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How to handle a pre-surgery psych evaluation

How to handle a pre-surgery psych evaluation

When you’re preparing for bariatric surgery, it can seem like a long process. Ultimately, you want to just get the procedure done and start working toward your healthier, slimmer self.

But some of the steps required, like a psychological evaluation, are necessary to ensure your well-being. Although a psych evaluation may seem tedious and inconvenient, it’s an important component to help prepare you for bariatric surgery.

With that in mind, don’t be discouraged if you’re asked to undergo a pre-surgery psychological evaluation. Here’s what you need to know about this process:

  • The person conducting the test is a qualified medical professional, and your information is kept confidential, just like all your medical information.
  • Being diagnosed with a mental health condition does not automatically exclude you from bariatric surgery. As long as you are seeing a mental health professional before and after surgery and your condition is under good control, you may still be a candidate for the surgery.
  • Tests for alcohol and/or drug abuse may be conducted. This is to ensure you don’t have any addiction problems that need to be addressed prior to surgery. You probably know that alcohol is excluded from your post-surgery diet, and recreational drugs would also not be permitted for your own safety.
  • Bariatric surgery patients must not have multiple suicide attempts in their medical record in order to qualify for surgery. Although the risk of suicide after bariatric surgery is low, it is still a factor that must be considered for your well-being.
  • You’ll likely be asked if you understand the surgery and what it entails. Basically, you’ll need to have a full understanding of how your life will be different once you’ve had bariatric surgery. Remember that the surgery is a tool to help you lose weight, and that you’ll need to follow your post-surgery diet and lifestyle changes carefully.
  • You’ll be asked about your eating habits and past weight-loss attempts. This shows your physician which weight loss methods haven’t worked for you, and how your health has been affected over time.

The test is not intended to exclude you from surgery or to make it more difficult for you to get it. Rather, it is a tool to help your surgeon and medical team understand your your mental health history and determine ways they can help you succeed. Just like your physical health is examined and discussed prior to bariatric surgery, so must your mental health be taken into account.

Your mental and emotional health play a big role in your overall health and your weight-loss goals. Although some people feel nervous or uneasy about the evaluation, it’s not intended to cause you stress. It’s simply one step in the process of getting your total health picture before bariatric surgery.

CarePoint Health Bariatric Surgery

CarePoint Health Center for Bariatric Surgery offers a number of different weight-loss surgeries to help you meet your goals, including sleeve gastrectomy, Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery, LAP-BAND®, and REALIZE® Band. To learn more about our bariatric surgery options, contact us at 201-795-8175 and register for our free seminar.

Content on our website is for informational purposes only and does not constitute medical advice. If you are experiencing a medical emergency, please call 911. Always consult your physician before making any changes to your medical treatment.

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