Looking to improve your overall health, from acid reflux to sleep apnea and joint pain?
The search is over. Bariatric surgery doesn’t just help patients shed pounds – according to Kenneth Schwartz, MD, general surgeon at MidState Medical Center, it also improves a variety of conditions that might have been plaguing you for years.
Here are five conditions that bariatric surgery can help with.
1. Acid reflux
Specializing in benign diseases of the stomach and esophagus, Dr. Schwartz is passionate about this one.
“Acid reflux, or GERD, is a common issue facing people with obesity,” he says. “Excess weight puts pressure on the abdominal cavity, which can force stomach acid back up the esophagus.”
Acid reflux tends to strike at night, especially if you lay down after a large meal.
2. Sleep apnea
Acid reflux might not be the only thing keeping you up at night. Sleep apnea is a common culprit, too.
“Obstructive sleep apnea is often a result of obesity. If you’re tired of living with a CPAP machine, weight loss can help,” says Dr. Schwartz.
Sleep apnea might just be the beginning – it’s also a risk factor for cardiac events and hypertension.
3. Heart health
Speaking of hypertension, Dr. Schwartz notes that bariatric surgery can be a cure for that, too.
“High blood pressure leaves you at risk for heart disease, heart attack, stroke and a host of other cardiac issues. Obesity is a leading cause of hypertension, so losing even a few pounds helps.”
And high blood sugar can be just as bad.
“Bariatric surgery is the only proven cure for type 2 diabetes. This is a debilitating disease with many severe, downstream health consequences, ranging from eye disease to kidney disease or even heart disease.”
Diabetes or insulin resistance can also make it difficult to lose weight on your own, so bariatric surgery can kickstart your weight loss.
5. Joint pain
Has joint pain started to affect your daily life? Weight loss decreases stress on the joints, specifically the hips, knees and ankles.
“If arthritis is already present, weight loss will allow for a safe and effective joint replacement. If there is pain, but no severe arthritis, reducing joint stress will decrease or even eliminate pain. This will allow you to exercise and participate in other physical activity pain free.”
Whatever ailment you’re suffering from, weight loss can probably help. Talk to an expert today, or take this health risk assessment to find out if it’s right for you.