Qualifying for Surgery - Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center
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Ralph H. Johnson VA Medical Center


Qualifying for Surgery

LINKS /Main Page/Qualifying for Surgery/Types of Surgery/Support Groups
Non-Surgical Weight Loss Options/Nutrition Corner/FAQs 

Veterans must meet specific criteria before a surgical evaluation: 

1. You must have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 40 or greater --OR--a BMI of 35 or greater with at least one (1) obesity related condition. 

Obesity related conditions include, but not limited to diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, sleep apnea, or reflux.  (I don't know my BMI)

2. You must be an active participant in a structured weight management program for a minimum of 6 months and demonstrate a 5% weight loss from your baseline weight.  

The VA MOVE! Weight Management or TeleMOVE Program at your local site is recommended --OR-- a non-VA structured weight loss program with which you MUST have documentation.

3. Be nicotine free for a minimum of 3 months prior to surgery.  

Random nicotine tests will be performed.  Smoking/Tobacco cessation classes are available at the VA.  Contact your primary care team for details on how to enroll.

4. Generally, be less than 65 years old.  

Those older than 65 years will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis.

5.  Demonstrate a stable living environment and adequate support system.

If you meet the above criteria and would like to be considered for weight loss surgery, speak with your primary care provider.