When To Consider Bariatric Surgery For Weight Loss


According to a declaration by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity in the U.S. has reached epidemic proportions, with more than one third of the adult population being obese. As the push to increase awareness about obesity increases, there is a growing trend in which adults are working to reduce their weight.

While many people consider obesity to be an aesthetic issue, the truth is that the greatest threats from obesity are the health issues that are inextricably connected to it. Under most circumstances, making appropriate lifestyle changes in the areas of nutritional intake and fitness activity will be sufficient in assisting people in battling obesity; however, there are certain instances in which a person may be struggling with morbid obesity, or some other health condition, forcing them to seek a more invasive solution.

The Initial Consultation

There are times in which Bariatric surgery is the best solution to assist in weight loss; however, there are a number of variables that must be considered. When determining if Bariatric surgery is the right option, the first thing that a person should do is consult an expert at one of the top weight loss treatment centers to be advised on what the surgery entails, and what makes an ideal candidate. The initial consultation is the time to gather as much preliminary information about the procedure as possible. This is also a time to interview the specialists that will be determining the best approach to treating the obesity.

Getting Past a Common Misconception

There is a common misconception that anyone who decides that they want to lose weight can decide to have Bariatric surgery. The truth is that this type of surgery is not for everyone, and most reputable Bariatric surgeons will not perform the procedure on most people. This type of surgery is best suited for extreme cases of obesity in which typical weight loss modalities are not proving efficacious.

As a general rule of measure, there are certain obesity levels based on health that must be reached before more surgeons will consider performing this type of surgery on someone; these standards include:

  • A BMI of at least 40 if no negative health conditions exist,
  • A BMI of at least 35 if certain health conditions, such as diabetes or heart disease exists

There are also other considerations, such emotional and psychological stability, which can negatively impact the effectiveness of the surgery. Most surgeons will also want to know if the patient has attempted traditional methodologies for losing the weight, such as dieting and exercise.

Reasonable Expectations

Due to the success of Bariatric surgery, there has been a great deal of hype over the last several years, which has served to create some unrealistic expectations. Most surgeons will want to make sure that the patient has realistic expectations prior to agreeing to conduct the surgery.

Under the right condition, Bariatric surgery can be a life-saving procedure, but it is not a viable option for everyone. Working with an experienced and reputable surgeon will help determine when this type of procedure is right.

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