Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Steps to prepare for Bariatric Surgery

First get real fat (LOL). Actually, if your BMI is less than 40 you will have a hard time getting your insurance to cover any of it. Thank goodness I'm a 53 (LOL again).
The real steps I've taken so far:
One: Go to a Bariatric seminar to see if this is right for you. This sugery will force you to change your life. If you don't think you can handle the radical change to your new life long eating habits, don't do it. Even the best surgery can be negated from over eating (your stomach will stretch back out). Now imagine having each meal equal 1/4 cup of food (only three meals a day). No more carbonated drinks (they stretch you out), no caffeine (stimulant), and no alcohol (waste of calories, straight to the waist). You have to monitor your diet to make the best use of 1/4 cup. You can't drink during meals and you have to sip water around meals to keep hydrated. There are two basic bariatric surgeries. One is the gastric bypass (pro- fast weight loss; con- invasive and extremely hard to reverse). The other one is the "Lap-Band" or the "Realize Band" (my choice!). (basically the same) (pro- can be out-patient and is performed laparoscopically and is adjustable; non-invasive; con- slower weight loss). If you can handle these basics, then you may be ready.
Two: Pick a type and find a good surgeon (mine rocks!) and go to a consultation.
Three: You will have to jump through some hoops before they can get an insurance pre-certification. You must have the pre-cert before you can pick a surgery date. Some of the items may include a psychological evaluation, three to six months of diet history, one year of medical records from your PCP, cardiac evaluation, pulmonary function test (sleep eval), and, in my case, a note from your Oncologist.
Four: pick a date (I haven't reached that point yet)
I will be posting all of my trials and tribulations here on my blog. Feel free to post questions.

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