Weight Loss Surgery in Connecticut

June 26, 2009 · Filed Under Weight Loss Surgery · Comment 

The epidemic of obesity that is sweeping the nation has hit home in Connecticut, despite the state’s reputation of good health. In fact, obesity rates have risen markedly in Connecticut over the past decade, with more than 56% of the population being classified as overweight or obese.

What does this mean? For one thing, obesity is a serious threat to individual health. Researchers say that a high body mass index (BMI) constitutes a greater threat to a person’s overall health than tobacco use or alcohol abuse. Being obese may also lead to other life-threatening illnesses, called co-morbidities, such as heart disease, hypertension, and Type II diabetes.

Obesity is a public health threat as well. Nationwide, obesity is the second leading cause of preventable death in the United States.

And then, there are financial implications. According to a recent survey by the Centers for Disease Control, the cost of obesity to Connecticut is substantial: In 2003, state taxpayers paid $665 million of the $856 million total cost of obesity-related public heath activity in Connecticut. Of that $665 million, $246 million was paid out in Medicare costs and $419 million in Medicaid costs; the remaining $191 million was picked up by private insurance companies. In other words, the taxpayers of Connecticut cover some 77% of the state’s obesity-related health-care costs every year.

What can be Done?

Of course, treating obesity is no mean feat, and the citizens of Connecticut are facing this problem in a variety of ways. Many of those suffering from obesity simply ignore their condition – until disaster strikes. Of those who do attempt to deal with their obesity, many try to lose their excess weight by means of fad diets, exercise programs, or weight-loss pills and powders. For a tiny minority, these methods work. But the vast majority of people quickly regain the weight they lost after they suspend their self-defined “program”. For them, as well as those who lose no weight at all, there are extreme emotional consequences, due to their perceived lack of character.

Obesity is not a character defect. It is a disease – a disordered relationship between the person, the food they eat, and the lifestyle they lead. As a disease, obesity is best treated medically, and one increasingly popular method of treatment is bariatric surgery, also known as weight loss surgery. Although not a panacea, surgical weight loss has been proven to be an effective solution for those whose lives are jeopardized by obesity. Surgical treatment can help minimize or resolve obesity-related health problems for people with a BMI of 35 or higher. It can also help those who are obese but have no co-morbidities reach their ideal weight and guard against developing weight-related health problems in the future.

Considering Surgical Weight Loss

Weight loss surgery can be life-changing. However, it is not a magic formula, and the disease of obesity cannot be cured by surgery alone. Patients who fail to follow prescribed lifestyle changes and disregard their doctors’ instructions may regain the weight they lose, or reach a weight-loss plateau over time, even with successful bariatric surgery. The decision to undergo most types of weight loss surgery also has life-long implications, since some procedures are irreversible.

Although bariatric surgery can be a solution to cases of life-threatening obesity, anyone considering the surgical treatment of obesity should consult with his or her primary care doctor, and also speak with one of the many qualified bariatric surgeons in Connecticut regarding the risks and possible outcomes of surgery.

Weight loss surgery in Connecticut is a growing trend, since more than 56% of the state population is overweight or obese. Visit online website for Weight Loss Surgery .