Bariatric Surgery Requirements
Am I a candidate for weight loss surgery?
Many people don’t think that they weigh enough for weight loss surgery. Unfortunately, many of those people are wrong. Around 1 in every 5 Americans were considered to have "severe obesity" in 2019. It's predicted to be 1 in every 4 Americans by 2030.1 To physicians, "severe obesity" means that a person's Body Mass Index (BMI) is greater than 35, and that they might be a candidate for weight loss surgery. So, are you a candidate?
For a patient to be eligible for weight loss surgery, many surgeons and insurance companies will require the following:
You have previously tried to implement lifestyle changes including diet and exercise to lose weight.
You do not have an untreated severe psychiatric disorder or active substance abuse.
Examples of medical conditions that have been associated with obesity include, but are not limited to:
Type 2 diabetes
High blood pressure (Hypertension)
Heart disease (Coronary artery disease)
Obstructive sleep apnea
High cholesterol (Hypercholesteremia)
High blood fat level (Dyslipidemia)
Non-alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease (Steatohepatitis)
There are some exceptions to the above information. Your surgeon can help you determine if you are eligible for weight loss surgery.
Updated: 1/30/21References1. Ward ZJ, Bleich, SN, Cradock AL, Barrett JL, Giles CM, Flax C, Long MW, and Gortmaker SL (2019). "Projected U.S. State-Level Prevalence of Adult Obesity and Severe Obesity". The New England Journal of Medicine. 381 (25): 2440–50
Dr. Richardson specializes in weight loss surgery in Arizona (bariatric surgery), including the communities of Phoenix, Chandler, Gilbert, Glendale, Mesa, and Tempe.