Obesity is measured by the individual’s body mass index (BMI). This calculation uses the person’s weight as compared to their height, age and gender. The BMI chart puts you in a category based on your BMI, ranging from being underweight and average weight, to obese, morbidly obese and super obese. There is a direct correlation between obesity and the lifespan of that person, mostly because of medical conditions brought on by obesity. These conditions can lead to further complications. To avoid this, weight loss surgery is showing to have a positive impact and improve the mortality for people getting the surgery.
There are a wide array of diseases and medical conditions that tend to be worsened by obesity. They include depression, obstructive sleep apnea, migraines, asthma, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, metabolic syndrome, non-alcoholic fatty liver disease, type 2 diabetes, polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS), GERD, stress urinary incontinence and degenerative joint disease. Not all of them impact your mortality, but many lead to further complications without proper treatment. For example, high blood pressure can create a greater risk for heart disease and stroke, which can risk your life. Individuals who have successfully lost weight, such as from weight loss surgery, are showing a positive impact on their lifespan, as evident by studies like the one conducted by the Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine.
How Weight Loss Surgery Improves Mortality
According to the Cleveland Clinic Journal of Medicine, morbid obesity is directly related to a shortened lifespan. Through their studies, they found that a man in his 20s, who has a BMI of over 45, is going to live approximately 13 years less than someone of the same age with a normal BMI range. This same study looked at weight loss surgery, also called bariatric surgery, and how the procedures helped with mortality. It showed an improvement by about 27 percent for patients who got gastric bypass surgery, for their 15-year mortality rate. After surgery, the long term survival rate was increased to 33 percent.
Another study, conducted by the New England Journal of Medicine, showed long-term success for mortality rates, based on improvement for medical conditions and diseases that put obese individuals at risk. This includes a significant improvement in things like cancer, diabetes and heart disease.
In a NYU Langone Online Journal of Medicine study, they reported that the overall quality of life was improved for obese individuals who had undergone bariatric surgery. It improved their mortality rate, adverse health conditions and the quality of their life by giving them more years with their healthy new bodies.