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Bariatric Surgery in India: What You Need to Know Before Your Procedure

24 Apr, 2023

Blog author iconZafeer Ahmad
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Bariatric surgery is a weight loss surgery that involves altering the digestive system to help patients achieve significant weight loss. This surgery is usually considered as a last resort for people who have tried and failed to lose weight through diet and exercise. In India, bariatric surgery is gaining popularity as an effective solution for obesity. In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know before undergoing bariatric surgery in India.

Types of Bariatric Surgery

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Procedure

There are several types of bariatric surgery, and the choice of procedure depends on the patient's health condition, body mass index (BMI), and the surgeon's recommendation. The most common types of bariatric surgery include:

  1. Gastric Bypass Surgery: This is the most commonly performed bariatric surgery. It involves creating a small pouch in the stomach and rerouting a portion of the small intestine to this pouch. The smaller stomach reduces the amount of food the patient can eat, while the rerouted intestine causes reduced calorie absorption, leading to weight loss.
  2. Sleeve Gastrectomy: This procedure involves removing a large portion of the stomach, leaving behind a narrow tube or "sleeve." This reduces the amount of food the patient can eat and leads to weight loss.
  3. Adjustable Gastric Banding: This procedure involves placing an adjustable band around the upper part of the stomach, creating a small pouch. The band can be adjusted to control the amount of food the patient can eat, leading to weight loss.
  4. Biliopancreatic Diversion: This procedure involves removing a large portion of the stomach and rerouting the small intestine to a new opening in the stomach. This leads to reduced calorie absorption, leading to weight loss.

Eligibility Criteria

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Bariatric surgery is not recommended for everyone. Eligibility criteria for bariatric surgery in India include:

  1. BMI: A person with a BMI of 35 or above is considered eligible for bariatric surgery.
  2. Obesity-related health issues: Bariatric surgery is recommended for people with obesity-related health issues such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, or joint problems.
  3. Age: Bariatric surgery is usually recommended for people between the ages of 18 and 65.
  4. Mental health: Candidates for bariatric surgery should be mentally stable and have realistic expectations about the surgery's outcomes.

Procedure and Recovery

Bariatric surgery in India is performed under general anesthesia and usually takes 1 to 4 hours, depending on the type of surgery. After the surgery, patients may need to stay in the hospital for a few days for observation and recovery.

Patients are advised to follow a strict diet and exercise plan after the surgery to ensure a successful recovery. The recovery time varies from person to person, but most patients can return to normal activities within two to three weeks after the surgery.

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Costs

The cost of bariatric surgery in India is relatively lower compared to other countries. The cost of bariatric surgery in India ranges from USD 3500 to USD 6000 depending on the type of surgery, hospital, and surgeon's fee.

Risks and Complications

Bariatric surgery is a major surgical procedure that involves certain risks and complications. The risks and complications of bariatric surgery include:

  1. Bleeding
  2. Infection
  3. Blood clots
  4. Bowel obstruction
  5. Nutritional deficiencies
  6. Dumping syndrome
  7. Gallstones
  8. Ulcers
  9. Stricture (narrowing) of the stomach
  10. Hernia

Patients should be aware of the risks and complications of bariatric surgery and discuss them with their surgeon before deciding to undergo the procedure.

Choosing a Surgeon and Hospital

Choosing a surgeon and hospital for bariatric surgery is an important decision. Patients should consider the following factors before choosing a surgeon and hospital:

  1. Qualifications and experience: Patients should choose a surgeon who is qualified and experienced in performing bariatric surgery. They should also check the hospital's accreditation and infrastructure.
  2. Success rate: Patients should check the surgeon's success rate in performing bariatric surgery and the hospital's success rate in treating bariatric surgery patients.
  3. Cost: Patients should consider the cost of bariatric surgery in India and choose a hospital that offers affordable yet quality treatment.
  4. Reviews: Patients can check online reviews and testimonials of the hospital and surgeon to get an idea about their reputation and patient satisfaction.

Preparation for Surgery

Before undergoing bariatric surgery in India, patients need to prepare themselves mentally and physically. The preparation for surgery includes:

  1. Medical evaluation: Patients need to undergo a medical evaluation to assess their overall health condition and fitness for surgery.
  2. Diet and exercise: Patients need to follow a strict diet and exercise plan to prepare their body for surgery and achieve the best outcomes.
  3. Mental health: Patients should be mentally prepared for the surgery and understand the changes that come with it.
  4. Support system: Patients should have a strong support system of family and friends to help them during the recovery period.

Post-surgery Care

Post-surgery care is crucial for a successful recovery after bariatric surgery. Patients need to follow a strict diet and exercise plan as recommended by their surgeon to ensure long-term weight loss and avoid complications. The post-surgery care includes:

  1. Diet: Patients need to follow a liquid diet for the first few weeks after surgery and gradually transition to solid foods. Patients should avoid high-calorie and high-fat foods and focus on protein-rich foods and vegetables.
  2. Exercise: Patients should follow an exercise plan recommended by their surgeon to aid weight loss and improve overall health.
  3. Medications: Patients may need to take medications to manage pain, prevent infections, and address nutritional deficiencies.
  4. Follow-up appointments: Patients need to schedule follow-up appointments with their surgeon to monitor their weight loss progress and address any concerns or complications.

Conclusion

Bariatric surgery in India is a safe and effective solution for obesity and related health issues. Patients need to understand the eligibility criteria, types of surgery, risks and complications, and post-surgery care before deciding to undergo the procedure. Patients should choose a qualified and experienced surgeon and hospital and prepare themselves mentally and physically for the surgery. With proper preparation and post-surgery care, patients can achieve long-term weight loss and improve their overall health and well-being.

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FAQs

Generally, individuals with a BMI of 40 or more, or a BMI of 35 with obesity-related health problems, are eligible for bariatric surgery in India. However, eligibility criteria may vary depending on the patient's individual health condition and other factors.