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Am I a Candidate for Bariatric Surgery?
You qualify for bariatric surgery, if:
- Your body mass index (BMI) is equal to or above 40 (overweight by 100 pounds in case of men and 80 pounds in case of women)
- You have a BMI ranging between 31 and 40, in addition to a co-morbidity of obesity, such as Type 2 diabetes, cardiac problems, high cholesterol and sleep apnea
- You have tried but failed losing weight through conventional means, such as diet and exercise
- You are motivated enough to lose weight, and are aware of the risks associated with gastric sleeve, bypass surgery or any other weight loss surgery.
What You Need to Know
Usually, bariatric surgery is an irreversible procedure that requires utmost commitment from the individual who needs to be strong enough to deal with it, especially in terms of the transition that arises after it. It is advised when there is no other alternative left to lose weight. Therefore, you are candidate for gastric sleeve or bypass surgery if you:
- Have been obese for approximately 5 years
- Tried to lose weight for two years through other measures
- Are not addicted to smoking or alcohol
- Do not require blood thinning medications frequently
- Are not less than 18 years of age or more than 65 years (varies)
Qualification for surgery also depends on the health history of the patient and the practices followed by the surgeon. Some surgeons accept patients with a BMI of more than 30 and treat them with gastric balloon or even gastric banding (provided certain co-morbidities exist).
The rule is simple – the benefits of weight loss surgery must outweigh the risks associated with it.
Psychological Preparation for Bariatric Surgery
A study2 conducted on patients to examine their mental preparation for bariatric surgery revealed that:
- Majority of them were emotional eaters
- Many of them did not make a sincere effort towards the diet programs
- Quite a few of them had unrealistic expectations from the surgery or were not fully aware of the potential risks
- Some of them did not have social support to cope with the changes post-op.
Hence, you may be disqualified during psychological evaluation if you fall in any of the above categories and do nothing to control it. If even after being assigned a weight loss program before surgery, you gain weight, your bariatric surgery may not see the light of day.
Financial Considerations for Weight Loss Surgery
Bariatric surgery comes for a price. If you are unable to arrange funds well in time, you are bound to get disqualified.
- Many insurance providers have certain restrictions which makes it difficult for the holder to get funds released.
- They may not cover certain procedures or cover only parts of some.
- You may also have to be of a certain BMI for availing the cover
- It is better to check everything beforehand to avoid unpleasant circumstances later on.
- Here are a few options to finance your bariatric surgery.
Disqualification from Weight Loss Surgery
There are certain co-morbidities that disqualify you as a candidate for weight loss surgery. These include:
- Mental problems such as bipolar disorder
- Certain autoimmune diseases
- Severe pancreatitis
- Any other ailment that affects the GI tract
Remember that many surgeons do not accept individuals who have a BMI under 35, but it is not a good idea to increase your BMI just to get eligible for surgery. In fact, those with a severely high BMI are recommended certain lifestyle measures to reduce weight in order to avoid the occurrence of complications during surgery.
Our Client Experience
- Some of them had the gastric sleeve procedure even after having a BMI between 30-35.
- Most of them were denied surgery in the US due to low BMI (less than 35) and were happy with their decision to travel to Mexico for the same.
- The coordinator assisted them in finding out if they were eligible for surgery in a hassle-free manner.
- The concerned doctor helped our clients in deciding between gastric bypass or gastric sleeve based on the merits of each case.
- Goldwert, Lindsay. “FDA approves Lap-band weight loss surgery for less obese; Patients with BMI 30-35 now qualify.” Daily News, 2011, http://www.nydailynews.com/life-style/health/fda-approves-lap-band-weight-loss-surgery-obese-patients-bmi-30-35-qualify-article-1.121237
- Arehart-Treichel, Joan. “Psychological Problems Disqualify Many Bariatric Surgery Candidates.” Psychiatric News – American Psychiatric Association, 2007, https://psychnews.psychiatryonline.org/doi/full/10.1176/pn.42.23.0024a
- Mayo Clinic Staff. “Gastric bypass surgery: Who is it for?” Mayo Clinic, 2017, https://www.mayoclinic.org/healthy-lifestyle/weight-loss/in-depth/gastric-bypass-surgery/art-20046318
Related Searches and Questions
- What qualifies you for weight loss surgery?
- How much overweight do you have to be to get the sleeve?
- Who is eligible for gastric sleeve?
- How much do you have to weigh to have a gastric sleeve?
- What disqualifies you from bariatric surgery?
- How overweight do you have to be to get gastric bypass?
It is now time to make the right choices!