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It is usually treated as the last resort after conventional means to lose weight (diet control and physical exercise) have failed.
Going for bariatric surgical procedures is a matter of personal choice and most people approach their surgeons with the sole aim of living a healthy and disease-free life. One has to be mentally prepared to undergo bariatric surgery.
Having an interactive session with the concerned bariatric surgeon will help you make a more informed decision based on your individual needs. Know that surgery alters the body permanently and in no case should be chosen hastily.
Advantages of Bariatric Surgery
1. Weight Loss
The major effect of any bariatric procedure is weight loss. With a forced calorie restriction coupled with exercise, the patient loses up to 60% of their excess weight.
2. Reduction in Stomach’s Holding Capacity
Bariatric surgery encompasses reducing the size of the stomach in some procedures, and modifying the intestines in others, in order to decrease their food holding capacity and change the way calories are absorbed in the body.
3. Greater Chances of Resolution of Co-morbidities
Some of the benefits of bariatric surgery include getting rid of illnesses such as high cholesterol, sleep apnea, high blood pressure, and other related conditions.
Who is an Ideal Candidate
To begin with, your Body Mass index (BMI) will help define whether you should consider undergoing a surgery. The rule is simple. You might be needing a weight loss surgery if you have a:
- BMI of 40 or above
- BMI of 35 or above with comorbidities viz diabetes, hypertension, etc.
- In exceptional cases, a BMI of 30 or above may also qualify
Ask the bariatric surgeon all possible questions and discuss the available options such as Sleeve Gastrectomy and Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass, to name a few. What method is suggested will depend upon a multiplicity of factors such as:
- Body weight and BMI
- Age of the candidate
- Associated co-morbidities
- Capacity to integrate changes pre and post-op
Negative Effects of Bariatric Surgery
Obesity can be detrimental to one’s health in the long run as it slowly affects different organs of the body and harms them to a point beyond repair, if not treated early.
Bariatric surgery is an effective way to reduce the incidence of the same, however, at the cost of nutritional deficiency. So taking vitamins and nutritional supplements is an integral part of post-bariatric life.
Potential Risks Related to Bariatric Surgery
It will also be beneficial to acquaint yourself with the potential risks and complications of gastric bypass surgery or any other weight loss surgery before you take the plunge.
For best results, follow the instructions given by the bariatric surgeon religiously. Going under the knife is a life-altering decision and requires long-term devotion. Note that surgery alone cannot work wonders and it has to be supplemented with mindful eating habits and regular physical activity to avoid weight regain. Incorporate simple, yet powerful changes in your lifestyle for a better future!