In a recent article published by Obesity News Today, the author explored the different restrictions and variables that determine which patients are or are not eligible for bariatric surgery. The article explains that candidates for weight loss surgery are those patients who have a BMI over 40, are more than 100 pounds overweight, or have a BMI of 35 and over with at least two obesity-related comorbidities such as diabetes, heart disease, and a variety of respiratory and gastrointestinal disorders. The article not only does a good job of explaining requirements to any patients considering a procedure, but it also serves to illustrate exactly which types of patients benefit the most from weight loss surgery. While those who elect weight loss surgery simply to lose weight as an end goal will still benefit from a bariatric procedure, those that may benefit the most are patients who have serious health issues that can be at least partially remedied by losing weight:
- Slimming Down – It’s certainly true that excess weight on its own can cause a great deal of physical and emotional stress for obese patients. Not only can being obese cause social discomfort and embarrassment, it can restrict people’s mobility, preventing them from participating in a great number of enjoyable activities with their friends and family. Additionally, carrying around all of the excess weight can bring about chronic joint pain which, while not life-threatening on its own, can greatly reduce a person’s quality of life and overall wellbeing.
- Getting Healthy – Beyond these problems associated simply with excess weight, many obese patients are suffering from a variety of other serious health conditions that are associated with obesity. The reason why the BMI threshold is lowered from 40 to 35 for those with comorbidities, is that losing weight is such an effective way to get rid of many of these harmful medical conditions. As new data comes in proving just how effective losing excess weight can be for remedying these conditions, insurance companies and healthcare providers are seeing the patients with comorbidities more and more as the best candidates for weight loss procedures.