Below are some of our most frequently asked questions.

Is the Sleeve Gastrectomy Right for Me?

Also called the stomach staple surgery, laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy requires less follow-up care and nutritional supplements than gastric bypass surgery. With this gastric sleeve surgery, Dr. Dahiya uses surgical staples to form your stomach into a sleeve-shaped tube about one-third its original size, then removes the excess. This significantly reduces your stomach capacity, but not as dramatically as other weight loss surgeries.

Is Roux-en-Y Surgery Right for Me?

Instead of using an implanted device like a gastric band, gastric bypass surgery actually changes the way your digestive tract operates to help you eat less food and absorb fewer calories. The Roux-en-Y method removes most of the stomach, creating a small stomach pouch that fills up quickly, which is how gastric bypass surgery works to help you lose weight.

Dr. Dahiya has pioneered and perfected a technique for Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery that has actually been named after him—the Dahiya Vertical Micropouch™. This innovative approach is done laparoscopically to minimize the risks, complications, and recovery time for gastric bypass surgery.

Is Gastric Banding Right for Me?

Laparoscopic gastric banding is a form of weight loss surgery that is effective, adjustable, and reversible. Currently, the two gastric bands approved for bariatric surgery by the FDA are the LAP-BAND® and the REALIZE® Band (also called Swedish Adjustable Gastric Band or SAGB). LAP-BAND® surgery and REALIZE® Band surgery are equally safe, and both have a great track record of helping patients get down to a healthy weight.

What Criteria Do I Need to Meet for Weight Loss Surgery?

In addition to the BMI requirements, Dr. Dahiya wants to be sure that you are in good mental and physical health before your bariatric surgery. The best candidates for bariatric surgery should be:

• Aged 18 or older
• Unable to lose weight through diet and exercise
• Obese for at least 5 years
• Free from psychiatric disorders, eating disorders, and substance abuse
• Committed to serious diet, exercise, and behavioral lifestyle changes
• In good enough overall health for surgery

If you do not meet one of more of these criteria for weight loss surgery, don’t give up. In certain circumstances, especially if you are severely obese, you may still be a candidate for bariatric surgery. To find out if you can still qualify for bariatric surgery or which weight loss surgery is right for you, go ahead and schedule a bariatric surgery consultation with Dr. Dahiya. Only your board-certified bariatric surgeon can give you a definitive answer about your weight loss surgery options.

What Are the Body Mass Index (BMI) Requirements for Weight Loss Surgery?

You already know that obesity is a life-threatening condition, but obesity surgery, like any surgical procedure, comes with a certain degree of risk. For people who are only slightly obese or overweight, that risk may not justify the benefits of bariatric surgery. Our board-certified bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya can help you determine if you are a candidate for weight loss surgery and help you select the best weight loss surgery for your body and your weight loss goals. In general the FDA recommends bariatric surgery only for obese individuals who have:

• BMI of 40+, or
• BMI of 35-39.9 plus a serious weight-related health condition.

If you aren’t sure what your BMI is, try our online Body Mass Index Calculator. If you are in the second BMI category, dangerous obesity-related health problems that may qualify you for weight loss surgery include:

• Type II Diabetes
• Heart Disease
• High Blood Pressure
• Sleep Apnea

In December of 2010, an FDA panel recommended lowering the BMI requirements for LAP-BAND® surgery. A final decision is expected in the coming months, and if the panel’s recommendation is approved, LAP-BAND® surgery will be available to anyone with a BMI of 35+ and 30+ with a life-threatening, obesity-related health condition. So far, the FDA has not considered changing the BMI requirements for Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery or laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy.

What Is the Recovering From Bariatric Surgery Like?

Since your bariatric surgery procedure is considered major surgery, there will be a recovery period of several weeks. Depending on your overall health and the speed at which your body heals, this could be as little as two weeks or as much as six or eight weeks.

Your bariatric surgeon will closely monitor your progress and will let you know when you are ready to return to work and physical activity. In order to help you recover more quickly and with less pain, we use least invasive laparoscopic techniques for bariatric surgery, including the state-of-the-art SPIDER® Single-Incision Surgical System.

Immediately after your surgery, you will be on a carefully controlled liquid diet to help your digestive tract heal. Dr. Dahiya will keep track of your recovery and gradually allow you to move on to soft foods and, eventually, solid food. Because your digestive system has been altered, you may experience constipation or diarrhea, but this should largely subside within the first week. You should expect some swelling and pain in your abdomen, which can be controlled with medications.

During and after your recovery period, you will check in with Dr. Dahiya for follow-up care for about a year. This helps us monitor your weight loss and make sure you are sticking to your post-operative weight loss program of diet and exercise and that you are receiving proper nutrition.

How Should I Prepare for My Bariatric Surgery?

The first step toward combating obesity with bariatric surgery is coming to our weight loss surgery center in Lakewood, California for your consultation with our board-certified bariatric surgeon Dr. Shyam Dahiya. We will measure your current weight and Body Mass Index (BMI) and go over your medical history to make sure you are a good candidate for weight loss surgery. Dr. Dahiya will explain the risks and benefits of each bariatric surgery procedure and help you decide which weight loss surgery best suits your needs and challenges.

In your consultation, Dr. Dahiya will also explain some steps you will need to take to prepare for your bariatric surgery. For example, Dr. Dahiya or our nutrition specialist Dr. Jose Mari-Elacion will have specific, personalized advice for your diet before and after weight loss surgery.

Tobacco use increases the risk of pneumonia and other potentially serious complications. Therefore, all weight loss surgery candidates absolutely must quit smoking for a bare minimum of one month before undergoing bariatric surgery. You may also need to stop taking certain medications, including over-the-counter pain relievers like ibuprofen, and abstain from alcohol for several weeks before your weight loss surgery.

What Are the Safest Bariatric Surgery Procedures?

The very latest in laparoscopic surgery technology and the most advanced weight loss surgery techniques allows for a faster, less painful recovery period. Laparoscopic surgery allows Dr. Dahiya to complete your bariatric surgery procedure using very small incisions that heal more quickly and reduce the risk of infection and other complications. For example, we use the state-of-the-art SPIDER® Surgical System to perform LAP-BAND®, REALIZE® Band, and Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy procedures with a single incision.

How Long Is the Recovery Period for Bariatric Surgery?

Since your bariatric surgery procedure is considered major surgery, there will be a recovery period of several weeks. Depending on your overall health and the speed at which your body heals, this could be as little as two weeks or as much as six or eight weeks.

Do I Need to Quit Smoking for Bariatric Surgery?


There is one thing that nearly all physicians and surgeons agree on, including Dr. Dahiya, and that is the link between smoking and postoperative complications. Quitting smoking before surgery can can significantly reduce post-operative complications. A recent study by Dr. Thomas Fiala showed that there was a 41% less chance of complications for smokers that quit before surgery, compared to those who didn’t. Research showed that for every week of cessation from smoking, the chance for no complications after surgery increased by 19%.

The study further showed that smokers who quit before surgery had lower rates of total complications, less wound healing complications, and fewer pulmonary complications which may arise.

It is important to understand how smoking effects the body before and after a surgery. Nicotine in cigarettes constricts blood flow in the body’s tissues which may cause the tissue to turn black and die as a result. It is the recommendation of most surgeons that an individual should stop smoking for a full month before and another month following surgery.

Does Our Location Have Parking Facilities?


Free Parking is available at the parking structure out front of our bariatric center. Valet services are available.

Is Weight Loss Surgery Covered by Insurance?

The vast majority of patients with Medicaid, Medicare, and even private health insurance can get insurance coverage for bariatric surgery. This is because bariatric surgery, in almost all cases, is considered medically necessary. In other words, your insurance company believes that the cost of treating you for future obesity-related medical conditions outweighs the cost as well as the risks and complications of bariatric surgery.

What are the Pros and Cons of Weight Loss Surgery?

Weight loss surgery can help you with:

  • Obesity
  • Type II Diabetes
  • Sleep Apnea
  • Heart Disease
  • High Blood Pressure

Weight loss surgery does have several cons

  • Lengthy recovery time
  • Long-term success depends on the patient
  • Costly if not covered by insurance

What Is Bariatric Surgery?

You may have heard the term “bariatric surgery” popping up in weight loss communities and appearing randomly in blog articles articles and on Youtube. Bariatric surgery is a real, effective option for those who need to lose weight for their health.

3650 E. South Street Ste #412, Lakewood, CA 90712

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