Bariatric Surgery Brings Mother and Daughter Closer

October 16, 2019

Denver Health bariatric surgery patients Apryl Sabrina Hallberg
Sabrina (Hallberg) Leach and her mother Apryl Hallberg both had always struggled with their weight.

"I got to the point where I couldn't handle my weight gain anymore," said Leach. "Nothing was helping, nothing was working and I was absolutely miserable." She was heartbroken with how uncomfortable she was in her own skin.

Watch mother and daughter Apryl Hallberg and Sabrina Leach talk about their decision to have roux en y bariatric surgery together at Denver Health.

For Apryl Hallberg, she gained a lot of weight after making the decision to stop drinking. "Within the year after I stopped drinking, I gained over a hundred pounds," Hallberg said.

The mother and daughter are very close, and going through the same weight issues brought them even closer.

One night, Leach decided to research bariatric surgery, commonly known as weight-loss surgery, and found the Denver Health Bariatric Surgery Center. She thought it might be easier to go through the process with her mother.

"I asked her if she wanted to join me, and we went to our first informational session together," Leach said. After getting referrals from their primary care physicians, both women decided to have the surgery in November of 2018, just two weeks apart.

"Sabrina and Apryl both had roux en y gastric bypass surgeries, and they both did very well," said Denver Health Bariatric Surgery Center Director Fredric Pieracci, M.D. "Many of our patients are referred to us by family members, so it's not uncommon at all that we do surgery on multiple family members."

The patients talked about the decision to have the surgery together in this 9News interview.

Leach got engaged a few months before having her surgery. After surgery, she lost more than a hundred pounds and got married just last month.

Watch Sabrina Leach and Apryl Hallberg share their bariatric surgery journey at Denver Health in this 9News interview.
Fitting into her wedding dress was a huge deal for her. "Every time I would put on the dress for alterations or to show somebody, I would always think, 'this can't be my dress, this can't be me, this doesn't look right in the mirror – there should be a whole other person inside this dress,'" Leach said.

Apryl Hallberg had her own reasons for having her surgery. "I think my life has changed 150 percent," she said. The mother lost 115 pounds after her surgery and now follows a healthy diet with her daughter to keep the weight off. Both have gotten into healthy cooking at home.

"I'm healthier now and I wanted to be around for grandchildren down the road and to be around for my daughter. Having bariatric surgery at Denver Health has enabled that to happen," Apryl Hallberg declared.

 

Interested in bariatric surgery? Register for an upcoming informational seminar on bariatric and weight-loss surgery at Denver Health:

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If you want to share your patient story at Denver Health, email Patient_Stories@dhha.org.