When you have a condition such as diabetes, bariatric surgery will likely be a common term you’ll hear among fellow patients. After all, it’s a procedure touted to be one of the many ways diabetes patients may be able to achieve relief from the condition. Aside from the potential expenses, a lot may say this is worth it given the kind of benefits the surgery may bring to you in the future. However, if you’re one to want to be careful with major decisions you make, you can’t be blamed to want to know everything there is to know about bariatric surgery. Before you consult your physician about the matter, here’s what you need to know about bariatric surgery and the pros and cons of it.
Bariatric Surgery: What Is It?
Although it might help to begin to look into what bariatric surgery is first before looking into its pros and cons. Bariatric surgery, sometimes called metabolic or weight loss surgery, is often used as a means to help patients who are obese or otherwise afflicted with conditions because of obesity. As such, it’s also considered as an option for treating high blood pressure or Type 2 diabetes.
General physicians are the ones who are capable of suggesting and advising patients to undertake bariatric surgery, and may include meeting some prerequisites such as:
- You have a 40 body mass index (BMI), or if you have an obesity-related condition with a BMI that lies between 35 and 40 and your condition may improve if you lost weight. These include high blood pressure or type 2 diabetes.
- You should have already tried options such as dieting and weight loss but didn’t work.
- You’re willing for long-term follow-up after you’ve done surgery, including regular check-ups and healthy lifestyle adjustments.
Bariatric Surgery: Pros And Cons
Before you try to immediately get yourself bariatric surgery, it’s essential you get to know everything you can learn about the procedure. For instance, in some countries, Medicare covers certain bariatric surgeries – which can ease expenses on your end, and make your decision regarding taking bariatric surgery focused solely on your health needs and not particularly on your finances. Below are other pros and cons to consider in the process. Knowing how these elements work towards the pros and cons of bariatric surgery can hopefully help you make a more informed decision on the matter.
Pros: Bariatric Surgery Is A Safe, Secure Option For Treatment
Bariatric surgery is a good way of allowing those afflicted with obesity-related conditions to see a form of relief from their woes. The physical changes bariatric surgery may provide can be inspiring for patients to undertake a healthier lifestyle. This is especially effective if efforts towards other forms of lifestyle adjustments don’t work, as bariatric surgery can give a means to finally experience these.
Bariatric surgery is a fix that accurately tackles weight loss problems down to its source, and as such can be a reliable option to resolve weight loss-related conflicts should there be a need to.
Obesity in itself can lead to complications that can be fatal, but bariatric surgery can help hold these off and give patients lower fatality risks compared to those who don’t take surgery.
Bariatric surgery can pave way to the resolution or improvement of coexisting diseases, which is also one of the reasons attributed to why those who take bariatric surgery have decreased risks of death. These conditions that get resolved include pseudotumor cerebri, urinary stress incontinence, venous stasis, fatty liver disease, gastroesophageal reflux disease, lipid abnormalities, arthritis, obesity-related breathing disorders, apnea, and asthma among others.
Improve your psychological makeup after surgery, as bariatric surgery can help both your quality of life and perception to your quality of life. Sexual function, social interactions, work performance, self-esteem, and mobility can be improved after bariatric surgery.
Cons: Bariatric Surgery Can Be Expensive, High-Maintenance
Bariatric surgery isn’t a one-stop solution to weight-related problems, either, even if it helps a lot in the process. While bariatric surgery does help achieve weight loss, it’s not a “cure” but rather something you build upon and maintain. As such it can be a bit overwhelming of an adjustment to make for those who undertake the surgery.
There are risks involved in bariatric surgery and its various types. These include gastrointestinal leaks, breathing problems, blood clots, anesthesia-related reactions, infections, and excessive bleeding.
Long-term risks also exist for bariatric surgery, including vomiting, ulcers, stomach perforation, malnutrition, low blood sugar, hernias, gallstones, dumping syndrome, and bowel obstruction.
As mentioned, bariatric surgery is a major surgery, and as such can be expensive and have a lot of requirements in order to ensure your safety throughout the procedure.
The procedure itself won’t “heal” you, though, as it requires maintenance via medication and other adjustments in your lifestyle. You’ll likely get to have soft food or liquid diet for weeks after the surgery, and then move towards a balanced diet that you’ll need to sustain. You’ll also likely need to start an exercise routine that’s supposed to be continuous.
Aside from lifestyle adjustments, you’ll also need to have follow-up appointments regularly in order to check how your health is improving after the surgery.
The Takeaway: Bariatric Surgery Helps Best When You Know What It Does
Bariatric surgery can actually be quite the beneficial option especially if you want to help treat conditions such as diabetes. The kind of health benefits it can bring to you may help you manage your diabetic condition, but it might not always work out. This isn’t to say bariatric surgery in itself is dangerous, but there are pros and cons to consider before you decide to take this procedure. Do study and take into account the factors above, and make sure you get to consult your doctor about all potential side effects and consequences this might bring you based on your health.