Bariatric (weight loss) surgery has been shown to be effective at helping patients shed excess amounts of weight. On average, patients can expect to lose forty to sixty pounds of their excess weight over the span of two years. Patients who do find success with bariatrics often think of their procedure as their newfound lease on life. The pounds drop away, they have more energy, and their zest for life returns.
For a small number of patients, weight loss surgery fails to produce the expected results. If this describes your situation, bariatric revision surgery can give you a second chance to experience long-term weight loss.
When Does Bariatric Revision Become Necessary?
Some patients lose weight following their procedures only to find the scale creeping back up after a few years. Along with the return of obesity, these patients may experience acid reflux or sleep apnea. Bariatric revision surgery can be the answer to defeating obesity and treating obesity-related ailments.
How Common is Weight Loss Revision Surgery?
Around 10% to 20% of bariatric patients will seek out revision surgery. Most patients seek out revision two or three years after their original procedure.
Why Do Some Patients Need Weight Loss Surgery Revision?
The reasons for bariatric revision surgery vary widely and can be dependent on the original technique used.
Take the gastric sleeve procedure, for example. During this surgery, your surgeon will cut away about 80% of your stomach. The stomach sleeve left behind forces you to consume less food, helping you drop the excess pounds quickly. For some patients, the sleeve ends up being too large. A gastric sleeve revision can pare down the size of the stomach, helping your long-term weight loss take hold.
The lap-band is a bariatric device that fits around and constricts the stomach. This device can be prone to slippage. Lap band revision surgery puts the band back in place, making it effective for weight loss once more.
These are but two examples of revisionist bariatrics. Then there are those patients who experience changes to their anatomy over time, requiring repair. The weight regain that you experience could be due to new stressors in your life or certain behavioral changes.
Your reason for opting for revision surgery may differ. You can discover if weight loss revision surgery is right for you by scheduling a consultation with a qualified bariatric surgeon.
Bariatric Revision Surgery Is Not a Fix for Bad Habits
In some cases, bariatric surgery failure comes back to plain old bad habits.
Your food choices may become worse over time after having weight loss surgery. Weight loss surgery is designed to encourage you to eat less and eat the right types of foods. Eating calorie-rich foods, even after undergoing bariatrics, will make it hard to keep the weight off.
You might find yourself exercising less. Coupled with overeating, a sedentary lifestyle is a recipe for weight regain and bariatric failure.
Before opting for bariatric revision surgery, if you notice yourself slipping back into old habits, try to enact a reset. Get back on the horse. Choose smaller meals. Reach for healthier foods. Get plenty of exercise. If the weight still creeps back up, and you still feel your weight loss surgery has failed, then it may be time to seek out a revision.
Bariatric surgery is only a tool. You must still work hard to lose the excess weight. Your bariatric surgeon can help you along the way on your weight loss journey.
Who is a Good Candidate for Bariatric Revision Surgery?
Weight loss surgeons look for specific criteria when gauging a patient’s candidacy for revision surgery. If you underwent bariatrics in the past and yet your BMI has increased back up to the 35 to 40 range, revision surgery should be considered.
Your surgeon may recommend that your sleeve gastrectomy (gastric sleeve) be altered or converted to a gastric bypass. Regardless of the technique used, bariatric revision surgery can get you back on track to experiencing the weight loss you expect.
Does Insurance Cover Bariatric Revision Surgery?
Health insurance providers have different requirements for revision surgery. Insurers will usually cover bariatric revisions if they involve weight regain following the lap-band, sleeve gastrectomy, or gastric bypass. Check your policy or call your insurance company to determine if revision surgery is reimbursed by insurance.
What Recovery Time Can You Expect with Revision Surgery?
Take the time it took you to recover from your first procedure and add a couple of days. This is about how long you can expect to heal after revision surgery. Your surgeon might have to deal with scar tissue and an altered blood supply. These complications can extend your recovery time. Your surgeon may also require you to stay in the hospital for a few days. Overall, you can expect to resume your normal schedule within one to two weeks.
What Results Can You Expect from Bariatric Revision Surgery?
Bariatric revisions often have good outcomes. Whether the original failure was due to genetics, environment, food choices, life stresses, behavioral patterns, or a mistake made by the original surgeon, your revision surgeon’s first aim is to address those factors. A revision surgery will have a better likelihood of succeeding once those issues are identified and cared for.
You can increase the chances of success even more by choosing an experienced bariatric surgeon for your revision surgery. Determine if you are a good candidate for bariatric revision by scheduling a virtual consultation with Dr. Moeinolmolki at Healthy Life Bariatrics. Call (310)-694-4486.