Some of the questions people ask most often about Revision Bariatric Surgery:
When is revision bariatric surgery an option?
There are two main indicators for revision surgery as an option following previous weight loss surgery. One indicator revolves around weight loss and weight gain - too much too fast can be dangerous, not enough over time or actually regaining weight following the original procedure keeps patients from attaining the health benefits of successful weight loss.
The second indicator involves developing complications that are related to the original procedure, such as ulcers following RY gastric bypass and slippage or tissue erosion following LapBand. In these situations, a follow-up bariatric procedure, known as a bariatric surgery revision, may be necessary to alter or repair the initial bariatric surgery.
Who qualifies for revisional bariatric surgery?
Before a revisional bariatric procedure is performed, the patient will be examined by the bariatric surgeon to determine the cause of failure and to evaluate for the appropriate treatment options.
Bariatric surgery is a very specialized and complicated treatment process that doctors approach carefully. Great care is given to maximizing weight loss success while minimizing risks and complications. Your surgeon will discuss the options and what each patient should expect with the bariatric revision.
Is revision surgery covered by insurance?
Every insurance company and plan is different, and you should check with your specific insurance provider. In general, patients with complications are usually approved by their insurance carrier due to the medical necessity of their condition. Those with unsatisfactory weight loss may have more difficulty depending upon their insurance carrier.
In general, the indications for revisional bariatric surgery mirror those of the primary procedure, i.e., if someone meets the usual weight criteria (generally, 100 pounds over ideal weight or significant obesity-related health problems). Check with your specific insurance provider.
What are the results of revisional operations?
The results of revision surgery vary depending on factors like what original procedure is being revised, who is performing the revision, and what revisional procedure is chosen. The best results following revisional bariatric operations are obtained by the most experienced surgeons.
It is generally acknowledged that revisional bariatric procedures should NOT be performed by general surgeons with no bariatric experience. There is a "learning curve" associated with improved outcomes. In the hands of an experienced bariatric surgeon, the results of operations for complications are generally good, complications are corrected and the associated problems resolved.
What are the potential complications?
Any major surgery involves the potential for complications - adverse events which increase risk, hospital stay, and mortality. Some complications are common to all abdominal operations, while some are specific to bariatric surgery. A person who chooses to undergo bariatric surgery should know about these risks. To learn more about the potential complications of abdominal and bariatric surgery, click here.