Breaking Misconceptions About Bariatric Surgery


Bariatric weight loss surgery has been performed for decades and the techniques have been significantly improved over the years. Despite the hundreds of thousands of patients who have benefited from bariatric weight loss, there are still many misconceptions about these procedures. If you’re considering having surgery to treat obesity, you could consult a bariatric specialist at Riverside Community Hospital to learn more about these procedures.

Myth: Bariatric Surgery Is Riskier Than Obesity

Every type of surgery carries the potential for some risks to the patient. It’s important that patients fully understand these risks before having bariatric weight loss surgery. However, weight loss surgeries may actually be safer than certain other types of surgeries, such as gallbladder surgery. In fact, the health risks associated with obesity are of far greater concern than the potential risks of treating obesity with surgery. After weight loss surgery, patients typically have significantly reduced risk of mortality from heart disease, diabetes, and certain cancers.

Myth: Bariatric Surgery is a “Magic Bullet” Solution

It’s true that ideal candidates for bariatric surgery are those who have previously tried conservative weight loss methods because undergoing surgery is a significant decision. However, while bariatric procedures may be considered options of last resort, they are certainly not “magic bullet” solutions. Before having these procedures, patients can expect to undergo a thorough evaluation to determine if they are committed to making the drastic lifestyle changes that are necessary for a successful outcome.

Myth: Patients Require Little Follow-Up Care

All surgeries require some follow-up care. The physician must check to see that the patient’s incisions are healing properly, for example. However, it’s commonly thought that bariatric weight loss patients require only minimal follow-up care. In fact, long-term follow-up care is essential for successful weight loss. Long after the surgery, patients may continue to attend bariatric support groups and to meet with various members of their healthcare team.

The Center for Surgical Weight Loss at Riverside Community Hospital provides a comprehensive bariatric weight loss program that includes extensive patient evaluation, education, and post-surgical follow-up care. At our community hospital, residents of the Riverside area can also explore our heart health services, OB/GYN care, and organ transplant program. Call our Consult-A-Nurse referral line at (951) 788-3000.

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