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Is gastric bypass surgery worth the risk?

Currently, bariatric surgery is the only effective option for achieving long-term weight loss. When considering gastric bypass surgery to combat obesity, it’s normal to have concerns about the risks involved. Nevertheless, benefits from following through with gastric bypass greatly outweigh the low chance of encountering serious complications.  

Risks and complications

Gastric bypass surgery is very safe procedure. In fact, common surgeries like hip replacements and C-sections have higher mortality rates than gastric bypass. With a survival rate of 99.8%, gastric bypass is about as risky as having a gallbladder removed.

About 10% of patients experience some sort of complication after surgery, such as nausea, vomiting, new food intolerances, dumping syndrome or a number of other side effects. An important fact to remember, however, is the majority of gastric bypass patients (9 in 10) experience no complications whatsoever.

Here’s how to minimize risk of complications:

1. Be open and honest with the surgeon. When meeting with the bariatric surgeon, it’s imperative that patients speak about any health problems they may have before undergoing surgery. Certain conditions, such as sleep apnea or high blood pressure can increase the chance of postoperative risks.

2. Exercise as soon as possible after surgery. The sooner patients are able to get up and moving around after surgery, the lower risk of future complications. Even simple activities like sitting up and hanging legs over the side of the bed helps safeguard against future risks.

3. Follow medical advice. Maintaining contact with surgeons, dietitians and other medical professionals after gastric bypass surgery greatly improves patients’ chance to avoid complications and adverse side effects.  

Benefits of Gastric Bypass Surgery

To reap the benefits of weight loss surgery, it’s imperative that patients adhere to a healthy lifestyle with smart eating habits, a consistent exercise regimen and changes in behavior.

Physical health

Studies have consistently shown that weight loss surgery prolongs patients’ lives. Most of the reductions in health problems stem from heart attacks, strokes and cancer deaths. Overall, bariatric surgery can reduce or cure many weight-related diseases, such as Type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, heart disease, infertility and more.  

With gastric bypass surgery comes an increase in physical activity, which offers a host of health benefits. Losing weight combined with an uptick in exercise improves the body’s ability to burn fat, promotes a positive attitude and lowers stress levels. As a result, many patients find themselves requiring fewer and fewer medications to treat their obesity-related conditions as they lose weight.

Quality of life

Obesity often takes a toll on patients’ mental health as issues concerning self-esteem, confidence and body image can contribute to depression and other mood disorders. However, a person’s quality of life is greatly improved by sticking to healthy lifestyle after gastric bypass surgery. Patient mobility, sexual function, self-esteem and a multitude of other factors will improve after surgery as well.

Undergoing bariatric surgery to losing weight opens more opportunities to participate in social activities with family, friends and strangers alike. You have little to lose and everything to gain from bariatric surgery. So, why wait? Call WeightWise today to speak to one of our medical professionals or attend a free seminar to see if weight loss surgery is right for you.

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WeightWise Bariatric Program
1800 S. Renaissance Blvd.
Edmond, OK 73013
405-359-2475
Fax: 405-341-2495

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