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Truck Drivers seek Gastric Sleeve Surgery for CSA 2010

Almater Hospital

Almater Hospital

The lifestyle of truck drivers can lead to many health problems and many drivers are looking at the new safety initiative, CSA 2010 as focusing on the problem of obesity and sleep apnea.  The concerns drivers are having is due to the following statement, found in the CSA 2010 document which states:

Driver Fitness BASIC—Operation of CMVs by drivers who are unfit to operate a CMV due to lack of training, experience, or medical qualifications.” The “medical qualification” that many drivers are concerned with, is the possible disqualification due to being overweight.

We have received emails from drivers who are having difficulty getting hired because of their weight and even those who are being forced to go through sleep apnea testing because they meet certain candidate criteria, including weight and neck size.

Concerned about the BMI tests and the costs of the CPAP, as well as the possibility of losing their jobs, many truck drivers are investigating the option of gastric sleeve surgery.  Furthermore, many truck drivers with a BMI of 30 and over are looking at CSA 2010 as the incentive to lose the weight that they have been wanting to lose anyway, but due to the trucking lifestyle, never had that “push” they needed to do so.

We have done exhaustive research into this procedure and wanted to share what we have discovered with our readers :

Gastric sleeve surgery in the United States will cost between $18,000 and $35,000 and many insurance providers will not pay for the procedure unless the patient has a BMI of 40 or more, or if there is a health risk involved such as diabetes or heart disease.  With the average long haul truck driver making $32,000 per year, it is nearly impossible for them to have the Sleeve Gastrectomy procedure.  More truck drivers across the country have discovered another alternative with incredible results.

To learn the truth, we went directly to the source :

Almater Hospital is a private hospital with state of the art equipment, located in Mexicali, Mexico.  Dr. Alberto Aceves specializes in the gastric sleeve surgery and has performed nearly 1000 surgeries.  His credentials include:

  • Member American College of Surgeon
  • Member American Society for Briatric and Metabolic Surgery
  • Current President of the Mexican Association for Bariatric Surgery
  • Member International Federation for the Surgery of Obesity
  • Member Mexican Association of Endoscopic Surgery
  • Member Mexican Association of General Surgery
  • Member General Surgeons College of Mexicali
  • FACS  (American College of Surgeons)
Dr. Aceves and Staff

Dr. Aceves and Staff

We contacted Dr. Aceves’ staff to discuss the gastric sleeve surgery and to learn more about him and the Almater Hospital.  The biggest concern with a sleeve surgery is having a leak.  Dr. Aceves has never had a leak with any of the sleeve surgeries he has performed.  The Almater Hospital is above the statistics for this procedure and no other doctor in the United States or Mexico has this great of a record with this number of surgeries performed.

In the U. S. most sleeve surgeries are done as an out-patient procedure.  Dr. Aceves keeps his patients in the Almater Hospital for three days for recovery.  He and his staff’s biggest concern for American patients is that they will get trapped in attending one of the many facilities in Mexico that offer the procedure at a very low price, but in return, they are having a great deal of complications, including infections and poor sterilization.  Dr. Aceves and the Almater Hospital believe in not sacrificing quality to lower prices.   Speaking with Nina Eguia, patient coordinator at the hospital, she told us:

“The doctors in Mexico doing surgery at lower prices are having a lot of complications and sacrificing quality.  It is a shame that patients go to them to save money and end up with complications they really cannot afford or having to stay off work for months to recover, because procedures are not done correctly or with sanitary standards.”

The Almater Hospital in Mexicali, Mexico are seeing and hearing from more American truck drivers and we wanted to research this more.  What we found is an excellent hospital and staff with exceptional standards.   As the U. S. is charging $18,000 to $35,000 for the gastric sleeve surgery, Dr. Aceves total cost for the procedure, including the hospital stay and everything . . . is  $9,500.

As CSA 2010 grows closer and truck drivers are threatened by their BMI in regards to a possible positive sleep apnea diagnosis, they are questioning the use and cost of forced and  expensive  sleep apnea testing and a CPAP machine.  Instead of only treating the effect of the problem, why not treat the cause?   The cause being the overweight issue that they feel they may be flagged for . . .

I feel that this information on Dr. Aceves and the Almater Hospital in Mexicali, Mexico is imperative for truck drivers facing this problem to be aware of . . . in fear of losing their jobs and the fact that they look at CSA 2010 as the push they needed to do something about their weight and to become healthier . . . if there is another reliable, trustworthy and safe solution that will save them thousands of dollars . . . then we wanted to provide this information for them.

Let’s face it . . . how many truckers can afford $18,000 to $35,000 even when their livelihoods are at stake?  Dr. Alberto Aceves and his professional staff at Almater Hospital are making the impossible . . . possible.

For more information contact:

Mexicali Bariatric center
Madero 1119-2, Colonia Nueva
Mexicali, BC 2110
U.S. TOLL FREE : 1-888-344-3916
Allen Smith

© 2010, Allen Smith. All rights reserved.

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By: Allen Smith

Allen Smith is a 37 year veteran who started at an early age in a household goods family moving business. He began driving straight trucks in 1977 and moved to the big rigs in 1982. His experience within the industry includes; owner operator, company driver, operations manager, and owner of a long distance HHG moving business, taking many of the long haul moves himself when needed. Allen Smith, a truck driver advocate who is driven by the desire to help others succeed within an industry where injustice, unrewarded sacrifice, and lack of respect and recognition exists. Allen and his wife Donna are hosts of Truth About Trucking ”Live” on Blog Talk Radio. Other websites include AskTheTrucker, TruckingSocialMedia, NorthAmericanTruckingALerts, TruthAboutTrucking, and many Social Media websites. In 2011 Allen and Donna hosted the first Truck Driver Social Media Convention, designed to create unity and solutions for the trucking industry. This is now being extended through the North American Trucking Alerts network as those within the industry join forces for the betterment of the industry. Allen strongly supports other industry advocates who are also stepping up to the plate to help those who share honesty, guidance and direction. He believes that all those involved in trucking need to be accountable for their part within the industry, including drivers, carriers, brokers, shippers, receivers, etc… The list of supporters and likeminded people grow daily, networking together and sharing thoughts and ideas for the betterment of trucking. He has coined the popular phrase "Raising the standards of the trucking industry"

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13 Responses to Truck Drivers seek Gastric Sleeve Surgery for CSA 2010. - Post a Comment

  1. Brad Hollister

    Alan – this is serious business buddy. How can basically tying your stomach in a knot be good for you? I know it is approved, but I see many people using this as a green light to make poor life choices and then hit the reset button with surgery.

    While the surgery does the trick of taking the fat off, it still does not help when making poor choices such as eating too much sugar, or not eating a balanced diet.

    My best friend is company driver for Large National Carrier. I talk to him everyday. I know it is hard to find parking close to vendors of healthy food choices. I totally understand. I just think it is important to spread the word educating guys if we can on the imporantance of making healty life choices and using the bypass surgery as a way to solidify their commitment to a better lifestyle.

    • Allen Smith

      Thank you Brad for your concern. I also am concerned, especially when I receive many emails from those who are:
      fearful of losing their job because they are extremely overweight
      concerned because their BMI index is high and they will be forced into a high cost sleep apnea regime of testing
      they possibly may have sleep apnea due to their weight and would rather cure their weight problem and their possible sleep apnea problem

      We’re talking about grown adults who live a difficult lifestyle that is not conducive to being healthy. Many have tried to lose weight, or at least not gain more weight, but they can not. Most understand things about a balanced diet, not eating too much sugar, etc…
      Yes, there are truckers out there who are disciplined and do eat healthy and even exercise while driving 2000 miles per week or so, but then there are those who find it difficult. Many of these drivers are morbidly obese, not just a few pounds overweight. They steadily gain pound after pound as they continue to be in a career that is not just promoting an unhealthy lifestyle, but is the only job they know how to perform or have years of experience in.
      Do you think these adults don’t realize they need to be healthier? Do you think they enjoy being big and not enjoying life as much as perhaps they could if they were in better physical condition?

      Many of these drivers are overweight because they eat too much and/or have a lower metabolism than others. What this surgery can do, is prevent them from overeating, as their ability to consume large amounts of food at one time is no longer possible.

      I’ll tell you what’s really sad, and you’ve missed this entirely, is the fact that the government regulations are forcing people into these kinds of options and they choose surgery, just for the sake of not losing their jobs. On the other hand, it is these same regulations which are about to be enforced, that are actually the catalyst for those who have wanted to do something about their severe overweight problem, but didn’t have a true incentive for doing so. It’s amazing how the combination of government mandates and the possibility of losing ones job, creates an incentive to do something positive about a morbidly obese condition.

      Part of the programs that these facilities include are teaching and explaining to their patients that they do need to eat healthier. Again, we’re talking about adults here, not children, and after the initial counseling about the other options of eating healthy and exercising more in order to cure their obesity problem, they still choose to have surgery, then that should be their choice.

      I recently received a blog post comment from a women whose husband underwent this kind of surgery.
      It was this comment and the fact that we were receiving so many emails from fellow truckers, either losing their jobs or are fearful of losing their jobs, that sparked the incentive for writing this post.
      Another incentive was the fact that many people who wanted this procedure did not have insurance, thus couldn’t afford $18,000.00. We found this facility and spoke to them directly, then researched them to ensure they were a quality and affordable facility, as well as reputable and ethical.

  2. […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Allen Smith, Martell Thornton. Martell Thornton said: Truck Drivers seek Gastric Sleeve Surgery for CSA 2010 | AskTheTrucker: Concerned about the BMI tests and the cost… […]

  3. Doug

    There is NOTHING is CSA 2010 about focusing on sleep apnea or obesity. 391.41 is the same as always. Pass the DOT physical and you are good to go. Just another CSA 2010 rumor that is untrue!

  4. Allen Smith

    It’s the modifications of the DOT physical that we are talking about. No laws have been placed yet, but there’s much discussion about it and drivers have written us about their termination from their company due to this. We are hearing from drivers who are looking into this procedure due to their fears of CSA 2010, I simply pointed that out in the post, so take a “chill pill” Doug …

    Drivers are concerned with the Driver Fitness Basic that is in the CSA 2010 Document, and how it pertains to the overweight problem:

    I further clarified this in the post. I forget sometimes that I have to “spoon feed” some of you on every little detail. When reading about the Driver Fitness Basic, learn to read between the lines . . .

    Allen Smith

  5. Doug

    I don’t doubt that companies may be terminating drivers but this has not been discussed in the CSA 2010 working group. just pointing out a fact.

  6. Alex

    Allen, I recently completed CDL school and passed with no problems. I have not been able to secure employment with any company applied to. I am being told that due to my overweight problem, they would not be able to hire me anyway because of the csa 2010 restrictions that are coming. This Doug guy better look again if he thinks that there is NOTHING in csa 2010 that focuses on obesity, etc. You’ve got it right Allen. thanks for all you do. Alex

  7. Allen Smith

    And we have pointed out the fact from the CSA 2010 document. thanks

  8. Allen Smith

    Thanks Alex … keep looking, hopefully there is a company that will give you a chance. These restrictions are not in place yet, and may never be … don’t give up and let me know how it goes.


  9. Nichole Setzer

    My wife and I just did our DOT physical and because of our BMI and neck size the doctor only gave us a 3 month card and requiring us to both do a sleep apnea test. This test is expensive and times two. We called the company we work for and asked if we could go somewhere else they said no that was doctor shopping and if we wait till the 3 months are up still have to see same doctor. We have insurance but even with that it will still cost us two thousand each out of pocket. We called csa2010 and they said this is not a law but it is trying to pass legislation to become law. There is nothing that they can or will do to help. We told the doctor this and he just basically said oh well deal with it. So now what do we do.

  10. Allen Smith

    You are caught in the money-making trap by your carrier. For now, this is another scam that many drivers will face. You could switch to another carrier that will pick up the cost of the testing, as one alternative.

    Marten Transport is one carrier that is stating that they will pay for sleep apnea testing for their drivers.

  11. Lap band Doctors Fort Worth

    What people do not know is that weight loss surgery is especially generated to help obese people live longer, healthier, and better.

  12. Lap band Doctors

    If it makes it worse then don’t use it. It’s as simple as that. Physician’s don’t want to decrease their success rates.

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