Avoiding Bariatric Surgery with Semaglutide
Losing weight can be incredibly challenging and those who are unable to lose weight may feel that they are left with few options. Bariatric surgery is one of the more extreme options for those who need to lose weight for health reasons and is often a last resort. However, with the rise of semaglutide for weight loss, there is now another option before having this major surgery. In an interview with Insider, a St. Louis woman named Elizabeth Wood opens up about how taking semaglutide was the one thing that allowed her to lose weight and avoid spending $30,000 on bariatric surgery.
Wood struggled with weight gain due to having polycystic ovarian syndrome and was concerned about her ability to have children if she wasn’t able to lose weight. After her doctor recommended taking semaglutide, she started on this popular weight loss medication in October 2022. After only 5 months, she lost 82 pounds and was able to confidently forego having major surgery.
What is Bariatric Surgery?
Bariatric surgery is a weight loss surgery. The most common types of bariatric surgeries are gastric bypass, gastric banding, gastric sleeve, and gastric balloon. The goal with these is to achieve weight loss by reducing the size of the stomach and reducing the amount of food your body can absorb. Bariatric surgery is a major medical procedure that is recommended by doctors as a way to avoid serious health complications from obesity, not for cosmetic reasons. The procedure is done by either making a large incision in the abdomen (laparotomy) or by using tools inserted through small incisions (laparoscopy). It requires general anesthesia and spending several days in the hospital. It’s important to know that bariatric surgery is typically one part of a multidisciplinary weight loss plan that also includes exercise, healthy eating, and possibly treatment of other conditions that may be contributing to weight gain.
Risks of Bariatric Surgery
It’s no surprise that Wood wanted to avoid this major surgery which does not come without risks. There is a chance of bleeding or perforation of the stomach or intestines, which would be life-threatening and require emergency intervention. Bowel obstructions from an internal hernia are also a risk. Some people who have received this surgery may also become malnourished, have a permanent nutrient deficiency, adrenal failure, gastrointestinal issues like GERD, gallstones, or pancreatitis, as well as emotional issues.
Taking Semaglutide for Weight Loss
Elizabeth Wood has had great results and is happy with her decision to take semaglutide instead of having bariatric surgery. She said that from day one, she was consciously trying not to eat too much because she wanted the medication to work. By month three, she didn’t feel hungry at all and didn’t want to eat. With such a minimal appetite, she made sure to be eating nutritious foods, prioritizing protein with items like sliced turkey and cheese sticks. She is feeling more confident than ever, and her goal is to lose another 80 pounds.
Semaglutide vs. Surgery
When it comes to weighing out the pros and cons of taking semaglutide versus having bariatric surgery, Elizabeth Wood’s story makes it clear that semaglutide is an excellent option. Many people have concerns about the side effects of taking semaglutide, but as with any medication, it's crucial to examine whether or not the benefits outweigh any potential risk. For many, bariatric surgery is simply too risky and too expensive and may not even be possible for those who cannot afford the expensive procedure. The potential side effects of semaglutide are most commonly nausea, vomiting, constipation, diarrhea, or stomach pain. Lucky for Wood, she didn’t experience any negative side effects. She also admits that while semaglutide isn’t cheap, it is much more affordable than a $30,000 surgery. For her, and many others like her, semaglutide has been life-changing.
Try Semaglutide with Joi
Joi is a women’s wellness company that offers a variety of weight loss solutions, including semaglutide injections. If you are considering bariatric surgery for weight loss, you may be able to reach your weight loss goals with semaglutide instead. When you work with the professionals at Joi, you get to consult with a board-certified clinician to determine if semaglutide is the right option for you, and you will get support throughout your journey. Visit the website to learn more or to schedule a consultation.Back to Blog