A grandmother who lost an astonishing 17 stone through ‘sheer hard work and determination’ has been denied NHS surgery to get rid of the folds of excess skin she’s been left with.
Gillian Jenkins, 57, from Penarth in south Wales, dropped from 27 stone to 9 stone 10 lbs after taking up Zumba, and is now a regular gym bunny doing three gruelling cardio sessions a week.
But despite her amazing transformation, Gillian has been left with mounds of unsightly saggy skin which will cost between £10,000 and £15,000 to remove.
Decisions over funding for excess skin removal are left to local health authorities to decide, and Gillian has been told she does not qualify for surgery on the NHS – because the condition is not making her clinically depressed.
Gillian Jenkins has been left with saggy skin after dropping from 27 stone to 9 stone 10 lbs – but the grandmother been told she does not qualify for surgery on the NHS
After dropping more than 17 stone, Gill is desperately trying to raise funds for surgery to get rid of the folds of excess skin left behind, with her friend launching a crowdfunding campaign
Excess skin is a common result of major weight loss and is difficult to prevent – especially in older people – because of the rapidity of the loss of elasticity as a result of years of being stretched.
Now, Gill’s friends and family are rallying round her to help raise the huge sum, with her personal trainer Chris Burke, from Cardiff, setting up an online crowdfunding page on JustGiving.
Gillian knew she had to lose weight when she was forced to book two seats on an airplane when she travelled to Florida on a family holiday, and her resulting fitness journey has seen her go form morbidly obese to a healthy weight.
Chris, who describes Gillian as a ‘great friend’, said: ‘What this woman has achieved is amazing, every pound sweated out over months and years of dedication and persistence.
The way she was: Gillian’s weight soared to 27 stone before she took up Zumba and hit the gym. Now, Gill’s friends and family are rallying round her to help raise the huge sum
New woman: Gill (pictured here 17 stone lighter) knew she had to lose weight when she was forced to book two seats on an airplane when she travelled to Florida on a family holiday
Gill’s friend Chris said: ‘What this woman has achieved is amazing, every pound sweated out over months and years of dedication and persistence’
‘Unfortunately, with such weight loss in later years having adverse effects on skin collagen, Gill’s achievement has come with great sacrifice with her now-sagging skin issue.
‘Although she’s over the moon with her new body I know deep down it’s way short of what she deserves.’
Chris, who says he was inspired to help his client after watching ITV’s Lisa Riley’s Baggy Body Club, added: ‘It really hit home to me exactly how this issue would affect your life.
‘I had never seen things through Gill’s eyes before and it was an insight into how the transformation affects her life still today.’
So far the crowdfunding campaign has raised £360 – just 2.4 per cent of its target.