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Bariatric Surgery

What's Inside

This booklet is about bariatric surgery. After you read it, talk with your bariatric care team to
decide whether this surgery is right for you.

  • Bariatric surgery changes your digestive system in ways that may help you lose weight. The surgery is for people who are very overweight and have serious health problems because of their weight.
  • Bariatric surgery is major surgery that is not for everyone who weighs too much. If it is not right for you, you can take other steps to lose weight and improve your health.
  • Bariatric surgery is not a quick fix. Weight loss happens over time. And you must make major changes to your diet, physical activity and other habits to keep off the weight you lose.
  • Before you can have surgery, you go through an evaluation process that includes medical and mental health exams. You also have a “to-do” list to help you prepare. Depending on your needs, this process may be as short as three months but can take up to a year.
  • You must be able to pay for all costs related to the surgery. Contact your health insurance company early to learn what your policy does and does not pay for.
  • Talk with your bariatric care team about each kind of bariatric surgery and what you must do to prepare. Ask what typically happens when you are in the hospital and how to care for yourself at home. Talk about the benefits, side effects, risks and possible complications of the surgery.
  • In large part, the success of the surgery is up to you. Be sure you understand the lifestyle changes you need to make. Be sure you are willing to make those changes for the rest of your life.

If you have questions after you read this information, talk with your surgeon or another member of your bariatric care team.

Read the Bariatric Surgery Booklet