How to qualify for gastric bypass surgery?

The most common type of surgery for weight loss is known as Gastric bypass surgery, which is a type of Bariatric surgery. In this procedure, certain surgical changes are made to the stomach and digestive system, which limits the amount of food you can eat and calories will be absorbed by the body. It can be an effective way of losing excess weight for some people.

Although this may sound appealing to every weight loss aspirant, gastric bypass surgery, like any other treatment, is not suitable for everyone. It has its own significant risks and side effects. However, the long term success of Gastric Surgery completely depends on the patient’s ability to make permanent changes in their lifestyle.

If one wishes to go for gastric bypass surgery, there are certain guidelines to qualify. The candidate has to go through proper evaluation in order to determine if it is suitable for their situation or not.

Qualifying Guidelines:

Gastric bypass surgery can be your option if:

  • Your efforts to make a change in your diet have been unsuccessful.
  • Daily exercise is not giving you any results.
  • Your Body Mass Index (BMI) is 40 or higher than that.
  • You are suffering from serious obesity-related diseases, such as high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, or sleep apnea.
  • If you are a teenager and gone through puberty but your BMI is 35.

Evaluation:

Even if one qualifies the general guidelines, they still have to go and see the team of medical professionals, which will include a doctor, psychologist, dietitian, and surgeon. They will do some screening tests and medical evaluations to determine if one qualifies for the surgery or not.

The team will evaluate if you are medically and psychologically ready to undergo weight-loss surgery.

There are certain factors to be considered while evaluating a candidate for gastric bypass surgery:

Nutrition and weight history:

This involves evaluation of the person’s weight trends, diet attempts, eating habits, exercise regimen, stress level, time constraints, motivation, and other factors, leading to weight gain.

Medical condition:

The doctor will consider the medical history of the candidate, because there are some health problems, which can increase the risk rate of surgery, or might get worse after the surgery, such as liver disease, blood clots, kidney stones, and other deficiencies. They will also evaluate the consumption of alcohol, whether you smoke or not and the medications the patient is taking. There will be a thorough physical examination and lab tests to determine eligibility for surgery.

Psychological status:

Stress level and certain mental health conditions also contribute directly to obesity or can make it very difficult for one to maintain the health benefits of gastric bypass surgery. This can include any of the following conditions such as binge-eating disorder, substance abuse, anxiety disorders, major depression, schizophrenia, severe bipolar disorder and issues related to childhood sexual abuse. Then doctors might postpone the surgery to ensure that any source of stress is appropriately treated.

Motivation and commitment to weight loss program

The team will also assess your willingness and ability to follow through with recommendations made by your health care team. Also, your ability to carry out prescribed changes in your diet and exercise routine.

Age

Although there is no defined age limit for gastric bypass surgery, until recently, the procedure was considered too risky for teenagers and older people. Recent studies have found gastric bypass surgery can be safe and effective for adults. The procedure is also now considered an option for some teenagers with a BMI of 35 or more and serious obesity-related health problems.

Other factors to consider are:

Finances

Once it has been decided that gastric bypass surgery is appropriate for you, there are still financial hurdles to work out. If you plan to rely on health insurance coverage for the gastric bypass surgery, then you will have to get preapproval from the health insurance company. The preapproval process typically requires medical reports and documents from the team of doctors to justify the medical need for gastric bypass surgery.

Different health insurance providers have different requirements to prove the medical need for gastric bypass surgery. Sometimes health insurers may not cover gastric bypass surgery at all or may cover only parts of the process. To avoid unpleasant financial surprises, it’s always a good idea to get the cost estimation and save, before starting the evaluation process.

Another way to have an economical treatment is to choose to travel to a top medical tourism destination like India. The gastric bypass surgery cost in India is relatively lower than in several countries, but with equally good quality of services.

Pre-surgery requirements

Once the individual is approved for gastric bypass surgery, then the health care team gives instructions about how to prepare in the months or weeks before the surgery. These instructions will include restrictions on eating and drinking, undergoing lifestyle counseling to help you cope with big changes in diet and exercise, quitting smoking, and starting a supervised physical activity or exercise program. In some cases, one might have to lose weight before having gastric bypass surgery. If your health care team determines that you are psychologically or medically not ready for surgery or haven’t made appropriate changes in their eating or exercise habits, or if they have gained weight during the evaluation process, gastric bypass surgery can be delayed or canceled.