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Frequently Asked Questions About Weight Loss Surgery


Why Weight Loss Surgery?

The latest statistics from the National Health Institute shows that more than 50 percent of the adult population in the United States is overweight. Current statistics reveal that nearly 25 percent of the population is obese.

A body mass index (BMI) above 40 means about 100 pounds overweight for men and 80 pounds overweight for women, which indicates that a person is severely obese and therefore a candidate for surgery. Surgery also may be an option for people with a BMI between 35 and 40 who suffer from life threatening cardiopulmonary problems, for example: severe sleep apnea or obesity-related heart disease, or diabetes. However, as in other treatments for obesity, successful results depend mainly on motivation and behavior. Contact us for more information regarding weight loss.

Body Mass Index Calculator

A Body Mass Index calculator works in a pretty simple manner. It takes your height and weight and determines if - in general - your weight is in a healthy range for your height.

Measure your height (including feet and inches) while standing barefoot, then weigh yourself.

Height - feet: inches:
Weight - pounds:
Your Body Mass Index:

BMI Ranges:

< 20 very good, perhaps even underweight
20-25 healthy
> 25 at risk

Overweight: BMI of 25-30
Obese: BMI of 30 or more

Is weight loss surgery something I should consider?

Weight loss surgery is commonly recommended by physicians (and approved for coverage by insurance companies) when the perceived risks of continued obesity are greater than the risks of having surgery. In general, the risks of obesity are considered to outweigh the risks of surgery when a patient is 100 pounds or more overweight or has a Body Mass Index (BMI) * of 40 or greater.

Obesity has many adverse effects on your medical and psychological well being.
People who are m
orbidly obese have a higher incidence of:
* Low self esteem
* Depression
* Self-hatred
* Anger

Obesity can lead to premature death and is responsible for 300,000 deaths per year. The morbidly obese die 10 to 15 years earlier than the rest of the population.

When can I go back to work after the weight loss surgery? This will depend on the type of weight loss surgery you have and the type of job you do. For obesity surgery, most patients can proceed with their regular activities after about 6 weeks. If you work in a low-impact office, you may be able to go back to work after 3 weeks. If you are a construction worker, you may be able to go back after 6 weeks. Each patient heals on their own schedule.
What kind of foods will I be able to eat and drink? Immediately after the operation, you will be placed on a strict menu of liquid foods and a diet plan while you heal. A list of foods you will be able to eat will be provided, along with instructions on when you begin eating them. Many patients become lactose intolerant after the operation. You will be able to eat whatever you want, but in small portions. Even so, your appetite will feel satiated, and you will not feel hungry.
How fast will I lose the weight after stomach stapling, and is it dangerous? Most of the weight will be lost in the first six months. Some patients have even been able to loose weight for up to two years after the surgery. This surgery is a tool to help you loose weight, and exercise and diet will help you achieve your ideal body weight. Losing weight quickly is generally not a dangerous procedure if you maintain your vitamin supplements and diet.
Who is not a Candidate for Surgery?

People at the extreme ages of life, women who are pregnant, alcoholics, drug addicts, and patients with certain psychological diagnoses, are generally not eligible for weight loss surgery.

Who Will Benefit the Most From Surgery?

Those patients who are unhappy with their current condition and who are most willing to make a lifestyle change. A life-long commitment to all aspects of treatment is necessary. Regular exercise, dietary discipline, support group participation, and occasional office visits with your doctor are important components of post-operative success.

If you are obese, there are several key factors to keep in mind when making a decision as to managing your weight. Bariatric surgery is the only proven long-term method of weight loss for individuals 100 or more pounds overweight. Diet, exercise and behavior modification result in only a 10 percent long-term weight loss.

Patients are able to maintain their weight loss after surgery. Studies show that:
The average weight loss after obesity surgery is:

  • 75% of excess weight after 1-2 years
  • 55-65% of excess weight after 5-10 years
  • The average weight loss after surgery is: 60% average excess weight loss after 5-6 years


Two Ways Surgical Procedures Promote Weight Loss

Surgical procedures promote weight loss by decreasing food intake. Operations limit the amount of food the stomach can hold by closing off part of the stomach. These operations also promote weight loss by delaying the emptying of the stomach by causing food to be poorly digested and absorbed. In the gastric bypass procedure, a surgeon makes a direct connection from the stomach to a lower segment of the small intestine, bypassing the duodenum and some of the jejunum. Immediately following surgery, most patients lose weight rapidly and continue to do so until 12 - 18 months after the procedure. Surgery improves most obesity-related conditions. For example, in one study, blood sugar levels of most obese patients with diabetes returned to normal after surgery. Contact us for more information about your options.



Lou Harold, M.D.
1173 Blackwood Ave
Ocoee, Fl 34761-4581

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