Obesity continues to hit an alarming level across the country...affecting more than one-third of the population according to the CDC. This is leading to life-threatening health problems like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. 

This has more people turning to weight loss surgery as a last-ditch effort to shed the extra pounds...

I sat down with Bariatric Surgeon Dr. Chris Sanborn from Erlanger. He says there are 3 things patients should keep in mind before going under the knife.

What are your expectations?

Dr. Chris Sanborn says "What are your expectations? What are you looking to get out of it? Are you looking to lose weight? Are you looking to fix your diabetes and those kinds of things."

Things can't stay the same.

Dr. Chris Sanborn says "Are you ready to make a change?"

Dr. Sanborn says that means a complete lifestyle change when it comes to your diet and exercise.

Do you have a support system in place?

Dr. Chris Sanborn says "I think you have to look and say a lot of things are going to change, so how are we going to handle that afterward."

Make sure you have those who are going to encourage you and help you stay on track, if not Dr. Sanborn says you will most likely only see temporary results."

Dr. Chris Sanborn says "So round numbers are that 80 percent of people will lose half their extra weight and the 20 percent that don't lose about half their weight are about 40 percent so it is still pretty good for them too."

Dr. Sanborn wants to emphasize that this is not a quick and easy fix and there are no guarantees. Patients have to be ready to not only make physical changes but mental changes as well.

Dr. Sanborn says "We don't want surgery to work for a few years and that's it. We won't it to work lifelong."

To qualify for weight loss surgery, you need to have a BMI of 35 and above with other problems associated with it like type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, or high cholesterol or have a BMI of 40 or above without problems. There are some exceptions. As always, check with your doctor.