Obesity is a progressive condition that can be life-threatening. People who are overweight or obese have an increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, sleep apnea, respiratory issues, gallbladder disease, osteoarthritis, infertility, depression, and some types of cancer. It's currently estimated that obesity results in around 400,000 deaths every year. In cases of severe obesity, it's difficult to treat with just diet and exercise. Only about 1 out of 20 obese people find success this way. This is where bariatric surgery can help.
Bariatric surgery is best suited for those who are severely obese, especially people who haven't been successful in losing weight with other methods or developed health problems due to obesity. People who have a body mass index (BMI) over 40 (usually around 100 pounds overweight for men or 80 pounds overweight for women) may be good potential candidates for bariatric surgery. If a person has a BMI of 35-40 and has Type 2 diabetes or other potentially life-threatening health conditions, they may be candidates for surgery as well.
Bariatric surgery works by greatly restricting the stomach's ability to hold food, and by changing the process of digestion in some cases. During the surgery, part of the stomach is closed off to form a new smaller stomach pouch, making it unable to hold nearly as much food as it previously did. In malabsorptive bariatric surgeries, stomach restriction combines with a partial bypass of the small intestine. This procedure directly connects the stomach to the lower part of the small intestine, skipping the part of the digestive tract that absorbs calories and nutrients.
Bariatric surgery is only the start of the weight loss journey. Patients have to be fully committed to making a lifestyle change that includes a healthy diet and regular exercise. If a person is dedicated to losing weight and getting healthy, they'll maximize the benefits of this surgery.
Feel free to email us regarding any scheduling or general questions!