Effectiveness and Risks of Weight Loss Surgeries

Obesity is one of the major health conditions a modern man suffers from today. Perceived as a disease by World Health Organization since 1948, obesity was slowly recognized as such by other institutions as well over the course of more than 50 years. It poses a serious risk for noncommunicable diseases like diabetes and hypertension, and even cancer.

Additionally, it can have a negative effect on a person’s life often leading to depression and immobility. And all these facts are the reason people decide to undergo weight loss surgeries. However, just like any surgical interventions, these also showed the effectiveness and certain risks.


  1. Weight loss

Weight loss is the intended and obtained benefit of the surgeries and amounts for 50 to 70% of the body mass reduction. Of course, how much weight the patient will drop depends on their lifestyle and type of surgical intervention, but the results are there. In line with this, gastric bypass leads to up to 70% of weight loss, sleeve gastrectomy to 60% and gastric banding to 50%.

  1. Improved quality of life

Over time, people lose weight and become more mobile. This leads to the more active lifestyle which energizes the body and creates a self-awareness about the quality of life. In order to preserve the new bodies, people need to remove the unhealthy habits and adopt the right ones.

  1. Enhanced mood

Since obesity reduces our quality of sleep, that in turn has a positive impact on our mood. Also, insecurities about the way we look and self-esteem will start coming back when we see the surgery paying off. Since being obese tends to impair the mobility, a person’s social life can be heavily affected by this.

But by going outside and meeting people in different places, the person will feel less like an outsider. Even though mental health before the surgery plays a vital part in maintaining a healthy way of life, just a spark of improved mood can help with that.

  1. Improved overall health

Obesity causes diseases that can impair a person’s life and even end up with death. This includes high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, asthma, obstructive sleep apnoea, gastroesophageal disease, high cholesterol and severe arthritis. However, certain cancers are caused by obesity as well.

Center for Disease Control and Prevention stated that obesity is connected to as much as 40% of diagnosed cancers in the USA. It leads to an increased risk of 13 risks of cancers the study showed in 2014, which rose by 7% from 2005. More precisely, a staggering 55% of cancers were diagnosed in obese women and 24% in obese men.

  1. Prolonged life

The moment a patient starts losing the weight, the risks of obesity-caused diseases lower. With exercise and a healthy diet, it’s a good chance that life expectancy will improve which many studies already suggest. Additionally, people replace their sedentary habits with more active life which helps remove stress – another cause of life-threatening conditions.

  1. Minimally invasive procedure

Today, thanks to the scientific and technological achievements, bariatric surgery is a minimally invasive procedure. With laparoscopic technique most of the procedures used, the body is left with barely visible scarring and fewer complications. It also reduces the recovery time for patients, although that depends on the person’s body as well.


  1. During and after the procedure

Have in mind that any surgical procedure carries risks to the patient and thus weight loss surgeries are not excluded. The healthcare staff will assess your case carefully and take your medical history in order to evaluate the gravity of potential risks. Most of these conditions are taken care of immediately or after the surgery, for example, when your body rejects the sutures.

However, death rarely happens and with modern techniques, these risks are lower than before. Your doctor will present you with the risks of bariatric surgery and refuse to do it if there is a serious danger to your health.

Certain conditions before surgery increase the risks, like high blood pressure, age over 45 and having BMI above 50. To help lower these factors, you will have to lose some weight the old-fashioned way, stop smoking and increase exercise.

  1. Longer-term risks

To avoid longer-term risks, like stomal stenosis or malnutrition you will need to behave in certain ways after the surgery. For example, chop the food into smaller pieces so they wouldn’t cause the blockage and take vitamins and supplements regularly.

Also, keep in mind that excess skin may show up after the weight loss, so start planning how to keep it at the minimum. You can use firming lotions and start weight lifting as soon as your doctor gives you a green light. Some patients have to undergo skin removal surgery afterward, but going to support groups is also a good idea to keep a positive mindset.

In the end

Examine your options and weigh in the effectiveness and risks of the weight loss surgery. It’s better to be realistic about what to expect and to plan to mitigate its effects right away after the procedure. However, remember that weight loss is a process you will have to go through patiently and with determination in order to achieve the best results.

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