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Safe Weight Loss Surgery – Be Sure

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Medical professionals generally recommend safe weight loss surgery as a last option when working with each patient. It is probably always best to work with traditional diet and exercise programs, with the support of a medical doctor, before deciding to on surgery to treat an obesity problem.

In fact, most research and medical literature strongly urge individuals to talk with their doctor or other health care professional about controlling weight before making a decision on any weight-loss program, including safe weight loss surgery. While several factors are recognized as contributing to overweight and obesity, the primary goal should first be to adjust food intake and increase physical activity. The medical profession now recognizes that psychological states, family habits, medication and genetics can all contribute to obesity. Safe weight loss surgery should not be thought of as a quick fix for this serious health condition. All of these various factors can be dealt with in a specially designed weight loss program that may include surgery.

Don''t be afraid to tell your doctor that you would like to talk about your weight. As with any major decision, an informed consumer has a definite advantage. Be prepared to ask questions and take notes when discussing weight loss and safe weight loss surgery with your doctor. If you feel that having a family member or friend will help, ask someone to come with you when you visit with your doctor or a staff member at a center for weight loss.

Find out as much as you can about your weight-loss goals the benefits before joining a weight-loss program. Make sure you understand if you really need to lose weight or just need to avoid gaining more. Many weight loss surgical methods in the past have been very complex and invasive, involving isolation of parts of the digestive tract or even more complicated procedures. But new techniques such as lap band surgery have made safe weight loss surgery a real possibility. Candidates for obesity surgery include those who have a BMI of 40 or more, or a BMI of 35 to 40 and a health risk such as type 2 diabetes or severe sleep apnea. Surgical choices include: restrictive surgery that limits food intake; malabsorptive procedures that isolate the small intestine from the digestive tract; and a combination of the two types. Medical professionals are now advising against malabsorptive operations due to the risk of severe nutrition deficiencies.

There may be some complications. One study reports that even after safe weight loss surgery, some patients risk brain damage from vitamin B-1 deficiency. If treated right away with vitamin B-1 shots, patients quickly recover. But if the syndrome isn''t recognized quickly, it can result in permanent brain damage. Tip from National Institutes of Health: Could my excess weight be caused by a medical condition such as hypothyroidism or by a medicine I am taking? (Hypothyroidism is when your thyroid gland does not produce enough thyroid hormone, a condition that can slow your metabolism—how your body creates and uses energy.)

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