What Is My Role Before Surgery?
Your role as a primary care physician is to help the bariatric patient have a positive and pleasant surgery experience. You should help the patient with the following:
Educate About Options
Inform your patients about the three weight loss surgery options: laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery, laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy surgery and laparoscopic adjustable gastric band. Educate them about the advantages and disadvantages of each surgery, and let them know about short- and long-term risks.
Every insurance carrier and individual plan varies, so have your patient contact his or her insurance company and learn their specific plan's surgery requirements.
You will need to document the following information:
BMI - Body mass index ≥ 40 kg/m2 or a body mass index ≥35 and <40 kg/m2
Current weight - Patient must have been obese for at least two or more years, sometimes give years (depending on individual insurance).
You will need to help your patient obtain medical records for:
Letter of Support
Write a letter of support to your patient to give him or her a boost of morale and for the patient to use as a medical referral for the bariatric surgeon's office requirements.