Do I Meet Criteria For Weight Loss Surgery?

I'm in need of help.


I am a 35 year old mother to two girls.

I am 5'3" tall and I weigh 220 pounds.

I have very bad back aches all the time, my hip also hurts, I have high blood pressure, my cholesterol is at 229, and my sugar is up a little but not enough to need meds for it.

I was wondering would I be considered a good candidate for laproscopic gastric bypass surgery ?



You do, in fact, meet the criteria for weight loss surgery.

Your BMI (Body Mass Index) is used to determine whether your weight makes you a good candidate for weight loss surgery.

BMI Interpretation:

  • < 18.5 = Underweight

  • 18.5 - 24.9 = Normal

  • 25.0 - 29.9 = Overweight

  • 30.0 - 34.9 = Obesity (Class I)

  • 35.0 - 39.9 = Obesity (Class II)

  • 40.0+ = Extreme Obesity (Class III)


According to NIH Guidelines (National Institute of Health), you're a good candidate for bariatric surgery if:

  • Your BMI is 40 or higher

  • Your BMI is 35-39.9 and you have have one or more weight related health conditions (called "comorbidities") such as diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnea, reflux, heart disease, stroke, respiratory problems, osteoarthritis, joint problems, etc.

  • You're at least 100 pounds over your estimated ideal weight



However, meeting the technical weight criteria for weight loss surgery is not the same thing as being a good candidate for weight loss surgery.

Just because your weight puts you in a category eligible to qualify for bariatric surgery doesn't mean it's necessarily right for you.

That's why most insurance companies require that you meet with a psychologist and/or a dietitian (like me!) before surgery as part of your pre-op evaluation.

Here are some of the things I, as a dietitian, am looking at when I talk to someone considering weight loss surgery:

  • Have you made adequate diet attempts?

  • Have you exhausted all traditional dieting methods?

  • Have you truly given past dieting attempts your all?

  • How long have you been overweight?

  • Are you an emotional eater?

  • Have you made adequate attempts to exercise?

  • Have you made adequate attempts at behavior modification?

  • Do you have realistic expectations of weight loss surgery?

  • Are you committed to making lifelong changes in your diet and lifestyle?

  • Do you understand and are you willing to follow the diet after weight loss surgery including changing how much you eat, what you eat and how you eat?

  • Do you have a good support system?


These are all good questions to ask of yourself as you're considering the possibility of weight loss surgery.

Read about the experiences of people who've had weight loss surgery here.

You can also find out all about gastric lap band surgery here.


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