One of the most disruptive consequences of obesity is its effect on fertility. Many women of child-bearing age who are also suffering from obesity are not able to have children. This is usually the result of hormonal changes caused by gaining weight as well as resultant co-morbidities including physical and psychological ailments. Unfortunately, if left untreated, these women may never be able to get pregnant, not matter how hard they try.
The good news however, is that losing weight and subsequent long-term maintenance of a lower weight can go a long way to restore the body’s natural hormonal levels. Many women will first see this in the form of more regular menstrual cycles. Others may be able to become pregnant more easily.
There are very few restrictions with regard to pregnancy after bariatric surgery. However, patient should be mindful that in the interests of their safety and the safety of the fetus, they should wait to get pregnant until their weight has stabilized and they are at least 15-18 months out of surgery. This reduces the risk of complications for both mother and child. We always suggest notifying our office when you want to become pregnant and we can offer advice as to when it is the appropriate time to become pregnant.
It is also important to note that not all fertility issues are caused by obesity. If losing weight does not seem to resolve a fertility issue, speaking to a specialist in the field is the first step toward finding and treating the cause of infertility. Also remember that bariatric surgery is not a suitable weight loss option for everyone and should not be considered a magic bullet. Ultimately it is up to the patient to ensure they change their life by losing weight and keeping it off.
Please feel free to contact us for more information on pregnancy related issues before and after weight loss surgery.