The facts about weight loss surgery

November 8, 2016

Weight loss surgery can be lifesaving for some people who have a lot of weight to lose and need more than diet and exercise. Depending on the operation, patients often lose 30% to 50% of their extra weight within 6 months. Opting for weight loss surgery is a big and often life-changing decision. Hence, it is important to understand the misconceptions and facts of weight loss surgery.

Regaining weight post-surgery-A general misconception is that most people who have weight loss surgery regain their weight. While nearly half the patients may regain weight post-surgery, it is a very small amount (approximately 5%) two years or more following their surgery. Most patients who follow post-operative guidelines on nutrition and exercise management maintain weight-loss post-surgery successfully long term. ‘Successful’ weight-loss is arbitrarily defined as weight-loss equal to or greater than 50 per cent of excess body weight.

Chance of death from weight-loss surgery – A major misconception is that the chance of dying from weight loss surgery is more than the chance of dying from obesity. Truth is, the risk of dying from weight loss surgery is exceptionally low. A weight loss surgery helps significantly reduce mortality rates due to specific diseases such as cancer, diabetes, heart disease. With respect to mortality, the benefits of a weight loss surgery far outweigh the risks.

Weight-loss surgery is a shortcut – One of the biggest misconceptions of weight loss surgery is that it is a shortcut method for those who are not disciplined enough to go on a diet program. Weight loss surgeries are highly effective in maintaining long-term weight-loss. Weight-loss surgery increases the production of certain gut hormones that interact with the brain to reduce hunger, decrease appetite, and enhance satiety. In these ways, weight-loss surgery, unlike dieting, produces long-term weight-loss. There are many causes of obesity and that the disease of obesity is far more than just agreed for food. To dismiss an obesity case as an addiction to food and try to curb it by dieting may not be effective for all. It is important for individuals affected by severe obesity to explore the option of weight loss surgery.

Just as with any serious surgical operation; the decision to have weight loss surgery should be discussed with your surgeon, family members, and loved ones.