At Cooper University Health Care’s Center for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, our goal is to help you lose weight so you can live a longer and healthier life. If you have obesity, significant weight loss can increase your energy levels, improve your self-esteem, and improve many obesity-related diseases and conditions.
Moreover, research from the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) shows that, over a five-year period, weight-loss surgery improves a person’s quality of life by 95 percent and reduces risk of premature death by nearly 90 percent. Hundreds of people have experienced these benefits first-hand with the help of our highly skilled surgeons.
Conditions Weight-Loss Surgery Can Treat
Weight-loss surgery can help manage, or even cure, a wide range of obesity-related conditions.
Obesity is connected to multiple conditions that affect your airways:
- Asthma, a chronic lung disease that causes breathing problems. Obesity may increase lung inflammation or make it more difficult to expand the lungs fully.
- Sleep apnea, a disorder in which you briefly stop breathing during sleep. The causes of sleep apnea are complex, but excess fatty tissue around your throat may contribute to the condition.
Blood, heart, and vascular problems
Living with obesity can also have a negative impact on your heart and blood vessels, leading to:
- Cardiovascular disease, which includes narrowing of the arteries due to plaque build-up from high cholesterol. Over time, this build-up can block blood flow to the heart, causing heart attack.
- Chronic venous insufficiency, when the veins in the legs are unable to bring blood back to the heart. Obesity can negatively affect blood flow in the legs.
- High cholesterol and other lipid disorders, which affect fat-like substances in the blood. Obesity can raise the levels of bad cholesterol in your body and lower the levels of good cholesterol, contributing to heart disease.
- Hypertension, or high blood pressure. Obesity increases your blood pressure, raising your risk of heart disease and stroke.
- Stroke, or interrupted blood flow to the brain. Obesity contributes to high blood pressure and inflammation, increasing the risk of stroke.
Carrying extra weight can contribute to these digestive tract problems:
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), a digestive disorder caused by gastric acid flowing from the stomach into the esophagus. Abdominal fat may put pressure on your stomach, which can contribute to GERD.
- Nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, a condition in which fat deposits in your liver keep it from effectively removing toxins. Obesity is the leading risk factor for developing this disease.
Obesity can cause inflammation in the body and put more pressure on your joints, leading to conditions such as:
- Degenerative joint disease or osteoarthritis, affecting your hips, knees, feet, or back. Carrying excess weight can damage these joints, limiting your mobility and causing pain and swelling.
- Gout, a painful inflammation of the joints caused by excess uric acid. Extra weight makes your kidneys less efficient at removing uric acid from the body.
Obesity can cause hormonal imbalances and problems with pregnancy, including:
- Infertility, or difficulty becoming pregnant. Having obesity can result in hormonal imbalances that make it harder to conceive.
- Polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS), which occurs when a woman’s body produces too many male hormones, causing fluid-filled cysts to develop on the ovaries. Extra weight may contribute to the development of PCOS. In addition, having PCOS makes it harder to lose weight and keep it off.
- Pregnancy complications, such as gestational diabetes and pre-eclampsia, a condition causing high blood pressure and protein in the urine.
Living with obesity can lead to many other health problems, including:
- Depression, due to self-esteem issues.
- Metabolic syndrome, a group of risk factors that raises your risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and stroke. Abdominal obesity, or having excess fat along your waistline, is a risk factor.
- Migraine headaches, which are more likely as your weight increases.
- Type 2 diabetes, a condition in which the level of glucose, or sugar, in the blood is too high. Obesity promotes insulin resistance, meaning cells in the body do not properly use insulin, which raises blood sugar.
- Urinary stress incontinence, or the loss of urine during activities such as coughing, sneezing, or laughing. Being obese can put extra pressure on the pelvic floor muscles, leading to urine leakage.