Weight loss surgery is a big commitment for people, and is generally reserved for those who have tried and failed time and time again at losing weight.
Not everyone qualifies for all types of bariatric surgery. More importantly, not everyone who can physically qualify is a good candidate.
General Qualifications: who benefits from bariatric surgery?
People with a BMI over 40. BMI, or body mass index, is a good way to assess how overweight someone is relative to their height. Over 25 is considered overweight, but over 40 indicates morbid obesity and affects a small percentage of the population.
People who are over 100 pounds overweight. 100 pounds is a lot to lose, and comes with several risk factors including higher risk of diabetes, heart problems, and ultimately death.
People who suffer from common comorbidities such as type 2 diabetes mellitus, sleep apnea, hypertension, fatty liver disease, or several others. Ask your physician if your comorbidities are severe enough such that bariatric surgery is a necessary intervention.
People with any of these qualifications who have also suffered from them for some time, while also being unable to achieve weight loss with regularly prescribed diet and exercise.
Why Is This Important?
Weight loss surgery cannot be taken lightly as it is a highly invasive procedure with a lengthy recovery time that does have its risks. Particularly, it has the risk of not succeeding in patients who are unable to make the necessary changes post-op.
Weight loss surgery is NOT a cosmetic procedure like liposuction. It changes the way your digestive system works in order to prevent the possibility of overeating and the absorption of excess calories.
Weight loss surgery is often seen as a last ditch effort if regular healthy diet and exercise fails or is unable to be adopted due to severely disordered eating.
What Should I Do If I Believe I’m A Good Candidate?
Talk to your doctor for information, and to assess if weight loss surgery is necessary for you.
Talk to a bariatric surgeon about your situation.
Extremely obese patients may find that weight loss is required prior to performing bariatric surgery. This is because doing any surgery on people who are extremely obese is highly risky, and doing the bariatric surgery on these patients may be more risk than it’s worth.