A comorbidity is a disease that is the result of, or strongly related to, a primary disease. As it applies to weight loss surgery, the disease is morbid obesity and the comorbidities are many. Morbid Obesity is a condition when you are severely overweight. Body Mass Index (BMI) is a calculation that uses your height and weight to create a standard measure of obesity. A BMI over 35 is considered morbidly obese. Some insurance companies consider anyone who is 100 lbs over their ideal weight morbidly obese.
How does this relate to weight loss surgery?
Insurance companies typically require at least 2 comorbidities and a BMI of 35 or greater in order to cover weight loss surgery. Some insurance companies require more than 2 comorbidities before approving surgery. Below is a list of common comorbidities of morbid obesity that are accepted by most major insurance carriers.
- Sleep Apnea
- High Blood Pressure
- High Cholesterol
- Type 2 Diabetes
- Venous Stasis Disease (Collection of Blood in the Lower Limbs)
- Soft Tissue Infections
Did You Know?
Type 2 Diabetes is extremely common in morbidly obese patients. Data shows that laparoscopic gastric bypass, lap gastric banding and gastric sleeve surgery can reduce your dependence on medication and often completely resolve the condition.
Less frequent comorbidities that are occasionally accepted by insurance include:
- Congestive Heart Failure
- Fatty Liver Syndrome
- Gall Bladder Disease
- Stroke or Stroke Risk
- Inability to Carry Out Daily Activities
- Psychosocial Stress Resulting From Obesity
- GERD (Acid Reflux Disease)
Discuss your possible comorbidities with your Primary Care Physician. Should you choose to have bariatric surgery, this shows that you have previously discussed your obesity related diseases with your doctor and will provide documentation of your disease.