Americans have a problem. Sixty-six percent of all adults in the United States are overweight or obese. The rate of obesity has doubled for adults and tripled for children over the last twenty years. Heart disease, high blood pressure, and diabetes are all outcomes of being overweight. Seven out of every 10 deaths in the United States are the result of chronic diseases. By 2005, 78% of people over 55 years old had at least one chronic disease. In addition to the above mentioned chronic diseases, obesity can also contribute to depression, stroke, arthritis, and cancer.
Given the grim reality of the proportion of obesity in the United States, many Americans are giving serious consideration to weight-loss surgery.
Questions To Ask Yourself Before Seeking Weight-Loss Surgery
Prior to seeking out a surgeon, there are some questions you may wish to consider to subjectively assess yourself as a candidate for weight-loss surgery.
What is your goal? How much weight do you wish to lose? Your body mass index must be above 40, the threshold for extreme obesity. If you body mass index is between 35 and 40, you may still be considered for surgery if you have a chronic health problem.
What other methods have you tried to lose weight? Have you tried diets and exercise and not been successful? Have you tried these methods a number of times? Approval for weight-loss surgery is dependent in part on this criteria.
Do you have other medical conditions? Some health problems can complicate surgery such as blood clots and nutritional deficiencies. Alcohol abuse also can be problematic.
How motivated are you? Success after bariatric surgery is dependent on a disciplined change in lifestyle. Permanent programs of diet and exercise will be required as well as a regiment of vitamin supplements. Are you prepared for long-term dedication?
Are you in good emotional health? Certain psychological conditions can compromise the benefits of weight-loss surgery. For example, a person suffering from depression may be asked to address his or her condition prior to having bariatric surgery.
Does your health care plan cover gastric bypass surgery? Weight-loss surgery can be expensive, and your insurance carrier will want you meet certain criteria.
Finding the Help You Need for Gastric Bypass Surgery
There are things you need to do to better ensure your success as you search for a bariatric program. The first thing is to exercise some patience and find a good weight-loss surgery program. Chances are you are anxious to begin, but your situation is probably not a emergency. A good weight-loss surgery program will give information about the different options for weight-loss surgery, as well as make direct conversation about post-surgery programs of diet and exercise.
Explore your weight-loss surgery options and do some homework. One bariatric procedure may be more effective for you than some other. Have one or more consultations and do some research to determine what is best for you.
Know your bariatric surgeon's history. Ask him about his level of bariatric surgery experience and his level of success. You will want a good bariatric surgeon.
Inquire about the level of support you will receive post-weight-loss surgery. Does the bariatric surgeon's program have support groups, a nutritionist, or a physical therapist. A bit of help after your weight-loss surgery can stretch a long way in ensuring a lifetime weight-loss.
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You can read about my decision to have weight loss surgery back in 2003 and my journey to maintain a lifetime of obesity disease management since that time. My wish is to help you on your own journey of lifetime obesity disease management with shareposts along the way to help you navigate that journey successfully.
Published On: March 23, 2012