What is Bariatric Surgery for Obesity (Basics, Complications, Cost)?

Bariatric surgery

Bariatric surgery is an option for the morbidly obese.

Bariatric surgery or weight loss surgery is done for people who are overweight, obese or morbidly obese. This surgery is performed only when there is an immediate indication of danger to life and for those who are facing life threatening obesity related issues. Some of the health issues that are related or aggravated due to obesity include cardiovascular diseases, renal failures, high blood pressure, stroke, asthma or diabetes.

Basics of Bariatric Surgery

The main aim of performing bariatric surgery is to reduce amount of food intake. Various methods of bariatric surgical treatments are used and these include:
  • Vertical banded gastroplasty
  • Laporoscopic gastric banding
  • Gastrointestinal bypass procedure
  • Biliopancreatic diversion with a duodenal switch
  • Vertical sleeve gastrectomy.

The ultimate consequence of bariatric treatment is to reduce the size of the stomach.

How to decide whether you are in need of a bariatric surgery?

The decision of performing a bariatric surgery is based on BMI calculations, which will tell you whether you are overweight (25 to 29.9) or obese (30 to 39.9) or morbidly obese (>40). Even a reduction of at least 10 to 20% of your actual weight is encouraging and helpful in curbing and reducing obesity . However, one should bear in mind that resorting to bariatric surgery is a lifetime commitment as this may require you to make some lifestyle changes.

Complications Associated with Bariatric Surgery

This surgery like other surgical treatments may have the following complications:

  • Infection at the point of incision and the regions where the bands and staples are being placed (post-operative infections).
  • Pulmonary embolism (blockage of blood flow into the lungs).
  • Peritonitis (leakage into other parts of the body from the stomach).
  • Loosened staples.
  • Stomal stenosis (narrowing of the passage from the stomach to the intestines).
  • Dumping syndrome.

While these are the major complications that can occur following a bariatric surgery, some of the minor complications that can cause distress and irritation include vomiting, nausea, sweating, fainting, general weakness and diarrhea. Hernia, ulcers, gall stone formation and nutritional deficiencies are some of the other concerns. Therefore, you are advised to be regular and punctual in following your physician’s post-operative plans.

Cost of the Bariatric Surgery

The cost of bariatric surgery covers include pre-operative standard lab procedures that a patient has to undergo like X-ray, anesthesia, hospital facility and surgeon’s consultation fees to the post-operative cost, till recovery from surgery. Besides, the cost of bariatric surgery also depends on the type of surgery that you are going to face. Hence, the total cost involved might be around USD $17,000 to $30, 000.  But this is not the end of the expense list, for you will spend some more money during the follow ups too.

Are you planning to undergo bariatric surgery? Have you already undergone bariatric surgery? Then you should leave your comments and share your experiences of how good you feel after a bariatric surgery and how encouraging this article was? Find here some of the clinical trials for bariatric surgery, which will make you feel more confident to face the surgery than before.

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