DIET&FITNESS Published December13, 2014 By Staff Writer

Pre-teen Enjoys Better Health after a Gastric Sleeve Surgery

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alexis shapiro
(Photo : Hope and Love for Alexis Facebook Page)

A pre-teen who can't stop eating has now lost significant weight after a gastric sleeve surgery that's meant to save her life.

Alexis Shapiro was a fun-loving little girl when she was diagnosed with a benign brain tumor. While the operation had successfully removed the tumor, it caused a major problem for her, who then developed hypothalamic obesity. The surgery damaged her hypothalamus and pituitary gland, which then affected the way her brain interprets signals including feeling of satiation from eating.  

The problem became so serious that her mom was forced to lock areas with food such as the refrigerator. Once, her mom, Jenny, saw her eating a huge chunk of meat, which eventually choked her.

Her almost non-stop eating also hurt her liver, which had become enlarged. She was also diagnosed with type 2 diabetes, which means that her body has already become resistant to insulin.

Although she was placed in a very strict plan composed of diet and exercise, she continued to gain 2 pounds per week until she ballooned to more than 200 pounds. If this continued, she would become completely immobile and weigh around 400 pounds.

A few years after the procedure that disturbed her metabolism tremendously, she underwent a gastric sleeve surgery last March, which eventually reduced her stomach size by 25%.

Now, her mother happily shares the huge positive developments happening in Alexis's life. In their official Facebook page called Hope and Love for Alexis, she mentioned that while Alexis, now age 12, sometimes struggles with school, she is generally happy and enjoys a number of subjects and new friends. She has already lost more than 50 pounds and continues to be more active and energetic.

Her mom fought hard for her treatment after their insurance company initially denied them coverage. The family also received strong financial support, raising more than $85,000.

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