When you come to the surgical weight loss program, you can be sure you’re getting the most complete care available from a specially trained group of physicians, nurses and support personnel.
There are certain criteria required for you to qualify for weight loss surgery, which include:
If you think you meet these criteria, you’re ready to begin pursuing weight loss surgery. There are a series of specific steps required of weight loss surgery patients, which have proven to be the most effective way for you to receive the appropriate education, counseling and care before your surgery.
As a patient of the program, you will:
Please note: Smoking greatly increases the risks associated with surgery. You must quit smoking at least two months prior to surgery or surgery will not be performed. You must commit to continue smoking cessation after your surgery.
Everyone who is interested in weight loss surgery is required to attend one of the program's information sessions before calling to make an appointment. Sign-in is required at these meetings. This is your opportunity to meet our surgeons and have your surgical questions answered. Information sessions take place on the second Monday of each month at 6 pm in the Alumni Auditorium at Lahey Clinic Medical Center, 41 Mall Road, Burlington.
We request that you inquire as to whether your insurance company covers the cost of laparoscopic adjustable gastric band and/or Roux-en-Y prior to scheduling an appointment. You will be asked to provide this information at your appointment.
Most insurance companies require you to provide a history of prior diet attempts for at least a consecutive six-month period before they will cover the cost of surgery. This can often be proven with receipts from weight loss groups, nutritionists and physicians. If you don't have this information, start working on documentation now. For more information, please refer to our insurance approval guide.
Call 1-855-WEIGHT-8 to make your first appointment. This will be a half-day, multi-departmental consult. Please plan to spend the entire day at Lahey Clinic on the day of your appointment. Please complete all of the paperwork given to you at the information session. For printable copies of the required forms, select the links, below.
Patient questionnaire Eating questionnaire
When you come for your preliminary appointment, please bring your completed patient questionnaire, eating questionnaire and insurance questionnaire and be prepared to spend approximately four hours meeting with specialists. During this consultation, you will meet with a nurse practitioner or physician assistant from the surgical weight loss program who will be your primary caregiver during this process. You will also meet with a psychologist and a dietitian. Following a consultation, a staff meeting is held among all of the clinicians who met with you, where they determine your candidacy for surgical weight loss. If you are a good candidate for surgery, you will receive a follow-up appointment in the mail. If you are not, you will receive a letter in the mail explaining why.
You will be required to complete a detailed patient assessment with information about your family medical history, insurance coverage and general health.
Once it is determined that you are a good candidate for surgical weight loss, you will undergo a series of diagnostic and nutritional tests to screen for any underlying comorbid conditions. Together, you and a dietitian will draft a pre-surgical nutritional plan with set goals that must be met before surgery. These include maintaining a healthy, nutritious eating plan and losing 10 percent of excess weight through diet and exercise. This weight loss makes for an easier and less risky surgery. If you are found to need treatment for any medical conditions, such as diabetes, depression or high blood pressure, you will have separate scheduled appointments with specialists in these areas to address the conditions. Once these are under control, you will continue on your path to surgery.
You will meet with the dietitian to assess progress on your goals. An appointment with a surgeon will be scheduled based on your readiness at your nutrition follow-up.
Prior to your surgery, you must attend a minimum of two support group meetings specific to the procedure you will undergo. The support group for the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass is on the second Monday of each month from 6 to 7:30 pm in the 6 Central waiting room at Lahey Clinic Medical Center, Burlington. The support group for the laparoscopic adjustable gastric band is on the last Tuesday of each month from 6 to 7:30 pm in the 6 Central waiting room at Lahey Clinic Medical Center, Burlington.
Before your surgery, you will attend a number of appointments with your surgeon and other members of the team for education and assessment. These appointments will include blood work and an EKG (a diagnostic test of your heart) and will include your final meeting with your surgeon before your surgery takes place. During this visit you will also schedule your postoperative appointments with your surgeon, dietitian and other members of the team.
Depending on the procedure you and your surgeon have selected, and whether there are any circumstances that affect the speed of your operation, your surgery should last from one to three hours. Adjustable laparoscopic band surgery takes approximately two hours, laparoscopic Roux-en-Y about two to three hours and open Roux-en-Y approximately two hours. You will most likely stay in the hospital for one to four nights, depending on your procedure and overall health.
Weight loss surgery requires a lifetime commitment. Following your surgery, you will continue to see members of the surgical weight loss team for virtually the rest of your life. The follow-up protocol for each procedure is as follows:
Determine your BMI with an interactive calculator.Learn about Medical and Surgical Weight Loss information sessions.