Weight Loss Surgery Value Underscored by Increasing Risk of Severe COVID-19 Infection in Obese Patients, says West Medical

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West Medical comments on a recent article that obesity should be considered a treatable medical condition rather than a matter of willpower.

The weight loss medical group operates clinics throughout Greater Los Angeles and Southern California.

The risk of severe COVID-19 infection is only one more reason people struggling with obesity should seek medical assistance and may want to consider some form of weight loss surgery or treatment.

A February 26 article on NPR reports on some U.S. states, including New York and Texas, adding obesity to their list of conditions that make affected individuals eligible for COVID-19 vaccination. Previously, vaccination was reserved for older patients or those with specified pre-existing conditions that made them likely to require hospitalization in the event of infection. However, new findings strongly suggest that excessive weight may be one of the largest predictors of severe COVID-19 infection. A recent CDC study provides context for these new state policies: people with a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or higher are at least 7% more likely to need intensive medical care and 8% more likely to die from COVID-19. Patients with a BMI of 35 or higher face an even greater risk. Southern California-based weight loss center West Medical says that the risk of severe COVID-19 infection is only one more reason people struggling with obesity should seek medical assistance and may want to consider some form of weight loss surgery or treatment.

West Medical says obesity stresses virtually every system in the body, which is likely why COVID-19 infection is so severe in obese patients. From decreased mobility and joint issues to a higher risk of developing heart disease and respiratory illness, the effects of obesity are widespread and substantial. While this may be cause for patients to begin losing weight, the weight loss center says the process isn’t as simple as exercising and eating better. The center says that even if patients do slim down without assistance, maintaining that weight loss can be extremely challenging for formerly severely obese patients because the body may perceive the lost weight as a threat to survival. This results in increased production of hunger hormones, leading to frequent feelings of hunger. The center adds that fighting this ramped-up hormone production isn’t a matter of willpower; it’s biology at work.

To complicate matters, obesity can be caused by many factors, including genetics, long-term lifestyle choices, psychological issue, and more, says West Medical. Treating obesity without also treating its root causes can be further grounds for failure, the center notes. The weight loss medical group adds that, while these factors combined can be demoralizing, the good news is that medically-assisted weight loss has a strong track record of success. The center says patients who undergo surgical operations such as a gastric sleeve procedure typically experience a significant decline in their appetites. The center says that the procedure removes the majority of the stomach, which makes overeating uncomfortable, but a welcome side effect is that it also tends to greatly decrease the body’s capacity to manufacture the hunger hormones that make patients want to overeat in the first place. West Medical says that medical intervention better equips obese patients with the tools to successfully lose weight, thus enabling them to live healthier lives.

Readers can learn more about West Medical by visiting their website at https://westmedical.com/ or by calling (855) 678-4778.

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