Why am I being sent for a psychological evaluation?
Preparing for bariatric surgery and adhering to the post-operative requirements means life-long changes in your eating habits and how you think about food. The better prepared you are for your surgery, the better your chances are for losing the weight you need to lose and keeping it off.
A psychological evaluation determines if you need a better understanding of the surgical procedure, pre-and post-operative requirements, and/or if you have any psychological issues that should be treated before and/or after you receive surgery.
Can the psychologist determine that I am not suitable for bariatric surgery?
No. The goal of the psychological evaluation is to make recommendations for any assistance you may need to increase the likelihood of your success. It is ultimately you and your surgeon’s decision as to whether you are a suitable candidate for bariatric surgery.
Do I need email and/or a computer to complete the questionnaires?
For evaluations conducted via video session, all questionnaires will be emailed to you, and you will need to return them via your computer or smartphone.
For evaluations conduced in person, you will need to provide your insurance information prior to the interview. However, all other forms and questionnaires can be completed in the office.
What does the psychological evaluation entail?
You will be asked to complete a brief intake questionnaire that provides basic demographic and historical information; a consent form; a form with your insurance information; and a release of information that allows your surgeon to receive a copy of the completed psychological report. After the forms are received, you will receive email links to two psychological questionnaires that you can complete at your convenience prior to the interview. These questionnaires assess your eating habits and overall psychological functioning.
The interview can be conducted in-person or via video session. During the interview, the psychologist will ask you questions to determine your understanding of the surgical procedure your surgeon has recommended, and the risks involved. You will also be asked questions about your current eating habits and history of dieting and weight loss. Finally, any mental health symptoms will be discussed.
After the interview, your psychologist will prepare a report with a summary of the interview and computerized questions, along with any potential recommendations. Typical recommendations include brief psychotherapy to address depression and/or anxiety, psychotropic medications, bariatric surgery support groups, and/or a more detailed discussion of the bariatric surgery and the associated risks. Both you and your surgeon will receive a copy of the completed report via email. The psychologist will be available should you or your surgeon have any questions about the report.
What to Expect from a Pre-Bariatric Evaluation