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When is metabolic and bariatric surgery the right choice?

Obesity is a complex disease that does not always respond effectively to medical management. Bariatric surgery is often a more effective treatment to maintain weight loss and improve or resolve obesity, especially when it’s related to medical conditions such as hypertension, diabetes, sleep apnea and more.

But bariatric surgery alone is not enough. Our patients understand that it takes hard work and dedication to maintain a healthy weight for life.

What are the criteria for weight loss surgery?

  • BMI over 40 – Click here to calculate your BMI 
    • If your BMI is be between 35-39.9, your must have significant medical issues such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, sleep apnea
  • A minimum of 5 years struggling with obesity with repeated attempts to keep weight off through diet/exercise
  • Must be over 18 years of age
  • No untreated medical or significant psychiatric conditions that may cause serious complications
  • Ability to commit to lifestyle changes necessary for success

BMI Calculator

How should I prepare for bariatric surgery?

  1. Attend your scheduled appointments
    • No shows, cancelling appointments or having months between appointments may negatively impact the approval process with your insurance provider
    • Cancelling with a provider at the last minute affects their availability to assist others who also need care
  2.  Lose weight if you can
    • Our nutritionist will help you get started with weight loss, which is important to help your medical status and make your weight loss surgery safer for you
    • Many insurance providers will not authorize a bariatric surgical procedure if the patient gains weight during the evaluation process
  3. Exercise
    • After getting approval from you primary care provider, start an exercise program to help your heart and lungs and decrease some of the operative risk
    • If you need to be evaluated by a physical therapist, get a prescription from your primary care provider for Rehabilitation services
    • Participate in low-impact or Yoga classes at our wellness center. Exercise postoperatively enhances weight loss success and helps you maintain weight loss long term
  4.   Follow the correct sleep apnea treatment
    • Individuals who have obstructive sleep apnea and are prescribed positive pressure therapy for sleep need to understand how important this therapy is to health
    • If you have sleep apnea and are supposed to use CPAP, BIPAP or other positive airway pressure therapies but have questions or problems, please contact our sleep lab

How do I remain successful after surgery?

  • Follow the dietary guidelines provided to you
    • Our guidelines are evidence-based and designed for the specific procedure performed
    • Patients who follow the instructions for dietary intake, hydration, activity, and vitamins/supplements have fewer complications and are more successful over the long term
  • Include activity daily
    • A healthy lifestyle includes activity, which is necessary to achieve a balance of calories in and out and to build and maintain healthy muscle
    • Check with your primary care provider to be sure you are medically safe to exercise
  • Avoid behaviors that can be unhealthy such as smoking, drinking soda and alcohol and eating a lot of “junk” food
  • Attend support group meetings
  • Follow up with your bariatric surgeon and team
    • Complications or nutritional deficiencies can develop over time and need to be evaluated
    • Get annual assessments of your health and lab work so you know your nutritional status

Does weight loss surgery really help medical conditions?

Bariatric surgery has been proven to help improve or resolve medical problems such as diabetes, hypertension, hyperlipidemia, sleep apnea and more. Weight loss surgery alone is not the answer. It is a step in the plan to help you achieve a healthy weight, improve your quality of life and help you live longer.

How do I know if I have coverage for bariatric surgery?

Verify with your insurance provider that your plan has Bariatric Benefits. Please provide a copy of your plan's bariatric coverage to our office manager for your chart.

Who chooses what procedure is performed?

Your weight loss surgeon will discuss your options based on your medical conditions and lifestyle. You and the bariatric surgeon will decide on a weight loss treatment plan together. You can research your options here

How long does it take to get to bariatric surgery?

Each insurance plan has own criteria for preoperative evaluation and screening. We work with you to make sure you are medically ready for the procedure.

What should I expect for preoperative evaluation?

  • You must be seen by the nutritionist, weight loss surgeon and a behavioral health practitioner familiar with bariatric surgery
  • You must have medical clearance from your primary care provider
  • Additional clearances may include cardiology, pulmonary breathing tests, etc.
  • You will receive a checklist of what you will need to have done when you have your initial consultation
  • Bariatric surgery will not be scheduled until the evaluation is completed

How do I get started?

  • Attend our free information session. It is mandatory for your enrollment in our program. To register, click here or call 800-400-3627.

  • Obtain a referral from your PCP if required by insurance plan

  • Call (508) 650-7725 to schedule your initial consultation or email us for an appointment

  • Do your research about weight management





MetroWest Medical Center provides advanced medicine and personalized care, right here in your community.

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