Weight Loss Surgery

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Begin your journey today.
Get started with an in-person or tele-health appointment.

Dr. Elizabeth Colsen understands the struggle to lose weight. She recognizes how the emotional, physical, and societal effects of obesity can make life difficult. When you’ve tried everything and nothing works, she can help.

Through one-on-one interaction and counseling, Dr. Colsen will explain your options for weight loss including potential risks, complications, and benefits. Together, you decide if weight-loss surgery is the best option for you.

Dr. Colsen has extensive experience and expertise in weight-loss surgery. She specializes in performing laparoscopic gastric sleeve weight-loss surgery.

At Glacial Ridge Center for Surgical Care, we’re well prepared to perform innovative surgical procedures while keeping you safe from COVID-19. You don’t have to wait to get started with your weight-loss journey. You can make an appointment to safely see her in the clinic or you can see Dr. Colsen from your own home through Tele-Health.

Is it right for you?

Weight-loss surgery isn’t for everyone. But if lifestyle changes such as diet, exercise, and medication aren’t working, it might be for you. You may be a candidate for weight loss surgery if you meet the following criteria.

  • Age 20-50 (older adults may qualify on a case-by-case basis)
  • Unable to lose weight and keep it off through diet and exercise
  • BMI > 40
  • BMI > 35 with life threatening condition, such as heart disease, diabetes, sleep apnea, or high blood pressure
  • Weigh more than 100 pounds over your ideal body weight
  • Weigh less than 350 pounds
    • If you weigh more than 350 pounds, you have an increased risk of anesthesia complications. Dr. Colsen will refer you to Dr. Robert Montenegro where you may participate in his medical weight-loss program until you reach a safe weight for surgery.

What is bariatric weight-loss surgery?

Bariatric surgery isn’t a guarantee—it’s a tool to accompany lifestyle changes, such as diet and exercise, to help kick start weight loss and help you maintain a healthy weight.

Dr. Colsen performs sleeve gastrectomies, also known as “gastric sleeve” surgery. Different than the once-popular gastric band or “lap band” weight loss surgery, gastric sleeve surgery permanently alters your digestive tract by removing part of your stomach—creating a very small “sleeve” (approximately the size of a banana). The gastric sleeve holds two to four ounces at a time, so you feel full faster and longer. You experience rapid weight loss during the first few weeks and months following the procedure because you consume less food and fewer calories.

This surgery is performed laparoscopically—using small incisions—lessening the risk of infection, shortening your hospital stay, and reducing your recovery time.

Practicing healthy eating habits is crucial to achieving results and avoiding complications. Constant overeating stretches the sleeve, which can result in medical problems. Frequent snacking on high-calorie foods can defeat weight loss efforts too.

Undergoing bariatric surgery is a big decision. Before the procedure, our team works with you to make sure you are physically, mentally, and emotionally ready. Preparing for the surgery is a six-month process consisting of the following:

  • Educational video and quiz—Watch a short video and take a quiz to gauge your understanding of the procedure and what you’ll need to do to maintain a healthy weight following surgery. This surgery is not a quick fix.
  • Goal setting—Set a goal weight.
  • Dietitian appointments—Learn how to adjust your diet for healthier-living.
  • Psychologist consultation— Ensure you are able to make the required post-op lifestyle and behavioral changes in order to receive a recommendation for weight-loss surgery.
  • Physical Activity Guide—The guide will help you begin an exercise program prior to surgery to make exercise part of your lifestyle. Exercise can take place at home or a fitness center. Personal Training sessions are available at Glacial Ridge Wellness Center.
  • Physical therapist evaluation (if applicable)—Check for underlying knee, hip, or other conditions that could limit your ability to be active post-surgery (e.g., low exercise, walking).

After surgery, our entire healthcare team is here to provide you with the highest level of heartfelt care as you continue weight loss journey and lifestyle plan. The Physical Activity Guide is adjusted post-op to get you moving again when it is safe and to gradually increase the exercises to continue losing weight. Once you reach your goal weight, daily exercise will be part of your routine. Continuing to exercise will help you remain healthier and maintain your weight-loss.

Dr. Colsen is dedicated to providing follow-up care and ongoing support, including care for any post-surgical complications. A support group (or private Facebook group) of Dr. Colsen’s weight-loss surgery patients is being formed, providing you a network of continuous support and encouragement.

Does health insurance cover weight-loss surgery?

Some insurance plans will cover bariatric weight-loss surgery. Our team will assist you in determining your insurance coverage and will review any prior authorization requirements at the first visit. A self-pay option is available for gastric sleeve weight-loss surgery.

Take the first step.

If you have questions about weight-loss surgery, or you would like more information about gastric sleeve surgery, complete the form to the right and our Bariatric Coordinator will contact you.

Click the button below to provide information needed prior to a bariatric consult.

For general inquiries or to learn more about bariatric surgery, click on the Contact Us button below.

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