Questions and Answers About Bariatric Surgery
Will my health insurance pay for bariatric surgery?
Some insurance companies do have exclusions in their policies for weight loss surgery. An exclusion means that they will not pay for the surgery even if it is proved medically necessary. However, more and more insurance carriers now provide some coverage for bariatric surgery and will at least pay a portion. We can help you determine what your benefits are, so that right from the start you know what your surgery will cost.
How do I know if weight loss surgery will be successful for me?
Only you can decide if bariatric surgery is right for you. Surgery is only a tool, since strict adherence to dietary, exercise, and lifestyle changes are essential to long-term success. Weight loss surgery will only succeed when you make a life-long commitment to these changes. However, if you are motivated to make these changes, surgery can have a great impact on your life, likely improving the quality and longevity of life.
Is it possible to dine out and stick to your diet after your bariatric surgery?
Dining out can be a challenging event for anyone watching their diet, so it is important to be very deliberate dining out following your bariatric surgery. However, eating out is a reality for most of us today. We have plenty of tips and advice on how to successfully “dine out” without compromising weight loss.
What does an adjustment involve with my Lap-Band?
In the first year, most patients will need 5 or 6 adjustments. If you are feeling constantly hungry and no weight loss is occurring it is likely time for an adjustment. Alternatively, if you are not able to eat much of anything without feeling uncomfortable of vomiting, your Band may be too tight, also requiring an adjustment. During each adjustment, a specialized “fill” needle is placed into the port and sterile saline is either added (tightening the band) or deleted (loosening the band) depending on your individual needs.
What is robotic bariatric surgery?
Bariatric surgery has become increasingly safe and effective over the years, and robotic bariatric surgery has helped make that possible. Robotic bariatric surgery uses advanced technology, including computerized measurements, to eliminate operator error and allow for a more precise operation. Patients can expect to enjoy less bleeding, less pain, and a shorter hospital stay—meaning you can begin your healthy new life as soon as possible.
CBSI performs all bariatric procedures robotically and is proud to have the most experienced robotic bariatric surgeon in the Rocky Mountain area. We offer a full range of bariatric procedures and can help you decide which one is best for you. Our team is dedicated to helping you achieve the results you need to live a long and healthy life.
What is gastric sleeve surgery?
The most common bariatric procedure, gastric sleeve surgery, or sleeve gastrectomy, involves removing a large part of the stomach and forming the remaining portion into a thin tube or “sleeve.” It is a fast and effective weight loss surgery, and because it is a single procedure with minimal risks, it is considered much more suitable for super-obese patients with a BMI greater than 50.
What are my options if I’m experiencing discomfort with my lap band?
While the lap band is an extremely effective weight loss surgery method for some patients, many experience discomfort, inadequate weight loss, and other negative side effects. Lap bands also require multiple adjustments and can cause patients to experience either constant hunger or nausea and vomiting. In fact, 70% of lap band patients struggle with adequate weight loss and discomfort. At CBSI, we believe your weight loss journey should be as seamless as possible. If you are experiencing uncomfortable side effects from your lap band, we can help you determine if it needs to be removed and discuss other bariatric surgery options to help you achieve your goals.
Can I get pregnant following weight loss surgery and is it safe?
Yes, pregnancy can be very safe following surgery. It is recommended that a woman wait until she is 1 year to 18 months post-operative before getting pregnant to assure that her weight has stabilized. If a bariatric surgery patient does become pregnant, it is important that labs are monitored regularly to ensure that vitamin or mineral deficiencies do not occur.
What is gastric bypass surgery?
Considered the gold standard of bariatric surgery, gastric bypass surgery involves creating a small pouch from the stomach to which a segment of intestine is attached, thereby bypassing part of the digestive system. This limits how much food you can eat and restricts your body’s ability to absorb calories, making it a highly safe and effective procedure.
What is revisional weight loss surgery?
If a patient has experienced inadequate weight loss or complications from an initial surgery, revisional weight loss surgery could be the answer. Patients who have regained a significant amount of weight, experienced side effects or mechanical failure from surgery, or are still morbidly obese even after weight loss might be candidates for a second procedure. Our skilled and compassionate team can help determine if revisional weight loss surgery is right for you.
With the gastric bypass, how big will my pouch be?
The newly created pouch will be about the size of your thumb, with the capacity to comfortably hold about 2 ounces. With time, the pouch will enlarge to 6 to 8 ounces, but it must be carefully managed so that it does not enlarge too much too soon. That’s why it is important to follow your dietary and nutrition guidelines that we carefully outline for you.
Why should I choose a multidisciplinary program?
A team approach to treatment results in better long-term outcomes for patients. At CBSI, people who are candidates for bariatric surgery will undergo a thorough team evaluation prior to any treatment. In addition, patients will have extensive follow-up by both the surgeon and other health professionals as they progress. Such an approach is associated with long-term successful weight loss.
Bariatric surgery requires a long-term commitment to positive change on the part of the patient; eating habits, physical activity habits, and overall lifestyle habits will undergo significant modification. The patient must be prepared and ready for such a challenge. Utilizing such a team approach to bariatric surgery increases the likelihood of success in achieving desirable and realistic weight loss, as well as improvement and satisfaction in daily life for the patient long-term. We also provide and encourage involvement in a support group to assist patients in continuing to maintain their modified lifestyle they have chosen.
What is the value of the CBSI Support Group?
Support groups are held on the first Thursday of each month from 5:30-7:00 p.m. Support group is an open forum that allows you to chat with other patients, discuss issues you are encountering, and talk with the nutritionists. Participation in support group is encouraged as it is a wonderful opportunity to gain insight and guidance as you journey through this major change in life.