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Pre-bariatric Surgery Requirements and Guidance

Bariatric surgery is a highly effective option for weight loss if diet and exercise alone have been unsuccessful. According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), research has found that weight loss surgery produces long-term weight loss for around 90% of patients. 

When coupled with a personalized nutritional program and regular exercise, bariatric surgery has also been shown to help reduce or eliminate obesity-related complications like hypertension, cardiovascular disease, and type 2 diabetes. However, deciding to have bariatric surgery should be a carefully made choice after considering all options; it is a significant decision that should not be taken lightly. 

At Be Slim Bariatrics (BSB), we know bariatric surgery is a huge step. We always encourage patients to approach the decision to undergo weight loss surgery thoughtfully. To assist you, we have assembled a list of pre-bariatric surgery requirements below to help you prepare for weight loss surgery with confidence. 

Pre-bariatric Surgery Guidance

Body Mass Index (BMI) 

The first pre-bariatric surgery requirement used to determine eligibility for weight loss surgery is your body mass index (BMI). This is a key indicator, and generally, you’ll be considered for weight loss surgery if your BMI is 30 or above. However, if your BMI is lower and you’re experiencing health complications like diabetes, cardiovascular disease, joint pain, sleep apnea, gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), or pulmonary hypertension, you may still qualify.

We would be delighted to support you on your weight-loss journey. Discover your BMI with the  BMI calculator and start your weight loss journey today.

Once you have decided to schedule your bariatric surgery, you will need to follow pre-bariatric surgery guidance to prepare for your surgery. The three key things you need to do before weight loss surgery are:

  1. Quit smoking.  Smoking significantly increases the risk of post-operative problems. Smoking increases the risk of post-surgical complications such as blood clots, infections, slowed or impaired wound healing, and reduced heart and lung function. So, it’s crucial you stop using nicotine products like cigarettes, vapes, and nicotine gum as soon as you can. 

It is strongly advised you stop using any nicotine products as soon as possible before any type of bariatric surgery to lower your risk of complications. However, depending on your overall health, you may be able to have surgery as long as you stop one month before your scheduled surgery date.

  1. Giving up alcohol.  Alcohol consumption can interfere with blood clotting and increase the risk of uncontrollable bleeding and delayed healing. This is why it’s essential to abstain from drinking alcohol for at least one month before your bariatric surgery procedure. 

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offers a useful tool to check your alcohol consumption and drinking habits. We recommend using this tool to help you reduce your alcohol intake. By taking these steps, you can ensure the best possible outcome for your surgery and recovery.

  1. Pre-bariatric surgery diet. Before your bariatric surgery, you’ll need to follow a detailed nutrition program, also known as a liver reduction diet. This pre-bariatric surgery diet helps you lose some weight and reduce the size of your liver before weight loss surgery. Shrinking the liver makes it easier for your bariatric surgeon to access your stomach, which means a safer and less complex procedure.

The pre-surgery bariatric diet typically lasts two weeks but can be customized for patients with a high BMI — normally over 60. During this time, you’ll typically incorporate meal replacement and protein shakes into your daily diet. 

Arranging Your Weight Loss Surgery

At BSB, we place patient care and safety above all else, starting with our comprehensive health questionnaire. A bariatric surgeon will evaluate this to determine the best approach for your health needs, and they will use this information to recommend the most suitable types of weight loss surgery

Sometimes, health conditions or a high BMI may make surgery unsafe. But don’t worry — if that’s the case, you’ll simply need to follow a nutritional plan and increase your exercise to lose some weight before reapplying for the surgery.

We can generally arrange for your weight loss surgery to be performed as early as 14 days from the date of approval. When you decide to move forward, you will be assigned a dedicated, personal patient coordinator to answer any questions or concerns you may have about weight loss surgery and the recovery process. Your safety is our primary concern, and we are always here to support you before, during, and after your weight loss surgery.  

Simply complete our health questionnaire to determine if bariatric surgery is a good fit for you. This service is free of charge to allow everyone to take the first step in transforming their lives. 

Are you ready to take responsibility for your health? 

The experience and skills of the board-certified surgeons on the BSB team, who only practice in the most cutting-edge and modern hospitals in Tijuana, Mexico, means your care will be comparable to that offered by the top hospitals in the U.S. 

We also provide financing options to make it easier to transform your life.


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