6 LIVING WELL That proved challenging to her weight in several ways. “Food was comfort,” she explains. “And weight gain was a side effect of my medications.” No matter what she tried, nothing moved the needle. She consulted with her primary care team and tried appetite-suppressing medications. Even an epilepsy medication known to suppress appetite didn’t help. “I tried a year of keto. I tried a year of a food elimination diet,” Cassie recalls. “I would lose a little, and it would come back. Nothing was working.” “One of my friends had gastric sleeve surgery with great success,” Cassie says. She asked her cardiologist, who said Cassie was a good candidate for the gastric sleeve. Bariatric surgery Cassidy Tyre had struggled with her weight her entire life. At just age 12, she was diagnosed with epilepsy. The Best Decision for a Big Is it right for you? Meet Cassie’s bariatric team at AdventistHealth.org/PortlandBariatric or call 503-912-8083. CHANGE Cassie felt some initial unhappiness realizing she needed surgery to help with her weight. Then she decided to move forward and met with the Oregon Health & Science University (OHSU) bariatric program. That’s how she found out about Ryland Stucke, MD, who works with the OHSU program to offer bariatric surgery at Adventist Health Portland. Rigorous preparation She was super nervous and poured herself into a lot of research, so she came to her first appointment very prepared. “I absolutely peppered them with questions,” she remembers. “That first appointment, I met Nikki [Davis], the nurse navigator, and Dr. Stucke. Both of them were incredibly helpful and answered every question I had.” Nikki, who is also the program manager, even gave Cassie her number to call if she had any questions. Cassie recognized the bariatric team really wanted her to be sure this was the right decision for her.