Just be careful and check some of the responses. Go to a support group sponsored by the surgeon or ask for a recommendation for one. Then go to that support group and ask about the surgeon! They will tell you what the surgeon is like from a patient perspective.
Ask your primary care doctor or GI doctor if you have one (gastric bypass surgeons are GI doctors who have specialized.)to check out the surgeon. They will probably have friends who know the surgeon and if they do not enthusiastically endorse the surgeon then ask then who is the best in your area.
Example: When I asked my GI doctor if he knew my bariatric surgeon he said yes. He said he was a really good surgeon. He went further since he knew my insurance would not allow Dr Hunter who is one of the best on the west coast do the surgery. He told me the my surgeon interned under him and that Dr Hunter trained him in gastric bypass surgery.
Another important point for me was that my surgeon and other doctors be willing to work together. My naturopath, primary care, endocrinologist, and gastroenterologist all worked together with my surgeon. At each visit the others were sent notes of exams and I was asked to sign medical releases so all of them could see all reports, labs, tests, and office visit notes. In the last two years they have all commented on how pleased they are with the information that is being shared by the other doctors. It has really helped to keep my healthcare a top priority. My doctors are at three different clinics so it is very important to have information shared.
For example: My throat got scarred during the surgery and it was 4 months before I had an endoscopy and my gi doctor did a dilation. Now that was a complication from surgery. However, if you ask my surgeon about complications he would say my surgery had no complications. Why because the pouch did not leak, the pouch processed food and I did not end up back in the emergency room within a few hours of being released or while still in the hospital. What I know was a complication in my case is not the legal definition of a medical complication from gastric bypass surgery.
I think I would ask How many of your patients in the first 6 months after surgery had any problems requiring treatment or special tests? The follow up questions are asking about the type of problems. ie scarring, infection, incision leakage, staples pulling loose, intestine/pouch connection problems, ulcers, h pylori or other infections. What type of problems have your patients experienced after surgery? is another way to approach the question.
I think mortality rate only applies to those who died on the table during the surgery so it may not cover people who died after surgery during the recovery period or later of complications.
Cindy - A Co-Leader on Gastric Bypass Sparklers
Proximal Laproscopic RNY 9-10-10
Start Wt: 228 5-21-10
Surgery Wt: 205 9-10-10
Goal Wt: 135
| current weight: 176.0