Childhood obesity is a serious medical condition that affects children and adolescents. It occurs when a child is well above the normal weight for his or her age and height. This is particularly troubling because the extra pounds often start children on the path to health problems that were once confined to adults, such as diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. Childhood obesity can also lead to poor self-esteem and depression.
Bariatric surgery is sometimes used to treat youth with extreme obesity. Although it is becoming clear that teens can lose weight after bariatric surgery, many questions still exist about the long-term effects on teens’ developing bodies and minds.
Who is a good youth candidate for surgery? Experts in childhood obesity and bariatric surgery suggest that families consider surgery only after youth have tried for at least 6 months to lose weight and have not had success.
Candidates should meet the following criteria:
- Have extreme obesity (BMI > 40 )
- Be their adult height (usually at age 13 or older for girls and 15 or older for boys)
- Have serious health problems linked to weight, such as type 2 diabetes or sleep apnea, that may improve with bariatric surgery
In addition, health care providers should assess potential patients and their parents to see how emotionally prepared they are for the surgery and the lifestyle changes they will need to make.
Mounting evidence suggests that bariatric surgery can favorably change both the weight and health of youth with extreme obesity. Over the years gastric bypass surgery has been the main operation used to treat extreme obesity in youth. A review of short-term data from the largest inpatient database in the United States suggests that these surgeries are at least as safe for youth as adults.
If you’re looking for a bariatric expert in the Las Vegas area, schedule a consultation with Dr. Shawn Tsuda. He and his team can find the right treatment for you.
Read more online at: https://asmbs.org/resources/pediatric-best-practice-guidelines