Q: What is bariatric surgery?
A: Bariatric surgery is a technique to achieve long-term weight loss for morbid obesity. Bariatric surgery is not a cosmetic procedure such as liposuction, but rather is a surgical procedure used to decrease the size of the stomach and/or gastric reservoir to safely modulate eating behavior. There are several different types of bariatric weight-loss surgical procedures, but they are known collectively as "bariatric surgery."
Q: What is morbid obesity?
A: Morbid obesity, or clinically severe obesity, is defined as a condition in which the level of obesity greatly interferes with normal activities or bodily functions. Medically speaking, this correlates to having a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or greater or being an average of 100 pounds or more overweight. Unfortunately, non-surgical methods such as anorectic medications, diet modification and exercise aren't always successful for long-term weight reduction.
Q: What makes one eligible for weight-loss surgery?
A: Through consultation with your physician, qualified bariatric surgeons on the medical staff at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas will determine if you are a candidate for weight-loss surgery. However, in order to be considered, patients generally must:
- Be at least 18 years old
- Have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 greater, be an average of 100 pounds overweight, or have a BMI of more than 35 with one or more additional health problem such as diabetes, sleep apnea, hypertension, dyslipidemia, infertility and Pickwickian syndrome
- Have had only short-term success at serious and multiple attempts to lose weight
- Be committed to making substantial changes in eating habits and lifestyle, and to long-term follow up with your surgeon
- Be a non-smoker and drink alcohol in moderation
Q: Does Texas Health Dallas offer weight-loss surgery services?
A: Yes. Currently, Texas Health Dallas and the physicians on its medical staff offer gastric bypass surgery and gastric banding. In addition, several services and specialties offer resources specific to bariatric patients' needs, including pre- and post-op support services and a Bariatric Exercise Program at our fitness center.
Q: What are the dietary adjustments necessary with bariatric surgery?
A: Both gastric bypass and laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding surgeries require some dietary adjustments for weight loss success.
Q: What are some of the possible complications from bariatric surgery?
A: Both gastric bypass and gastric banding surgeries have possible complications.
Q: What kind of results can I expect after surgery?
A: Results vary forgastric bypass and adjustable gastric banding surgeries. For more information, consult with your physician.
Q: Are patient education sessions offered if I'm interested in learning more about this surgery?
A. Yes, the hospital and surgeons on the medical staff who perform these surgeries offer education classes that can help you learn more about weight loss surgery.
Q: Does Texas Health Dallas offer a support group?
A: The Bariatric Nurse Coordinator guides and supports the patient through their hospital stay. When the patient leaves the hospital they will have access to sessions in nutrition, a bariatric exercise program and support group sessions. The Bariatic Nurse Coordinator helps direct the patient to these services prior to leaving the hospital.
Q: What is the process if I want to have this surgery?
A: Only a physician can determine if you are a candidate for bariatric surgery. Please call one of the physicians listed to schedule an appointment to discuss whether weight loss surgery might be right for you.
Q: Once I decide this is something I want to do, how long before I can have surgery?
A: The entire process from the initial point of contact to the day of surgery can vary from person to person. The length of time depends on how quickly you schedule and complete any necessary appointments and testing. The time before surgery is also affected by the insurance authorization process. The entire process takes between one to three months on average. Please understand each person's needs are different.
Q: Are there other resources where I can find additional information?
A: Visit these websites: American Society for Bariatric Surgery, National Institutes of Health, and American Obesity Association.