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International Health Insurance News: Bariatric surgery benefits 'outweigh risks'

The risks involved in bariatric surgery are outweighed by the possible benefits, it has been claimed.

A paper published in Circulation: Journal of the American Heart Association claimed that the surgery is becoming increasingly popular for severely obese people.

This is partly due to the fact that obesity is becoming more widespread and also because medical staff are becoming frustrated with alternative treatment options.

"Substantial long-term successes from lifestyle modifications and drug therapy have been disappointing, making it important to look at surgical options," said Dr Paul Poirier, director of the prevention and rehabilitation programme at Quebec Heart and Lung Institute.

Severe obesity is classified as having a body mass index of 40 or above and it can have a significant impact of a person's life expectancy, with a 25-year-old expected to see a 22 per cent reduction in his expected life if he is severely obese.

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