Morbid obesity is a serious health condition. It can interfere with your daily functioning, making it difficult for you to walk or even breathe. People with morbid obesity are at higher risk for health disorders including diabetes, high blood pressure, heart conditions and gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD).
The team of experts at the University of Vermont (UVM) Medical Center works with you to find an effective solution for morbid obesity. Together, we can help you live a healthy lifestyle and enjoy your daily activities. We can determine if you are a candidate for bariatric (weight loss) surgery, a permanent solution for morbid obesity.
What is Morbid Obesity? Calculating Your BMI
If you weigh 100 pounds (or more) more than your ideal body weight, you may be morbidly obese. We diagnose morbid obesity by calculating your body mass index (BMI), a measure of body fat based on your weight and height. If you have morbid obesity you may be a candidate for weight loss surgery, also called bariatric surgery.
- Normal BMI ranges from 20-25.
- Morbid obesity is a BMI of closer to 40. You may have morbid obesity if your BMI is lower than 40 but you also have related conditions such as diabetes or high blood pressure.
Causes of Morbid Obesity
Morbid obesity occurs when your body consumes more calories than you use during your daily activities. Eating a high-fat diet, consuming too-large portions and not getting enough regular exercise can lead to morbid obesity. Other factors such as stress, lack of sleep and even certain medications can also contribute to morbid obesity.
Often, patients find that weight loss programs or changing their diet and exercise routine are not successful in helping them lose weight. In those cases, bariatric surgery may be the solution you need. This online tool can help you determine if you should have weight loss surgery.
Bariatric Surgery for Morbid Obesity:
Bariatric surgery is considered a permanent weight loss solution for morbid obesity. UVM Medical Center has the only bariatric surgery program in Vermont, serving residents of Vermont, upstate New York and New Hampshire.
We are a center of excellence for bariatric surgery, certified as a Level 1 Bariatric Surgery Center by the American College of Surgeons (ACS). Our team takes care of all of your needs at our center, from your initial evaluation through surgery and recovery. We offer ongoing support, including diet and exercise guidance, as you adjust to your new lifestyle. Learn more about our Bariatric Surgery Program.
At our center, you will find:
- Outstanding outcomes: Patients experience excellent results compared to the national averages. We have a complication rate of nearly zero and our readmission rate (readmission to the hospital within 30 days of discharge) is 3.2 percent, compared to the national average of more than 5 percent. We provide you with a smooth surgical experience and recovery, so you can begin living your new, healthy life.
- No BMI restrictions: Many weight loss surgery centers may turn away patients with a BMI of more than 70. At UVM Medical Center, we have no BMI restrictions. Our team has performed bariatric surgery for patients with a BMI of 80-95.
- Revision surgery experts: We are regional experts for revision surgeries. If your original bariatric procedure was not successful or needs a revision, our specialists can provide an effective surgery so you can feel better.
- Commitment to minimally invasive procedures: We use a laparoscopic approach, which uses small incisions rather than a large abdominal one. This approach leads to an easier, shorter recovery so you can feel better faster. Find out more about Lap-Band® Surgery, one of the bariatric surgery options we offer.
- Dedicated bariatric floor: Our team understands our patients' needs. On our bariatric surgery floor, you'll find comfortable showers, beds and chairs, designed to accommodate our patients. In addition, our nurses receive specialized training to understand the unique needs of weight loss surgery patients.
Bariatric Surgery: Comprehensive Care for Patients with Morbid Obesity
Patients with morbid obesity often try many different methods to lose weight. If you did not experience success with other methods, you may be considering weight loss surgery. We know that the decision to undergo weight loss surgery is not one you make lightly.
Weight loss surgery is a change for life, and our team is with you every step of the way. Our comprehensive care includes:
- Evaluation: We will perform a thorough evaluation to ensure you are a good candidate for the surgery. The evaluation includes meeting with our surgeon, nutritionist and psychologist, as well as attending information sessions.
- Preoperative care: To ensure you are ready for the necessary lifestyle changes, we work with you on starting a routine of regular exercise and healthful eating. Incorporating these changes into your life will be crucial to the success of your surgery.
- Postoperative care: Our meticulous care continues after your surgery. In addition to follow-up appointments with your surgeon, you will meet with our nutritionists and physical therapists. They will help you set up an exercise plan, design a balanced diet and offer restaurant guidance so you can not only live your life but enjoy it as well.
You are not alone. Our support groups offer the opportunity to meet fellow weight loss surgery patients, discuss your experience and share support and advice. Join us at our:
- Monthly support groups for weight loss surgery patients
- Free seminar every other Tuesday focusing on healthy living aspects
- Bariatric Surgery Program
- Lap-Band® surgery (gastric banding)
- Bariatric surgery brochure
- Weight loss surgery