Frequently Asked Questions
What is bariatrics?
Bariatrics is the discipline involving the study and treatment of obesity.
What is obesity and the Body Mass Index (BMI)?
Obesity is an excess amount of body fat. It is often defined by the body mass index (BMI), which is a measure of a person’s height and weight. The index is used by healthcare professionals to define obesity, since studies find that BMI correlates to the amount of fat a person has. This is true for most people, but not all. BMI measurements for athletes, pregnant women and the elderly do not follow these guidelines. A BMI of 18.5 to 24.9 is considered normal size: 25 to 29.9 is overweight; 30 to 34.9 is Class I or moderate obesity; 35 to 39.9 is Class II or serious obesity; and a BMI of 40 or higher is Class III or clinically severe obesity (sometimes also known as morbid obesity).
What causes obesity?
Obesity is caused by a number of factors. These include but are not limited to:
- Excessive calorie intake
- Sedentary lifestyle
- Chronic sleep loss
- Modern agriculture techniques
- Processed foods
- Trans fats
- High fructose corn syrup
- Specific types of pesticides and pollutants
- Stress and emotional distress
- Drugs and certain medications
- Weight gain can also lead to obesity by causing biological changes to occur in the body that make us more susceptible to fat accumulation and further weight gain.
What are the consequences of obesity?
Obesity reduces your longevity, primarily because of additional health problems that can occur because of it. These include: type II diabetes, high blood pressure, heart and vascular disease, sleep apnea, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, osteoarthritis, acid reflux disease, gastritis and other gastrointestinal disorders, asthma and other respiratory conditions, a weakened immune system, oxidative stress, intracranial hypertension, back problems, infertility, urinary stress incontinence, depression, anxiety and more.
What is clinically severe obesity?
Obesity becomes “morbid” when it reaches the point where it significantly increases the risk of one or more obesity-related health conditions to occur, which can lead to physical disability or even death.
What are the benefits of surgery?
Bariatric surgery (gastric and sleeve) can lead to massive weight loss. Long term, you can expect to lose a minimum of 50% of the excess weight and often much more. Along with increasing your lifespan, you’ll find that your chances of serious complications such as diabetes, heart disease, vascular disease, lipid abnormalities, blood pressure, sleep apnea and other sleep disorders, asthma, fatty liver disease, osteoarthritis, back pain, intracranial hypertension, urinary stress incontinence, GERD and other GI disorders, the risk for cancer, fertility, depression and anxiety are greatly reduced because of your surgery and corresponding weight loss.
Will my insurance cover bariatric surgery?
All insurance coverage is different, so this depends on your individual insurance plan. We will ask you to bring your driver’s license and insurance card with you to your first appointment with your surgeon. This will allow us to review your insurance plan and assess your coverage.
What kind of foods can I eat after surgery?
Most people who have had either a gastric bypass or sleeve gastrectomy procedure can eat all the foods they enjoyed before the surgery, but in smaller portions. With gastric bypass, some individuals will experience what is commonly known as “Dumping Syndrome” which causes extreme discomfort when you consume food or beverages that are high in sugar. As such, you’ll want to avoid these in your diet. “Dumping Syndrome” does not occur after a sleeve gastrectomy, however, it may result in more significant lifestyle and dietary restrictions compared to gastric bypass. It is important to follow the dietary guidelines your doctor gives you to ensure your success with both procedures.
Will I ever gain weight after surgery?
There are many factors at play with obesity. The disease itself can cause biological changes within your body that can make you more susceptible to weight regain. However, it is extremely rare for you to regain all the weight you lost and with proper nutrition and lifestyle changes, you should be able to keep your weight off for a lifetime if you have the desire and motivation.