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Bariatric Surgery Process: Our Multidisciplinary Approach to Bariatric Surgery

UPMC's multidisciplinary approach to bariatric surgery includes personalized care from all members of the weight loss team — before, during, and after your surgery.

  • Receive assistance and ongoing support from our bariatric surgeons dietitians, psychologists, and exercise specialists.
  • Access educational activities and support groups before and after weight loss surgery.
  • Achieve long-term, weight loss success as our lifelong partner.

We’re with you every step of the way.

The Steps to Surgical Weight Loss at UPMC

Step 1: Do you qualify for weight loss surgery?

  • Weight loss surgery may be appropriate for those who are 100 pounds or more overweight, have a Body Mass Index of 40 or higher, or who have a body mass index of 35 or higher accompanied by one serious obesity-related health problem.
    » Learn how to calculate your BMI.
  • Begin your journey by attending a free bariatric surgery information session. Offered several times a month, these sessions help you learn about requirements, the surgery process, and the lifestyle changes you will need to adopt.
    » Learn about bariatric surgical options available at UPMC.

Step 2: Schedule your bariatric consultation at UPMC

Step 3: Begin the Presurgical Lifestyle Support Program

  • This six-month program will prepare you for both surgery and your insurance requirements.
  • You will learn about healthy diet and exercise habits.

Step 4: Prep for your bariatric procedure

  • Follow your doctor’s pre-surgery diet program.
  • Ensure you are able to take four to six weeks off work.
  • Prepare the foods and vitamins you’ll need after surgery.
  • Cease smoking and alcohol consumption.
  • Ensure you have received insurance approval and have completed all necessary paperwork.

Step 5: Undergo your weight-loss procedure

  • You will most likely require a two-hour pre-op, in which your care team will prepare you for surgery.
  • You will undergo anesthesia.
  • During post-op, your care team will monitor your vital signs and help manage your pain.
  • Most patients remain in the hospital for one to three days after their procedure.

Step 6: Post-bariatric surgery recovery

  • You will need to strictly adhere to your doctor’s post-surgery diet plan.
  • Your calorie consumption will be about a quarter of what it used to be.
  • In the weeks after your procedure, you must care for your incision site.
  • You may experience weight loss surgery side effects.

Step 7: Adopt a new lifestyle

  • You will need to begin a new diet and exercise plan. Many patients can begin exercise about six weeks after surgery.
  • Your care team will arrange long-term support and educational services to help you achieve long-term weight loss success.
  • You will attend follow-up appointments with your care team to ensure a healthy recovery.

UPMC | Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences | Supplemental content provided by Healthwise, Incorporated. To learn more, visit

For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

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