“My 600 Lb. Life” Season 5 continues its look at patients from previous seasons tonight when Nikki’s story gets the “Where Are They Now?” treatment. You might recall how Nikki looked when she first appeared on the show (see the photo above). She was 33 years old and weighed 650 lbs. RECAP of episode posted below. Here is the original video clip from that episode.
Her journey was not marked by resistance to change, whining or complaining. She dedicated herself to take off the weight, helped by a gastric sleeve procedure. Nonetheless, her organs weren’t in the best of shape after ballooning to that size and there was constant concern for her.
Like many patients on “My 600 Lb. Life”, Nikki had enablers. She lived with her parents who got the Dr. Nowzaradan treatment of scolding and disdain. Unlike others we’ve seen, they got with the program quickly. Nikki’s emotional health was affected by family issues.
As this went on, she sought psychological counseling, because despite reducing her body weight by more than 200 lbs. in the first year, she lived with the same self-hate and screwed up relationship with her mother and older siblings.
One of her sisters had broken off a relationship with Nikki, saying that watching Nikki continue to grow was disturbing for her children. Nikki had to tell her mom how she felt marginalized as the youngest in the family. Her mother, she claimed, turned her attention to her two sisters who got married and had babies while Nikki was in school and ballooning in weight.
In “Where Are They Now?” Nikki has done well, taken off more weight and got herself an active social life. She’s now looking forward to skin surgery to remove a very large slab of skin that hangs from her stomach. Then tragedy strikes and gives Nikki second thoughts about going through with it.
Check back after the episode airs for a full recap of Nikki’s story.
While watching the story of Nikki’s second year under the care of Dr. Nowzaradan, it occurred to me that the Assanti brothers could use a dose of her. For a while we’ve thought about an extension of the “My 600 Lb. Life series, or perhaps a segment during its episodes with a former patient who was successful, visiting a non-compliant patient.
While those like the Assanti boys and James K find ways to ignore the doctor’s advice or claim it’s impossible to comply, a fellow patient might get through. Just a thought…
Back to the show. Nikki still had more surgeries and weight to lose to meet her goal when the episode ended, but having shed more than 450 lbs. in two years was extraordinary. Her two setbacks were quickly turned around because of her commitment to be approved for skin surgery. One setback related to the death of her bestie.
While the show wants to focus on its own patients and Dr. Now’s success rate, it might have been a great topic for the doctor to address with Nikki. She told Dr. Now about the death of her friend causing a setback, but at least on camera, she didn’t mention how he died. Since he passed after complications from gastric bypass surgery, it would have made sense.
Nikki only expressed fear once during year two and that was when she faced the skin surgery she longed for. The cost benefit analysis netted the answer that the apron of fat hanging from her waist had to go for her to complete her transformation, and not just for cosmetic purposes. Have we ever seen as large a piece of fat and tissue taken from one patient?
Just shy of 60 pounds was taken from her body, affecting her so much she lost her center of gravity and had to learn how to walk without it. One thing of note was Nikki using a local doctor to treat her oozing wound once she moved back home. Apparently it was not in consultation with Dr. Now and he was pissed.
He also explained that she was treated incorrectly and had extended her recovery time, also jeopardizing her life. He reversed the treatment and Nikki was once again on her way. Her goals are to get her own place and bring her brother along with her. She’s also exploring a romantic relationship with Mark. It was a good story all around.
“My 600 Lb. Life: Where Are They Now?” airs Wednesdays beginning at 8 p.m. ET/PT on TLC Image credit: TLC, used with permission