Can’t Lose the Weight? Gastric Bypass May Be the Answer

Obesity is a problem that plagues millions of people around the world. Sometimes caused by eating disorders, other times people are practically raised on fatty, unhealthy food. Regardless of the cause, once a person reaches certain level of obesity, it becomes exceedingly difficult to reverse the trend. Exercises are harder, and small meals and diets leave people trying to lose weight hungry and unfulfilled. It’s a vicious cycle that’s tough to break, but there is help: bariatric surgery, such as gastric bypass, can help tremendously.

How Gastric Bypass Works?

A gastric bypass is a procedure that modifies the patient’s gastrointestinal tract. First, the doctors divide the stomach into two parts, a large and a small one. The smaller stomach section is stapled to create a pouch that becomes the person’s actual stomach. This small stomach can hold only a single cup of food. The second part of the surgery involves connecting the stomach directly to a part of the intestine called the jejunum. This means that the patient absorbs fewer calories from their food. The ultimate result of gastric bypass surgery is rapid weight loss and an easier time keeping excess weight off.

After Having Bariatric Surgery

The bear minimum of recovery time for such a bariatric surgery is two to three weeks, though for many patients it's as long as eight weeks. The biggest change post-operation will be in the patient's diet. At first limited to just liquids, after a short while soft foods are again consumable. Eventually, a normal diet – albeit a reduced one – is available. Aside from this, expect the common side effects related to most plastic surgery, such as fatigue.

Will Insurance Cover Bariatric Surgery?

In some extreme cases, insurance will cover a gastric bypass operation. People who are morbidly obese may be risking death if they do not lose weight, so insurance companies generally cover the costs in that case. If your situation is not so dire, expect serious expense: up to $35,000 for the operation.

Potential Problems After a Gastric Bypass

Complications aren’t entirely uncommon after gastric bypass surgery. Minor examples include infections, ulcers, or internal bleeding. Fewer recipients of the surgery develop life-threatening issues, such as pulmonary embolism, heart attack or more serious infections. Gastric bypass can be a dangerous surgery, not to be taken lightly – but it can be a true life saver for some.

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