Find out if weight-loss surgery is an option for you.
We understand that weight-loss surgery is a serious decision. We want you to make the choice that is best for you. Read about our patient's experiences and learn more from the helpful information below.
- The average surgical patient permanently loses 50 to 70 percent of his/her excess weight in the first 12 months. Combined with a healthy diet and exercise, additional weight loss can occur for up to two years after surgery.
- Losing this amount of weight can make dramatic improvements in your overall health. Weight-loss surgery has been shown to improve diabetes.
- Along with greatly improved health, weight-loss surgery can give you more confidence and energy.
Weight-loss surgery procedures
Because no two patients are alike, the Legacy Weight and Diabetes Institute offers several surgical weight-loss procedures. Your surgeon will discuss options with you, including each procedure's benefits and risks.
Laparoscopic gastric bypass: Surgeons modify the stomach so that only a small amount of food can be eaten at a time.
Laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding: An inflatable band is placed around the upper part of the stomach to limit the stomach's capacity and increase the feeling of fullness.
Laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy: Most of the stomach is removed, leaving a long tube from the esophagus to the small bowel. This limits the amount of food that can be eaten at one time.
Revisional surgery: A small number of patients will require additional procedures after weight loss surgery to achieve the best results or to manage complications. These vary depending on the original weight loss procedure.
Eligibility for weight-loss surgery
Legacy Weight and Diabetes Institute can help guide you through the qualification process and through insurance issues that may arise, but ultimately it is your responsibility to understand your benefits.
Understanding your insurance benefits is an important part of determining if weight-loss surgery is right for you. Each insurance plan will have a different set of qualifying criteria, the following criteria must be met to qualify for weight-loss surgery regardless of your insurance requirements.
- A body mass index (BMI) greater than 40
- Or a BMI greater than 35 if significant associated illnesses are present, such as high blood pressure, heart disease or diabetes. Check your BMI here
- Documentation that other significant and appropriate attempts at weight control have been ineffective
- Highly motivated to make lifestyle changes, including increased activity and healthier eating habits
- Smoke-free for at least three months
- Able to tolerate general anesthesia
Ultimately your surgeon will decide whether weight-loss surgery is an option for you, and this will depend on factors that might interfere with your recovery and successful long-term weight loss. In addition, it is important for you to understand the surgical procedure, the impact of obesity on your current health and what will be required of you after surgery. Then, you will be much better prepared to understand the reasons for the changes in eating patterns and exercise that will be necessary to achieve your goals.
Step one: Attend Welcome Group and complete initial consultations with the Legacy Weight and Diabetes Institute.
Step two: Following the initial appointments, you will be scheduled to meet with a surgeon.
Step three: Once you and your surgeon have made a decision about surgery, you will attend a pre-operative class.
Step four: Surgery
Step five: Post-surgery follow-up; long-term follow-up is important to your success and well-being. There are five required clinic visits within the first year after surgery.
Support groups are offered once a month and open to patients before and after surgery. All support groups are free and are facilitated by a licensed health care professional.
After weight-loss surgery
Bariatric surgery is just the first step in a lifelong journey of weight loss and weight management - your ultimate success depends on healthy eating and regular physical activity. To help you on this journey, the Legacy Weight and Diabetes Institute offers support groups to assist in maintaining your weight loss where you can communicate with others who have gone through the surgical procedure.
Nutrition and exercise
After surgery, you will meet regularly with a dietitian to make healthy eating a way of life, not a temporary "diet." Getting in touch with the feelings of physical hunger and learning to identify emotional hunger will be a key step for you.
Regular physical activity must also become part of your daily life, not just to achieve weight loss but to maintain it. You will meet with a physical therapist before surgery to develop an individualized activity plan and specific musculoskeletal exercises.
We sponsor monthly groups for after surgery. We strongly recommend that you participate, to discuss adjustment issues with people who have gone through the same life-changing experience. Guest speakers ranging from plastic surgeons to dietitians are featured periodically, and the groups plan events and activities. Research has shown that patients who attend support groups have greater success in sustaining their weight loss.