Are You A Candidate for Bariatric Surgery?
To help determine who is a good candidate for bariatric (weight loss) surgery at Multi Health Community Center (MHCC), we use the following guidelines for the surgical treatment of severe obesity from the National Institutes of Health:
- 80 to 100 pounds overweight.
- Body Mass Index (BMI) greater than 40.
- BMI greater or equal to 35, with one or more significant obesity-related health conditions
- Typically, between 14 and 75 years old.
- History of multiple failed attempts with diet plans, behavioral changes, and medical therapy.
- Presence of realistic expectations and motivation.
- Ability to understand the procedure and its implications, and to accept the operative risks.
- Commitment to following the post-surgery diet, vitamin supplementation, exercise program, and follow-up necessary for health and weight maintenance.
Preparing for Bariatric Surgery
Helping You Prepare for Lifelong Weight Loss Success
UPMC’s six-month bariatric presurgical lifestyle program helps you build lifestyle skills you can use before and after bariatric surgery.
How to prepare for weight loss surgery:
- Begin and maintain a workout routine to reach and keep your weight loss goals.
- Lower your daily calories to a range between 1200-1500 calories (or in a range discussed with your doctor).
- Avoid consuming caffeinated beverages approximately one month prior to surgery.
What You’ll Get From the Bariatric Surgery Pre-surgical Lifestyle Program
- Six, monthly bariatric pre-surgical lifestyle classes to fulfill insurance requirements.
- Personalized lifestyle pre-parationand diet to prepare for bariatric surgery and long-term maintenance
- Solutions to problematic eating behaviors and nutritional issues
- Help identifying and managing eating sabotages
- A realistic exercise program for life
- Private bariatric nutrition consultations
- Monthly support groups
Support from the program’s multidisciplinary team of:
- Bariatric surgeons
- Clinical nursing staff
Preoperative Appointment: Preparing for Gastric Bypass or Lap Band Surgery
Soon after engaging in your bariatric pre-surgical lifestyle program, you will meet with your bariatric surgeon to:
- Review your weight loss procedure
- Discuss expectations about surgery
- Learn about preparing for bariatric surgery – gastric bypass or lap band surgery
- Learn about postoperative follow-up care
Talk to your doctor about how to prepare for your bariatric weight loss surgery. You may have restrictions on eating, drinking, and taking medications before your procedure.
After Bariatric Surgery
At MHCC Bariatric Program, our relationship with you doesn’t end after bariatric surgery. Our commitment to your health and weight loss success lasts a lifetime.
We’re with you every step of the way.
First Year After Bariatric Surgery Guidelines
After bariatric surgery, you must totally change how you eat and approach food. It’s also important to incorporate exercise into your daily routine.
To assist you in these lifestyle changes and successful weight loss during the first year after gastric bypass, gastric sleeve, or laparoscopic band surgery, we will:
- Start you on your after bariatric surgery diet. Your bariatric surgeon will lead you through the four phases, from liquid to stabilization.
- Give you tips for using protein supplements to help you meet your daily protein requirements.
- Arrange comprehensive, follow-up support and educational services.
Everyone is Unique: What to Expect After Bariatric Surgery
While many people shed 50 percent of their body weight after their operation, everyone is unique. Some people burn fat faster than others. There’s no set expectation for how much weight you will lose in the first, second, or third year following surgery.
Weight loss surgery should not be thought of as a quick fix. Following a diet and exercise plan maximizes the results.
Stay motivated by setting clear goals and realistic expectations. And, don’t forget to celebrate the non-scale victories.
Ultimately, weight loss is more than just a numbers game. Limiting your perception of success to what you see on the scale can prevent you from realizing how far you have truly come.
There are many other micro-achievements that can be just as rewarding. If your waist size is dropping or you’re getting closer to fitting into those jeans you never thought you would wear again, this means your post-weight loss surgery lifestyle is working as it should.
Improving Your Health if You Don’t Qualify for Bariatric Surgery
At MHCC, we understand the toll that obesity takes on your quality of life.
While not everyone is an ideal bariatric surgery candidate, we can still help you reach a healthy state through:
- Nutritional & Behavioral Counseling
- Creating a custom diet and exercise plan for your individual needs
- MHCC’s BodyChangers program (Oral and IVs Treatments).
Bariatric psychology is multifaceted and complicated. If you are interested in reducing your weight, seeking surgery, or have already had surgery and have not reached your goal weight..this is the right place!
Our services include:
- Pre-Surgical Evaluations include our assessment that will provide a comprehensive overview of your strengths and weaknesses going into surgery. This is important to understand for your lasting success.
- The evaluation will provide you with an unbiased, professional information as well as strategies to overcome possible bumps in the road. We encourage all weight loss clients to participate in ongoing psychotherapy and psycho-education. The process of assessment is not to prevent anyone from having surgery, quite the opposite. The more ready you are to engage in the activities that are required for you after surgery the easier it will be to incorporate the new lifestyle changes into your daily routine.
Who: Anyone considering bariatric surgery will need to complete a full assessment.
What: Our 360 Bariatric Assessment includes three standardize assessments, a series of questionnaires, a clinical interview, and review of the testing data. We invite you to come back for a follow-up appointment 6 months after surgery.
Where: You will complete your assessment online. Testing takes up to 3 hours.
When: After signing up for your online assessment, you will schedule a clinical interview to get your results. Don’t wait until the last minute to complete your assessment, often the suggestions given will help you better prepare for surgery. Plus we need a 3-5 day turn around time for assessment reports.
Benefits of Behavioral Health
- Consistency of information. We are happy to work with you and your doctor to provide consistent information and support.
- Better weight loss outcomes. People who participate in weekly, bi-weekly or even monthly therapeutic counseling have better success rates.
- You will learn how to change your relationship to food. Surgery alone will not change how you think and feel about food. Understanding the internal forces and beliefs that drive your behavior will make your journey easier.
- Relationship difficulties are not uncommon, this includes marital, family, work and friendships. Counseling can help you navigate through the process of change.
- Keeping motivated. After a while, the novelty of surgery will wear off, and motivation may ebb. Through counseling you will begin to set goals and employ changes that help you create the life you want, your therapist will keep you on track and headed in the right direction.
The weight reduction program is a great start and can be added to your weight loss journey (see tab). We also offer a 12 month follow up after care program, structured specifically for bariatric weight loss patients.
12-Month Bariatric Behavioral Strategies Coaching Program
- Reevaluating expectations
- Understanding and changing your relationship to food
- Understanding the connection between food and mood
- Managing stress and stressful situations
- Transference of addiction
- Feeding the emotional self
- Appetite awareness
- Barriers to successful weight reduction
- Underlying beliefs that motivate your behavior
- Communication strategies
- Understanding your personality and your weight loss journey
- Achieving balance between goals and habits
If you are someone who is considering surgery, you have come to the right place. If you are someone who has had surgery and want the extra support..you have come to the right place. We are passionate about helping you achieve your goals and create the life you love!