Top 5 Weight Loss Surgery Questions Answered

WakeMed Cary Hospital is a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence, and we have helped many people and their families decide if weight loss surgery is for them.  Most often, the exploratory process starts with online research and then an information session.  The top 5 questions asked during these information sessions include:
 
1.       Do I have enough extra weight to qualify for surgery?

Many people are surprised to find out a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above qualifies them for weight loss surgery.  The BMI threshold is only 35 if extra weight is coupled with an obesity-related disease like diabetes or sleep apnea makes them qualified for weight loss surgery.  Bariatric surgery is a permanent weight loss solution for many people who have struggled to lose weight for years. 
 
2.       Will I still be able to enjoy life and eat real food after surgery?

Life immediately after surgery will require you to retrain your brain.  You will have to maintain a strict diet, eating small meals and drinking only a little bit at a time.  This strict diet will prevent the surgery site from becoming injured.  After the surgery site has had a chance to completely heal, you will again be able to eat tasty good food in smaller quantities.  You will also be able to enjoy celebrations that include food, including Christmas, birthdays, etc.
3.       When will I be able to resume normal activities after surgery?

The recovery period after bariatric surgery is pretty short.  Most people stay in the hospital for one or possibly two days.  Then, they are usually back to work within two weeks, assuming their jobs are not excessively physically demanding.
 
4.       Will I be in a lot of pain after surgery?

Believe it or not, bariatric surgery does not typically cause a significant amount of pain.  Of course, it is surgery so there will be some discomfort, but most patients find that the restrictive eating plan immediately following surgery is more difficult than handling the surgical pain.
 
5.       There are multiple different options for bariatric surgery, which one should I choose?

The best way to decide between banding, sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass is to carefully review the pros and cons for each procedure and discuss the options your physician.

Committing to losing excess weight through bariatric surgery is a big decision.  At WakeMed, we offer patients a team approach to care, offering access to a surgeon, psychologist, nutritionist and physical fitness expert.  We are committed to help patients make the right decision about surgery and then supporting them after the procedure is complete.  We even have a bariatric surgery support group that meets regularly at the Cary Hospital.  All of our patients lose weight, and most realize other weight loss benefits as well, including less depression, lower blood pressure, improved blood sugar and generally better overall health. 

Sign up to attend an information session today to learn more. 
 
Dr. Brandon Roy is a board certified general surgeon who specializes in bariatric surgery.

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