Bariatric Surgery FAQ

What is morbid obesity?

Morbid Obesity is defined as having a Body Mass Index that exceeds 40 (100 lbs. over optimal weight). Morbid obesity conflicts with essential behavior such as walking and breathing. If individuals allow themselves to be obese for a long duration of time, long term effects can result in contemplative problems such as diminished life expectancy and co-morbid conditions.

What is Bariatric Surgery? – Am I A Candidate for Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery reduces the size of the stomach, allowing patients to become fuller faster with less food intake. Bariatric surgery is for patients who are currently morbidly obese, and should not be a patients’ first option for weight loss, natural methods such as exercise and dieting are the safest and most effective ways to lose weight. Weight loss surgery should only be chosen if these options cannot be practiced, or have not worked after multiple attempts.

What is Body Mass Index (BMI)?

Body mass index is a formula that is used to determine an individuals weight and height. Body Mass Index allows healthcare experts to appreciate health issues associated with a particular weight allocation (i.e. morbid obesity).

Other common guidelines include:

  • Carrying out all behavior adjustments recommended by your surgeon such as exercise and dietary suggestions.
  • Be subjected to a thorough medical examination

What are the risks of bariatric surgery?
All surgical procedures have risks associated with them, bariatric surgery risks include:

  • Dehiscence
  • Complications arising from medications used during procedure and anesthesia.
  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Minimal ulcers
  • Infections
  • Staple line leaks (seepage through opening)
  • Pulmonary difficulties
  • Spleen injury
  • Stenosis
  • Death

What are the side effects of weight loss surgery?
Weight Loss Surgery Side effects involve:

  • Rapid gastric emptying
  • Nausea/Vomit
  • Prevention of pregnancy
  • Inadequate nutrition
  • Bloating and diarrhea
  • Very clear crystallization assembled within the gallbladder (Gallstones)

What is gastric banding?

Gastric banding is a surgical procedure which involves the stomach having a silicone band wrapped around it. The adjustable gastric band can be adjusted depending on the needs of the patient.

What is the qualifying process for bariatric surgery?
Multiple tests are conducted by your surgeon to diagnosis whether or not you qualify for bariatric surgery. Support staff members (such as psychologists and nutritionalists) prepare you for the situations you will face after your procedure.

What are the routine tests before bariatric surgery?

Certain basic tests typically are performed:

  • Complete Blood Count (CBC)
  • Urinalysis
  • Chemistry screen
  • Electrocardiogram
  • Psychological evaluation

Other tests that may be requested include:

  • Blood glucose test
  • Pulmonary function testing
  • Sleep study
  • GI evaluation
  • Cardiology evaluation

What are the preparations I can make before surgery?

Bariatric surgery should be treated like any other surgical procedure. The greatest way to be prepared is by following the instructions provided by your doctor and educating yourself on the risks of the surgical procedure.

When can I return to my normal level of activity?
Patients can return to their normal physical activity within three to seven weeks after undergoing bariatric surgery, though this heavily depends on the condition of the patient and should follow the physicians recommendations on when to return to normal physical activity.

What is the success rate for bariatric surgery?
The success rate of bariatric surgery depends strongly on the long term lifestyle changes the patient undergoes that was recommended to him by his bariatric surgeon. Majority of patients have high success rates and are able to lose weight much faster than if they did not receive the surgery and tried losing the weight via natural means. It is incredibly important that the patient continues to diet and exercise, the weight loss procedure should be used as an aid in the attempt to lose weight.

 

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