7 Most Common Questions About Bariatric (Weight Loss) Surgery
Bariatric surgery refers to surgical procedures for patients who are severely overweight or obese. Bariatric surgery aids in weight loss by modifying your gastrointestinal tract.
Below are the seven most common questions our Summit Bariatrics patients have when considering bariatric surgery:
Do I have to diet before surgery?
Yes, it is common for patients to undergo a preoperative diet before bariatric surgery. The purpose of this preoperative diet is to help reduce the size of your liver and facilitate a safer surgical procedure.
How quickly can I expect to lose weight?
Bariatric surgery is a tool that, when combined with lifestyle modifications, can lead to significant and sustained weight loss over time. Individual weight loss depends on many factors, including the type of surgery performed, your initial weight, adherence to dietary and lifestyle changes, and metabolic factors.
In the first few weeks after surgery, most patients experience a rapid drop in weight due to reduced calorie intake, changes in eating habits, and the body's initial response to surgery. On average, patients can expect to lose around 50% to 70% of their excess body weight within the first 12 to 18 months following surgery. Weight loss tends to stabilize after the initial 18 months, and the rate of weight loss may slow down.
How long does it take to recover from bariatric surgery?
Recovery time varies depending on the type of surgery and individual factors. In general, most patients can expect to stay in the hospital for one night and resume normal activities in one to two weeks.
Does bariatric surgery cause hair loss?
Hair loss can occur after bariatric surgery, although it is usually temporary and self-resolving. The shedding typically lasts several months and gradually improves as the body adjusts to metabolic changes and achieves nutritional balance following surgery.
Do people regain weight after weight loss surgery?
Bariatric surgery can result in significant weight loss, but long-term success depends on lifestyle changes and adherence to dietary guidelines. Counseling and support from healthcare professionals, dietitians, and support groups are often recommended to maximize weight loss and maintain it.
Will I need plastic surgery after weight loss surgery?
Weight loss after bariatric surgery can lead to excess or loose skin. The amount of loose skin varies from person to person and depends on your age, genetics, and weight loss. Plastic surgery procedures, like body contouring, can help address excess skin.
Following bariatric surgery, the diet typically consists of several phases, progressing from liquids to soft foods and eventually to solid foods. The specific guidelines may vary depending on the type of bariatric surgery you undergo and Dr. Farrer's recommendations.
Bariatric surgery can affect the absorption of essential nutrients, including vitamins and minerals. Common deficiencies include iron, vitamin B12, calcium, vitamin D, and folate. Regular monitoring and nutritional supplements are necessary to prevent nutrient deficiencies and ensure proper nutrition.
The answers provided here are general and may not apply to every individual. A consultation with Dr. Farrer is essential to receive personalized advice and information about bariatric surgery. To schedule a consultation or reserve a spot at our weekly information sessions, call our Summit Bariatrics office at (830) 223-8150.