Some people hesitate to opt for bariatric surgery because of many myths that surround the surgery, post operative recovery process, and life after surgery. Hearsay takes prominence over knowledge and one is too scared to choose this potentially life-changing and life-adding solution for obesity.
Through this article, we hope to address your concerns and bust the key myths that prevent you from making a fact based decision.
This write up is the first one in the sequence.
It is true that for the first few weeks post-surgery, you will need to follow a restricted and controlled diet plan. This is to allow your body to adapt to the changes it is going through.
A step-by-step approach is followed in introducing foods into your diet. For the first few days after the surgery, the patient is advised to be on a liquid diet and then gradually pureed food is introduced which is followed by soft and easy-to-digest food items.
Within about three months, most patients are able to get back to eating regular diet. You would also feel satisfied with the small portions that is actually needed by the body as opposed to large portions that you were used to before surgery as a result of overeating habits that we unknowingly learn over time right from childhood.
However, it is important to exercise portion control and eat small but frequent meals so that we don't fall back on old habits.
Every patient will get about 2 years of Golden Period to internalize new and healthy eating habits. In the first 2 years after surgery the excess weight is losing rapidly, motivation is high and results are magical in most patients. So its wise to use this period to learn new eating habits so well that it becomes a part of life and the wonderful results of surgery are preserved life long.
If your digestive system is sensitive to certain foods such as dairy products and spicy preparations, you will be advised to introduce them into your meals in small quantities and monitor how your digestive system reacts to them.
Each patient will have his or her own recovery pattern. Follow our guidance at every phase in your diet plan and you will see the difference to yourself.
So the FACT is: You will be able to eat most of your favourite foods after surgery under guidance of a proper diet plan to empower healthy living.
It is never a simple decision to opt for a surgery. No matter how simple the procedure, when you are going under the knife, it is only natural to have doubts and to worry about something going wrong during the procedure.
As far as bariatric surgery goes, it is no more risky than any other surgery carried out under general anaesthesia.
But, it is common for patients to have second thoughts about the surgery as the date draws closer. Since it is an elective surgery, questions like “Do I really need this surgery?” or “Have I exhausted all other ways to lose weight?” may plague you.
Remember that a high BMI and the related co-morbidities put you in the high risk category of the possibility of strokes, heart attacks and other related diseases which are much more risky than undergoing this surgery.
Here are some tips to prepare yourself for the surgery:
Bariatric surgery is performed laparoscopically which means that it is minimally invasive thus drastically reducing the chances of infections. Most patients do not need more than one or two nights at the hospital and within 15-20 days get back to their regular life.
By opting for bariatric surgery you have set yourself on a path to a better and healthier life. Don’t get bogged down by unfounded doubts. Approach your surgery with the accurate information from the right sources.
So the FACT is: Bariatric surgery is a safe and most scientific option available for long term solution for obesity. Risks of surgery are negligible compared to the host of life threatening complications with which patients of obesity live with.
Am I justified in spending so much money to lose weight?
If I just resolutely stick to exercise and diet, would I not lose a lot of weight with out losing money?
If these are the thoughts floating in your head, don’t worry, you are not alone.
But, ask yourself this, honestly – would you think of cost so much if you needed an emergency surgery?
Since, Bariatric is an elective procedure, many anxieties attack mind. Cost of surgery is a big one out of these.
The key consideration to make here is to look at the long-term cost of both scenarios.
Scenario 1 – you do not opt for the surgery and continue spending on medical care, drugs, frequent hospital visits, etc associated with obesity-related issues.
Scenario 2 – you opt for surgery and safeguard yourself from the expenses occurring from the co-morbidities.
Obesity is a leading cause of diabetes, blood pressure, heart condition, etc.
Cost of life long medication to keep these life-threatening conditions under check, frequent visits to your Physician such as Diabetes Doctor, frequent hospitalization, quality of compromised life etc need to be considered to make a good comparison vs Cost of Surgery.
There are Bariatric RoI (Return on Investment) studies published which conclusively prove that in 26 months, cost of surgery is recovered in most parts of the world due to stopped or decreased spend on medication and improved productivity of the patient.
Also, bariatric surgery is done laparoscopically. This means smallest of incisions which ensures a speedy recovery and quick return to work. On, the other hand, living with morbid obesity leads to frequent absenteeism in the workplace as well as subtle discrimination and social stigma.
Studies have proven that eliminating or reducing obesity-related conditions through weight-loss surgery reduced the healthcare expenses of the patients by 29% within five years of having undergone the procedure.
Weight-loss surgery is as expensive as any other surgery and may also be covered by your insurance if you have co-morbidity. For years, weight-loss surgery was clubbed together with cosmetic surgery but, insurance companies have now awoken to the life-saving impact of Bariatric surgery and it is covered under many insurance plans.
So the FACT is: The one-time cost of Bariatric Surgery gets recovered pretty quickly due to savings in medication and healthcare costs incurred in controlling co-morbidities.
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