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Frequently Asked Questions

PRE-OPERATIVE

Is Bariatric Surgery Right for Me?
Bariatric surgery is not right for everyone. We have developed a comprehensive preoperative process to determine whether or not surgery will be effective in your particular circumstance. Bariatric surgery is, however a last resort when diet and exercise has not successfully resolved your obesity problem.

Do I Qualify for Bariatric Surgery?
Qualification for bariatric surgery depends on several markers that determine whether or not surgery represents an acceptable risk. Your BMI, any weight related diseases, your general health, the procedure being performed and your willingness and ability to change your life after surgery will all come into play when determining if you qualify. Learn more on our Do I Qualify for Bariatric Surgery page.

How Do I Pay for Bariatric Surgery?
Payment options range from insurance coverage (including Medicare) to self-pay. It is important that you speak to your insurance company and contact our office to verify your insurance benefits to learn more. In the meantime please visit our page on Paying for Bariatric Surgery.

What Do I Drink Or Eat Before Surgery?
As you approach your surgery date, you will need to follow your pre-surgical guidelines very closely to help ensure a safe procedure. We also suggest that you begin to the post bariatric surgery diet before you undergo the procedure in order to acclimate yourself with the coming changes in diet and exercise.

PROCEDURES

Can The Procedures Be Reversed?
The gastric band is easily reversed by simply removing the band. While the stomach will return to its original shape, you will likely regain weight. The gastric bypass can also be reversed although this is a procedure that comes with significant risk. If the bypass is no longer offering weight loss support, we would consider a revisional procedure. The gastric sleeve cannot be reversed as part of the stomach is removed from the body. The sleeve can be revised however.

What Is The Best Procedure For Me?
There is no one-size-fits all procedure – many factors are taken into account when decided what is best for you – this may include your BMI, comorbidities, financial situation and more. As a general point of reference:

  • Gastric bypass may be most suitable for those with significant type 2 diabetes and chronic acid reflux (GERD).
  • Gastric sleeve may be best for those who have a high operative risk due to extreme BMI and poorer general health.
  • Gastric Banding may be appropriate for those at a relatively lower BMI with less severe obesity related diseases. It is also the least expensive of the procedures.

Only a consultation with a bariatric surgeon like Dr. Gornichec can offer the appropriate guidance for which procedure is best.

Will I Feel Anything During Surgery?
No. You will be placed under general anesthetic by a qualified anesthesiologist.

COMPLICATIONS

What Complications Can I Expect?
Ideally, we hope for no complications at all. And while they are not common, every surgical procedure comes with risk. Comprehensive pre-operative testing is performed to ensure that you are at a low risk of complications. After surgery, we will monitor you closely to ensure complications, if any, are caught and treated quickly. The best way to minimize complications is to follow your pre- and post-op instructions.

What Are The Most Common Complications?
Complications can range from mild blood loss, pain and infection to those that are more severe. Factors such as how the procedure is performed (open or laparoscopic) and the patient’s ability to heal go a long way to determining the eventual outcome of surgery.

Will Recovery Hurt?
Any surgical procedure involves a certain amount of pain after surgery and recovery. While you’re in the hospital, our goal is to actively manage any discomfort you may have. The nursing staff as well as Dr. Gornichec will check in regularly to help you mitigate any pain. With that said, laparoscopic surgery is generally less painful than traditional open surgery.

When Should I Call The Office
You will receive a postoperative instruction packet that will tell you what is normal after the procedure. You can also visit our When To Call the Office Page. We encourage you to contact our office anytime you suspect something is not right. If you believe you are having an emergency, do not delay in calling 911.

LIFESTYLE AFTER SURGERY

What If I Cannot Follow My Post-Op Diet?
Implementing the modifications to your diet and exercise program after bariatric surgery are key to losing weight. It may take some time to become comfortable with the diet and exercise regimens that you will be required to follow. If you have any concerns, we suggest that you discuss them with Dr. Gornichec during your preoperative consultation.

When Can I Get Pregnant?
One of the great benefits of bariatric surgery is that some formerly obese patients may regain their ability to have a child. However, it is important to time the pregnancy properly. At a minimum you will have to wait 18 months to become pregnant. Please consult with us when you decide you want to become pregnant.

When Can I Go Back To Work
Depending on the procedure you undergo, the recovery time before you can go back to work can range from a couple weeks to four weeks. This also depends on the progress of your recovery, as well as the type of job that you have. Particularly strenuous jobs may require the additional recovery time before returning to work. Learn more about Returning To Work After Bariatric Surgery.

Will I Lose Hair?
Bariatric surgery itself, along with the significantly restricted diet that you will undergo after surgery, creates stress on the body. This can cause some patients to temporarily lose hair. Ensuring that you follow the prescribed diet after surgery should minimize the amount of hair that you lose. Unless the hair loss is due to genetic balding, It should grow back in due time.