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Frequently Asked Questions

You’ve Got Questions and We’ve Got Answers.

Choosing to undergo bariatric surgery is a big decision and we know you have questions. Here are some of our most frequently asked:

Will I have to go on a diet before surgery?

As a requirement of most insurance companies, you must participate in a pre-surgical bariatric lifestyle program to help optimize your success post-surgery. This includes starting and maintaining an exercise routine; losing a percentage of your body weight before surgery to lower your risk of surgical complications; and participating in counseling and support groups.

How long after my initial consultation do I have to wait for surgery?

The average weight time varies between 3 to 6 months and is dependent on you hitting your pre-surgical goals and completing pre-operative testing to ensure you are a suitable candidate.

Who will perform my surgery?

Dr. Leslie Pristas is the medical director and board-certified general surgeon for the Center for Bariatric Surgery at Southwest General. She performs all our bariatric surgeries. Dr. Pristas has been performing bariatric surgeries for over 10 years and has performed over 1000 procedures.

Read about some of the patients Dr. Pristas has helped

Do you accept insurance?

We accept most commercial insurance plans. We can go over your insurance requirements and coverage when you come in for a consultation.

Do you accept payment plans or offer financing?

Payment options and discounted rates are available for patients that are uninsured or do not have coverage with their insurance. Please contact our Financial Clearance department at 440-816-4701 weekdays 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. for more details.

How long is the hospitalization and recovery?

On average, you can expect to be discharged 1-2 days post-surgery. Full recovery can take between 2-6 weeks.

How long will I have to take off work?

Most patients return to work 1 to 2 weeks after surgery.

Can I get pregnant after surgery?

Yes! Many women experience an increase in their fertility after weight loss surgery.

How long should I wait post-surgery before becoming pregnant?

We advise waiting between 12-18 months.

Will I have dietary limitations or foods I can’t eat post-surgery?

Expect to be on a liquid diet for 2 weeks post-surgery followed by pureed foods. By weeks 4 and 5 you can consume soft foods and a regular diet by week 6. You will learn by trial and error what foods agree with you and which to avoid. In general, we recommend avoiding foods that are fatty, spicy, hard to digest, contain empty calories or could cause a blockage.

Will I be able to go off my medications post-surgery?

Many people see a reverse in obesity-related conditions after surgery. You may be able to discontinue treatment or reduce medications for things like hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes and sleep apnea with your doctor’s supervision.

Will I need to take vitamins?

Weight loss surgery can lead to reduced amounts of vitamins and minerals being absorbed in the intestines. Your medical team will advise what vitamin and mineral supplements you should take.

What are some complications I could experience?

As with any surgery, you could experience bleeding, infection or anesthetic complications, but these are very rare. The benefits of weight loss surgery outweigh the risks. As a matter of fact, weight loss surgery decreases the chance of dying from an obesity-related condition by up to 40%.

What is the success rate of bariatric surgery?

Studies show Roux-en-Y gastric bypass patients initially lose 70% of their extra body weight and 2 years or more after surgery only regain approximately 5% of their extra body weight.

Is there a chance I could gain all the weight back?

A very small number of patients regain their weight, but this isn’t likely to happen if you are eating right, exercising, following the habits you learned in the pre-surgical lifestyle program and leaning on your medical team and support group for guidance.

Will I need plastic surgery after bariatric surgery?

Some patients have excess skin that remains after significant weight loss and choose to undergo body contouring. That is a personal choice and will depend on your situation.

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