What is Bariatric Medicine? An Introduction to Bariatric Care


What is Bariatric Medicine? An Introduction to Bariatric Care

Many of us have heard the term “bariatric medicine” used when discussing potential ways to lose weight. However, this is an extremely broad field and bariatric specialists are actually tasked with a number of different concerns. The main intention of this article is to provide a detailed overview of medical bariatrics as well as some of the techniques that are currently employed. If you have been struggling to maintain a healthy body mass index, these weight loss solutions could very well represent the most practical approaches.

What Does Bariatric Mean?

Let us begin by highlighting what is considered to be a general bariatric definition. This clinical approach involves a specialty that deals with the medical and surgical treatment of obesity. However, note that the techniques can sometimes be used in tandem with other strategies such as dietary modifications and targeted exercise regimens. Let us now take a look at some of the finer points to better understand just how unique this field actually is.

What is Bariatric Medicine?

Bariatric physicians have various responsibilities. These are often moulded around the unique requirements of each patient. For instance, one professional may focus solely upon dietary modifications while another could recommend the use of a gastric balloon in order to alleviate the health risks associated with a more severe form of obesity.

There may also be times when a doctor recommends non-invasive alternatives, such as the adjustable gastric balloons offered by Spatz3. This can depend on issues such as the amount of weight that needs to be lost and potential underlying health conditions that preclude traditional surgical techniques. Once again, the specialist will ultimately determine whether or not this is the most appropriate solution.

Bariatric medicine therefore involves much more of a holistic approach that many patients may have been led to believe. The main goal is therefore to discover which treatments are the most effective on a case-by-case basis. This is also why a bariatrist must be highly experienced in his or her field.

What Does a Bariatric Doctor Do?

What is a bariatric doctor and what is bariatric care? For the sake of this article, we will be referring to the medical and surgical roles associated with doctors who specialize in obesity. So, what is a bariatrician and what are his or her responsibilities? In order to answer this question, we first need to take on the role of the individual who is seeking treatment.

What is a Weight Loss Doctor Called and How Does this Title Different from a Bariatrist?

This is actually an important question, as these professions are more different than they might initially appear. A doctor specialising in weight loss will often deal with numerous variables. From formulating a healthy diet to providing ongoing support and prescribing specific medicines, patients will be able to obtain well-rounded guidance. However, most weight loss doctors do not actually offer surgical interventions. In the event that the techniques listed above have not yielded the desired results, the individual will often be referred to a physician who specialises in bariatric surgery. This also leads us to the next main point.

What is a Bariatric Patient?

Bariatric medicine tends to focus upon those who have had difficulty losing a significant amount of weight in the past. So, what is considered bariatric weight and how is this related to medical intervention? A common definition of bariatric patients involves individuals whose body mass index (BMI) is rated as 30 or higher (this is the medical term for morbidly obese).

What Does Bariatric Surgery Mean?

This concept essentially involves any type of medical procedure that is intended to manage obesity as well as the conditions often associated with being overweight. For example, the implantation of a gastric balloon (mentioned earlier) is one example. We should nonetheless note that such surgical interventions might not always be recommended for those who are simply overweight. They are instead leveraged when traditional solutions (such as dietary modifications) fail to produce the desired results in in the event that severe obesity has already caused debilitating health effects.

What Kind of Doctor Treats Obesity that Requires Surgery?

We should mention that doctors who have been trained to perform bariatric surgery are highly specialised in the latest medical intervention techniques. Being allowed to practice in this field will involve several steps including:

  • Obtaining a four-year degree from an accredited medical university.
  • Subsequently completing an internship.
  • Satisfying residency requirements.

In other words, only those who possess a significant amount of hands-on experience will be granted access to such a niche field.

What Other Responsibilities Does a Bariatric Specialist Need to Possess?

First and foremost, doctors within the bariatric field will generally boast a familiarity with certain surgical techniques. Examples include:

  • A sleeve gastrectomy
  • Gastric bypasses
  • Gastric balloons
  • Gastric lap bands

Please note that for the sake of brevity, we will not be directly discussing each of these options in detail. The main takeaway point here is that such procedures are determined based on the condition of the patient as well as the amount of weight that needs to be lost.

Still, the role of a bariatric physician goes far beyond the procedures themselves. They will often be involved with other responsibilities such as post-operative guidance, working in tandem with nutritionists and monitoring for health conditions that may result from bariatric surgery. There are likewise times when this type of specialist will be recommended due to the fact that other weight loss techniques failed to produce the desired results. In this case, he or she will perform an in-depth consultation in order to better understand the needs of the patient as well as to determine the most appropriate procedure.

Who is Considered a Bariatric Patient?

Now that we have developed a well-rounded understanding of bariatric surgery, it is important to address a final variable. Are you a candidate for this type of intervention? In order to take the guesswork out of the equation, the team at Spatz3 have developed a handy BMI calculator. Simply enter your height and weight into the associated fields. In the event that your BMI is at or above 27, bariatric surgery might represent a valuable option to consider.

It is still important to note that any type of bariatric procedure is associated with a certain amount of risk; especially for those who have already been diagnosed with preexisting health conditions. There are also times when invasive surgery is not recommended.

This is why a growing number of individuals who continue to struggle with their weight are instead opting for the adjustable gastric balloon offered by Spatz3. Not only is this a non-invasive alternative, but the dimensions of the device can be changed in accordance with your requirements. This will lessen the chances of experiencing discomfort while still providing a powerful means to reduce your body mass index over time.

If you would like to learn more about bariatric medicine or should you wish to consult with a specialist at Spatz3, we are happy to provide additional assistance.

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