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Are You a Candidate?

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has standardized guidelines and criteria for determining whether or not the patient is a qualified candidate for bariatric surgery**. The Johns Hopkins Center for Bariatric Surgery adheres to these guidelines. The candidate should:

  • have a Body Mass Index of 40 kg/m2 or higher. This is approximately 100 pounds overweight. Patients may qualify if their BMI is between 35 and 40 and they have a significant obesity related disease.
  • be healthy enough to have surgery.
  • have tried and failed dietary management regimes.

You should understand that bariatric surgery is not a 100% easy cure. It is an aid to help you lose weight. You must realize that nutritional supplements are for life and that medical follow-up with periodic lab testing is important to maintaining post-operative health.

**Gastrointestinal Surgery for Severe Obesity. NIH Consensus Statement 1991 Mar 25-27; 9(1): 1-20.

For a review of the 1991 NIH Executive Summary, click here.

Body Mass Index (BMI) and How to Calculate Your BMI

Calculate your BMI

Body Mass Index (BMI) is one of the most accurate ways to determine when extra pounds translate into health risks. BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight that applies to both adult men and women. Your BMI measures your height/weight ratio. It is your weight in kilograms divided by the square of your height in meters. Morbid obesity is defined as at least 100 pounds overweight, with a BMI greater than 40.

   BMI (kg/m2)     Excess Body Weight  
Underweight< 18.5None
Normal Weight18.5 - 24.9None
Overweight25.0 - 29.9< 30 lbs
Obese30.0 - 39.9> 30 lbs
Morbidly Obese40.0 - 49.9> 100 lbs
Super Morbidly Obese     50+> 150 lbs

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