Is bariatric surgery right for me?

To be a good candidate for weight loss surgery, you generally need to: 
  • Be 18 to 70 years old
  • Be free of diseases that cause excess weight
  • Be free of drug, alcohol and emotional problems
  • Commit to a healthy lifestyle and to follow-up appointments with your medical team
  • Have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above, or a BMI of 35 to 40 with significant health problems, such as diabetes or high blood pressure
  • Have made serious attempts to lose weight in the past

How effective is bariatric surgery?

This depends on many things. Your age, your weight before your surgery, your overall health, your ability to exercise and the kind of surgery you choose all impact the results. Also, how well you follow the dietary guidelines your doctor gives you, and how much support you get from your family and friends, are also factors.

Studies show that most people lose weight rapidly after their surgery and continue to lose for the next 18 to 24 months. You may lose 30 to 50% of your extra weight in the first 6 months, and 77% as early as 12 months after your surgery. Some people maintain as much as a 60% weight loss for up to 14 years after their surgeries

What kinds of bariatric surgery are there?

At Aurora, we specialize in three types of weight loss surgeries:

We also offer medical weight loss, which helps you reduce your weight gradually with supervision from our experts

What tests will I need before surgery?

You’ll need a complete blood count (CBC), urinalysis, chemistry panel, chest X-ray and electrocardiogram. You may also need a glucose tolerance test to find out whether you have diabetes. Some surgeons require a gallbladder ultrasound, pulmonary function test, echocardiogram, sleep studies, GI evaluation, cardiology evaluation and/or psychiatric evaluation.

If I want gastric bypass, how long will I have to wait?

Evaluation usually takes 4 to 8 months, depending on your insurance requirements. If you and your surgeon agree that a gastric bypass is the right choice for you, the operation typically takes place within 8 weeks.

Is laparoscopic surgery less risky than regular surgery?

No. Laparoscopic operations are typically less risky as open or traditional surgery. They also tend to involve less pain, shorter hospital stays, earlier returns to work and less scarring.

What happens to the part of my stomach that is bypassed?

It may shrink a bit, but it will remain largely unchanged. Even though it’s not processing food, your lower stomach will still help your body absorb certain vitamins and keep your hormone levels balanced.

What will I be able to eat after my surgery?

That depends on your surgeon’s advice and the type of surgery you have. You’ll definitely have to change your eating habits: 
  • You won’t be able to eat steak or other chunks of meat unless they’re ground or chewed thoroughly, and you won’t be able to drink fluids when you eat. 
  • You’ll have to avoid carbonated drinks, high-calorie nutritional supplements, milkshakes, high-fat foods, high-fiber foods, alcohol and sweets or desserts that have sugar as one of the three main ingredients. 
  • You’ll need to limit snacking between meals, too.

Will I be hungry after my surgery because I won't be able to eat as much?

In most cases, no. In fact, for the first 4 to 6 weeks after your surgery, you’ll probably have almost no appetite. It will return gradually, but most people don’t feel extremely hungry post-surgery.

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