Pros and Cons of Bariatric Surgery
Maybe you are one of the growing number of modern people who suffer from obesity. Perhaps you have tried overcoming this condition with physician-assisted dieting, exercise, even tried some of the new weight-loss drugs on the market. You have a BMI level of over 35. It could be time to consider one of the various types of gastric surgery that are available. What do you have to gain? What are the risks involved?
In order to qualify for bariatric surgery you must fall between the ages of 18 and 60, with a BMI of usually over 40 but as low as thirty in some cases. You must have seriously tried to lose weight through all of the more traditional methods such as diet and exercise for a long period of time.
Surgery for weight loss can be costly, somewhere in the region of US$15,000 – $35,000. The good news here is that if you really do need the surgery and have a physician’s recommendation then your insurance will probably cover it. This applies also to people on Medicare. Check with your insurance provider or Medicare for more details.
The most obvious benefit of bariatric surgery is rapid weight loss. By undergoing these procedures you will also lower your risk of heart and bone disease, diabetes, sleep apnea and other symptoms which accompany being seriously overweight. Blood pressure will probably go down, as will cholesterol levels. Your tendencies towards depression or even suicide will decrease, and you may gain a new level of confidence with your slimmer figure.
Like all surgeries, however, you must be prepared for the inherent risks. You .may have to remain in hospital after the procedure. You may develop allergic reactions to certain medicines. Diarrhea and bloating have been known to occur in post-gastric surgery patients. Hernias and pneumonia are also very rare after effects. The mortality rate is extremely low, with only 0.2% of people who have undergone bariatric surgery succumbing to death. It is suspected that these people went to physicians who were underqualified or underexperienced. A natural concern when considering which type of surgery to undergo would be whether the condition of obesity could possibly return in spite of the most diligent efforts at dieting, exercise etc. These are all matters which should be discussed individually and in detail with your surgeon before deciding to proceed.
After having had any type of gastric surgery you are required to adhere to strict nutrition guidelines. You will be referred to a post-surgical nutrition education specialist who will design an individual program for you. You will need to learn to adapt your exercise program to keep a balance in your body mass. This would benefit from the support of a personal trainer, who can design and monitor your own exercise regime. This is probably best achieved by using the services of a local gymnasium.
This may involve some heartache and work but can be worth the effort when you consider the massive improvement in your quality of life.