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7 Hidden Truths About Bariatric Surgery and Your Insurance Benefits!

Bariatric surgery can reduce the risk of premature death by 30-50%.! It is the most effective treatment for severe obesity, preventing or resolving many diseases, including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, hypertension, certain cancers, and sleep apnea. But it involves various steps and not just surgery. Weight-loss surgery is just a part of the treatment plan. Nutrition guidelines, mental health care, and exercise will also be included in your treatment. 

If you're planning to undergo bariatric surgery, you may be getting tons of pre and post-operative guidance from your healthcare professional. But your doctor may not tell you the hidden truths about this surgery. In this article, we will look at the hidden truths about bariatric surgery, bariatric surgery side effects, and what insurance benefits you can get with it. 


Lesser-Known Facts About Bariatric Surgery

We have enlisted the lesser-known facts about bariatric surgery that even your doctor might not tell you. It's important to know even the small changes related to this surgery so that you can be prepared for the generally great after-results. 


Your bowel habits may change

After bariatric surgery, you can expect changes in your bowel habits. As alterations are made to your digestive system while performing procedures like sleeve gastrectomy or gastric bypass, some patients can experience loose stools while paradoxically some patients have constipation due to the change in diet. The good news is that your gut adapts quickly but yes you need to be very diet aware of things that go well with you and things that don’t!


You may develop loose skin

When you start losing weight after bariatric surgery, your body and skin will take some time to adjust to these changes. But many people may get loose skin, and some might have to go for cosmetic surgery to get it fixed. Although a lot of patients experience loose skin (the more weight you lose more likely you are to have some skin loosening) the good news is that it is generally manageable without further surgery in most. Less than 2-3% of patients undergo surgery for removal of the loose skin after massive weight loss. The price for these cosmetic surgeries will vary depending on the clinic you select and the extent of your issue and may not be covered by insurance.


Some people may have depression

Another issue faced by a few people who have undergone bariatric surgery is depression. When people undergo bariatric surgery, their body goes through many changes that can impact their mental well-being. This is generally seen in patients who have a history of depression before surgery which is why they need careful counseling. It is important not to overthink about the way your body looks and how others will react. Give some time to your body to adjust to these new changes. 


It can Increase the Risk for Alcoholism 

A study was conducted on people who had undergone bariatric surgery one, three, six, and twenty-four months after the procedure. The study showed that the risk of alcohol abuse was higher post-surgery. However, this finding needs further investigation to establish the results. One possible reason for the link between increased alcohol use and bariatric surgery can be the way the body processes alcohol after the surgery.


You need to avoid sodas

If you're someone who loves having soda and mocktails, then you will have to say goodbye to them as soda introduces air into your belly. The gas created by these carbonated beverages can put a strain on your stomach, making it expand unnecessarily and can make you feel uncomfortable. Drink lots of water in place of soda to keep yourself hydrated throughout the day. 


The surgery has low Risks 

There was a time when bariatric surgery was not considered safe because of the lack of technological innovations and the need for open surgery with large cuts. But in today's time, bariatric surgery has improved significantly, and complications of bariatric surgery are rare in experienced hands. With good preoperative evaluation and perioperative management, the risks are seen to be lower than other commonly done surgeries such as gallbladder, hernia, etc. Remember, the risks of heart disease, diabetes, death, stroke, and staying obese are far more dangerous than not undergoing this surgery. 


Bariatric Surgery Cost is not necessarily out of Your Pocket

If you have never thought about going for bariatric surgery or thinking about its cost, then you need to change your thinking. This procedure can be affordable depending on the hospital you select, the weight you want to lose, and other health conditions you have. The Insurance Regulatory Authority (IRDA) mandated bariatric surgery coverage by insurance in October 2020 and clarified that it is not a cosmetic surgery. Insurance companies cover bariatric surgery costs for patients over BMI 40 or over 35 with obesity-associated health issues such as diabetes, heart problems, sleep apnea, etc. 



Bariatric surgery changes the function and shape of your digestive system. You can manage various medical conditions and lose your excess weight with the help of this surgery. But before you undergo this surgery, know about the advantages and disadvantages and the possible complications after this surgery. Choose only a reputed hospital that has all the facilities and expert staff to carry out this procedure and manage the infrequent complications. Ask your doctor as many questions as you have in your mind to have clarity about what you can expect after this procedure. 

Are you planning to go for bariatric surgery or want to know more about this procedure? Consult our experienced healthcare professionals to know whether you're the right candidate for this surgery. 

Dr. Vikas Singhal
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