Questions to Ask Your Doctor About Weight Loss Options

The desire to lose a significant amount of weight comes with options – and many questions. Talking with a doctor or professional in the weight loss field can help you make the best decision for yourself and your lifestyle. Below is a list of questions to get you started:

  1. Do I have surgery options? What is the difference in results?
  2. If I take medication, will I be on it indefinitely, or can I stop taking it after I lose weight?
  3. How do different methods of weight loss work – medications, nonsurgical and surgical?
  4. What are the cost differences and insurance coverages for weight loss options?
  5. What are the side effects of different options, medications vs. surgery?
  6. What can I expect for the outcome of each of my options?
  7. What will I be able to eat/not eat with my different options?
  8. How long will it take to lose weight, and what can I do to maintain weight loss?
  9. What are the major and/or most frequent complications of surgery?
  10. What can I do to decrease my risk of complications?
  11. What are the safety concerns for different types of weight loss – medication and bariatric surgery?
  12. What kind of support is available for me on the weight loss journey – such as for diet or psychological support as my body changes?
  13. If I do not have surgery, what is the risk?
  14. What do I have to do to qualify for weight loss surgery?

Because obesity is so harmful to health, having surgery to help with significant weight loss may greatly reduce your risk of premature death. And, surgical techniques for weight loss surgery have been shown to be as safe or safer than gallbladder or hip replacement surgery, and the overall likelihood of major complications is about 4%.

The decision to have weight loss surgery typically happens after many years of trying other methods to lose weight. But why wait?

Weight loss surgery is generally designed for those with a body mass index (BMI) equal to or greater than 40, or equal to or greater than 35 with serious co-morbidities. Weight loss surgery is considered safe, but like many types of surgery, it does have risks. Consult with your physician about the risks and benefits of weight loss surgery.

Sources:
American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery
UC Health
MedlinePlus

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