Bariatric surgery can help people lose weight and live healthy, active lives. There are several types of bariatric surgery procedures, but all work by changing the stomach to limit the amount of food you can eat at one time, reducing your appetite, and reducing the ability of the body to digest the food consumed. It may be worth considering bariatric surgery if you are obese and have tried other strategies but haven’t been able to take off enough weight to reduce your health risks.
It may be helpful to know that bariatric surgery also can greatly improve and sometimes reverse such obesity-related conditions as diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, and chronic musculoskeletal pain, especially in the hips and knees.
“We see patients stop using their CPAP machine [for sleep apnea] after three months of surgery, or come off their 11 medicines, including their insulin and high blood pressure meds,” says Geoffrey Nadzam, MD, a bariatric surgeon for Yale Medicine Minimally Invasive & Bariatric Surgery. “We are really able to change lives and make people healthier,” he says.