At 212kg and with a BMI of 70, Vasoo had lost his job, developed chronic asthma and couldn’t even play with his young children without getting breathless. He thought he would be this way forever until Dr Tan Chun Hai, a bariatric and metabolic surgeon at Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, helped him embark on his weight loss journey.
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Obesity is a medical condition with serious consequences to your health – increasing your risk of getting Type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure (hypertension), and shortening your life span.
While dietary management and physical therapy are enough to help some people lose weight, bariatric surgery has proven to be an effective treatment for patients who are morbidly or severely obese.
In recent years, with “keyhole” or minimally invasive surgery, bariatric surgery has become much less invasive than the conventional surgery.
In Singapore, individuals with a BMI greater than 32.5 are advised to consider surgery when all other treatment options have been unsuccessful.
Surgeries like the sleeve gastrectomy that Vasoo went through are widely available at public hospitals like Khoo Teck Puat Hospital, where the procedures are subsidised for some patients and costs can be paid with Medisave and Medishield.