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how much weight will I need to lose before WLS? BMI is 65



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Hey everyone:

i am in the very early stages of my weight loss journey and I have been referred to a surgeon. What I'm afraid of though is my weight is 437lbs, with a BMI of 65. From the research I've done, it looks like I would need to lose a significant amount of weight before they would even do surgery. Is this accurate? Was anyone at this BMI prior to surgery?

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It depends on the surgeon. Some people on this board have gotten the surgery at your weight (But they started heavier).

Most everyone has to go through a lengthy process that takes 3 months to a year to complete all the requirements, including a diet. So you should expect to lose some weight before the surgery.

Welcome!

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My doc wanted me to lose 10% of my body weight prior to surgery. For me that was 24lbs. I didn't make it, I only lost 16. But my surgeon didn't give me a hard time about it.

Good luck on your journey [emoji4]


Band to SIPS/SA-DI/LOOP DS 8.8.17
HT: 5'6 HW: 242 SW: 226 CW: 212 GW: TBD

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Good luck!!

When i got referred i was close to 280 with several chronic medial issues (diabetic, high cholesterol, high bp just to name a few) their program was set according to my ins

I needed to see them for 6 straight months in order to to be approved that meant

1 group session to learn about the process with my team and that was just to get my 1st appt.

3 nutrition classes

And numerous appts with my doc and his nurse practitioner. Plus testing

Every doc is different i was just encouraged to follow the diet the nutritionist laid out for us the 1st session in our booklets, and get used to eating this way for the rest of my life and that's what I did and lost 35lbs doing it.

Again good luck!!

Edited by Irisbramble

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56 minutes ago, MNgirl1234 said:

From the research I've done, it looks like I would need to lose a significant amount of weight before they would even do surgery.

Some surgeons will perform bariatric surgery on patients with BMIs greater than 60 and others won't take the risk. It depends on the surgeon in question.

If you're willing to do Medical Tourism, virtually all of the surgeons in Mexico will perform surgery on you without requiring you to lose weight first.

10,000+ Americans travel to Mexico for bariatric surgery each year to avoid the red tape and waiting required by insurance companies and U.S.-based surgeons.

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I agree with everyone else - some will do it, some won't. I started out with a BMI of 60. I went to several orientations with different surgeons (I think 4 or 5). Only one specifically said he didn't operate on people with BMI's over 60. Although my insurance company, like many, required a six-month supervised diet, so I knew I'd be under his limit by the time surgery came around.

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When I was in the hospital recovering from RNY gastric bypass surgery, I asked the hall nurses, what was the highest weight patient that underwent this operation at their hospital. They said they had one that was 650 pounds.

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When I had my sleeve surgery done in 2012 (the only surgery my dr did. The hospital was not set up for anything else, military), my BMI was 72. I am currently on week 3 of a 5 week pre-op for SIPS. My current surgeon wants my BMI under 60, the closer to 50 the better.

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Mine is 10% or 25.6lbs cuz was 256.0 at the 1st surgeon's appointment. She explained that the weight loss not only helps reduce surgical risk a little bit, but it also shows them a glimpse into our behavior. Can we moderate/modify our eating enough to stay on an actual eating plan once it's absolutely life or death important that we do--i.e. after surgery, while we're healing most especially.

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I was self-pay, so maybe that's why I wasn't required to do a pre-op diet? Not sure. I still had a lot of pre-op appts with various people on his team for months before my surgery. I've heard a lot of good things about Dr. Esquera in Mexico if you think you might want to consider that option. As someone suggested, it would cut a lot of the red tape out, be cheaper, and they've done hundreds of DS surgeries, though I personally am not familiar with any of surgeons in Mexico.

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I have a similar BMI and I am scheduled for surgery next month. My doctor did not have any specific weight loss requirement for me. But I am also otherwise very healthy. A lot will depend on your surgeon, how you carry your weight and your other health risks.


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1 hour ago, Strivingforbetter said:

I was self-pay, so maybe that's why I wasn't required to do a pre-op diet? Not sure. I still had a lot of pre-op appts with various people on his team for months before my surgery. I've heard a lot of good things about Dr. Esquera in Mexico if you think you might want to consider that option. As someone suggested, it would cut a lot of the red tape out, be cheaper, and they've done hundreds of DS surgeries, though I personally am not familiar with any of surgeons in Mexico.

Self pay will avoid the 3-6 month diets often imposed by insurance companies to slow things down and weed out the less serious patients (and hopefully delay things until they are on another company's policy), but the only way to get around the shorter diets often imposed by surgeons is to go with a different surgeon who doesn't require them. From what I have seen, most of the DS guys, particularly those who have been at it for a while, don't impose any significant pre-op diets.

For the OP, as you can see, surgeon's requirements vary all over the place - my wife was a 65ish BMI and didn't have to do any pre-op dieting or weight loss. From my experience, particularly if you are going with a sleeve or a bypass, the more that you can work on your dietary habits ahead of time the better - not for any specific weight loss goals, but to help establish or reinforce the good habits that will serve you in the years ahead in maintaining your loss and controlling your weight.

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Wasn't part of my requirements.

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I'm 4 days post op today and my surgeon practices at 2 hospitals. Only one hospital required my BMI to be below 60. I was private pay since my insurance didn't have the benefit so it was much easier to plan. My BMI was just over 62 so I did the preop diet for 17 days and lost 28 lbs and got my BMI to 58

Best of luck on this journey! It's an exciting one!

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I was 497 when I started to seriously try to lose weight. I used 2 different weight loss plans and went to a gym to do sit down exercises as I am disabled and was not able to stand but 2 to 3 minutes at that time. I had a BMI of 80.2. I managed to get to 352 which was a BMI of 56.8 when I couldn't lose any more weight on my own and went to a Bariatric Doctor. He said my insurance requred that I be on a 6 month supervised diet even though I had lost all that weight on my own. During that 6 months I went through all the preop training and testing and lost down to 315 which is a BMI of 50 when the surgeon did the sleeve, repaired a hernia and took out my diseased gallbladder.

I would go to the Bariatric now so that the weight you do lose will count toward the supervised diet if your insurance requires you to be on one.

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