What to Expect from a Weight Loss Operation
A weight loss operation is not just cosmetic surgery. Rather you should see it as a cure for a range of diseases associated with morbid obesity.
What is BMI?
The Body Mass Index (BMI) is an important tool in weight control and is a measure of body fat based on height. Calculate your BMI by taking your weight, dividing by your height and dividing the result again by your height.
If your BMI is 19 to 25, you are normal, from 25 – 30 you are overweight, at 30 or greater you are considered obese and at 40 or greater you suffer from morbid obesity.
Am I suitable for a weight loss operation?
You will be considered suitable for a weight loss operation if you have a BMI of 40 or over, but there are also other important factors before you will be accepted for weight-loss surgery.
For example, you must have made many, many real attempts to lose weight through diet or medication.You must be prepared for a lifelong follow-up with doctors and a dietician after the surgery, you must between 16 and 65, and you must be able to understand everything about a weight loss operation and its affects.You must also be committed and able to keep to the necessary changes in your diet and your lifestyle, something that requires immense discipline.
This is an important, life-changing decision, and a team including a psychologist and a psychiatrist to ensure that you are suitable for the operation will also assess you.
What does the surgery involve?
Gastric bypass surgery stops the normal signalling from the stomach to the brain, reducing your longing for food. With gastric bypass surgery, you will lose weight quickly soon after surgery until you reach a consistent weight after approximately two years.
A weight loss operation is seen as successful when half of your extra weight is lost and you keep that loss in weight for up to five years. For example, a patient who is fifty kilograms over their ideal weight should lose twenty-five kilograms or more and keep that weight loss for five years
It is important that you select an experienced and accredited surgeon who performs the weight loss operation in a hospital or clinic.
The surgery takes one to two hours and you can usually leave the hospital on the 3rd or 4th day after the surgery. You will take on average about four to six months to fully recover.
Immediately after surgery, for at least eight weeks, you will be required to follow a special eating plan.With your stomach pouch reduced to the size of a walnut, you will need to eat very small meals during the day. The amount you can eat will slowly increase, but you will not be able to return to your old way of eating.
Unless there are problems with the wound or anything else from the operation you will usually sees the surgeon for a check-up after three to four weeks, as well as other specialists to check on your blood glucose, blood pressure, etc.
For the rest of your life, you will need to make routine visits to your doctor and a dietician after the operation.