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Bariatric Surgery: A Life-Changing Decision

Bariatric surgery is not for people who have given up trying to lose weight through healthy lifestyle choices. On the contrary, weight-loss surgery can be the first step in a lifelong commitment to healthy eating and regular physical activity.

For most bariatric surgery candidates, any weight-loss surgery will prove to be a great aid to making healthy lifestyle changes,” says David Provost, M.D., F.A.C.S., bariatric surgeon on the medical staff at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Denton. “We offer multiple surgical options that can provide long-term weight loss, correct many of the problems associated with obesity and improve longevity. I have a decade of experience performing laparoscopic gastric bypass and revising prior weight-loss surgeries to help people achieve their goals.”

Bariatric surgery can help patients lose more than 100 pounds of excess weight and improve medical conditions, including diabetes, hypertension, high cholesterol and sleep apnea, according to a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. If you would like to pursue bariatric surgery options for weight loss, educational programs and one-on-one consultations with surgeons, Texas Health Denton can help you determine the right procedure for you.

“In the first interview with any patient, the most important thing is making sure he or she understands the benefits and limitations of any weight-loss operation,” says Curtis Mosier, M.D., general surgeon on the medical staff at Texas Health Denton. “Candidates for surgery also meet with our coordinator, Judy Spira, R.N., C.B.N., Ph.D., and with a dietitian. When all parties understand what is required, we can schedule surgery.”

The Bariatric Program at Texas Health Denton anticipates receiving the Center of Excellence designation by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery in the near future. This distinction will highlight surgeons’ experience in exceeding patients’ expectations for excellence through the following procedures:

• Roux-en-Y gastric bypass — This procedure has been performed for more than 40 years and now can be done laparoscopically through half-inch incisions. Weight loss is achieved by limiting the quantity and absorption of food a patient consumes. Lifelong vitamin supplementation is required.

• Adjustable gastric band — Through this operation, weight loss is achieved by inserting an adjustable band around the upper portion of the stomach. Regular adjustments, which do not require surgery, are needed whenever a weight-loss plateau is reached.

Before you discuss your candidacy for bariatric surgery with a qualified physician, this list of criteria by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services will help you determine whether or not you are a good candidate. Consider scheduling a consultation if you have:

• A body mass index (BMI) of 40 or greater (men more than 100 pounds overweight or women more than 80 pounds overweight) or a BMI between 35 and 39.9, in addition to one or more medical conditions, such as Type 2 diabetes, heart disease or obstructive sleep apnea

• Clearance for surgery

• The ability to participate in long-term follow-up care and treatment

• An understanding of the procedure and the lifelong lifestyle changes required for success

For more information about bariatric services at Texas Health Denton, call 1-877-THR-WELL (1-877-847-9355).

(Fall/Winter 2009)

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