Surgery Websites
Department of Surgery »  Patient Center »  Patient Stories

Patient Stories

  • Courtney Annotti

    Life After Ulcerative Colitis Surgery Feels Amazing

    Colorectal Photo Courntey Annotti
    My name is Courtney Annotti. I’m 22 years old and was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis (UC) eight years ago. UC is a chronic condition that causes long-lasting inflammation in the large intestine. For years I experienced pain that would come and go, and the anxiety of always having to know where a bathroom was. I tried several medications to control my symptoms, but to no avail. Concerned that my condition was worsening day by day, my gastroenterologist referred me to UCSF to meet with Dr. Madhulika Varma, Chief of Colorectal Surgery at UCSF.  When I met with Dr. Varma, I immediately felt[...]
    Story Tags: ColectomyOstomy Surgery: Ileostomy & ColostomyUlcerative Colitis
  • Mark Carpenter

    Preparing for a Triathlon after Outrunning Espophageal Cancer

    Mark Carpenter After Running NYC Marathon
    My name is Mark Carpenter, and I owe my life to the doctors and nurses at UCSF.  My story began in January 2010, when it became difficult to swallow. A few weeks later my general practitioner delivered the news that changed my life forever: I had esophageal cancer.  I went first to a surgeon in my local community who was unwilling to operate given the advanced stage of the tumor. Along with my wife, I decided to search for a second opinion. We were referred to UCSF where we met with Dr. David Jablons, chief of Thoracic Surgery and program leader of the Thoracic Oncology Program, who[...]
    Story Tags: Esophageal CancerEsophagectomy
  • Fran Cruse

    Surgery Gives Grandmother "A Cherished Gift Every Day"

    Fran Cruse With Her Grandchildren
    In 2002, my mother, Fran Cruse, was diagnosed with Stage II lung cancer. In the following months, my three siblings and I took her to surgeons and oncologists near her home in Carson City, Nevada. Because the tumor was extremely large and pressing against her aorta, the doctors told us there was nothing they could do – that she should just enjoy the time she had left with her family.  We were devastated. At the time, my mother was a vigorous 60-year-old woman with eight grandchildren. Although she had a serious illness, she wanted to do all she could to fight the cancer. We scoured the[...]
    Story Tags: Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer
  • Alyssa Welch

    A Story of Hope and Survival

    Amanda, Kim, Alyssa.jpg
     Alyssa flanked by mother Kim and older sister My name is Kim Welch, and my daughter Alyssa’s story is one of hope and survival. She was born 15 years ago with autosomal recessive polycystic kidney disease (ARPKD). ARPKD causes severe damage to both your kidney and liver. Alyssa was two and a half years old when she had her first kidney transplant. Ten days after her successful kidney transplant, unrelated to her congenital disease, Alyssa was diagnosed with eye cancer. Her left eye was surgically removed and replaced with an artificial one. Time marched on and so did Alyssa’s[...]
    Story Tags: Kidney TransplantPolycystic Kidney Disease
  • Dwayne Teach

    I Feel Incredibly Lucky to Be Alive

    Dwayne Teach Pic2.jpg
    My name is Dwayne Teach and I feel incredibly lucky to be alive to share my story with you today. I had a massive pulmonary embolism in 2007 followed by a gastric bypass in 2009.  Three years ago I received a new heart and could not be more grateful for the care delivered by the University of California, San Francisco. In the matter of a week, my entire life changed. It all began with flu-like symptoms on a Monday. I was feeling much worse by Thursday so I decided to go to the hospital. After checking in at my local hospital in Fortuna I was transferred to a larger institution in Eureka. On[...]
    Story Tags: Heart Transplant
  • James Dials

    Man Loses 200 Pounds With Surgery and Lifestyle Changes

    Unless you weigh more than 400 pounds, it’s difficult to imagine walking a mile in James Dials’ shoes. In fact, for most of his life, he couldn’t do that either. The gregarious 62-year-old limousine driver made friends easily, escorting musicians and athletes all over town. Sometimes they would shower him with choice tickets to concerts and sporting events. But Dials always had to turn them down. Not because of a company policy or because he didn’t enjoy public events. Not too long ago, Dials weighed 434 pounds, and he couldn’t walk 10 feet without having to stop and catch his breath.[...]
    Story Tags: Laparoscopic Gastric BypassObesity
  • Sheila FitzPatrick

    Sheila FitzPatrick: Dialysis vs. Transplant: A Due Diligence Decision

    Sheila Fitzpatrick.jpg
    An international attorney specializing in data privacy and employment law, and a self-described "super active" person, Sheila FitzPatrick spent three weeks of every month hopscotching the globe. Curious and passionate, she nurtured a worldwide network of friends who became her second family. She loved heart-pounding two-mile swims in the morning and long, leisurely walks around the great cities of Europe. She approached staying healthy with the same vigor. Regular checkups never revealed the slightest hint of kidney disease. But in 2008, her[...]
    Story Tags: DialysisEnd-Stage Renal Disease (ESRD)Kidney Transplant
  • Susie Rember

    [...]
    Story Tags: Islet Transplant for Type 1 DiabetesType 1 Diabetes
  • Sandy Raffi-Rashed

    Mother of Two Calls Weight-Loss Surgery a "Miracle"

    Sandy Raffi-Rashed after losing 185 pounds
    Sandy Raffi-Rashed after losing 185 pounds When Sandy Raffi-Rashed, a 60-year-old mother of two, went to the airport to pick up her youngest son visiting from Manhattan, he didn't recognize her. "I was waving to him from the car and he thought, 'Who is that strange woman waving at me?'" says Raffi-Rashed, of Novato, California. "Then, when he saw me, he said, 'Oh my God!'" His mother had undergone a transformation after weight-loss surgery. In July 2011, Raffi-Rashed had gastric bypass surgery at the Bariatric Surgery Center at UCSF Medical[...]
    Story Tags: Laparoscopic Gastric BypassObesityPost-Bariatric Body Contouring
  • Suitulaga "Sugi" Hunkin

    Heart Failure Patient Loses 100 Pounds Before Transplant Surgery

    UCSF News reports on the use of a Ventricular Assist Device (VAD) as a bridge to a heart transplant allowing a patient to lose the weight needed to undergo the procedure: Suitulaga "Sugi" Hunkin has been overweight most of his life. He attributes that to his love of food and his Samoan ancestry.  Because of his size, he also had trouble breathing and experienced irregular heartbeat - symptoms his doctors diagnosed as heart disease called cardiomyopathy, which usually leads to heart failure... He needed heart transplantation surgery to replace his failing heart, but before that could happen,[...]
    Story Tags: Heart FailureVentricular Assist Device (VAD)
1 2 3 4 5 6 All
Site Directory
    X