Weight Loss Surgery Can Be Your Option Even Amid the COVID-19 Crisis
According to the statement issued by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), "Safer Through Surgery", which was published online, the surgery for weight loss or obesity surgery is no more considered elective and can be performed as soon as it is safe even during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Individuals who are overweight or obese are three times more likely to develop a severe COVID-19 illness and require admission to the intensive care unit (ICU). Obesity can be associated with other co-morbid conditions such as heart diseases and diabetes. The sooner the people with early diabetes get their weight loss surgery done, the more likely is their remission of diabetes.
Obesity Is a Major Risk Factor and Can Lead to Worse COVID-19 Outcomes
As the COVID-19 pandemic situation may not change for some time ahead, people with obesity must consider weight loss surgery and stay safe. With bariatric surgery, people with obesity are likely to be in better condition if they get COVID-19. Therefore, metabolic and bariatric surgery is considered the best treatment and medically necessary for people with life-threatening severe obesity.
Obesity Was an Epidemic Even Before COVID-19 Pandemic Arrived
Obesity has a high prevalence globally and bears a significant impact on all aspects of health. The epidemic of obesity continues to grow and the rates of obesity and other metabolic diseases are on the rise for a few decades. In the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, the treatment of obesity should not be considered optional as getting a weight loss surgery can relate to reducing the risk of poor outcomes of COVID-19 in obese people. This group of people must not be neglected during this COVID-19 pandemic situation.
Here is a priority-based list of conditions which would require weight loss surgery:
- Revision surgery for complications such as slipped band, severe reflux disease, difficulty in swallowing, malnutrition, and anastomotic strictures
- Pending surgery for pre-operative weight loss (transplant candidates)
- Severe nutritional deficiencies requiring revision surgery
- Patients with poorly managed comorbid conditions such as diabetes, hypertension, osteoarthritis, and obstructive sleep apnea
Each individual is unique and their priorities may differ. Your surgeon will figure out what is right for you by considering the specific risks involved in undergoing or not undergoing surgery. If you need more information regarding weight loss surgery, do contact us and we will be happy to answer all your questions.