If you’re thinking about bariatric surgery, you may be wondering how the whole process works. The Central Maine Healthcare Bariatric Surgery Program is here to provide the information you need, so you know just what to expect at every step. Start with this helpful FAQ.
View our informational video, which is presented by a board-certified surgeon at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston, that explores different types of weight loss surgery.
How do I know which weight loss surgery is right for me?
The type of surgery depends on your unique needs and goals, overall health and personal preferences.
If you think you may be a candidate, we’ll schedule a private consultation to discuss your specific goals, medical history and more to help determine which surgery is best for you.
How long does it take to schedule surgery?
The timeframe for a surgical date is different for each patient. At Central Maine Bariatric Surgery, it typically takes three to six months. However, some insurance companies require six months or more of supervised weight loss.
If your insurance plan supports a quicker program, we can accommodate a ‘fast track’ approach to dietary education to support you obtaining a better quality of life sooner. Whatever you need, we’ll support you through the process and help you prepare for surgery with confidence.
Can weight loss surgery help other physical conditions?
Yes – the benefits can go far beyond weight loss. Bariatric surgery can improve or resolve many obesity-related conditions such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, joint pain, acid reflux and more.
What tests will I need before surgery?
Certain basic tests are done prior to surgery. All patients in our program receive nutritional counseling, a psychological evaluation and blood work. Your surgeons may recommend other tests as well, such as chest X-ray, electrocardiogram, pulmonary function testing, echocardiogram, sleep studies, GI evaluation, endocrinology evaluation and cardiology evaluation. Our team will help coordinate all testing you need to make your experience as seamless and stress-free as possible.
How do I prepare for surgery?
To ensure the best possible results, our team Bariatric Surgery team will work closely with you well before your surgery date:
- Weight loss: Our dedicated dietitian will help you develop new eating habits and lose weight, even before surgery. It may surprise you to learn that one of the first places you lose weight is in your liver. In addition to making surgery safer, losing weight helps prepare you for the lifestyle changes needed for long-term success.
- Exercise: Get your heart and lungs in the best possible shape by doing exercise suitable for you. Your bariatric surgeon will work closely with you and your primary care provider to determine what physical activities are appropriate for you. Starting exercise before surgery is also key to maintaining a regular program afterward.
How do I maximize success after surgery?
The basic rules are simple and easy to follow:
- Follow postoperative dietary guidelines carefully. Patients who commit to these standards have fewer complications and achieve better long-term results.
- When cleared by your healthcare provider, incorporate exercise into your daily routine. Just 30 minutes a day, five times a week will help you increase your weight loss and achieve your goals. Weight resistance exercise can be added as instructed by your care provider.
- Commit to the lifestyle changes our team has reviewed with you throughout the process.
- Attend support groups. These meetings will help you with tips to stay motivated after surgery.