Rosie O’Donnell has Weight Loss Surgery

Rosie O’Donnell shared some news on Friday: she had weight loss surgery after surviving a serious heart attack.
O’Donnell has dropped 40 pounds since undergoing a procedure known as the gastric sleeve (also called vertical sleeve gastrectomy or just “sleeve”). This is the same procedure that comedian Lisa Lampanelli underwent last year. Losing 40 pounds so far, O’Donnell says she chose bariatric surgery because she was concerned about her health. After suffering a heart attach in 2012, she began eating better and walking, but was unable to lose enough weight through lifestyle changes alone. The medical treatment O’Donnell chose is not an alternative to those lifestyle changes. It is a tool that significantly enhances weight loss and improvement of obesity-related health conditions.

Photo from EOnline

“I did it to save my life,” O’Donnell told People Magazine. She made the announcement at the Go Red luncheon, which is sponsored by the American Heart Association. During the procedure, a surgeon removed approximately 80% of O’Donnell’s stomach, leaving a smaller stomach approximately the size of a banana. The smaller stomach helps patients feel full after eating a much smaller meal, and keeps them full for longer. The procedure has also been shown to have beneficial metabolic effects. This is another benefit to O’Donnell who was pre-diabetic and had high blood pressure and high cholesterol.

Most people wait to address obesity until something “major” happens – like a heart attack in Rosie O’Donnell’s case. However, studies have shown that early intervention is best. The sooner weight is lost, the better. Major medical associations, including the American Heart Association, have released guidelines are urging physicians to address excess weight with their patients. They should refer them for treatment – including consultation with a bariatric surgeon for obese patients.

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