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Is Gastric Bypass Safe for Teens?

Is Gastric Bypass Safe for Teens?

Obesity is a serious problem among teens. It affects about 22% of young people ages 12-19. Obesity rates are even higher among Black and Hispanic teens.

Obesity can affect teens in many ways. Not only does it increase their risk of bullying and depression, but it can raise their chances of developing serious medical conditions such as:

In fact, the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery refers to obesity as the “most common chronic disease in childhood.”

There’s no simple treatment for adolescent obesity, but for some teens, gastric bypass surgery offers a viable treatment option.

If you are an obese teen or the parent of an obese teen, our care providers at Peachtree Surgical & Bariatrics in Atlanta, Georgia, would like to help you understand the conditions under which we may recommend gastric bypass surgery for teens. We invite you to read on to learn more.

About weight loss surgery

Weight loss surgery — also known as bariatric surgery — is a type of surgery that makes structural changes to your body and your digestive system to help you lose weight. 

Weight loss surgery is a major medical procedure that should not be taken lightly. But in certain circumstances, when its potential benefits outweigh its potential risks, we may recommend it.

There are several types of weight loss surgery, including gastric bypass, Lap-Band®, and gastric sleeve surgery.

Qualifying for bariatric surgery

Every patient is different, and we use your personal health information to make recommendations about surgery. But in general, teens may qualify for bariatric surgery if they have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or above, or a BMI of 35-40, along with a serious weight-related medical condition.

To determine BMI, use this BMI calculator for children or teens.

Gastric bypass surgery for teens

Gastric bypass surgery is one type of surgery we may recommend for teens. It creates a small pouch out of the top part of the stomach. Weight loss occurs because the stomach can hold less food than before. Also, surgery reroutes digesting food past part of your intestines so fewer nutrients are absorbed.

In addition to traditional bypass surgery, we at Peachtree Surgical & Bariatrics also offer one anastomosis gastric bypass, which is a simplified version of gastric bypass surgery.

If we determine that a teen can benefit from weight loss surgery, we create a personalized treatment plan that includes a recommendation for the type of surgery that would best suit the teen’s needs.

We also educate patients and their families on the lifestyle changes they need to make before and after surgery so their procedure and their weight loss are safe and effective.

Learn more about weight loss surgery

If you or your teen is considering weight loss surgery, we invite you to view our free online seminar, which gives many details about weight loss surgery at Peachtree Surgical & Bariatrics. 

We also invite you to bring your questions with you when you visit our office for a consultation. To schedule an appointment with one of our weight loss surgery specialists, contact us today.

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