Jesse Profitt: A bariatric success

Carol Casebolt

Jesse Profitt of Pikeville has spent years searching for the right weight loss program. He tried everything from diet pills to nationally advertised programs before he made the decision to check out weight loss surgery at Pikeville Medical Center (PMC).


He says he was tired of all the different diets and losing a few pounds only to stop the diet and gain back the weight.


Profitt suffered from sleep apnea. “I was on the highest setting that you could get on my cpap and I would quit breathing as many as 200 times a night, even with my machine,” said Profitt. “I dreaded even the thought of going to sleep at night.”


He also had trouble with his knees and was on medication for high blood pressure.


Profitt says he was depressed just thinking about going out in public. He wore bigger scrubs at work to try to hide his weight.


“I was never comfortable with myself. I got to the point that I was just going to work and avoided going out in public,” he said. “I never engaged in activities or exercise. I had to do something.”


He decided to attend a PMC weight loss surgery seminar to check out his options.


“As soon as I talked to the staff, I knew this was definitely for me,” said Profitt. “I had to do something to feel better about myself and I finally found a real direction.”


After meeting with PMC Bariatric Surgeon Amy Johnson MD, Profitt decided to have the bariatric sleeve procedure.


Profitt said he was excited, for the first time in a long time, about a future that included better health. He was anxious to rid himself of his breathing machine but most of all he was longing for a life filled with activity.


It was not long before Profitt began to see positive changes.


“My earliest success came when I was able to come off my breathing machine two weeks after surgery,” he said. “I saw an improvement with my knees within a month, to the point I was able to start exercising regularly. I was also able to stop taking my blood pressure medication within six months.”


Life is quite different now.


“Today, I just love to get up and start my day,” he said. “I am riding my bike 16 miles a day and I am running. My goal is to do at least a half marathon, if not a full




He says he is doing all the things he longed to do prior to losing weight. He is back to going to Pigeon Forge again, but this time around he does not have to sit down to rest and watch the world pass him by.


“I am going and doing all I can,” said Profitt. “I went to Dollywood 21 times last year, rode everything three or four times and even ran up the hills.”


He has earned a new nickname at work.


“I am on the go all the time,” said Profitt. “I am sprinting down the hallway and my coworkers say ‘there goes Speedy.’ So everyone calls me ‘Speedy’ now.”


He says words cannot describe how he feels.


“I have revised my whole wardrobe. I enjoy dressing up and getting to go to my closet and picking out something great to wear,” said Profitt. “I used to pick out a pair of sweatpants and sweatshirt to cover myself up but now I can wear what I call my skinny jeans or pants.”


Profitt says he worked closely with Dr. Johnson and her staff.


“Jesse has been such a success after weight loss surgery,” said Dr. Johnson. “He devoted time and effort to a new lifestyle that includes a diet of whole healthy foods and vigorous exercise. You can tell just by looking at him how good he feels!”


Profitt has great things to say about the weight loss center staff.


“They are absolutely phenomenal. No matter who you call or who you speak with at the office they take the time to answer your questions,” he said. “Dr. Johnson told me if I had any complications to call her and she gave me her cell phone number. Who does that?”


He reported that the entire staff makes you feel like they are right there with you.


“Several of them have been through the surgery too, so they know what you are going through,” said Profitt. “They can tell you what to expect and what not to worry about. I could never ask for more. I would trust Dr. Johnson with my life and if I needed to, and I hadn’t already done it, I would sign up for surgery today.”


For more information about wellness or weight loss contact the Pikeville Medical Wellness and Weight Loss Center at 606-218-2205.