Like every surgery, bariatric surgery too has its pros and cons. When it comes to health, it is important to make an informed decision rather than blindly following what the others may or may not do. Remember, bariatric surgery isn’t a short cut to health. Hence, it is crucial that a patient understands all that there is to know about bariatric surgery before taking any decision.
Weight loss surgery or bariatric surgery – most people feel that it is a simple and easy way to cut down the extra flab. However, just like any other surgery, bariatric surgery also has its pros and cons. And before you plan to get a bariatric surgery, you need to know if you are eligible for the surgery, what are the complications and other key factors. Dr Ramen Goel, Director, Bariatric surgery, Wockhardt hospitals, Mumbai, shares five important points one should consider before undergoing bariatric surgery.
1. Check if you meet qualification criteria: One of the foremost and most important things to consider before you undergo bariatric surgery is to check whether you are eligible for the surgery as it has strict medical guidelines. For a person with some underlying diseases, the BMI (basic metabolic index) has to be at least 32.5 and for those with no medical condition, the BMI has to be a minimum of 37.5.
As most people fail to understand BMI, in general, a person who is 25kg overweight can be considered for the surgery. For example, if the ideal weight for a person is 65 kg but he weighs 90 kg, then he qualifies for the surgery. However, in some cases, for people who are significantly overweight or have any diseases like diabetes that is not under control, the criterion is lowered. For example, people who are not obese but have uncontrolled diabetes, qualify for the surgery as the cut off in such cases is 15 kg overweight and not 25 kg overweight.
2. Identify the right doctor: The second most important point to bear in the mind is to select the right doctor. Not everyone who is overweight needs to undergo bariatric surgery. After you decide that you have to undergo the surgery, it is vital to consult a surgeon who has experience in the field. It is always better to go with an experienced bariatric surgeon. Here’s more on surgery for weight loss or bariatric surgery – get your facts right!
3. Choose a hospital with the best facilities and accreditation: It goes without saying that one should choose the best hospital to undergo the surgery as not every hospital is equipped with the infrastructure and facilities to take care of an extremely obese person. Right from the facilities to carry a person to the operation theatre to the availability of table, trolleys, bed, CT scan machine and ICU, ensure the infrastructure suits overweight patients as well. Second, opt for a hospital which has accreditation given by international bodies or Surgical Review Corporation. The accreditation is achieved only by those hospitals that ensure high level quality control.
4. Consider a team of experts and not just a bariatric surgeon: As there are numerous aftercare measures that a person has to follow post bariatric surgery, it is mandatory to have a team of qualified experts to care for the person before, during and after surgery. Hence, along with a bariatric surgeon, your doctor should provide a team comprising of dietician, physician and pathologist as the patient requires lifelong support. If your doctor fails to do so, then it is wise to consider another surgeon with a qualified and experienced team.
5. Ask your expert about the entire range of surgeries and its outcome: Although your doctor will explain the pros and cons of the surgery, it is important to ask him properly about the outcomes of the surgery that you are planning to undergo. In most cases, your surgeon will let you know about the different types of surgery. Choose the one who offers a complete range of bariatric surgeries and then chooses what fits the bill for you. Also, always ask your surgeon about the complications, rate of complications and the mortality rate. Here is a detailed account of 5 risks involved in bariatric surgery that everyone MUST know.
Article Source: www.thehealthsite.com