Being overweight is not something to be ashamed of. Living with the disease of obesity can greatly affect your quality of life. It is a chronic condition that may warrant medical or surgical help. Bariatric surgery should not be a last resort.
You can take steps to prevent or treat obesity. Diet and exercise can be a healthy and effective way to lose weight. Follow a healthy eating plan and keep your calorie needs in mind. Participate in physical activity regularly and try to limit the amount of time that you are inactive.
However, if those traditional methods do not make a significant difference for those seeking weight loss, medication and surgery are possible options to pursue. Our objective at Capital Medical Center is to offer weight loss surgery as one of the tools in your journey toward achieving and maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle.
- For the obese person, the health benefits of losing weight are countless. Not only does the risk of serious disease decline dramatically, but some conditions may actually be reversed.
- Diabetes is resolved in 80 percent of non-insulin dependent diabetics as a result of gastric bypass surgery
- High blood pressure is resolved in about half of patients who lose weight following bariatric surgery
- The majority of patients with sleep apnea no longer have disrupted breathing at night following weight loss surgery
- Digestive issues, such as acid reflux and heartburn, are resolved following weight loss surgery
- Dramatic weight loss also improves shortness of breath, circulation and mobility
- Many people find dramatic improvements in joint pain, back pain and arthritic conditions following bariatric surgery
- Elevated triglyceride levels may resolve.
- Some women who were struggling with infertility before surgery find that conception is possible after surgery. (Pregnancy is not recommended before that time because of nutritional issues related to fetal development)
For those new to considering bariatric surgery, please take a moment to view three informational video options from the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (playlist on right):
1. A Bariatric Surgery Story. Not an Extreme Solution to Treat Your Obesity
2. Millions of Americans qualify for bariatric surgery. Do you?
3. Don’t Believe the Myths. Learn the Truth About Bariatric Surgery
Because careful selection of bariatric patients is critical for successful outcomes, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) established patient selection guidelines for practitioners to follow.
To qualify for weight loss surgery a person must:
- be between the ages of 18 and 64
- have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more (about 100 pounds overweight for men and 80 pounds for women) or a BMI between 35 and 39.9 and a serious obesity-related health problem, such as type 2 diabetes, coronary heart disease, or severe sleep apnea
- be an acceptable operative risk
- be motivated, well-informed, and able to participate in long-term care follow-up
- be willing to make the necessary lifestyle changes to achieve long-term success
- have longstanding obesity with multiple failed attempts of weight loss
- have realistic expectations and be motivated
Dr. Monica Young and her multidisciplinary team provide individualized care when it comes to surgical weight loss. Dr. Young performs laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, and laparoscopic adjustable gastric band removal surgeries.
Does my insurance cover weight loss surgery?
Insurance coverage is one of the biggest concerns among bariatric patients. The fact that your surgeon feels surgery is medically necessary and that you meet the surgical eligibility criteria does not automatically mean that your insurance company will pay for surgery. The surgical coverage benefit is primarily determined by the policy holder’s employer, not the insurance company.
Insurance coverage varies and some companies may only pay for a specific surgical procedure or have requirements that must be met prior to surgery. The percentage of the total cost that the patient is responsible for paying will also vary depending on the insurance provider and employer. Even if you are in the initial stage of considering weight loss surgery, it may benefit you to know what to expect from your insurance company. We recommend all patients call their employer’s HR department or the information lines on the back of their insurance card. Capital General Surgery will run an initial benefit check once the application has been received.
While many insurance companies have a benefit for bariatric surgery, if you are interested in paying out of pocket for your procedure, we have payment plans available.
If you are considering weight loss surgery, you are invited to attend an informational seminar that takes place on the third Thursday of every month at Capital Medical Center.
Please call the General Surgery Clinic at 360-596-4880 to reserve your seat at this free event.