Amazing stories: Yvette Moore
As a slender child and teenager, Yvette Moore had never imagined that she would be struggling with obesity as an adult, which affected her health and quality of life. “I began gaining a lot of weight after the birth of my daughter 19 years ago when I was dealing with the emotional stress that came with being a new mom and a single parent,” she says. “By the time I was in my early 40s I weighed over 300 pounds.”
Carrying excess weight caused Yvette to have aching legs, flagging energy, and obesity-related health problems that included high blood pressure and obstructive sleep apnea — a sleeping disorder that causes a person to repeatedly stop breathing during sleep and itself can raise a person’s risk of high blood pressure, heart attack and stroke.
“I was feeling awful about myself, and I was really worried about my health,” Yvette says. “I knew I wasn’t getting any younger, so on my 45th birthday I decided to do something about it.”
At the suggestion of a close friend, Yvette went to see Dr. Miguel R. Silva, a weight loss (bariatric) surgeon at NewYork-Presbyterian Lawrence Hospital. Dr. Silva works closely with a multidisciplinary team of world-class bariatric surgeons, specialty trained nurses, and nutritionists at Weight Loss for Life, a program of Columbia University Irving Medical Center’s Center for Metabolic and Weight Loss Surgery that helps people lose weight and achieve better health and self-esteem.
Dr. Silva is a highly experienced weight loss surgeon who performs laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy (gastric sleeve surgery). Gastric sleeve surgery is a safe and effective minimally invasive procedure that helps people to lose weight by reducing the size of the stomach, which restricts food intake and also reduces the level of the hunger-stimulating hormone, ghrelin.
“When I first met with Dr. Silva, he asked me what I wanted to accomplish, and we discussed my weight loss surgery options,” says Yvette. “Together we decided that gastric sleeve surgery would best fit my needs, improve my health, and allow me to get me back to enjoying my life again.”
“He also emphasized that lasting weight loss involves more than just having surgery,” she adds. “I would need to commit to making lasting lifestyle changes such as making wise food choices and getting regular exercise to keep the weight off.”
Yvette underwent gastric sleeve surgery one year ago and enjoyed a quick recovery. She regularly met with Dr. Silva and the weight loss team to receive nutritional tips, encouragement, and ongoing support.
As a special point of pride, Yvette has worn the same green dress to every visit. “The dress is so loose on me it’s down to my knees, but it reminds me of how far I’ve come,” she says.
Today, one year after surgery, Yvette has lost 120 pounds and feels completely transformed.
“I feel like I have a second lease on life,” says Yvette. “My health problems are gone — my blood pressure is normal; I have no more leg pain; I’m sleeping well, and I have better energy. I’m walking all the time now, and I’ll even take the long way to get places now!”
“I’ve forged a lifetime relationship with Dr. Silva and the weight loss team,” Yvette adds. “They helped me develop the confidence that I needed to actually do this — to lose the weight and keep it off. I truly love them and would recommend them to anyone who wants to lose weight.”
To learn more about weight loss surgery, visit nyp.org/clinical-services/weight-loss-surgery.