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Qualifying for Bariatric Surgery

If you need to lose more than 100 pounds and you've exhausted all other options, you could be a candidate for weight loss surgery at UPMC Bariatric Services.

Are You A Candidate for Bariatric Surgery?

To help determine who is a good candidate for bariatric (weight loss) surgery at UPMC, we follow guidelines from the National Institutes of Health. These guidelines state that bariatric surgery may be a good option for adults or teens who have:

  • A body mass index (BMI) of 40 or more.
  • A BMI of 35 or more with a serious health problem linked to obesity, such as type 2 diabetes, heart disease, or sleep apnea.
  • A BMI of 30 or more with type 2 diabetes that is difficult to control with medical treatments and lifestyle changes.

Your Decision: What to Consider About Bariatric Surgery

Qualifying for bariatric surgery is only the first step. The decision to undergo bariatric surgery is complex and intensely personal, with many factors to take into account.

Your answers to the following questions may help you decide if surgery is a good option for you.

  • Have you been unable to lose weight or keep it off using nonsurgical methods such as lifestyle changes or medication?
  • Do you understand what the operation involves and its risks and benefits?
  • Do you understand the different types of bariatric surgery and which may work best for you?
  • Do you understand how your eating and physical activity patterns will need to change after you have surgery?
  • Can you commit to following lifelong healthy eating and physical activity habits, medical follow-up, and the need to take extra vitamins and minerals?
  • Have you considered the costs of the surgery and follow-up care?

Improving Your Health if You Don't Qualify for Bariatric Surgery

At UPMC's Bariatric Surgery Center, we understand the toll that obesity takes on your quality of life.

While not everyone is an ideal bariatric surgery candidate, we can still help you reach a healthy state through:

You're Not Alone

Over 28 percent of Pennsylvanians are obese. If you're ready to lose weight and find the new you, UPMC bariatric services can help.

Did You Know?

You can find out more about the factors that make a person a likely candidate for bariatric surgery at one of UPMC's free information sessions, where you'll learn about gastric sleeve, gastric bypass and lap band requirements from our knowledgeable weight loss team.