Effectiveness of Weight Loss Surgery

How much weight is lost after surgery varies from one patient to another, depending on several factors. These include:

  • Patient's age
  • Weight before surgery
  • Overall condition of patient's health
  • Surgical procedure
  • Ability to exercise
  • Commitment to maintaining dietary guidelines and other follow-up care
  • Motivation of patient and cooperation of their family, friends and associates

Clinical Studies of Bariatric Surgery

In general, weight loss surgery success is defined as achieving loss of 50% or more of excess body weight and maintaining that level for at least five years.  The actual results may vary from one procedure to another and even from one surgeon to another.  It is a good idea to ask your doctor for information and clinical data showing his or her individual results for the procedure they are recommending.

Clinical studies show that, following surgery, most patients lose weight quickly and that this weight loss continues for 18 to 24 months after the procedure. Patients with higher initial BMIs tend to lose more total weight. Patients with lower initial BMIs will lose a greater percentage of their excess weight and will more likely come closer to their ideal body weight.

Studies have shown that patients may lose 30 to 50% of their excess weight in the first six months and 77% of excess weight as early as 12 months after surgery, while others show that patients can maintain a 50-60% loss of excess weight 10-14 years after surgery.

Patients with Obesity-Related Health Conditions

Having type 2 diabetes makes it harder to lose weight, even after weight loss surgery.  The good news, however, is that the surgery has been found to be effective in improving and controlling many obesity-related health conditions including diabetes.

A study of 500 patients, dating back to 2000, showed that 96% of certain associated health conditions studied (back pain, sleep apnea, high blood pressure, diabetes and depression) were improved or resolved. For example, even though patients with Type 2 Diabetes lost less of their overall excess weight, many were able to achieve better control of the disease and were able to stop taking some or even all of their medication.

For More Information

If you think you may be a candidate for weight loss surgery, talk to your primary care physician about Danbury Hospital, call 1-800-516-3657 for more information, or attend a free event and learn more about losing weight through bariatric surgery and if it's right for you.