Do I Need Weight Loss Surgery? Reasons and Risks

Weight Loss Surgery: Reasons and Risks – “Do I Need Weight Loss Surgery?”

If you’re exploring weight loss surgery, chances are you are doing so primarily because of two reasons:

  1. your health – and quality of life – are reduced due to having Obesity
  2. nothing you tried previously was successful in achieving adequate weight loss and long-term weight stability.

Reasons why you or your Doctor may explore your suitability for Weight Loss Surgery may include the following health conditions or lifestyle problems


do-i-need-weight-loss-surgery-reasons-risks obesity

In general, weight loss surgery MAY BE an option for you IF

  • You’ve made continuous efforts to lose weight over the years; but diet and exercise changes were unsuccessful in achieving a stable, lower weight over the longer term.
  • Your weight has steadily crept up over several years or decades; and your body mass index (BMI) is now 40 or higher.


Other reasons you may be a candidate for weight loss surgery

  • Your BMI is 35 or more AND you have a serious weight-related health problem, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure or severe sleep apnoea.
  • You’re a teenager who’s passed through puberty AND your BMI is 35 or more AND you have serious obesity-related health problems, such as type 2 diabetes or severe sleep apnoea
  • You MAY also qualify for certain types of weight-loss surgery IF your BMI is 30 to 34 AND you have serious weight-related health problems.

How to get an assessment for having Weight Loss Surgery

  •  An evaluation by a health professional is necessary as weight loss surgery patients must meet certain criteria.
  • The first step is usually a visit to your GP, who can refer you to a Surgeon or Bariatric Surgeon for assessment.

If you are considered a suitable candidate for weight loss surgery, you’ll have a Weight Loss Surgery TEAM of health professionals helping you make changes to have a successful operation outcome.


Your Weight Loss Surgery Team is likely to include:

  • a dietitian or nutritionist
  • a psychologist or counsellor
  • a Bariatric Surgeon (Weight Loss Surgeon)
  • other professionals as required, such as an exercise physiologist, physiotherapist or endocrinologist
  • post-weight loss Surgery Plastic Surgeon for skin reduction


Not everyone is a candidate for weight loss surgery such as a gastric sleeve, and there are RISKS as well as BENEFITS to consider.

Your Weight Loss TEAM will work WITH you to help assess your suitability for a weight loss procedure. Examinations and tests will be performed to assess whether the potential BENEFITS of weight loss surgery will outweigh the RISKS of the surgery for YOUR particular situation.

The specific type of weight surgery that may suit your needs best will also be evaluated.


Assessments of your suitability for weight loss surgery are likely to include:

  • Health/General/Emotional
  • your current age, height/weight and BMI
  • your nutrition and weight history
  • your medical conditions (current and past)
  • current medications or interventions
  • prior surgeries
  • your psychological status
  • your mental and physical preparedness for a surgical solution


Medical tests needed before your Weight Loss Surgery may include:

  • Blood tests for Thyroid function, liver function, blood count, vitamin deficiencies
  • Barium Swallow (contrast) to assess reflux and gastrointestinal tract
  • EKG – cardiac echo and stress test / ultrasound)
  • Exercise Stress Test (blood pressure tests on a Treadmill or exercise bike)
  • Pharmacologic tests may also be required
  • Ultrasound of the Gallbladder if you have right upper area abdominal pain)
  • Other tests as your Surgeon or Healthcare Team recommends


If you’re considered a good candidate for weight loss surgery and you decide to proceed, your medical team will then guide you through assistance to learn to make the required preparation changes for your surgery procedure.

Send us an enquiry to get a copy of the downloadable sheet – TYPES of Weight Loss Surgery; or our Guide – Preparing for Weight Loss Surgery, to learn more about what lifestyle or eating changes may be required of you BEFORE You can have your weight loss procedure performed by a Surgeon.

Interested in learning more? Phone us on 1800033333 for information.

More on Weight Loss Surgery types:

Weight Loss Surgery

Weight Loss Surgeon Directory

Weight Loss Surgeons – Directory of Australian Bariatric Surgeons


Obesity and Health Resources:




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