Is Bariatric Surgery Safe for Me as a Senior?

According to a 2012 study conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), over a third of adults 65 and older are considered to be obese. Bariatric surgery for senior patients may seem high-risk. However, under the guidance of a knowledgeable doctor who can evaluate risk factors and recommend a well-suited procedure, surgery can be a safe, effective option to take control of your health. Under the care of a doctor in the Tijuana Bariatric Center preferred provider network, you can receive exceptional bariatric care that prioritizes your safety and satisfaction. In addition to offering access to highly qualified bariatric surgeons, undergoing treatment in Tijuana, Mexico, also offers a significant reduction in costs.

big-belly senior

  • Decreased comorbidities
  • Minimized risk of chronic disease
  • Reduced need for medications
  • Improved mobility

While younger patients typically lose more weight, most senior patients can still expect to achieve a substantially better quality of life.

But Is Bariatric Surgery Safe for Seniors?

According to a 2014 study by the National Institutes of Health, the complication rates in patients over 60 years old are comparable to those in younger patients. However, comorbidity (the presence of two or more diseases) can increase the risk of complications. It is important that your health, both physical and mental, is thoroughly evaluated to plan the safest possible treatment.

Risk Factors to Consider

While age alone may not significantly increase your chance of complications, other conditions that are common amongst senior patients can. Risk factors include:

  • Diabetes
  • Hypertension
  • Hyperlipidemia
  • BMI (body mass index) over 55

Senior patients also may require a longer hospital stay following bariatric surgery.

Potential Side Effects

Jamie Rasnake-bypass 2 months
Real TBC Patient Jamie

Patients of any age need to consider the side effects of bariatric surgery. For elderly patients, in particular, common side effects may include surgical failure as well as changes in your physical or mental health. However, your doctor can help you plan ahead by recommending support groups or help from a mental health professional. While these considerations should be taken seriously, several studies show that the health benefits far outweigh the risks and that treatment can drastically improve your lifespan.

Measures to Improve Safety

The trusted doctors within the Tijuana Bariatric Center preferred provider network exercise the utmost caution and consideration when counseling their patients, planning treatment, and performing procedures.

Complication rates in bariatric patients over 60 years old are comparable to those in younger patients.

Evaluating Candidacy & Planning

When planning your treatment, your surgeon will guide you through the process by thoroughly evaluating your candidacy. This may include your current health and prior medical procedures, among other factors that can impact your outcome. It is important that you carefully consider the benefits and risks of bariatric surgery given your personal health and carefully follow your doctor's recommendations.

Laparoscopic Procedures

Each procedure which is coordinated by the Tijuana Bariatric Center is performed laparoscopically. Compared to traditional methods, laparoscopic surgeries require much smaller incisions. This minimally invasive technique is considered to be especially safe for elderly patients.

Improve Your Quality of Life

If you are a senior, it is not too late to improve your quality of life through bariatric surgery. Bariatric surgery for seniors can be safe. Contact Tijuana Bariatric Center to learn more about whether this weight loss treatment is right for you.


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