FAQs About Bariatric Surgery

What are the chances of weight regain after surgery?

If the patient follows instructions as advised and adopts a healthy life style, there is only a possibility of less than 5% for weight regain and that too in the range of 5-7 kg after a period of 5-7 years.

Why diet and exercise alone have proven to be ineffective in weight management in severe obese patients?

Several studies have shown that diet and exercise alone cannot cause desirable weight loss in severe obese patients. With the help of diet and exercise, patients can maintain weight loss of 10-12 kg only in the long run.

The problem with severe obese patients is that they cannot exercise for a long time because of lack of stamina and energy.Excessive weight puts too much pressure on the joints which might cause irreversible damage to joints.

In severely obese patients, obesity is associated with many factors like genetic where it runs in the family, low basal metabolic rate, hormonal disturbance. Such  patients even if they cut calories or start dieting, weight loss wont occur beyond a particular level.

The problem with dieting is that once a certain amount of weight is lost the body goes into a starvation type mode, and hormones are produced that cause a voracious appetite to occur and for the person to start craving foods high in sugar and fat.

Are there any adverse effects on health after bariatric surgery?

Some bariatric surgeries can lead to vitamin and certain mineral deficiencies but these are easily manageable with the help of tablets. Bariatric surgery brings many changes in the health and general well-being along with cure or marked improvement of obesity related health problems/.

Is Obesity a food addiction like alcoholism or dependency on drugs?

Only a fraction of severely obese patients have eating disorders which can lead to severe weight gain. In majority of patients, obesity has been linked to many factors  like  genetic predisposition or hormonal imbalance playing a vital role. Therefore, treatment of obesity as an addiction for food will benefit only a very few patients. in majority of patients , bariatric surgery is the answer.

Can other procedures like  liposuction or even medicines effectively cause weight reduction?

Liposuction is only a cosmetic procedure used for contouring the body. It is never done as a  weight loss procedure. Bariatric surgery on the other hand is a life saving procedure and causes significant weight loss. Bariatric surgery also helps in getting rid of obesity related health problems like diabetes, high blood pressure, arthritis or joint pain etc. Liposuction has no effect on obesity related diseases.

In liposuction, some amount of subcutaneous fat(fat under skin) is removed with the help of suction machine. This causes only contouring of the body. Weight loss is only 4-5 kg approximately.

The market nowadays is flooded with medicines which claim to cause weight loss permanently. However, the truth is these medicines have temporary effect. These medicines do not allow our body to absorb fat from food we take. This causes weight loss to some extent but patient will regain weight as soon as these are stopped.

What is the approximately duration of stay following surgery?

Bariatric surgery nowadays is usually performed by laparoscopy and the patients are usually discharged within 24-48 hours after surgery depending upon the type of surgery performed. Recovery is very fast and the patients are encouraged to start walking after 3-4 hours of surgery.

How do I start my physical activities after surgery?

We usually encourage our patients to walk 4 hours after surgery. They can start going to parks for morning or evening walk as soon as 2-3 days  after  surgery. They can resume their normal official work after one week of surgery. You can join fitness programs of your choice  like gym, cycling, swimming  and aerobics after 3-4 weeks of surgery.

 How does surgery affect fertility and pregnancy?

Bariatric surgery has a very positive effect on your sexual life. Weight reduction not only leads to better sexual performance but hormonal changes brought by surgery increases your sexual desire  leading to increase in chances of getting pregnant. It also makes  pregnancy safe and the chances of delivering a healthy baby are increased manifold. But it is highly recommended that such patients should avoid pregnancy for at least a year after surgery.

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