Saturday, June 22, 2024

Dr. Donda West’s Weight Loss Surgery: What Went Wrong?

November 19, 2007 by  
Filed under Health, News, Weekly Columns

Columbus, OH ( – The horrific news of Dr. Donda West’s tragic demise has rocked the African American community. Once again, we have lost a very inspirational leader unnecessarily. The most difficult aspect to accept about this tragedy is that it was undoubtedly preventable.

Let’s face it, today’s society dictates how we should look, what we should have, what we should do to make ourselves look better, and ultimately feel better about who we are. We turn on the TV, ride down the freeway and see billboards of beautiful models and buff bodies with wash board abs. We see this and of course we want instant gratification. With such proliferation amidst, and perhaps facing our own belly-fat demons – tummy-tucks, liposuction and other fat removal surgeries suddenly become an attractive viable option for shedding excess weight. Make no mistake about it, the risks accompanied with these types of procedures far outweigh the benefits!

Tummy tucks have been on the rise since the year 2002. In 2002 surgical procedures made up 23.5% of all cosmetic procedures. However, the most significant increase in this category was the abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), which rose 17%. What we hear propagated is that these types of surgeries are extremely safe and effective even with its inherent risk.

The reality is that surgery related death’s like Dr. West’s is not uncommon at all; despite the fact that this is not highly publicized. According to The Psychiatric Times (2000), only a fraction of medical errors are actually reported due to fear of lawsuits and public pandemonium. Even if death does not occur there are some high stakes to consider.

What are the most common risk factors for tummy tucks and other surgical procedures?

1) Post-operative Infections: One threat for infection could come from leaks in the abdomen. Infections such as staphylococcus aureus can quickly wreak havoc. This strain is particularly dangerous as it is resistant to antibiotics. In many cases the administration of antibiotics alone can be dangerous due to possible adverse reactions.

2) Pulmonary Emboli: This can occur whenever anything gets into the bloodstream that could cause a blockage. Blood clots can travel to the lungs and cause breathing problems, or can lead to a heart attack, coma and sadly – death. Usually pulmonary emboli will occur within the first 72 hours following the surgery.

3) Inexperienced Surgeons: This can be perhaps the most terrifying risk. Inexperienced surgeons place patients at great risk when they don’t provide adequate pre and post-operative care, counseling on proper diet and physical activity. Not to mention lack of skill and precision in performing surgical procedures.

To that end, countless studies conducted on patients of these cosmetic surgeries indicate the long-term success rate is only around 10%. While most of us want to look younger and feel younger; clearly there are safer, more effective options to help us improve upon our personal image, health and well-being.

Here are some basic natural therapies that encourage youthful appearance:

Juicing – with fresh organic produce has amazing anti-aging properties

Raw foods – have a living energy that promotes youthful vigor

Clean source of protein – helps to strengthen and build lean muscle (including abdominal muscles)

Good night’s sleep – can help you effectively cope with emotional stresses that add years onto your appearance and ultimately hamper positive self image.

Superior, total nutrition – when combined with moderate exercise is extremely effective at shedding belly fat.

We can enhance the way we look naturally by supporting our overall well-being, instead of compromising our most precious asset – LIFE. We are only here for a relative fleeting moment, and should avoid at all cost becoming a victim of a surgeon’s knife.

Dr. Donda West’s death is our wake up call in this respect. The choice is yours – make the right one!

Written By Makeisha Lee

Speak Your Mind

Tell us what you're thinking...
and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar!