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Are There Any Age Limits for Weight Loss Surgery?

31 August, 2020

Every year, an increasing number of patients over the age of 60 and under the age of 18 who have severe health issues due to their weight wonder how safe it would be to undergo weight loss surgery in Mexico. Some years ago, it was considered unsafe to have surgery over the age of 60 or during the teenage years. In this text, we will discuss the newest findings and studies’ results.

In the past, there was widespread concern about the risk of a surgical operation and the way patients would cope during the post-op period. However, in recent years, there have been fantastic improvements in the techniques used for weight loss surgery in Mexico.

Moreover, several studies have demonstrated the benefits of bariatric surgery and the increased improvements in the quality of life of elderly patients. Currently, there are minimal and reasonable surgical risks.

Which patients over 60 years of age are eligible for weight loss surgery in Mexico?

Currently, the age limit to undergo some form of bariatric surgery, such as gastric sleeve in Mexico, is well beyond the ages of 65 and 70. Provided the patient is in reasonable health but with problems caused by obesity is and low quality of life. Mainly, they have severe issues in their mobility, metabolic and respiratory issues, as well as diabetes and high blood pressure.

In recent years, researchers have done several clinical studies have with the sole purpose of evaluating the risk of patients over 60 years of age during weight loss surgery in Mexico. Interestingly, all studies showed the same or similar results. Namely, that what really matters is the biological age, that is, the state of health and not so much the age in years.

These results were essential in making specific changes to protocols. Hence, there is no longer and age limit to undergo bariatric surgery. The key lies in conducting a medical risk study in older patients. This includes specific cardiopulmonary stress tests, echocardiography, carotid ultrasound, and any other tests that the surgeon might see necessary.

A hypothetical situation that helps us understand this fact clearly is comparing two patients. One is 50 years old who has suffered from diabetes and hypertension for several years. The other is a 70-year-old patient with somewhat controlled levels of diabetes and blood pressure, but with limitations in his mobility and his quality of sleep. In this hypothetical case, the 70-year-old patient will have lower risks than the 50-year-old, even if the older patient has significantly higher BMI.

Are there any adverse risks for elderly patients to undergo weight loss surgery?

The best weight loss surgeons at the Mexico Bariatric Center agree that if the pre-op risk studies have reasonably good results, the minimal risks are not much different than the ones young patients may have. However, the chances of experiencing adverse effects from obesity and its related diseases are remarkably high as they get older.

Benefits of bariatric surgery in the elderly

Very often, people over 60 years of age tend to have poor eating and exercising habits, which increases obesity and its effects. Even if older people were trying to have good healthy habits, it becomes harder to lose a significant amount of weight at their age.

However, thanks to bariatric surgery, obese elderly patients can have a lasting solution and permanently change any bad habits. Thus, they can experience benefits that promote longevity and improved quality of life. Some of them are:

Disorders and diseases can be under control

Most people are well-aware that obesity is the cause of various diseases, such as diabetes, dyslipidemia, sleep apnea, and high blood pressure. After bariatric surgery, elderly patients begin to notice a considerable reduction or experience a cure to these pathologies.

Significant weight loss

Being overweight brings with its inevitable negative consequences, such as problems with the joints due to the friction between them. However, as you lose weight, you will experience a dramatic weight reduction that eliminates the effects of those conditions, and thus, you can eliminate pain and have more energy.

Recovery of mobility

As the years go by, mobility decreases, and if an increase in weight is added, it could result in considerable risks. Fortunately, those who have a bariatric procedure regain the ability to move freely and improve their quality of life.

Increase in physical activity

Regardless of the patient’s age, weight loss makes a person feel more confident of himself. Therefore, after weight loss surgery in Mexico,  they experience an increase in their motivation to carry out many physical activities: such as going for a walk or taking a bike ride, etc.

Weight loss surgery in Mexico for underage patients

On the other hand, some facts we have considers could also apply to teenagers. The obesity pandemic is increasingly affecting adolescents as much as adults. Therefore, the age limit for young patients to undergo bariatric surgery has also decreased.

A decade ago, patients had to be at least 18 years old to undergo this type of surgery. Currently, a minor patient can have a bariatric procedure, when his pediatrician recommends that it will benefit his physical and mental health reasons. Otherwise, obesity could seriously affect the development of the adolescent.

There are no cases where weight loss surgery in Mexico implies a greater risk in minors. However, bariatric surgery at a very young may have a higher failure rate. Moreover, a bariatric procedure requires mental maturity. The teenager must understand that surgery is not a magical solution for everything. Instead, he must be committed to having lifelong dietary and daily habit changes.

What role does the family play?

Parents and family are a determining factor when deciding whether surgery is the best way to eliminate obesity and its effects. Some may think that in the old age, surgery is no longer necessary, but this completely a misconception. As we have considered so far, the results of weight loss surgery in adults over 60 years of age are comparable with the results in younger patients.

Therefore, age should not be considered an impediment to performing these types of procedures. However, the key will be a thorough medical evaluation of the patients to determine what treatment will be optimal for the address obesity and its effects. The same is true to determine whether a patient is too young or not to undergo a bariatric procedure.

Enjoying life has no age limits

If you are dealing with the adverse effects of obesity, and if you are over the age of 60 or under 18 years old and you wish to know if you are eligible for bariatric surgery, we are here to help. Give us a call today at (858) 779 2552 or request more information. Never allow age to become an obstacle to enjoy a full and satisfying life!

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