My 600-lb Life’s Susan Farmer battled obesity related neuropathy


One of the most touching episodes of TLC’s My 600-lb Life was last week’s episode featuring 37-year-old Susan Farmer.

Although some episodes involve people who weigh less than 600 pounds, but still have a high BMI, Susan was right at 600. Her mother was her care-taker, and if she didn’t make changes, soon, she was at risk of losing her life. While Dr. Nowzaradan often asks patients to lose between 15-30 pounds before he commits to gastric surgery, he asked Susan to lose 100.

Although she’s been 600 pounds since she was a teenager, she stuck to a low-carb and low-calorie diet, and shed 100 pounds in just a few months.

Following the news that neuropathy could impact her ability to live a normal life even if she does lose all the weight, she had an entirely new outlook and became determined to make herself better. After the surgery, though, her weight loss stalled, and she found it harder to walk. Eventually she was evaluated and found to be suffering from an obesity related neuropathy that could render her paralyzed if she didn’t seek immediate treatment at a rehabilitation center.

She spent several months working on her mobility, determined to stay mobile and active no matter what. “I’ve been thinking about being in a wheelchair and using that as motivation to keep going. The surgery was my second chance at life,” Susan said. “And I’m not going to let a setback like this take that from me. I’m going to fight. I’m going to do everything I possibly can to get better.”

At the end of the episode, Susan had moved into her brother’s house, where she had to care for herself and do all her own housework. She was mobile, and continuing to lose weight. Hopefully her update a year from now will be an outstanding success.

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