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John Duggan's story


I am currently in my first year post op. I had reached a high of 375 pounds and was experiencing some health issues for the first time in my 50’s. I had tried every diet more than once. I did have some short lived successes. I had lost 35-40 pounds more than once but gained back 40-50 pounds within the year. 

I was always “heavy set” while growing up. It seemed a plus when playing sports in school, although it wasn’t until my 30’s that I really started to gain a lot of weight. I traveled for my job and entertained clients nightly with dinners and entertainment. My lifestyle became sedentary with travel all week and time with family and friends on the weekends. 
At the age of 57 I had 2 heart surgeries. I realized how lucky I was to have been healthy this long without taking care of myself. This was the moment when I realized how much I wanted to share time with my family and how quickly that could be lost. 

Confronting obesity

My Cardiologist at Tufts MC suggested I explore the Weight and Wellness Center for bariatric surgery at Tufts Medical Center. I didn’t hesitate. I knew I was ready to confront my obesity once and for all. 

From my first meeting through all the preparation and training my experience with the staff and program was fantastic. By the time my surgery appointment arrived I was excited and ready to begin a new healthy lifestyle. 

After surgery I felt great. I knew this was the new beginning I was working towards. I was back to work within days and never felt better! I follow the program to insure I drink enough fluids, take vitamins, eat healthy and exercise. 

Commitment to change

I am approximately 9 months since surgery and have lost just over 100 pounds. I am continuing to work towards my goal of 150 pounds. 

A few months after surgery, I realized I could easily fall back to old habits. The surgery is a great discipline for change and a great jump start. The success comes from a commitment to an active, healthy lifestyle change. I follow the program and most importantly attend support group meetings monthly. There is always an inspiration to be found within the group. Hearing about challenges others have faced and overcome prepares you mentally and emotionally for my own. 

There have been a number of milestones for me:

  • Breaking the 300lbs barrier
  • Playing with my granddaughter on the floor
  • Shopping in Men’s department instead of Big and Tall
  • Sharing active activities with my wife

As my fellow support group friends say, “I wish I had done this sooner!”