Marcella Carter has a good reason to drive three hours to AAMC to see her doctor. “I could have found someone else,” the 47-year-old from Williamstown, New Jersey said. “But he’s the top in his field. If he’s in Maryland, I’m going to Maryland.”
A well-known expert in bariatric surgery, Alex Gandsas, MD, came to AAMC from New Jersey to build the new Weight Loss and Metabolic Surgery Program. Many of his former patients, like Marcella, made the decision to enroll in the program despite the long drive. “What we are building here is comprehensive. It’s not just about the surgery. Weight loss is a matter of improving a person’s overall health and changing lifelong habits. Here, we support them every step of the way,” he said.
Bariatric nutritionists and fitness experts prepare patients for surgery and the lifestyle changes they need to make through the Bariatric Optimization Program. They continue to support and monitor patients after surgery, sometimes for a year or more. “Everybody is here to help you and to make sure you are a success,” she said.
For that, the three hour drive is well worth it. Within six weeks of surgery to reduce the size of her stomach, Marcella’s weight has dropped from 318 to 286 and continues to fall. She sleeps through the night for the first time in years, and her blood pressure is on the decline. “If I need to come back and have any type of procedure done, I would definitely come back to AAMC,” Marcella said, “I would recommend it to anybody else as well.”