Here, you’ll find a summary of frequently asked questions on Weight Loss Surgery. If you have additional questions please call 512-544-LIFE (5433) or attend a weight loss seminar in your area.
Morbid obesity is a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or more, which is roughly equal to 100 pounds or more over ideal body weight. The disease of morbid obesity interferes with basic physical functions such as breathing or walking. Long-term effects of the disease include shorter life expectancy, serious health consequences in the form of weight-related health problems such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease.
The causes of morbid obesity are multiple and complex. Despite conventional wisdom, it is not simply a result of overeating. Research has shown that, in many cases, significant, underlying causes of morbid obesity are genetic, environmental, and social. Studies have demonstrated that, once the problem is established, efforts such as dieting and exercise programs have a limited ability to provide effective long-term relief.
The presence of one or more medical conditions or diseases that is caused by or related to obesity, such as type II diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea.
Weight Loss Surgery, or Bariatric Surgery, is designed to make the stomach smaller so the patient feels satisfied with less food. It is intended for people who have a Body Mass Index of 40 or greater, or a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 35 or greater and one or more co-morbid condition.
BMI is a measure used to index a person’s height and weight. BMI allows healthcare professionals and patients to better understand health issues associated with specific weight classifications, such as obesity and morbid obesity.
It varies from person to person. Generally, the hospital stay is one day for a gastric band or sleeve gastrectomy, and two days for a laparoscopic gastric bypass.
It is recommended that women wait at least 18 months after the surgery before a pregnancy. Approximately 18 months postoperatively, your body should be fairly stable, and you should be able to carry a normally nourished fetus. Consult your surgeon as you plan for pregnancy.
Many people think weight loss surgery will be followed by a long and painful recovery period. However, most patients report experiencing only discomfort and soreness rather than pain. Recovery does, however, vary from patient to patient.
For people suffering from morbid obesity, weight loss surgery can be a powerful tool. For the surgery to be effective long term, it must be used properly. Through lifestyle changes, such as regular exercise and a healthy food plan, many patients are able to make a long-term change for better health.
Weight loss surgery is not a quick fix. It’s an ongoing journey toward transforming your health through lifestyle changes. After surgery, you will feel satisfied and fuller with less food. Positive changes in your body, your weight, and your health will occur if you maintain the diet and exercise routines recommended by your bariatric program.
Your ability to resume presurgery levels of activity depends on your physical condition, the nature of the activity, and the type of weight loss surgery you had. Many patients return to normal levels of activity within three to six weeks of surgery.
Most insurance carriers do offer weight loss surgery coverage. However, your individual policy determines what procedures are covered, if at all, and what expected out-of-pocket expenses will be. Bariatric surgical practices have insurance specialists which will help you navigate the questions of your policy coverage and expectations.
The cost of weight loss surgery varies depending on your medical insurance. St. David’s Bariatric Center currently accepts most major insurance carriers as well as Medicare. To learn more about the costs involved, call your insurance company to verify coverage and learn about your financial responsibility.