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Conditions We Treat
Obesity has become one of the most important public health problems in the United States. Bariatric surgery may be appropriate in adolescents to reverse serious life-altering and life-threatening obesity-related medical conditions, like the ones below.
Prediabetes and Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus
If your child has been diagnosed with prediabetes, that means there are moderate abnormalities in the fasting blood glucose, glucose tolerance, or hemoglobin A1C, that indicate your child is at an increased risk for developing Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM). With T2DM, the body is no longer able to metabolize carbohydrates, or glucose, appropriately due to a decreased sensitivity to the body’s insulin. Early diagnosis is imperative because aggressive treatment early on can slow the development of complications, like neuropathy, retinopathy, nephropathy and cardiovascular disease. Additionally, those who have adolescent T2DM have been shown to have a more rapid progression of diabetes-related complications than those diagnosed as adults.
Obstructive Sleep Apnea
Obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) is when your child briefly stops breathing while sleeping or breathing is not adequate to maintain oxygen levels in the blood. This happens because of a blockage in the child’s airway. The pause in breathing may occur many times throughout the night, disrupting your child’s sleep. In our program all of our patients will be required to get a sleep study in order to diagnose or rule out OSA.
Liver abnormalities associated with obesity include increased liver fat without inflammation, and nonalcoholic steatohepatitis (NASH), which is increased liver fat with inflammation.
Hypertension/High Blood Pressure
The chance of developing hypertension, or high blood pressure, increases with obesity and directly increases the risk of having a heart attack or seizure. With increased blood pressure, the arteries develop increased resistance to blood flow causing the heart to work harder. Many times, high blood pressure does not have any signs or symptoms, it must be checked by a doctor or monitored yourself. Your child’s blood pressure will be checked at each clinic visit while in our program.
Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)
PCOS is primarily characterized by ovulatory dysfunction and hyperandrogenism. The diagnosis of PCOS has life-long implications with increased risk for infertility, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes mellitus, and other health implications including possible cardiovascular disease. There are three major symptoms of PCOS:
- Menstrual irregularity or excessive bleeding
- Increased hair growth and persistent acne
- Obesity and insulin resistance
This occurs typically in those children and adolescents who hold most of their weight around the abdomen area. Patients with dyslipidemia will typically have elevated LDL cholesterol (the bad cholesterol), elevated triglycerides and decreased HDL cholesterol (the good cholesterol).