What is Bariatric Surgery?

The Bariatric Surgery is a general surgery involving physical alteration to the stomach for people who have undergone many lifestyle changes and have used various medications for weight loss. The basic principle behind this surgery involves by reducing the size of the stomach to hold lesser food (lesser intake of food) which will help a person to lose weight and lead a normal healthy life. A bariatric surgery is suggested only when exercise and diet regimen doesn’t support a person physical needs due to obesity. BMI (Body Mass Index) of 30 and above is a borderline obese weight, leading to numerous life threating diseases.

What is cosmetic Surgery?

A surgery involving improvement in the appearance of an individual in terms of aesthetic such as reducing wrinkles, blemishes, post-surgery bruise marks, etc. is termed as cosmetic surgery. A cosmetic surgery is also a general surgery mainly done to enhance superficial appearances rather than improving health benefits. Reconstructive, aesthetic, plastic or grafting surgery, whatever we may call, it is a boon for people who are looking to tweak their appearance.

How is bariatric different than cosmetic surgery?

1. Bariatric surgery is performed on people mainly with a high risk of diseases who have BMI higher than 30 and are not able to complete a daily life task with ease.
2. On the other hand, a cosmetic surgery is performed only to enhance the appearance of an individual by reconstructing, sculpting or even reducing fine lines on face and body. Following are some key points for both the surgeries-

Bariatric Surgery

1. Performed for individual with BMI 30 and higher.
2. Resize the stomach only

Cosmetic Surgery

1. Performed on individual who is willing to tweak the general appearance.
2. Reconstruct the tissues, reduces fine lines and wrinkles, any aesthetic or enhancing surgery comes under cosmetic surgery

What surgeons have to say?

A surgeon will perform a bariatric surgery only when lifestyle changes and medications are failing. Whereas a cosmetic surgery is a luxury (taken for granted) to many people to look good or enhance their features. The debate have been a hot topic since the ultimate result of bariatric surgery is to look good by losing weight but the key aspect of the same surgery is to lead a normal, healthier life which is not the case in cosmetic surgery.

So yes, bariatric and cosmetic surgery are two different surgeries specifically targeting individual needs. The following statistics can throw some light on both the surgeries-

1. The success rate of bariatric surgery is >85% and by maintaining constant weight and opting out healthier option, the surgery will show good results.

2. Nearly >2 billion people worldwide are overweight or obese. The bariatric surgery is performed to avoid future co-morbidities, making it an excellent way to increase life expectancy.

3. The most operated area under cosmetic surgery remains constant for years i.e. face and fat.

4. Breast augmentation, facelifts, liposuction, eyelid surgery and nose reshaping are top five cosmetic surgeries performed worldwide.

Is it need of the hour?

So to sum up, both the surgeries have their own potential market in the medical field. Both the surgeries cannot be used in place of another. Both of them have their own benefits and drawbacks but their ultimate goal is to make sure that the individual undergoing this surgery is happy with the results.

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