Stepping into a healthier future

April 19, 2022

Bariatrics surgery at Providence Saint John’s helps Rancho Cucamonga woman regain active, healthier life

Before finding Danny Shouhed, MD, and the care team at Providence Saint John’s Health Center, Theresa Farley, 51 had spent more than a decade of her life researching bariatric surgery — exhaustively looking for a surgeon willing to take on her case.

At the time, Farley — who resides in Rancho Cucamonga and works in Ontario —weighed 427 lbs. To complicate matters, she had numerous health risks including high blood pressure and diabetes, and a history of deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolisms.

For some physicians, the associated risks were too great to consider her eligible for weight-loss surgery.

“I was referred to Dr. Shouhed through another doctor who didn’t want to take on my case, and I’m so glad I was,” Farley said. “He and his team have been phenomenal from the start, giving me the support I’ve needed throughout this entire process.”

After an initial video call, Dr. Shouhed and his team quickly mapped Farley’s road to bariatric surgery. In addition to scheduling follow-up appointments, Dr. Shouhed made sure she was equipped with essential educational materials and ensured she’d have all the physical, nutritional and emotional support she’d need to succeed.

“Dr. Shouhed asked that I lose 30 lbs. before the surgery, which I was able to do,” she said. “They gave me everything I needed to have a successful surgery.”

Farley said Dr. Shouhed would frequently check up on her to provide compassionate care at every turn of her journey, even giving her his cell phone number and encouraging her to call or text if she ever needed anything.

“He was so personable,” she chuckled. His staff, she said, was just as caring and responsive to her needs.

On May 11, 2021, only a few months after her first consultation, Farley found herself under the bright lights of the operating room at Providence Saint John’s. Nearly a year after the procedure, Farley is now down to 300 lbs. and on track to reach her target weight.

“My weight has always been a struggle for me,” Farley admitted. “The surgery has made a huge improvement in my life.”

Now that she’s “lost the weight of a full person,” Farley enjoys taking leisurely walks — something she had not been able to do in many years. Before her procedure, Farley said she couldn’t make it past her building before feeling winded.

“It’s amazing to be able to walk my complex without feeling tired and like I’m going to collapse,” Farley said.

While challenges and temptations still persist, Farley is confident she’ll be able to overcome any obstacle thanks to the compassionate and holistic approach from Dr. Shouhed and the team at Providence Saint John’s.

“From the get-go, Dr. Shouhed and I just clicked,” she said. “He just seemed to really care. He was available for me and that means a lot.”

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