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Weight Loss Surgery: Benefits and Risks

You may be considering weight loss surgery if you are overweight or obese. For many people, surgical weight reduction is one of the only viable ways to lose a significant amount of weight and enjoy better health. However, it's important to realize that this is a very serious undertaking. You should definitely spend time researching the topic and, if possible, talking with people who have already had a weight reduction procedure performed. Understanding the benefits and risks involved with weight loss surgery is absolutely vital to making an informed decision. To help you get started, here is a brief guide...


* Fast Weight Loss: Obviously this is the biggest benefit of weight loss surgery. Immediately following the surgery most people begin to lose weight quickly. This rapid weight loss usually continues for at least a year and a half, leading to a very significant reduction in body weight. It's important to note however that many people begin to regain weight within 2 years, especially if they have not made any healthy lifestyle/diet changes!

* Improvement of Obesity-Related Health Conditions: For many people, the improvement in their overall health, following weight loss surgery, is just as important as the weight loss itself. And for good reason: people who have suffered from debilitating obesity-related conditions (such as diabetes) for years often experience tremendous improvements within a short period of time.

Risk and Side-Effects:

* Death: A small percentage of weight loss surgery patients die during the operation or from complications in the days and weeks following the surgery.

* Post-surgery complications: Some patients must have follow-up procedures to correct complications, which can include infections and hernias.

* Nutritional deficiencies: Some types of weight loss surgeries reduce the body's ability to absorb important vitamins and minerals. Many patients must take diet supplements on a daily basis or risk developing anemia, osteoporosis, metabolic bone disease, etc.

* Gallstones: More than a third of gastric surgery patients develop gallstones due to the rapid weight loss that occurs in the months following a weight reduction procedure.

* Side-effects: Some of the most common side-effects experienced by weight loss surgery patients include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, bloating, excessive sweating, increased gas, and dizziness.

As you can see, weight loss surgery carries some huge benefits along with some very significant risks. If you are severely obese, it is definitely an option for reducing your body weight and improving - or even eliminating - many of your obesity-related health conditions. Just understand the risk and be prepared to make some relatively extensive lifestyle changes after the procedure. If you are not severely obese you should definitely consider diet and exercise options before you think about weight loss surgery.

Jay Romano is a writer for Get more useful and up-to-date information about weight loss surgery at


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