Northwest Houston Surgical Association

Preparation For Weight Loss Surgery

Preparation For Weight Loss Surgery in Houston and Cypress txWhen you meet with any of the NHSA surgeons for a consultation regarding weight loss surgery in Houston or Cypress, they will carefully consider what will help you attain the best possible outcome for you and your lifestyle. They will educate you until they are convinced that you understand the risks and benefits of the weight loss option you choose. Request a consultation online or call our office at 713-426-2400 for more information about how you can take the steps toward improving your life.

 

WHAT TESTS ARE ROUTINELY DONE BEFORE WEIGHT LOSS SURGERY?

Certain basic tests are done prior to surgery: a Complete Blood Count (CBC), Urinalysis, and a Chemistry Panel, which gives results of about 20 blood chemistry values. Often a Glucose Tolerance Test is done to evaluate for diabetes, which is very common in overweight persons. All patients, but the very young get a chest X-ray and an electrocardiogram. Women may have a vaginal ultrasound to look for abnormalities of the ovaries or uterus. Many surgeons ask for a gallbladder ultrasound to look for gallstones. Other tests, such as pulmonary function testing, echocardiogram, sleep studies, GI evaluation, cardiology evaluation, or psychiatric evaluation, may be requested when indicated.

  • dr-fadner-img
    Meet Our Doctors

    Dr. Fadner

    Dr. Fadner is fellowship trained in Advanced Minimally Invasive Surgery and Bariatric Surgery and offers a wide range of general surgery operations to his patients.

  • Dr. Levia
    Meet Our Doctors

    Dr. Leiva

    A certified General Surgeon at the forefront of single incision and robotic general surgery. Dr. Leiva also has a special interest in primary and revision, advanced laparoscopic.






  • Dr. Amir
    Meet Our Doctors

    Dr. Amr

    As a highly skilled and fellowship trained weight loss surgeon, Dr. Amr is skilled in laparoscopic foregut surgery and bariatric (weight loss) surgery.






  • Dr. Ayyar
    Meet Our Doctors

    Dr. Ayyar

    Dr. Ayyar has pioneered minimally invasive surgery in the West and Northwest Houston area. His expertise in minimally invasive and endocrine surgery allow him to perform parathyroid operations.






WHAT IS THE PURPOSE OF ALL OF THESE TESTS?

An accurate assessment of your health is needed before surgery. The best way to avoid complications is to never have them in the first place. It is important to know if your thyroid function is adequate since hypothyroidism can lead to sudden death post-operatively. If you are diabetic, special steps must be taken to control your blood sugar. Because surgery increases cardiac stress, your heart will be thoroughly evaluated. These tests will determine if you have liver malfunction, breathing difficulties, excess fluid in the tissues, abnormalities of the salts or minerals in body fluids, or abnormal blood fat levels.

WHY DO I HAVE TO HAVE A GI EVALUATION?

Patients who have significant gastrointestinal symptoms, such as upper abdominal pain, heartburn, belching, sour fluid, etc., may have underlying problems such as a hiatal hernia, gastroesophageal reflux, or peptic ulcer. For example, many patients have symptoms of reflux. Up to 15% of these patients may show early changes in the lining of the esophagus, which could predispose them to cancer of the esophagus. It is important to identify these changes so a suitable surveillance or treatment program can be planned.

WHY DO I HAVE TO HAVE A SLEEP STUDY?

The sleep study detects a tendency for abnormal stopping of breathing, usually associated with airway blockage when the muscles relax during sleep. This condition is associated with a high mortality rate. After surgery, you will be sedated and will receive narcotics for pain, which further depress normal breathing and reflexes. Airway blockage becomes more dangerous at this time. It is important to have a clear picture of what to expect and how to handle it.

WHY DO I HAVE TO HAVE A PSYCHIATRIC EVALUATION?

The most common reason a psychiatric evaluation is ordered is that your insurance company may require it. Most psychiatrists will evaluate your understanding and knowledge of the risks and complications associated with weight loss surgery and your ability to follow the basic recovery plan.

WHAT IMPACT DO MY MEDICAL PROBLEMS HAVE ON THE DECISION TO HAVE SURGERY?

Medical problems, such as serious heart or lung problems, can increase the risk of any surgery. On the other hand, if they are problems that are related to the patient’s weight, they also increase the need for surgery. Severe medical problems may not dissuade the surgeon from recommending gastric bypass surgery to Houston or Cypress patients if it is otherwise appropriate, but those conditions will make a patient’s risk higher than average.

HOW LONG DO I HAVE TO WAIT BEFORE GETTING SURGERY?

New evaluation appointments are usually booked four to eight months in advance. Once a patient is seen, if the surgeon and patient agree it is appropriate, the operation can usually be scheduled within eight weeks. Why so long? There is more need for weight loss surgery than there are qualified bariatric surgeons.

WHAT CAN I DO TO SPEED UP THE PROCESS OF GETTING READY FOR SURGERY?

You can do the following:

  • Select a primary care physician if you don’t already have one, and establish a relationship with him or her. Work with your physician to ensure that your routine health maintenance testing is current. For example, women may have a Pap smear, and if over 40 years of age, a breast exam. And for men, this may include a prostate specific antigen test (PSA).
  • Make a list of all the diets you have tried (a “diet history”) and bring it to your doctor.
  • Bring any pertinent medical data to your appointment with the surgeon – this would include reports of special tests (echocardiogram, sleep study, etc.) or hospital discharge summary if you have been in the hospital.
  • Bring a list of your medications with dose and schedule.
  • Stop smoking. Surgical patients who use tobacco products are at a higher surgical risk.

If you’re ready to improve your life, request a consultation online or call our office at 713-426-2400 for more information.

Obalon Balloon System Surgery

The Obalon Balloon System helps facilitate weight loss by taking up space in your stomach so you eat less.






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Gastric Band

As one of the more popular procedures, LAP-BAND® surgery gives patients the ability to control their weight by allowing them to feel fuller, sooner.






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Gastric Bypass

Gastric bypass is successful at helping patients achieve and maintain a healthier weight by using sectioning and malabsorptive techniques.






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Sleeve Gastrectomy

A sleeve gastrectomy procedure involves removing about 85% of the stomach and reshaping the remaining portion into a tube or sleeve.






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Duodenal Switch

The Biliopancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch (BPD/DS) is a popular procedure for small stomachs combining a lower form of restriction and a high level of malabsorption.






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