Bariatric Surgery FAQs | Ascension
Ascension Borgess Hospital - Bariatric Center

Ascension Borgess Hospital - Bariatric Center

  • Weight-loss and bariatric surgery


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Bariatric Surgery FAQs

Ascension Borgess Hospital Bariatric Center in Kalamazoo, Michigan offers bariatric surgery and weight-loss programs.


Choosing to get bariatric surgery is an important decision. You should know what to expect and how to prepare for your weight-loss journey. Before your first consultation with a bariatric surgeon, please review our frequently asked questions. We provide you with answers about the types of bariatric surgery, dietary guidelines, recovery and more.

Who qualifies for weight-loss surgery?
The National Institutes of Health set criteria to determine who will qualify for weight-loss surgery. Patients with a BMI greater than 40 qualify for surgery, and patients with a BMI from 35-39.9 with weight-related health conditions may also qualify for surgery. You must also have tried to lose weight by other methods before pursuing a bariatric procedure.

What procedures are performed at Ascension Borgess Hospital?
We have surgeons who perform the sleeve gastrectomy and the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. Our surgeons will also perform revisions and conversions of prior weight-loss surgery as necessary.

What is a laparoscopic procedure?
Laparoscopic surgery is a minimally invasive procedure that uses small incisions. This surgical technique helps to lower your risk of complications (infections, hernias,etc.) and shorten your recovery time.

How do I get started with a weight-loss program at Ascension Borgess Hospital?
You can get started by attending any of our free seminars. Our seminars will give you a better understanding of your options.

After completing the seminar, what is next?
The surgeon’s office will contact you for your initial appointment. Preparation for surgery includes: surgeon evaluation, dietitian evaluation and classes, medical weight management, behavioral evaluation, Fitness 101 classes, pre and post-support groups and clearances from cardiac, pulmonary, diabetes and other specialties if needed.

Is bariatric surgery covered by my current health insurance plan?
Many insurance companies cover weight-loss surgery, but insurance coverage depends on your insurance plan. We highly recommend contacting your insurance company to verify your bariatric surgery coverage and any plan limitations.

Will the results of bariatric surgery last?
No matter which procedure you choose, each of them require lifestyle changes to be successful. This includes eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly, follow-up appointments with a weight-loss specialist, attending support groups, and one-on-one psychological support as needed. There have been cases where patients do not lose the amount of weight they expected or have gained some of their weight back. Your success is directly related to your commitment to the post-surgical program. Surgery is only one part of the process. Long-term lifestyle changes keep you at a healthy weight. Our dedicated care teams are here to help you every step of the way.

Are there things that I will need to do before my surgery?
Yes. When you come into your consultation, you will meet with one of our surgeons and a patient navigator. Your patient navigator will let you know what you need to complete before surgery.

Can someone come with me to my appointments?
Yes. We encourage you to bring a support person with you. Having weight-loss surgery requires a lifestyle change, so having a support person over 18 years old with you is very helpful. Please, no children.

Do you offer support groups?
We have support groups monthly. These are helpful for patients both before and after surgery. You are welcome to bring a friend or support person with you to these groups.

Do I have to follow a special diet after surgery?
You will meet with a registered dietitian and attend education classes prior to surgery. Special diets will be discussed during these visits. Every patient follows a diet progression of liquid, pureed, soft and solid foods.

Will I have hunger pains?
Every person’s journey is different. We will provide you with tools, resources and education to help make sure that your journey is comfortable and successful.

Will I have a lot of pain or discomfort?
Post-surgical pain is to be expected. Our care teams will personalize your pain management based on your specific needs.

Will I have to take vitamins?
All procedures require a lifetime vitamin supplementation. Our dietitians will help customize your vitamin regimen.