Friday, December 29, 2017 12:00 AM

270 lbs. healthier 12 years after bariatric surgery [Video]

More than 12 years after his bariatric surgery, Miguel D. Garcia is still diabetes free and continuing his journey to optimum health.

He was 479 lbs. back in 2005 and battling diabetes, sleep apnea and high blood pressure. He was too big to go on rides at Disneyland with his oldest daughter, but mostly he worried about living to see her grow up.
Today, Garcia is off all his medications and less than half the size he used to be. He shares how far he’s come on his Facebook page by holding up a humongous pair of Levi’s 501 jeans he used to wear and the number 270 – how much weight he’s shed.  

“I can’t express  the simple joys I have now of buying clothes, going on a hike, getting up easily from bed and being able to run. The last time I did that was when I was in fifth grade. I forgot how it felt,” he said.
Garcia was one of the first patients to undergo bariatric surgery at Fresno Heart & Surgical Hospital. When the hospital celebrated the 10th anniversary of its Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery program in the spring of 2016, more than 9,000 bariatric procedures had been performed.

Medical Director Kelvin Higa said he most interested in celebrating the patients that have found better health by eliminating their obesity and losing a collective 670,000 lbs. in that first decade. That weight loss resulted in the cure or significant improvement of:

  • 1,706 cases of diabetes
  • 3,059 cases of high blood pressure
  • 1.707 cases of reflux
  • 1,091 cases of high cholesterol
  • And 983 cases of sleep apnea

Reported by Erin Kennedy. Reach her at