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Healthy Living: Bariatric surgery

Feb 18th, 2012

How do you feel about people who are obese undergoing the knife to lose weight? Marcie Fraser reports on the pros and cons of bariatric surgery in this week's Healthy Living.

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Bariatric surgery is becoming more popular, many critics say it's a fast way out, others say it's the way to go.

Bariatric patient Becki LaGrange said, “I didn't feel good about myself. I didn't feel good about anything around me. I always say I hate myself."

LaGrange battled her 70 pound weight problem for 25 years. Tired of struggling failing, she opted for surgery, the adjustable lap band. When it comes to weight loss, bariatric surgery should be the last resort.

Bariatric surgeon, Dr. Matt McDonald said, "This is not a quick fix none of these surgeries just fixes you, this is a tool that that helps you lose weight."

There are skeptics who say this is a copout. A quick fix and to just get on a treadmill, Becki was one of those who said it.

"I agree because I was one of those people but the older you get the harder to lose," said LaGrange.

"This is a disease. You can't just lose weight there is genetic factors, there is environmental factors,” said Dr. McDonald.

In order to go under the knife, there are strict guidelines. Patients must be able to prove they have tried several medically managed diets, be 100 pounds overweight, have a BMI or body mass index of at least 35 and have other existing medical conditions.

"Diabetes, hypertension, osteoarthritis,” said Dr. Tilliou.

Some say weight that loss surgery is a quick fix and many people don't learn the tools needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle. If you are choosing a program, be sure they have support during and after the surgery.

Saratoga bariatric center surgeon Dr. Greg Tilliou said, “They see psychologist, psychiatrist and any of their other physicians that are needed to be involved during before and after surgery."

A registered dietician also is available them before during and after the surgery. The adjustable lap band is a restrictive procedure where a band is placed around the top of the stomach creating a small pouch limiting the amount of food they can eat. There can be complications.

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Healthy Living: Bariatric surgery

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