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Benefits Add Up for Bariatric Surgery

If you’re considering bariatric surgery, you’re probably used to checking numbers -- on food labels, on the scale, at your doctor visits. Some recent statistics compiled by the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery reveal how bariatric surgery stacks up for effectiveness in achieving weight loss, improvement in related health conditions and overall procedure safety. Read on for data that can help you make an informed decision.

Effectiveness of Bariatric Surgery

Just how effective is bariatric surgery at achieving weight loss? The American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery reports that people typically lose the most weight one to two years after bariatric surgery. They further report that studies show people may:

  • Lose 60% of excess weight within six months
  • Lose 77% of excess weight as early as 12 months
  • Maintain 50% of excess weight loss, on average, five years after surgery

Because it results in significant weight loss while also improving other related health conditions, bariatric surgery has been found to be the most effective, long-lasting treatment for obesity.

Health Gains

Many people consider bariatric surgery not only for the weight loss but also because obesity is contributing to other health concerns. For example, they may be unable to have a needed surgery, such as a joint replacement. The good news is that weight loss following bariatric surgery has been proven to improve or resolve many related diseases.

The American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery reports that following conditions have significant remission rates (decrease or disappearance of symptoms) attributable to weight loss following bariatric surgery.

Condition                                       Rate of remission

Type 2 diabetes                                                 92%

Hypertension                                                    75%

Obstructive Sleep Apnea                                96%

Dyslipidemia (High Cholesterol)                 76%

Cardiovascular Disease                                  58%


All those benefits add up to better health. In fact, your risk of premature death can be reduced by 30 to 50 percent after bariatric surgery, according to studies. You may also save money due to fewer needed prescription medications, for example.

Safety Assurance of Bariatric Surgery

People looking into bariatric surgery often have concerns about the safety of the procedure. You might be surprised to learn that bariatric surgery has been found to be as safe or safer than gallbladder, appendectomy, knee replacement and other commonly performed surgeries. The risk of death associated with bariatric surgery is about 0.1%, and the overall likelihood of major complications is about 4%, according to a 2013 study.  For many, the risk of obesity is greater than the risk of bariatric surgery.

Bariatric surgery is a life-changing decision that’s also very individual. It’s important to get the information you need and discuss all of your concerns with your providers. For more information from the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery, and the studies reporting these statistics, go to

Reach out to CHI Health Weight Management for more questions.

Cora Villagomez, APRN, FNP-C
Cora Villagomez, APRN, FNP-C

Cora Villagomez, APRN, FNP-C is a Nurse Practitioner Coordinator at CHI Health.

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