Health Care Professionals
The Weight Loss Surgery Advantage
When other medically supervised methods have failed, surgery offers the best option of long-term weight control for those with clinically severe obesity.
Weight loss surgery has been endorsed by a consensus panel convened by the National Institutes of Health as the only effective means of inducing significant long-term weight loss for the vast majority of patients with morbid obesity.
According to the ASMBS, evidence suggests that bariatric surgery is one of the most effective treatments for metabolic diseases and conditions. It can improve or resolve more than 30 obesity-related conditions such as:
- Type 2 diabetes.
- High cholesterol.
- Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease.
- Obstructive sleep apnea.
- Heart disease.
Typically, patients experience and sustain substantial weight loss after bariatric surgery at Southcoast. Four years after surgery, patients who have undergone a gastric bypass procedure have lost 64 percent of their excess weight. Patients who have undergone the gastric band procedure have lost 44 percent of their excess weight three years after surgery.
Southcoast Center for Weight Loss
More than 4,000 patients have benefitted from our program, which includes laparoscopic gastric bypass, adjustable gastric band, gastric sleeve and revision surgical procedures.
Based on national and registered benchmarks, the care at the Southcoast Center for Weight Loss far exceeds national quality standards.
We have consistently performed significantly better than industry benchmarks, with a major complication rate of approximately 1 percent. This is a lower rate than some more common procedures, such as gallbladder removal surgery.
- Average excess weight loss (bypass): 71%
- Average excess weight loss (band): 41%
- Average hospital stay: 1.6 days
- Major complications rate: 1.18% (national benchmark: 3.61%)
- Patient follow up after 4 years: 75%
Comprehensive Care by a Specially Trained Team
Our program is designed to incorporate a thorough approach to weight loss surgery utilizing a team of surgeons, nurses, dietitians and psychologists.
Our specially trained team is in regular contact with our patients and their referring physicians to maintain a safe and comprehensive surgical weight loss program.
We offer a variety of weight loss surgical options and work with each individual to determine the most appropriate course of action to meet their unique needs and circumstances.
These surgeries include:
Ongoing, Supportive Programs for Continued Success
Southcoast is the region's leader in weight loss surgery, offering unprecedented support through a full-service program consisting of pre-op education and ongoing post-op support to provide support and maximize successful outcomes for our patients. Our program fee includes support groups for life. Learn more about our ongoing supportive programs.
Insurance and Program Costs
Most insurance providers have specific requirements that must be met in order to obtain coverage for bariatric surgery. Our team understands the general guidelines for some of the more common providers and helps facilitate this process with all our patients.
The Southcoast Center for Weight Loss requires all patients to contact their insurance company directly to inquire about their individual benefit coverage and required medical criteria. It is the patient's responsibility to understand and comply with their insurance company's requirements.
A program fee includes support group meetings for life for all patients in our program.
How to Refer
STEP ONE: Discuss weight loss with your patient.
Talking with your patients about their weight loss options can be difficult, but is a productive way to help manage their health. Consider the following tips when discussing bariatric surgery with your patients.
- Address the patient's chief complaint first. You can assume that the patient already knows they are overweight. Avoid placing blame or attributing all of the patient's health issues and complaints to their weight.
- Opening the discussion. Delicately find out if the patient is willing to talk about their weight at all. In expressing your concern, it is important to remain non-judgmental. You may want to use complaints made by the patient at this visit or in the past within in opening the discussion.
Example: Mr. Smith, you have mentioned problems with ______, and I have concerns that these issues are related to your weight/BMI. What are your thoughts about your weight?
- Use tools such as the BMI wheel/chart and anatomic models and posters to assist in opening a discussion regarding weight loss.
- Upon your patient's response, you may assess their willingness to talk about their weight and possible weight loss options.
- Practice empathy and respect. Show empathy for your patients struggle with weight loss. Be conscious of the words you are using within the discussion. Use more neutral terms with your patient. For example, use the words "weight" and "excess weight" rather than "fatness" and "excess fat."
- Discuss weight loss tools and methods. Begin by asking your patient what they have done in the past to control their weight or lose weight. Review the various options that your patient has in order to lose weight, such as lifestyle changes and bariatric surgery.
STEP TWO: Assess patient's candidacy.
To be considered a candidate for surgery, patients must have the following traits:
- Body mass index (BMI) of 40+ or 35+ with an obesity-related disease on treatment, such as heart disease or type 2 diabetes.
- At least 18 years old.
- Previously failed medically supervised attempts at weight loss.
- Stable psychological condition.
- Understands surgery and risks.
- Acceptable operative risks.
STEP THREE: Send patient to a free informational seminar with the Southcoast Center for Weight Loss.
Call 508-273-4900 to pre-register your patient for a seminar in their region.