DR. JAIME PONCE: On average, you can lose about five to ten percent of your excess weight. The majority of the patients in studies show they can lose about 20 pounds. The problem with those programs is that they have a high failure rate in the long term. What happens is, 95% of the patients, if you follow them for three and four years, will regain that weight that they lost, and they gain a little bit more.
ANNOUNCER: By contrast, surgical weight loss has a much higher success rate both in terms of amount of weight lost and long-term durability.
DR. FELIX SPIEGEL: Weight loss surgery is done for permanent weight loss, and good weight loss surgery has at least ten year success rates of losing more than 50%, more than 60% of a person’s excess weight and maintaining it.
DR. GEORGE WOODMAN: The fact is, for 98% of individuals out there who are morbidly obese, they will never lose any significant weight and never keep that weight off without surgery. And that's a fact that's been proven over and over.
ANNOUNCER: Although weight loss surgery is not for everyone, it can play a vital role in losing weight and preventing many of the medical problems associated with obesity.
DR. GEORGE WOODMAN: The best way to treat obesity and the complications that come along with it is to prevent them from occurring. Patients that we see in the office suffer from every type of medical problem that you can imagine. What we need to be doing is trying to get to these patients and target these individuals before those problems occur. It only increases the risk of complications to wait for them to get sicker and sicker.