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3 Weight Loss Surgery Myths, Debunked

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Weight loss surgery remains one of the safest and most effective treatment options for people struggling with weight and diabetes. But you wouldn’t know it if you spend a lot of time on social media.

It’s easy to lose sight of the truth in a world of misinformation and hot takes; bariatric surgery is no exception. Our goal is to help you distinguish truth from myth by giving you accurate information. We want you to put you in the driver’s seat for your healthcare decisions, and that starts with giving you the power to make an informed decision. Let’s begin by debunking three weight loss surgery myths that I encounter almost daily:

MYTH: Weight Loss Surgery Is Expensive and Not Covered by Insurance

I have spent much of the past 15 years on the phone confirming patients’ benefits with insurance companies, so if there’s one thing I know, it’s this: if you have health insurance, there is a high likelihood that they will pay for your surgery.

MYTH: Weight Loss Surgery Is for People Who Are Heavier Than Me

Oftentimes, patients tell us that they’ve thought about weight loss surgery but assumed that the procedures were only for the morbidly obese (people who have 200 or more pounds to lose).

This is not the case. In fact, you may be surprised to learn that the average person who gets weight loss surgery is only 60–100 pounds overweight. For many people frustrated with the dieting merry-go-round, weight loss surgery can give them the extra help they need to control their hunger and achieve a healthier lifestyle.

MYTH: Weight Loss Surgery Is Risky

Weight loss surgery is more than just safe. It’s safer than many of the most common surgical procedures. According to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), weight loss surgery has a mortality rate nationally of 0.1%. This makes it safer than hip replacement (0.93%) or gallbladder removal (0.7%).

What’s more, the health risks of obesity far outweigh the risks of surgical intervention. According to the ASMBS, individuals with a body mass index greater than 30 have a 50–100% increased risk of premature death compared to individuals of healthy weight. Yikes!

Make the Decision That’s Right for You

The decision to have weight loss surgery is not an easy one, but it’s not as intimidating as it might seem.

Simply reach out and let us do the rest. Our weight loss experts can help you determine whether weight loss surgery is right for you, as well as which procedure type best matches your needs. Our team will happily call your insurance company to help you understand your benefits. We can also connect you with patients who’ve already had the surgery, online support groups and more so that you get to hear from all perspectives.

About the Author:

Tina Musselman, LPC, RD, LDN, CLT, is a regional director of bariatric surgery at Adventist Medical Center Bolingbrook. She graduated with a BS in Human Nutrition and Dietetics from University of Illinois at Chicago and a MA in Counseling from Governors State University. She has been helping people before and after weight loss surgery for 15 years. Outside of work, she likes to spend as much time with her two children (5 and 2.5 years old), family and friends as much as possible.

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