Bariatric Weight-Loss Surgery

The Different Ways to Help You Qualify for a Weight Loss Surgery

Dr. Jason F. Moy
Dr. Brian T. Chin
Daniel Roman
The Different Ways to Help You Qualify for a Weight Loss Surgery

Weight loss surgery, also known as bariatric surgery, is a procedure that can help people with obesity lose weight and improve their health. However, not everyone is eligible for this surgery. There are certain criteria that you must meet before you can undergo this operation. In this article, we will explain the requirements for weight loss surgery and how you can prepare yourself for the evaluation process.

Qualification Criteria for Weight Loss Surgery

Qualifying for weight loss surgery involves meeting specific medical and health-related criteria to ensure the procedure's safety and effectiveness. These criteria are carefully designed to identify individuals who will benefit the most from surgical intervention for weight management. While these criteria can vary depending on the type of surgery and the healthcare provider's guidelines, some common factors include:

  • Body Mass Index (BMI): Most weight loss surgery programs require a BMI of 40 or higher, or a BMI of 35 or higher with obesity-related health conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, or high blood pressure. BMI is a calculation that considers your weight in relation to your height. You can also calculate your BMI at home!
  • Failed Attempts at Non-Surgical Weight Loss: Candidates often need to demonstrate a history of unsuccessful attempts at non-surgical weight loss methods, such as dieting, exercise, and behavioral modifications. This highlights the surgery's role as a last-resort option when other avenues have been exhausted.
  • Health Conditions: Certain obesity-related health conditions can play a crucial role in qualification. These may include type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol, and more. Demonstrating that your weight is contributing to these conditions can strengthen your case for surgery.

Meeting these qualification criteria is an essential step in determining whether weight loss surgery is a suitable option for you.

The Different Ways to Improve Your Qualification Chances

Here are some tips you can follow to improve your chances of qualifying for a weight loss surgery.

Lower Your BMI

BMI, or body mass index, is a measure of your weight relative to your height. It is one of the main factors that determine your eligibility for bariatric surgery. According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), you may qualify for bariatric surgery if you have a BMI of 40 or higher, or a BMI of 35 or higher with serious health conditions due to obesity, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, or sleep apnea.

If you have a BMI of 30 or higher with type 2 diabetes that is difficult to manage, you may be a candidate for bariatric surgery as well. To lower your BMI, you need to lose some weight before the surgery. This can be done by following a healthy diet and exercise plan that is supervised by your doctor or a registered dietitian.

Losing weight before the surgery can also improve your outcome and reduce the risk of complications after the surgery.

Manage Your Comorbidities

Comorbidities are health conditions that are related to or worsened by obesity. Some common comorbidities include diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, sleep apnea, arthritis, and depression.

Having comorbidities can affect your qualification chances for bariatric surgery, as well as your recovery and long-term health after the surgery. Therefore, it is important to manage your comorbidities before the surgery. This can be done by taking your prescribed medications, following your doctor's advice, and making lifestyle changes that can improve your health.

For example, if you have diabetes, you need to monitor your blood sugar levels and follow a diabetic diet. If you have high blood pressure, you need to limit your salt intake and avoid smoking. If you have sleep apnea, you need to use a CPAP machine or other devices that can help you breathe better at night.

Complete the Required Evaluations

Before you can undergo bariatric surgery, you need to complete several evaluations that will assess your physical and mental readiness for the procedure. These evaluations may include a psychological evaluation, nutritional evaluation, weight loss plan, medical clearance, and pre-surgical imaging.

By proactively addressing these aspects of your health and lifestyle, you'll not only enhance your qualification chances for weight loss surgery but also set a foundation for successful post-operative recovery and long-term weight management. Remember that your healthcare provider is your best resource for guidance on your individual journey toward improved health.

At BASS Bariatric Surgery Center, we understand the complexities of obesity and the journey toward a healthier life. Our team of skilled doctors specializes in treating obesity and weight-related health conditions. With a patient-centered approach and a commitment to your well-being, we're here to guide you through every step of the process.

If you're ready to explore your options for weight loss surgery or learn more about how we can help you achieve your health goals, contact us today. Your journey to a healthier, happier you begins here.

About The Author

Daniel Roman, Content Writer

Daniel Roman is a Digital Content Writer at BASS Medical Group. He received his Masters in Journalism from UC Berkeley in 2021. Daniel has published multiple newspaper articles covering public health issues. His latest was a magazine cover story on pandemics and diseases that he co-wrote with Dr. Elena Conis, a historian of medicine, public health, and the environment.

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