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Is weight loss surgery right for you?
A decision to pursue weight loss surgery is a very personal and complex matter. It takes a great deal of thought and consideration. As you consider the risks and benefits to weight loss surgery, it's important to remember that weight loss surgery is not a cure-all or "silver bullet." It's simply one of many TOOLS used in the battle against obesity.

Some other important considerations for all weight loss surgery:
Surgery should not be considered until all other options have been evaluated
Weight loss surgery is not cosmetic surgery
The decision to elect surgical treatment requires a serious assessment of the risk and benefit to you
The success of weight loss surgery is dependent upon your long-term lifestyle changes in diet, exercise and behavior modification
Problems may arise after surgery that may require re-operation
In a survey of over 10,000 patients, the mortality rate for weight loss surgery was 0.3%. This is higher with some types of surgery.
 
According to the National Institute of Health, weight loss surgery may be an option for:
People with BMI scores greater than 40, OR
People who have a BMI greater than 35 with significant co-morbidities AND can show that dietary attempts at weight control have been ineffective.
 
If you fit the profile for surgery, your honest answers to the following questions may help you further decide whether weight loss surgery is right for you.
Are you unlikely to lose weight successfully with non-surgical measures?
Are you well informed about the different surgical procedures and the effects of treatment?
Are you determined to lose weight and improve your health?
Are you aware of how your life may change after the operation?
Are you aware of the potential for serious complications, dietary restrictions and occasional failures?
 
It's important to remember that there are no guarantees for any method, including surgery, to produce and maintain weight loss. Success is possible only with maximum cooperation and commitment to behavioral change and medical follow-up - and this cooperation and commitment must be carried out for the rest of your life.

You should meet with your physician to discuss weight loss surgery in great detail. You and your surgeon must both agree that this is the best treatment option for you. There are several different weight loss surgical procedures to consider and each has its own set of benefits and risks.
Living a Healthy Lifestyle
Midwest Bariatric Solutions Patient Selection Requirements
You must be at least 100 pounds overweight, or have a BMI score of 40 or more (candidates with less severe obesity but with life-threatening conditions may also be considered)
You must have exhausted conventional dieting and weight loss methods
You must be fully informed of the risks, benefits and alternatives to surgery by attending an informational seminar
You must be willing to make a life-long commitment to a new way of life
Patient Profile
The International Bariatric Surgery Registry (IBSR) has put together a database with information on 14,641 people who have had obesity surgery. The patients had the following characteristics:
Average Weight at Time of Operation: 279.4 pounds (+/- 60.3*)
Average BMI at Time of Operation: 46 (+/- 8.3*)
A BMI between 35 and 39.9: 19.7%
A BMI of 40 or more: 76.1%
*add (+) or subtract (-) the number in parenthesis from the average number to find a range.

Sources:
American Society for Bariatric Surgery. Rationale for the Surgical Treatment of Morbid Obesity 8 April 1998. (www.asbs.org/html/ration.html)

Gastric Surgery for Severe Obesity. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. NIH Publication No. 96-4006, April 1996.
 
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