Crystal Messick before and after weight loss surgery

Kissing 100 Pounds Goodbye

Surgical Weight Loss

Losing weight isn’t an easy feat. Keeping it off can be even harder. Both are much easier, however, when you have the right tools and a trusted team helping you reach your goals.

Just ask 39-year-old Crystal Messick. She had weight loss surgery just shy of a year ago. And her bariatric surgery story began the moment she met Bayhealth General and Bariatric Surgeon Theodoros Katsichtis, MD.

“Before I met Dr. Katsichtis, I had looked into bariatric surgery, but was a little scared. But once I met him, I knew it was meant to be. He was so nice. And then I met the rest of the bariatric team, and they answered all my questions which also put my mind at ease,” shared Messick when asked how she learned about Bayhealth’s Bariatric Program.

After talking with her primary care doctor about her interest in bariatric surgery and learning she was a candidate, Messick began her weight loss surgery journey in December 2020. This involved following a specific eating plan and completing other steps to get her ready for surgery—all of which she did with the expert guidance and support of Bayhealth’s bariatric team.

At the end of February 2021, Dr. Katsichtis performed Messick’s laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy. In the laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, the stomach is divided along its vertical length in order to create a slender pouch, about the size and shape of a banana. The excess stomach is removed. The purpose is to limit the amount of food ingested at any given time, without altering the normal absorption of the vitamins and minerals.

While Messick said she gained so much from her experience—including a greater quality of life and feeling better about herself—she also lost even more thanks to Bayhealth’s bariatric program. “I not only lost the weight, but I’m no longer on blood pressure medications and I don’t need a CPAP machine anymore. Being not even 40 years old and on that CPAP machine for sleep apnea was scary by itself,” shared Messick.

“Now I feel like I can be a better mother, wife, friend, and coworker. I have one child who is 9 years old. He and I take a lot of walks when the weather is nice, including around Killens Pond. I wouldn’t have been able to do that before my surgery,” she added.

When asked if Bayhealth’s bariatric team did anything else to earn her trust, Messick replied, “Everybody throughout the whole process was so helpful. They were excellent, and the informational binder I received was something I referred to on a regular basis.”

When Messick started her bariatric surgery journey, she weighed 331 pounds. Since then, she has lost more than 100 pounds and is still losing weight by continuing to make healthy lifestyle choices. “I love walking, as I mentioned earlier, and doing weightlifting now,” she said. “I also enjoy trying new recipes and foods that I wouldn’t have before doing the program. I eat less now than I did before and shopping for new clothes is so much fun!”

Considering weight loss surgery? Take the first step by watching our free Bariatric Informational Seminar. Learn more here.