This is an interesting article on weight loss surgery. It has a dark side. Check out the URL for some powerful pictures.
Here are a few quotes I found to be very interesting:
The modified stomach naturally expands a bit over time, most substantially in patients with a penchant for overeating, so weight loss can be hard to maintain in some cases.
Scant research has been done on the psychological impacts of bariatric surgery, and what does exist isn’t particularly conclusive. One study, published last March in the journal Obesity Surgery, surveyed people when they applied for a weight-loss procedure. Two-thirds of them wound up having the surgery. When surveyed four and a half years later, patients in both groups had lost weight, but there was no reported difference between them in terms of psychological well-being — although the bariatric patients lost far more weight on average, both groups showed fewer problems. Nor was there was any correlation between weight loss in bariatric patients and their ultimate levels of anxiety, depression, binge eating, and psychosocial stress.
Yet the potential downsides are also astonishing. The risk of death, depending on which study you’re looking at, ranges from 0.2 to 2 percent — arguably high for an elective procedure. The popular Web site ObesityHelp.com hosts a memorial page listing 132 members who have died since 2000, a mere fraction of the total post-surgical deaths. Up to 20 percent of patients require subsequent operations to address complications. Common side effects include diarrhea, nausea, vomiting, lactose intolerance, signs of nutrient deficiency such as anemia and hair loss, agonizing stomach pain, and shockingly pungent gas and stool. And those who lose weight successfully often have huge folds of excess skin to deal with.
These post-surgical ordeals, and the accompanying emotional adjustments, can persist for many years. Then there’s the cost: Even if insurance covers the initial surgery, the price of subsequent cosmetic procedures and myriad dietary supplements required for optimal health can add up quickly. To top it all off, there’s no scientific evidence that weight-loss surgery makes people any happier in the long run.
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