A Winning Weight Loss Journey: MaShawna Jacobs


PIKEVILLE – Pikeville Medical Center (PMC) Weight Loss Surgery has changed the lives of countless patients.

MaShawna Jacobs was experiencing severe acid reflux. Her esophagus was eroding causing multiple health issues. Her gastroenterologist suspected her biopsy could reveal a diagnosis of cancer.

This health scare brought Jacobs to the office of general and weight loss surgeon Amy Johnson, MD.  Jacobs was seeking a second opinion for a different surgery but found herself considering weight loss surgery.

“Dr. Johnson informed me I was not a candidate for the surgery I thought I needed but she offered a new direction I had not even considered, weight loss surgery,” said Jacobs. “I honestly thought I had to be much bigger for that type of surgery. It was for really heavy people.”

Jacobs reluctantly agreed to move forward with the surgery. She says she kept in the back of her mind the idea that she could back out at the last minute if she wanted.

The pre-surgery process took approximately six months, proving to be enough time for her to attend the classes provided by PMC and also research the process on her own.

“The education that patients are provided is an amazing tool,” said Jacobs. “By the time you are ready for surgery you understand exactly what happens and why the surgery is necessary. I could clearly see this was something I needed.”

The 4’10 ½” woman who started out with a body mass index of 44, lost a total of 115 pounds.

In addition to her acid reflux she was pre-diabetic, had high blood pressure and sleep apnea. Jacobs reports after about nine months she lost the majority of her excess weight and no longer had the other health issues she had prior to surgery.

She stays active and keeps tabs on her nutrition. The dynamic of her family has undergone a dramatic change.

Approximately six months after her gastric bypass surgery, Jacobs’ husband Joseph had the same surgery.

“We have gone from parents who were totally inactive to a family on the move,” said Jacobs. “We exercise together, we walk and lift weights.  The support my husband and I have for each other has made a huge difference.”

Dr. Johnson said, “My patients who experience the greatest long-term success are those who make lifestyle changes. They eat right and exercise, it takes the combination to succeed.”

The PMC weight loss surgery office is located in the Grace Call Building at 1098 South Mayo Trail, Suite 103. For additional information on how to begin the weight loss journey, call 606-218-6358.