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My experience w/Almanza

Rating: 3 votes, 5.00 average.
Keep in mind that MX is a few decades behind the US when it comes to luxury. If you think about American hospitals during the 70s or 80s, you will have a better idea of the facilities in MX. Almanza's location is in a strip-mall but don't let that scare you. Once you walk in the doors, you totally forget that.

The first thing you do is put on booties. Then, you have blood drawn. The nurse has been the best person EVER to take blood. I didn't even feel a prick. Next, all patients walk upstairs for pre-op preparations and consult. This is where you will answer your medical history, have you EEG, and get your IV. Again, the nurse did the best IV that I have ever had! No pain, got it in w/the first stick, and more importantly, I had NO bruises!

Next the waiting game begins, you lie in a room until it's your time. I was 3rd in line. So, my roommate and I just chatted until she went down. The lady who was first in line came up to her room, next to ours. She was WIDE awake and talked for a long time w/my hubby and hers.

When it was my time, a nurse guided me downstairs to the OR. I got on the bed, the attached arm rests to the bed and the last thing I remember was someone asking me about my history w/latex. The next thing I remember was waking up and being guided back upstairs to my bed. Hubby burped me several times during the night and he also burped the 2 other ladies, when they needed it. (He rocks!)

I really don't know if I had pain the first 12 - 18 hrs. Every time that my roommate asked for something, they gave it to me too. She had a very rough night and her drain had to be emptied like 4 times. Mine was only drained once. I did have a heating pad packed, so, my hubby got it out for me almost immediately when I got to bed. It was great to have! (I had pinned a safety pin to it before going. So, when he got the pad out, I grabbed the pin and attached my drain to my gown.) I got up several times during the next 12 - 18 hrs to walk and use the restroom.

Since being sent to the hotel, I had not had ANY pain relievers nor have I needed them. They called us around 3 the day after surgery to see if we wanted to go shopping. Yes, I wanted to walk, so we did. I couldn't have shopped for hours but the hour and half was just what I needed. When we got back to the hotel, I showered, changed my dressings, and took a nap. Later, they took us back to the hospital for antibiotics and to check on us. (If you are staying at the hotel, you MUST ask for gauze or take your own. They probably won't think about giving it to when you leave the hospital the day after surgery.)

There was a lady who had surgery the day before us who went to the hospital w/us. She was having a horrible time. She had some sort of reaction to one of the meds and had been vomiting literally all day. Of the 4 of us sleeved on the 24th, none of us had nearly the hard time that she had.

After we got back to the hotel, hubby and I walked up to the convenience store and got some juice for me and snacks for him. the next day was the hardest part. I had to wake up at 6:30 to start drinking the nasty crap for the leak test. It took me until 9 to do it. Then, we went the xray clinic for the leak test. The barium drink was nasty and I thought that I was going to vomit but didn't. My recommendation for those of you who have not had your sleeve yet...CHUG that nasty white crap. (This is the only time that I will say chugging is okay.)

Everything was fine; so, we went back to the hotel. Later that night, they took us the hospital to have the IV and drain removed (felt weird, it was MUCH longer than I had thought.) The others who were sleeved on my day rec'd another shot of something but the nurse said that I was doing so great, I didn't need it.

The next day, we went back to San Diego. Hubby and I had decided to make a mini-vacation out of the trip. So, we went to the hotel that I had booked for us. The next 2 1/2 days, we lounged around the resort and sunbathed.

The best thing that I had done was have a wheelchair lined up for me at the airport. Walking through the airport in San Diego wouldn't have too bad but Atlanta would have been a nightmare and we would have missed our flight home to Birmingham.

I weighed once we got home. I had lost 10 pounds in a week! WooHoo! Since getting back, everything has been great. I went back to work on day 6. I was a little tired but nothing too bad. I ended up not being able to get my stitches out when I had planned b/c I had an allergic reaction to band-aids and the skin around 2 of the incisions was too inflamed. So, I had to wait a couple of days. I have become dehydrated but not too bad. Pedilyte came to my rescue.

Some people say that they cannot take the cipro that Almanza gives but I had no problems. I haven't had issues taking any pills that I have tried. It just takes longer than it did pre-op but that isn't bad. I haven't touched the "pain killer" or MOM that he gave me. Haven't needed them. After the first week, I did start having some diarrhea but my doc gave me Lomtril for that. No issues for several days now.

I'm still learning to eat slower. Twice, I have eaten too much but didn't get "sick". I did get the slimies once when I had something that was too chewy. (That is NOT something that you want to have happen!!)

My taste buds have changed and that is taking some getting used to. I cannot stand my chewable vitamins that I liked pre-op. (I am sending them back, since that is an option.) Water did not go down easily the first week and half. It really felt like fine grain sandpaper going down. Then, something "clicked' over the 2nd weekend and now it is okay.

It isn't hard to "diet" post-op. The hardest thing is getting the 64oz of fluid and protein in each day. I haven't hit the protein mark yet but have hit the fluids 3 times. I NEVER feel hungry and have to remind myself to eat.

Since starting my 3 day pre-op diet, I am now down 30 pounds. That's in 3 weeks time! I dieted 7 months last year and lost a whopping 5 pounds.

In a nutshell, I highly recommend the surgery and Almanza and his staff. I have had no regrets, other than not doing it sooner. The best part is that since the night before surgery, I have not take any BP meds or Glucophage XR AND no more CPAP!! All blood test levels are perfect!

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  1. SKINNYMINNIE's Avatar
    Thank you thank you THANK YOU for this post!!! It comes at such a great time for me because my surgery is literally just days away and, of course, panic is starting to set it. Then I read how wonderful you did and are doing now and that you have lost 30 POUNDS and the fear subsides and excitement comes back. It seems everyone has pretty much the same story to tell about Dr. Almanza and his staff.and its all very good. So happy to hear you are doing well, no regrets and have had amazing weight loss already. Congrats!! Keep posting as you progress through recovery - its so helpful!
  2. MrsLeochun's Avatar
    Thank you so much for posting I'm due to have my surgery 3/10 I'm going by myself and I been so worried about the trip to mx. Your post has help me out a lot I can't wait. I been praying that everything works out...Nice job on the weight loss keep up the good work
  3. jazziejasmine's Avatar
    Thanks for posting your experience as it gives me an idea of what to expect next Friday (!!!). I'm so excited and anxious to have mine done that I haven't gotten too nervous yet although once I start my liquid pre-op I might! Congrats on your recovery and weight loss thus far and keep up the great work and the information!!
  4. Mommysoup's Avatar
    My surgery with Dr. Alamza is 3-24 and im so glad you had a great expierence and didnt have a negitive feeling about the Dr. or his staff. Great to hear.....
  5. can't wait's Avatar
    Yes i also have surgery 03/10 . Very good info thanks for sharing.
  6. Myladybug's Avatar
    You are just amazing! I love the detail, especially the little stuff most people wouldn't think to comment about. Thank you, thank you, thank you!
  7. N2DVN's Avatar
    You're welcome. I'm actually an extremely detailed oriented person and had to force myself not to be too detailed in the post.
  8. olivera207's Avatar
    i love the fact that you included do's and dont's, also the suggestions as to what to take with me. i have been to tijuana many times, but never had medical services in mexico. i am comfortable a little nervous mostly excited .. congrats on your 30 lb loss... if you can think of other suggestions lets us know... thanks again
  9. cowgirldiva17's Avatar
    I love it!! All your posts, actually. You tell us the good, the bad, and the ugly. Thank you. I have been working towards RNY for the last 7 months, but my insurance cancelled me. Now I am probably going to do the sleeve. I need all the info I can get. keep posting, congrats on your surgery and many blessings to you for continued healing.
  10. Ms.lovely65's Avatar
    Thank you. Your informations helped to set my mind at ease.
  11. N2DVN's Avatar
    You're welcome! Having the surgery was the best thing, medically, I have ever done! I'm down 77 pounds and feel like a new person.
  12. cketelsen's Avatar
    Thank you so much for this detailed info!! My hubby and I are going to Almanza on Friday and we are both nervous and excited! I'm ready to end this battle of the budge once and for all but surgery is a nerve racking event no matter how easy the procedure. But I really hope our outcome will be as seamless as yours seems to have been. Congrats and good luck!!
  13. N2DVN's Avatar
    Best wishes, cketelsen! Please keep us posted on your recovery and new life.
  14. kalipso2's Avatar
    thank you for such a detailed account of your trip. i'm considering dr. almanaz. i will be traveling alone. knowing what you know now, would you go alone if you had to?
  15. N2DVN's Avatar
    Sorry, kalipso2, just say your question. Yes, I would go alone, if I had to, but my hubby and my mother would have never allowed it. They both wanted to go and it took a LOT of convincing to keep mother from going. Both are overprotective! They were that way when I had back surgery too.
  16. tmclenn's Avatar
    I went on my own kalipso2 and had no problems or worries, they take good care of you
  17. Erina's Avatar
    Kalipso2, I just got back from Dr. Almanza last week, and while I think you would probably be fine if going alone, it really is very nice and comforting to have someone with you. I was so thankful to have my husband. I think everyone's experience is different depending on the people on staff the day of surgery and how many are having surgery that day etc. etc. You can also read my experience on my blog as well. It was overall OK just different than this one.
  18. ShannaBanana's Avatar
    Thanks for the info. I'm so exited and nervous. I'm having mine on 3/1.
  19. N2DVN's Avatar
    9 months post op and I still feel that the surgery was the best thing I have ever done for my health! I'm done 100 pounds, have 32 to go and feel GREAT! I have not had any complications. Only 2 of my scars are even really visible. I have to look for the other 3, and I know exactly where the incisions were. All in all, LIFE IS GREAT!!

    I am very thankful for Almanza and his staff!!
  20. cketelsen's Avatar
    I'm so happy to hear that the scars do fade. I'm worried that after all this work,I won't be able to wear a bikini because of the scars. I'm using a scar cream and hope that helps. I'm 6 weeks out from surgery and am still going thru the struggling stage of how much I want to eat vs. how much I physically can. Some days I'm angry at my small stomach then I put on my skinny jeans and forget all about it!
  21. Minathickness's Avatar
    Thank you for this info and strongly considering the sleeve within the next few months
  22. pinupprincess39's Avatar
    So excited! thank you for the information my surgery is on 3/22!
  23. N2DVN's Avatar
    Best wishes, ladies! I am so thankful that I did it and am so much healthier now!
  24. Onmyway2's Avatar
    Thank you so much for posting such important and helpful information. This post was very much needed to people who are having surgery soon or just had surgery.
  25. Rob Walker's Avatar
    You left out the best part of recovery... the in room massage! That really helped me work out some of those gas bubbles.
  26. N2DVN's Avatar
    I didn't receive a massage. BUT my hubby did a great job taking care of me.
  27. orsola's Avatar
    Oh yes had my operation with Dr Almanza and the whole staff rocks they are the best....and that massage was great!!!!! Your description is exactly how my journey went! Yeahhhhh
  28. orsola's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by MrsLeochun
    Thank you so much for posting I'm due to have my surgery 3/10 I'm going by myself and I been so worried about the trip to mx. Your post has help me out a lot I can't wait. I been praying that everything works out...Nice job on the weight loss keep up the good work
    I went by myself there to Jerusalem hospital and met some amazing pple and the staff was so great the nurse was there all nite for me and he rubbed my back when i was feeling like throwing up they where superb....so really was not alone...you will be fine
  29. emerycook's Avatar
    Quote Originally Posted by N2DVN
    Best wishes, cketelsen! Please keep us posted on your recovery and new life.
    Thank You for the information I have worried about going to mx to have gastric sleeve. I have a weird question is there AC in the hotel room and the clinic.
  30. billieromany's Avatar
    my surgery is in 2 weeks im so happy to have read this post thank u
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