The National Institute of Health (NIH) says that weight loss surgery candidates should have a body mass index (BMI) equal to or greater than 40. Alternatively, the patient may have an obesity-related medical concern and a BMI equal to or greater than 30. Additionally, in the event that a patient has failed to lose weight over a long period of time with multiple attempts, weight loss surgery may be deemed appropriate.
We do offer bariatric surgery for patients who want to pay cash. Please call our office for further information.
It is common for patients to feel some discomfort after surgery. However, taking oral analgesic medication for several days post-surgery is usually sufficient. Please note that operations are typically performed laparoscopically, which generally reduces post both post-operative discomfort and recovery time because a smaller area is affected compared to more invasive surgeries.
Most patients are able to leave the clinic a day after surgery is performed and many can walk away hours after surgery is performed. After release, it is important that patients rest for a predetermined period of time.
Loose skin is common for those who have lost a significant amount of weight; however, oftentimes this is temporary. Several factors may determine the extent and duration of hanging skin, including genetics, smoking and exercise habits, age, and the amount of weight that was lost.
If the patient is interested in a body contouring after a period of at least 18 months to remove sagging skin, plastic surgery may then be considered. Doing so beforehand could affect the healing process and could also result in plastic surgery that simply is not needed.
Yes. Because of the massive dietary change that usually follows weight loss surgery, vitamin supplements are usually necessary to ensure that the patient is getting all of the important nutrients – at least during the initial months following a bariatric procedure. Afterward, patients are expected to visit the clinic every three months for the first year to make sure they are meeting their nutritional needs. Later, two check-ups per year are needed.
Calorie intake will drop considerably after patients undergo bariatric surgery. As a potential side effect of this, hair loss may occur three to six months after surgery. This is usually a temporary effect. With proper nutrition, a patient’s hair often returns to normal without long term side effects.
Walking is encouraged immediately after a patient wakes up, and mild exercise is usually acceptable during the first month following surgery. Patients should not engage in heavy lifting for at least four weeks after surgery. Some patients may recover more or less quickly than others, but all exercise should be undertaken cautiously.
This will depend largely on patients’ professions. High-intensity jobs or jobs requiring a great deal of physical activity are likely to be unsafe for a full month before returning. This is definitely the case for jobs that require heavy lifting, which should be delayed four weeks after a procedure at a minimum. On the other hand, patients who do not need to lift heavy objects or work in a physically active or stressful environment may be able to return in as little as one to two weeks. It is important that patients consult with their doctor about their return to work and that they are able to remain hydrated during work hours.
It is recommended that patients wait at least 12 to 18 months after bariatric surgery before becoming pregnant. After this period of time, there is less risk of C-section, stillbirths, and miscarriages. Again, it is important to consult with the doctor if a pregnancy is in any way likely.
Very Important Note: Weight loss surgery and the accompanying lifestyle changes often lead to increased fertility in women following bariatric surgery. Furthermore, birth control methods that rely on altering women’s hormones are unlikely to work as well in women who are either obese or have lost a significant amount of weight.