A gastric bypass is a surgical technique that can be used to help severely overweight patients who have not been successful with diets and exercise lose weight. The procedure requires a diagnosis by a qualified doctor and certain basic criteria have to be met before a patient is approved for the surgery. There are guideline weight limits for gastric bypass surgery and they vary slightly between men and women who are considering this surgery.
Even though these weight limits for gastric bypass surgery have been established, there are other contributing factors that can also help a doctor with the decision.
Is The Patient’s BMI At Least 40?
Typically the weight limits for gastric bypass surgery state that anyone with a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more qualifies as a candidate without the need to also have other related complications to qualify. If a patients BMI is between 35 and 40, there have to be other weight related conditions present to qualify for the surgery. These could include diabetes or hypertension and can be diagnosed by your physician as part of the initial physical examination.
Has The Patient Tried To Lose Weight By Diet And Exercise?
While these weight limits for gastric bypass surgery are one of the gating factors for the procedure, there are other criteria as well that have to be met before moving forward with surgery. One of these criteria is that the patient has tried and failed to lose the weight through more traditional means like dieting and exercise. This process needs to be well documented and may also include a period of time where this diet and exercise are augmented with medication to control hunger. Losing additional weight by a more natural process is always a healthier way to proceed than surgery. Every physician wants to exhaust every option before resorting to a gastric bypass procedure.
Is The Candidate In A Good Phycological Condition?
Because weight issues are often based on psychological conditions, a physician will many times require a psychological exam for a patient to determine their mental health prior to scheduling a gastric bypass surgery. This is to establish a sound state of mind in the patient and ensure a complete and successful outcome to the procedure.
Is The Patient Suffering From Chronic Obesity?
In addition to the weight limits for gastric bypass surgery, a doctor needs to see a history of the patient being overweight for a period of 3 to 5 years. This will establish the condition as chronic and can help the doctor in their final determination. Many doctors also need to understand the patients complete medical and family history to better establish a diagnosis. They will also need to know that there has not been a history of alcohol or drug abuse with the patient.
Most often a gastric bypass procedure is performed on adults between the ages of 18 and 65, but may also be done on adolescents under certain circumstances. The procedure has proven to be highly effective and will help most patients reach their target weight if combined with a program of reasonable exercise. Once the gastric bypass procedure is completed it will remain in place for the balance of a patient’s life and will help them lose weight and keep the weight off for good.