If you have a BMI over 30, you may qualify for a weight loss surgery procedure.

Generally, bariatric surgery candidate is one who meets the National Institute of Health’s (NIH) recommended criteria. To have bariatric surgery covered by your medical insurance, most companies require that patient meet the NIH criteria. Although the NIH and FDA have set guidelines for the bariatric candidate, patients can still pursue a procedure if they fall outside the guidelines. Please refer to our insurance and selfpay sections (links) for further details.


NIH criteria:

  1. Have a BMI greater than or equal to 35 with one or more significant obesity-related conditions including but not limited to:
    • High blood pressure
    • Diabetes
    • Arthritis
    • Sleep apnea
    • Obesity hypoventilation syndrome
    • High cholesterol
  2. Have a BMI greater than 40 regardless of the presence of other medical conditions
  3. Longstanding morbid obesity
  4. Have failed multiple attempts with supervised dietary, behavioral, and medical therapy
  5. Have realistic expectations and are motivated
  6. Have a lifelong commitment to lifestyle changes and long-term follow-up care
  7. Must be evaluated by a multidisciplinary team of medical, surgical, psychological and nutritional experts

FDA criteria:

In December 2010, a panel of FDA advisers recommended expanding the use of gastric banding to include patients with BMI’s as low as 30 with an obesity-related condition.