Childhood and Adolescent Obesity

An increasing number of children and adolescents are now at risk for overweight and obesity. Childhood and adolescent obesity often accompanies related conditions that typically affect adults who suffer from obesity, such as hypertension, sleep apnea and type 2 diabetes. Up to 80 percent of obese kids are estimated to continue to be affected by obesity into adulthood, according to recent data.

Bariatric surgery may be an effective solution for many children to improve their condition of obesity and related conditions. Dr. Wiljon Beltre provides bariatric procedures for both adults and children in Orlando, Tampa, Maitland, Central Florida, and surrounding locations.


Bariatric Surgery for Childhood Obesity

Although the first preference for addressing childhood and adolescent obesity will be lifestyle and behavioral modifications, these may not work in cases where the child is affected by severe obesity. This may necessitate an invasive procedure performed by a bariatric surgeon to treat obesity and related conditions. The surgery has shown to produce sustainable weight loss and health improvement in many children suffering from obesity as well as related conditions such as type 2 diabetes.

At present, the most common surgeries performed in kids affected by severe obesity include the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB), laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding (LAGB) and vertical sleeve gastrectomy. The goal of the procedure is to deliver maximum health benefit with minimal risk.



Type 2 Diabetes

Some children and adolescents who are affected by severe obesity may develop type 2 diabetes early. Diabetes can be chronic and progressive, and puts the child at a heightened risk of developing hypertension, high cholesterol, and liver disease. According to recent statistics, adolescents who receive bariatric surgery can achieve significant improvement or total remission of their type 2 diabetes.


Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA)

Up to 22 percent of children and adolescents who suffer from obesity will also have OSA. This condition is marked by abnormal pauses in breathing during sleep and shallow breathing. OSA can cause moodiness, fatigue, attention deficit, and other problems. Many young patients experience improvement or complete relief from OSA following bariatric procedures.


Fatty Liver Disease

Nearly 38 percent of children and adolescents suffering from obesity have a non-alcoholic fatty liver, and about nine percent have associated inflammation of the liver. Fibrosis or scarring may occur in the liver due to fatty deposition and inflammation. A bariatric surgeon may perform a weight loss procedure to successfully improve the condition of fatty liver in adolescents.


Cardiovascular Disease

Research indicates that childhood and adolescent obesity may contribute to an increase risk of heart disease and vascular diseases in adulthood. Studies are ongoing to determine the actual benefits of bariatric surgery in reducing the risk factors of cardiovascular diseases in kids.



Adolescents with a BMI of 35 kg/m2 or higher with major co-morbidities such as type 2 diabetes or fatty liver disease or severe sleep apnea, or with a BMI of 40 kg/m2 or higher with less severe co-morbidities may be appropriate candidates for bariatric surgery. Experienced bariatric surgeon Dr. Beltre receives patients from Orlando, Tampa, Maitland, Central Florida, and other communities in the area.

Important Note: If the weight is regained, diabetes and other conditions could return.

To find out more about the procedures & treatments performed by Orlando Bariatric Surgeon, Dr. Wiljon Beltre, at The Center for Metabolic and Obesity Surgery Call 321-499-6505 or Click Here to Schedule a Consultation.

Please note: If the weight is regained, conditions could return.

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