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Introduction to Bariatric Weight Loss Surgery

Bariatric surgery is a term derived from the Greek words: ''weight'' and ''treatment.'' Bariatric surgical procedures are major gastrointestinal operations that (a) seal off most of the stomach to reduce the amount of food one can eat, and (b) rearrange the small intestine to reduce the calories the bodies can absorb.

There are several different types of bariatric weight loss surgical procedures, but they are known collectively as 'bariatric surgery'.

Bariatric Surgery is Not a Magic Solution for Weight Loss

Bariatric surgery is not an easy option for obesity sufferers. It is a drastic step, and carries the usual pain and risks of any major gastrointestinal surgical operation.

Bariatric Surgery Involves New Eating Habits

Bariatric surgery compels patients to change their eating habits radically, and makes them very ill if they overeat. And after bariatric surgery is performed, patients remain at a lifelong risk of nutritional deficiencies.

Bariatric Surgery Typically Leads to Major Weight Loss

Some patients who undergo bariatric gastrointestinal surgery lose more than 100 pounds in weight - some lose as much as 200 pounds weight. Some reach a normal weight, while others remain overweight, although less overweight than before.

Candidates for Bariatric Weight Loss Surgery

Some bariatric surgeons accept patients in their 60's, and some even operate on teenagers. But because bariatric surgery is a last-gasp solution to weight loss, to be used when other more conventional weight loss programs have been tried and failed, candidates must generally have severe obesity-related health problems.

Must be Morbidly Obese for Bariatric Surgery

In general, in order to qualify for bariatric surgery you must be 'morbidly obese', which usually means being overweight by 100 pounds (man) or 80 pounds (woman) with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40+.

Alternatively, bariatric surgery may be appropriate if you are 80 pounds overweight and have a serious obesity-related condition like type 2 diabetes or life-threatening cardio-pulmonary problems such as severe sleep apnea or obesity-related heart disease.

Hospitalization Before Undergoing Bariatric Surgery

Some people who are suffering from extremely severe obesity (End Stage obesity syndrome) may have to be hospitalized before undergoing bariatric surgery in order to lower the risks of surgery.

Bariatric Surgery and Patient Attitude

The higher the motivation of patients to lose weight, and manage the post-operative requirements of dietary modification and behavioral therapy, the more successful Bariatric surgery is likely to be, in solving their obesity and weight problems. This may influence the selection of candidates for bariatric surgery.

Cost of Bariatric Weight Loss Surgery

Bariatric gastrointestinal surgical operations cost about $25,000 or more, although insurers are slowly beginning to accept that this kind of weight loss surgery can deliver powerful medical benefits that will save them money in the long run, especially where convention weight loss remedies have consistently failed to reduce obesity.

Inform Yourself About Bariatric Surgery

Do not believe everything you read about bariatric surgery. Talk with patients who have undergone this form of weight loss surgery. Find out about bariatric surgery yourself. Find out about the risks and what's involved.

 

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