Typically when we think of a good candidate for weight loss surgery, a very obese person comes to mind, however; after being denied surgery by 50 doctors, 21-year-old Venus Palermo managed to get it approved by one doctor. Palermo, also known as “the living doll,” had unrealistic thoughts that she was obese, even though she only weighed eight and a have stone (119 pounds), and was on a mission to maintain her doll-like figure.
Palermo is a YouTube sensation whose station is known as ‘Venus Angelic.’ The Japan resident made a trip to South Korea so she could have a dramatic procedure which involved removing 120 cm of her intestines and sewing a portion of her stomach shut, all in hopes of perfecting her doll-like image.
While the surgery proved to be a success at first and Palermo was able to maintain her eight stone figure, she soon found herself feeling sick. After throwing up nonstop and seeing her weight dropped to six stone (84 pounds), Palermo was admitted to the hospital where doctors had to drip feed her. The outlook did not look good and doctors admitted that they feared for her life. They soon discovered that her stitches had collapsed and food was going into the closed-off part of her stomach. She would need emergency surgery to recover and repair her stomach.
“It was devastating when the doctor came into my room and said we would need to do surgery,” said Palermo, who has always suffered from body issues and thought that she was morbidly obese despite her tiny figure. “I felt so dumb I cared so much about something unnecessary and hurt myself and my husband. When I started to puke out just water I realized something was really wrong. It was really scary and it was very painful – I honestly thought I was going to die.”
Looking back, Palermo admitted that she really needed psychological help and not a physical surgery.
“At the time I got the surgery what I really needed was psychological help and not a weight loss surgery,” she said.
“I used to try and avoid looking at myself, but when I out in the city walking around I would see myself in the window’s reflection as this really huge obese person in the way of everyone. I felt like this huge elephant bumping around – I tried to hide myself because I thought I was so big.”
And she can’t help but be disappointed in the doctor’s decision to go ahead with the surgery.
“He might have all the qualifications, but a ‘real’ doctor he should have prioritized health over personal gain,” she said. “I looked up surgeons all over the world and asked who would be willing to do it – I must’ve messaged about 50 different, and just one doctor agreed. When it came to the surgery and he put my mask on, I knew I could die but I wasn’t scared I just felt numb.”
Because Palermo was so determined to get people to think that she was ‘naturally skinny,’ she kept the surgery a secret for a long time. Since her health scare, she is using her experience to help other girls and prevent them from going through the same thing.