Testimonials from the people we’ve helped and images of the results they achieved.


This surgery was the best present of my life. It managed to extend my working career until retirement-which happens in 2021.

I would not have made the last 12 working years if I did not have the surgery. My job required me to travel extensively, mainly in Africa but also outside Africa, and if I could not manage the airplane stairs or the economy seats-I would have had to give it all up.

One of the more important aspects was meeting the team and specifically a psychologist who has helped me work through the many issues. I got a body job and a mind job…


I started my journey with the Chrysalis Clinic in 2012 and weighed 148.8kg at the time. I attended the support group sessions and consulted with the team of healthcare professionals. I was inspired by the stories of post-operative patients and encouraged by the holistic and interdisciplinary approach of the Chrysalis team.

On 3 March 2015, I had the Roux-en-Y surgery…and it was the best decision I have ever made.

There is what is described as the ‘golden period’ after surgery where you are not hungry. I used this period to completely change my lifestyle and my attitude to food. I established healthy eating habits and started exercising, and I stayed in therapy with Graham Alexander, the team psychologist.

Once the ‘golden period’ was over, I stuck to my newly established healthy lifestyle and I am now at a healthy weight. I still have to choose to make the healthier decisions every day, but I’m still going strong. Before, I couldn’t even run for more than a minute. Now, I run 5km with a smile on my face!

Although I have undergone a dramatic physical metamorphosis, my family and friends say that the biggest change that they have noticed is in my attitude or demeanour. They have all commented on how much happier I seem now. I am happy – a million times happier than I was. My whole life has changed for the better.

I am now a private practising dietitian, with a special interest in weight loss and weight loss surgery. I am passionate about helping other people achieve their weight loss goals from a position of understanding, empathy and professional advice. I was 148.8kg. I know what it’s like. I know how hard it is….And I did it!

Liezel Potgieter-2016

My surgery was on 8 February 2016. On 31 March 2016, my child died of a terminal illness. The recovery after surgery is therefore a blurry memory and not a time I wish to revisit.

What I can remember, is the time before my surgery, the years and years spent trapped in and constrained to an oversized, immobile, unsightly body. Like a bird in a cage, I fluttered around anxiously trying any diet and trick I could lay my hands on, just to realise time and again that my weight was steadily creeping higher and higher.

After 23 years of confinement, I surrendered to the idea that I need outside help. Gastric bypass truly is a last resort intervention. In 2018, I turned 50 years old. To celebrate my freedom and my birth year, I completed the Argus (Cape Town Cycle Tour) which is 110km around the Peninsula. On my birthday, I swam from Robben Island to Bloubergstrand, 8km in the Atlantic Ocean. Later in that year, I ran my first half marathon (21km) in Calgary, Canada.

I have since climbed and reached the summit of the highest mountain in South Africa (Mt Mafadi in the Drakensberg)

I have continued, and still do, take part in road and trail running, road and mountain bike races, open water swimming events and triathlons. Without fail, after each event I become emotional. I will never take for granted the freedom from my jail; my own body, which was transformed into a mobile and enjoyable vessel in which I am able to accomplish anything I decide to do.

Brendon De Smidt-2016

Being a very unhealthy and hectic overweight diabetic on huge insulin doses, the decision for surgery was a no brainer, and if I look at the result, the decision was most definitely the correct one, even though there were tense moments and complications. I have lost 60kg and I no longer inject, as my sugars are in normal range with only small doses of oral meds. The care and concern of the team was overwhelming to say the least, and Dr Turner and crew were genuine life savers!! There are most definitely no regrets in the long term.

Maureen Biskupsky-2017

I had my surgery on my birthday 24th April 2017-it was the best birthday present I could ever wish for. Over 4 years later and still down over 30kgs, my life has changed so much and I’ve become a different person mentally and physically.

From when I first made contact with the Chrysalis Clinic, the teams support and advice was invaluable. The fact that there is a full team advising you on every aspect of your wellbeing was so reassuring and gave me the confidence needed to go ahead with the surgery.

I am the healthiest I have ever been now, taking regular exercise and using the tools I was equipped to use by the Chrysalis team, to keep me on this wonderful journey of discovery of myself!


Before my surgery in 2017, my life was dominated by yo-yo dieting. I was in a cycle of weight loss and gain that I couldn’t seem to overcome. My surgery has enabled me to focus on other areas of life, while managing my physical health in a way that is sustainable. I have so much more time to spend on things that fulfil me in life, now that my thoughts are not preoccupied with my weight constantly. My journey with the bariatric team has been one of constant support and guidance. I would recommend each and every team member without hesitation.

Jo-Anne Campbell-2019

My journey began in October 2018. When I contacted Cathy Brunger about the programme. This was my last resort. Over these few months, pre-op, I worked closely with Dr Marr and the team.

With their guidance and support, I can say that I have received the best treatment and advice. The operation went smoothly due to Dr Marr’s determination to give me the best outcome possible.

I had a speedy recovery in hospital with the help of the team and hospital staff who attended to me. I cannot express how thankful I am for improving my standard of living.


I had a wakeup call one day when my brother sat me down and talked to me about some hard truths about my weight. I knew if my family was concerned enough about me to sit me down, I had to do something, but what? I had tried unsuccessfully so many times, once even losing all the weight (and regaining it all). Then I found the Chrysalis Team. From then on things moved very quickly and efficiently. Cathy held my hand every step of the way, helping to coordinate the symphony that all the pre op visits entail. She even walked me into the operating theatre. The biggest blessing of the process is that you have a full team of professionals all working with you towards the same goal. When you slip they catch you and keep you going. This is one of the hardest things I have ever done but by far one of the best. I have lost 40kgs, I am off all my blood pressure medication and have reduced all my other chronics to very low levels. I can run! I am getting fit and things I never thought were possible now are. No Regrets.

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