Who is a Candidate for Bariatric Surgery?
Qualifications for bariatric surgery in most areas include:
- MBS is recommended for individuals with BMI ≥35 kg/m2, regardless of presence, absence, or severity of co-morbidities.
- MBS is recommended in patients with T2D and BMI ≥30 kg/m2.
- MBS should be considered in individuals with BMI of 30–34.9 kg/m2 who do not achieve substantial or durable weight loss or co-morbidity improvement using nonsurgical methods.
For example, an adult who is 5’11" tall and weighs 290 lbs would have a BMI over 40. Calculate your BMI.
The NIH, as well as the American College of Surgeons (ACS) and the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS) also recommend that surgery be performed by a board certified surgeon with specialized experience/training in bariatric and metabolic surgery, and at a center that has a multidisciplinary team of experts for follow-up care. This may include a nutritionist, an exercise physiologist or specialist, and a mental health professional. In addition, some insurance companies require that the surgery be performed at a facility that meets the ASMBS-approved quality standards (MBSAQIP). Facilities which meet high standards or quality, like those outlined in MBSAQIP, are preferable choices for patients.
For more information on the Major updates to the 1991 National Institues of Health guidelines for bariatric surgery, click here.