6 Risks and Benefits of Weight Loss Surgery for PCOS Sufferers

PCOS, or poly-cystic ovary syndrome, is a condition in which multiple cysts form along the edge of the ovaries. This syndrome can create a variety of issues in women of reproductive age, and weight is a common problem. More than half of the women diagnosed with PCOS are obese according to the Mayo Clinic. Gaining weight with PCOS is easy, and losing it can be challenging and very frustrating. If you have this condition and are considering having weight loss surgery, here are a few things to keep in mind.

Benefit 1- Successful Weight Loss

The most obvious benefit of weight loss surgery is successful weight loss. The surgery will decrease the size of your stomach, making it easier to eat less. Since losing weight with PCOS can be very difficult, many patients opt for the surgery to help gain control over their weight.

Benefit 2- Regulate Insulin Levels

A common problem among women with PCOS is insulin resistance. This means the blood isn’t able to discard excess sugar, the primary role of insulin. Without the body metabolizing sugar properly, women with PCOS are at a greater risk of type 2 diabetes. Losing weight can help the body with the process of regulating insulin. While it may not cure the syndrome, it can greatly help control the insulin issues.

Benefit 3- Decreased Risk of Heart Disease

Obesity is a leading factor for heart disease. Women with PCOS are in a higher risk category for this because of the PCOS combined with the obesity. Studies published by the Mayo Clinic have shown that patients with PCOS who underwent weight loss surgery decreased their risk of heart disease by 20%-80% within a decade of the surgery.

Risk 1- Possible Malnutrition

After a weight loss surgery the stomach is much smaller, and food portions consumed must also be smaller. Patients who don’t eat correctly and take the supplements provided by the surgeon are at risk for malnutrition. This can actually cause the symptoms of PCOS to become more severe. It is vital if you are considering this type of surgery that you learn how to eat well without overdoing it, and take all medications and supplements prescribed.

Risk 2- Blood Clots

Women who are obese are more prone to dangerous blood clots in their legs. Adding a surgery to this can further increase the risk. The surgeon may suggest daily walking routines and the use of leg wraps to apply pressure and help circulation to reduce this risk.

Risk 3- Food Intolerance

Some patients will experience intolerance to certain foods after a weight loss surgery. Consuming these foods can lead to feelings of nausea, and may lead to vomitting. There isn’t a lot that can be done to deter this other than to avoid the foods that cause reactions.

While any surgery does carry certain risks, for some people the benefits far outweight the risks. You should consult with your doctor to determine if you a good candidate for weight loss surgery.


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