Adolescent Bariatric Surgery

Tampa General Hospital and USF Health’s Adolescent Bariatric Surgery program is a comprehensive, inter-disciplinary program that includes physicians, psychologists, dieticians, and exercise physiologists.

Our bariatric team works together to help each patient reach their weight loss goals and provide pre- and post-operative care. All of these resources are located in one place, for the convenience of our adolescent patients.

To be considered for bariatric surgery, adolescents must be over the age of 16 and have a body mass index of 40 or higher. Our services include:

  • Comprehensive wellness assessment with an experienced adolescent bariatric physician, dieticians, exercise physiologists and psychologists
  • Complete post-operative care programs, including medical care for improvements in medical problems, nutritional coaching and psychological assistance
  • Long-term support to help ensure goals are maintained and to assist in the prevention of post-operative weight gain
  • Support groups that focus on real-life issues such as how to adjust to your new body, ordering meals when eating out, nutritional supplements, and stress eating

Tampa General has been named a Bariatric Surgery Center of Excellence by the Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP).

Even in adolescents, obesity can cause the following adult medical problems:

  • Sleep apnea
  • Hypertension
  • Metabolic syndrome
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Fatty liver disease
  • High cholesterol
  • Infertility
  • Social stigmatization
  • Depression and suicidal ideations

Benefits of adolescent weight loss surgery:

  • Weight loss
  • Improved self-esteem
  • Improvement or resolution of conditions such as type 2 diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, hypertension, asthma, gastroesophageal reflux disease, etc.
  • Decreased use of medications
  • Increased energy
  • Improved quality of life

When is weight loss surgery an option for adolescents?

Bariatric surgery is considered when adolescents do not lose weight despite increasing physical activity and making healthy food choices. Bariatric surgery is not a guarantee. A healthy diet and regular physical activity are still required to maintain weight lost after surgery.

Adolescents may be considered for weight loss surgery if they meet the following criteria:

  • Have not lost weight despite dieting and exercising
  • Is at least 16 years of age
  • Is severely obese and has a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or greater

Patients considering adolescent weight loss surgery must attend a one hour Bariatric Surgery Information Session and adhere to post-surgery nutritional guidelines and lifelong follow up at the Bariatric Center.

Metabolic Program

TGH’s Children’s Medical Center is one of only three centers in the state providing comprehensive evaluation and treatment for infants, children and adolescents who have diseases that involve metabolism.

The CMC treats a wide range of conditions considered inborn errors of metabolism including:

  • Complicated biochemical abnormalities
  • Conditions that may cause hypoglycemia
  • Disorders of fatty acid oxidation
  • Disorders of amino acid metabolism
  • Organic acid disorders
  • Lysosomal storage diseases
  • Disorders of glycosylation
  • Mitochondrial disorders
  • Metabolic disorders detected in newborn screening
  • Pediatric endocrine disorders

Our Metabolic Program, led by USF Health physicians, is staffed by a multidisciplinary team of experienced clinicians from a wide range of specialties – neurology, gastroenterology, nutrition, cardiology, ophthalmology, genetics, psychology and social work – who collaborate to provide the best treatment options for each patient.