epi. 080

In this episode I have a conversation with Dr Janine Kyrillos. Dr Kyrillos is Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and she is Director of Jefferson Comprehensive Weight Management Program at Bala Cynwyd, Pennsylvania. She is also someone who herself is affected by obesity and has undergone Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass in 2005. This conversation ranges from her personal story of obesity and bariatric surgery to her professional role as an obesity medicine specialist who helps people along their journey of treatment for their obesity.

Discussed in this Episode

  • Dr Kyrillos’ early and personal history with obesity, weight loss, weight regain
  • Early adulthood- not letting her weight define her, living her life, traveling, learning new things
  • Feelings of conflict on her role as a medical doctor counseling patients on obesity when she herself was obese
  • How the result of the Swedish Obesity Study helped her understand more of the complexity of obesity and the potential role bariatric surgery could play in its treatment
  • The limited education that medical students get on obesity and nutrition and how to help people
  • Deciding to have bariatric surgery and moving forward
  • Before surgery “The last supper” phenomena and “saying goodbye” to food
  • How well can we pre-surgically predict a persons post-surgical success?
  • Her early post-operative expectations and experiences
  • How, if, when to tell her patients about her own bariatric surgery
  • Struggles with food
  • The New York Times article How the Sugar Industry Shifted Blame to Fat
  • Letting go of expectation of a cure allowed her to be open to the process of self-discovery
  • Becoming specialty trained in Obesity Medicine
  • When should bariatric surgery be considered?
  • Medical weight management
  • A hard and fast rule for Dr Kyrillos is no alcohol
  • Dumping syndrome
  • Considerations regarding pregnancy and bariatric surgery
  • Reeger’s concluding thoughts regarding this episode
  • Kids jokes. No really, I’m not kidding. Don’t believe me? Listen to the very, very end

Connecting with Dr Janine Kyrillos

Connecting with Reeger

  • email:
  • WLSP Facebook
  • Support the podcast at Patreon


079 Bariatric Surgery Seminar as a Podcast

by reeger on January 9, 2017



Happy New Year everyone! In this episode I bring you a podcast version of the bariatric surgery seminar I give twice monthly at Southern Oregon Bariatric Center. This version is more generic to bariatric surgery in general because my intent is not to tell you specifics about SOBC, but rather introduce you to important concepts regarding obesity and bariatric surgery that are relevant no matter where you live or what program you are joining.

Discussed in this episode:

  • Obesity: The extent of the problem
  • Why we become obese
  • The misguided message of “eat less and exercise more”
  • How and why bariatric surgery works
  • Surgical options with a focus on Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass and Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy
  • What issues can bariatric surgery help address and what can it not

As soon as I have the Youtube PowerPoint connected to this episode up and live I will let you know

Connecting with me:

WLSP Facebook

Southern Oregon Bariatric Center Facebook

I believe in you



078 Gathering Knowledge with Amy Swayzee

by reeger on December 11, 2016



In this episode I talk with Amy Swayzee who had gastric sleeve in May of 2015. We talk about her life before bariatric surgery, how she came to the realization that bariatric surgery was not cheating or the easy way, and that if she was finally going to bring her weight under control perhaps she should seriously consider bariatric surgery as part of her treatment options. But first, she needed to understand bariatric surgery better and learn more. A lot more. This desire for more understanding lead her on a journey of knowledge-gathering that continues to this very day.

But before I get to Amy’s episode, I want to say thank you to you, all of my listeners. Thank you for believing in me as much as I believe in you. Thank you for giving a rating in iTunes. Thank you for reaching out to me on Facebook. Thank you for emailing me with your heartfelt stories and thoughts about the podcast. I read every email and email you back. I want to give a special shout out to my patrons over at These are listeners who have gone above and beyond by offering their monthly financial support. Huge thanks to Barrie, Natalie, Shana, Keith, Ken, Carolyn, and LD (who was already a patron but then increased her monthly contribution.) If you think this podcast gives you value and you want to become a supporting patron for as little as $1 per month you can do so by going to patreon and signing up.

In this Episode Amy and I discuss:

  • Amy’s history of weight gain and dieting and why she began to seriously consider bariatric surgery
  • Dr Duc Vuong’s Ultimate Gastric Sleeve Success Book
  • WLS Podcast episodes featuring Duc Vuong: Episode 46 and Episode 47
  • The 7 Ingredients of a Bari Great Life: The right nutrition, the right physical activity, the right hydration, the right vitamins, the right support, the right mindset, and the right surgery.
  • Pandora Williams Episode 63
  • Jeff Newell Episode 42, Episode 43, Episode 49, Episode 55, Episode 71
  • People Magazine recent positive coverage of a woman who had bariatric surgery: Here
  • Bariatric Weight Loss Family Facebook Group
  • Failure does not exist. Instead: Act, Evaluate, Pivot (if needed)
  • Dr Brene Brown: The Power of Vulnerability
  • Rev Philip Tanner Episode 51
  • The World According to Eggface Website
  • Amy’s relationship with her family and friends
  • Its not all about the scale
  • Medication to help prevent nausea related to anesthesia: Emend (Aprepitant) 40mg by mouth 3 hours prior to surgery
  • Post-bariatric surgery hair loss
  • Dr Michelle May: Episode 35 Am I hungry?
  • Kamal Ravikant: Love Yourself Like Your Life depends On It
  • Expect the bounce of some weight regain
  • Don’t focus on calories, focus on protein and water

You can reach Amy at:
Bariatric Weight Loss Family Facebook Group

If you would like to reach out to me you can do so at:
WLSP Facebook 
Support the Podcast at Patreon

I believe in you.



076 What to Eat with Sarah Muntel, RD

October 16, 2016

In this episode I bring you my conversation with registered dietician, Sarah Muntel. Sarah has been a registered dietician in bariatric surgery for over 17 years. She brings a wealth of information and education to you in this episode. Covered in this episode: Sarah’s role as a registered dietician and program coordinator Pre-surgery nutrition plans […]

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075 Bariatric Surgery Rules? A talk with Dr Walter Medlin

September 11, 2016

In this episode I have a conversation with Dr. Walter Medlin about bariatric surgery rules. You may remember Dr. Medlin from episode 53. He is a bariatric surgeon at the Bariatric Medicine Institute in Salt Lake City, Utah. He is also a bariatric surgery patient having had sleeve gastrectomy. During this conversation Dr Medlin and I […]

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074 (Unedited) Set Point, Biology, Environment & Obesity: An Interview with Dr Randy Seeley

August 8, 2016

What you are about to hear is the unedited version of my most popular episode to date: Episode 34, titled “Set Point, Biology, Environment & Obesity: An Interview with Dr Randy Seeley.” I first published the edited version of this conversation on August 17th 2014. Over the past two years that episode has had the […]

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073 How to Choose a Bariatric Surgery Program with John Bukenas

July 12, 2016

In this episode I welcome back John Bukenas. We explore how to choose a bariatric surgery program. If you are new to the podcast, John and I have talked about his obesity and the possibility of bariatric surgery in episodes 26 and 45. Topics discussed in the episode John’s struggles and declining health First Step: […]

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072 “Hey Reeger..,” A Letter from a Listener

June 17, 2016

Welcome to the weight loss surgery podcast where we talk about obesity and bariatric surgery one episode at a time. I’m your host, family nurse practitioner, Reeger Cortell. This episode is brought to you by you, my listeners. I am so touched by the love you show me, whether that is iTunes rates, sharing the […]

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071 Jeff Newell: On Gaining a New Life

May 31, 2016

In this episode Jeff Newell returns to the podcast to catch us up on his life since having Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass on 12/1/2014. Jeff has been on the podcast before on episodes 055, 049, 043, and 042. He is now 18 month out from his surgery and 300 pounds down from his pre-surgery weight of […]

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070 Reeger Cortell FNP: An Interview by Rob Portinga

May 9, 2016

Presenting Your Host, Reeger Cortell, FNP Over the last 18 months or so, I, Rob Portinga, have had the pleasure of going from being a guest, to being a contributing host on the Weight Loss Surgery Podcast (WLSP). It was started by Reeger Cortel, FNP nearly three years ago now. One of the driving themes, and […]

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069 Talking about the Fear Factors of Bariatric Surgery with Dr Raul Rosenthal

April 17, 2016

My guest today is Dr Raul Rosenthal. Dr Rosenthal works at the Cleveland Clinic Florida in Weston Florida, where he is a bariatric surgeon, chief of surgery, chief of staff, and the director of the Cleveland Clinic Florida Metabolic and Bariatric Institute. In addition to all those good works, he is also the current president of […]

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068 Understanding Lipedema with Sarah Bramblette and Karen Herbst, MD, PhD

March 15, 2016

In this episode I bring you my conversation with Sarah Bramblette. As you are about to hear, Sarah is many things but above all she is an inspirational mix of hardwork, intelligence, grit, compassion, and determination. She is everything you would want in a loved one, a friend, a daughter, and an obesity advocate. Sarah’s […]

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067 The Bariatric Surgeon Episode

February 20, 2016

In this episode I bring you my interviews with six different bariatric surgeons. I conducted these interviews while I was at ObesityWeek in Los Angeles, CA in November 2015. I asked each surgeon one or two of the following questions: How do you help people decide which surgery to choose? And, If you could wave […]

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066 Connie Stapleton, PhD- Healing Your Relationship with Yourself

January 25, 2016

In this episode I bring you my conversation with clinical psychologist, Connie Stapleton, PhD. Dr Stapleton has been working in the field of bariatric surgery for 11 years and as you would image, and are about to hear, she has a wealth of information and insight and information to share with you. Discussed in this […]

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065 After the After with Nikki Massie

January 2, 2016

In this episode, I bring you my conversation with Nikki Massie. Nikki is many things within the bariatric surgery community including a bariatric surgery patient who had Roux-enY Gastric Bypass in 2008, the creator of the ever popular website Bariatric Foodie where she encourages you to “play with your food,” a prolific blogger, a storyteller, a […]

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064 Scott Monte, PharmD on Medications Just Before and Just After Bariatric Surgery

December 6, 2015

  In this episode I bring you my conversation with pharmacist, Scott Monte, PharmD. I met Scott at the 2015 Obesity Week conference in Los Angeles. Since 2009 Scott has worked as a pharmacist with the bariatric surgery program known Synergy Bariatrics in Buffalo, NY. After talking with him at the conference I knew I […]

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063 Pandora Williams on Feelings and Fitness

November 15, 2015

  After a lifetime of struggling with obesity, Pandora Williams underwent Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass on October 19th, 2010. Now, five years later and through a lot of hard work and dedication, she is a fitness and wellness coach, blogger, avid runner, and motivational speaker. In this episode with interviewer Rob Portinga, Pandora tells her story […]

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062 “I Have a Disease; It’s Called Obesity” Video Contest Winner!

November 1, 2015

  This episode is a quick update telling you about a video I produced called “I Have a Disease; It’s Called Obesity.” The video won the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery “It Starts Now” video contest! In this episode I tell you a little bit about how I came to write the script, […]

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061 Sandi Henderson: You are More Than Enough

October 18, 2015

  After a lifetime of yo-yo dieting, in 2004 Sandi Henderson’s weight was up to 425 lbs. She had uncontrolled high blood pressure, sleep apnea, asthma, and significant daily pain from bone-on-bone arthritic knees. After a significant health scare, Sandi decided it was time to make some lasting changes. As part of her decision to […]

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060 Pre-Op Education Part 2

September 28, 2015

  In this episode I go the second part of the Pre-Op education I teach to our patients who are getting ready for bariatric surgery. The focus of this second part is on the psychology of life after bariatric surgery. Discussed in this episode: The 7 right ingredients to live a Bari Great Life The […]

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