Gastric Bypass: Is It Safe and Effective for Younger Patients

It’s a simple fact that obesity isn’t just a concern for the aging population. It is estimated, in fact, that about a third of all American teenagers are obese. For those who find themselves classified as severely obese, the potential health ramifications are many. Obese teens face a higher risk for developing a long list of medical conditions, including type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and some forms of cancer. Addressing obesity while a child is younger is generally recommended, but diet and exercise alone may not be enough.

The reality that diet and exercise may not adequately address a teen’s needs to lose weight has many parents wondering about the benefits surgery may present. Research has shown that gastric bypass procedures can provide teens who are severely obese with the long-term help they need to shed pounds and keep them off. Studies are also showing that this procedure, although rather invasive, is safe to consider when a teen’s health is in jeopardy due to weight.

A recent study added to the body of growing evidence supporting the use of gastric bypass procedures on adolescents who are seriously obese. The study in question followed a group of young patients over the course of several years and ultimately found positive results in regard to weight loss and ability to maintain the loss over the long run. The safety of the procedure was also found to be quite satisfactory.

Teens and parents of teens who are considered seriously obese are urged to explore all safe weight loss options. Losing weight sooner rather than later can help teenagers avoid a lifetime of complications, such as diabetes and heart disease. To find out more about bariatric surgery interventions and their appropriateness in a teen’s case, it is best to speak directly with a qualified surgeon.

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