active without it taking a physical and painful toll on my body. My ankles, knees, and back don't hurt anymore.

Which conditions or diseases have you seen decrease or disappear since your surgery? I used to use a CPAP, which I no longer need and I no longer snore. ;) My blood pressure has decreased back to MY normal range.

How has surgery altered your outlook on life, your emotions, and/or relationships? Prior to surgery, if anyone would have asked me if I was depressed, I would have said there was no way!  Looking back on my life about 18 months ago, I absolutely was 100% depressed. I can say that that is not the case anymore. Life is great, I am happy. I have always been a "happy" person and had a smile on my face, but the last several years before surgery, the smile was definitely a forced smile. I feel like I smile now because I am genuinely happy and I feel amazing.

Why did you decide to have surgery with Dr. Eibes? Honestly, my insurance required a specific "center of excellence," and the only program close to me was based out of Belmond / Des Moines which led me directly to Iowa Weight Loss Specialists. With that being said, I have always felt like everything in life happens for a reason and I couldn't have been happier that IWLS were my people. :)

What would you say about Dr. Eibes and his team? Everyone I have encountered has been so nice, supportive, and encouraging. From the office staff to the mental health staff to the nurses and medical staff.  They have all been great!

What would you tell someone who is considering weight loss surgery? Do it! But also do the work to get yourself ready.  Make sure you deal with whatever emotions or "baggage" you may have before, during, and after.  Surgery is not the "easy fix", it is work, too, everyday. But if you take the steps you need to and prepare, you will be equipped to be successful.

Is there any additional information you would like to share? I feel like when I see other success stories, it helps me put in perspective compared to me when I know the "stats" of the person.  So, I am 37 years old and 6' 0" tall. My highest weight during the program was 335. I lost 35lbs on my own prior to my surgery date. Surgery day, I was exactly 300lbs. Currently I fluctuate between 165 and 170. I've had a total weight loss of 170 pounds with 135 of that being after my surgery.

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