Many people come in to see our doctors at Sun Coast Bariatrics with one question in mind. “Do I qualify for weight loss surgery?” There are many factors that play a role in this decision. The first step is to ensure you are healthy enough for bariatric surgery. That is why you'll receive a full examination.

The second factor is to determine your BMI, or body mass index. This is a calculation of your body's composition with the goal of understanding what percentage of your body mass is made up of fat. We can find that out using this BMI calculator.

BMI Calculator

To use it, simply input the information requested. Then, click the button to calculate your BMI. This information helps us to determine what your body fat percentage is. If your BMI is high, that indicates you are at a higher risk for developing life threatening complications related to your body size. This may include high blood pressure, heart disease, and even cancer. A high BMI means you are at a greater need for having bariatric weight loss surgery.

There are some limitations to this basic calculator. It does not give us an accurate body fat percentage for those people who are very fit and have significant muscle mass. Athletes, for example, cannot use this as a judgment of their health. However, for most people, it does provide accurate information.

When asking, "Do I qualify for weight loss surgery," this is one of the first steps we will take to better understand your health overall. It provides a clear indication of what your health risks are and the importance of taking drastic measures like weight loss surgery to improve them.

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute provides guidelines on what are high risk BMI numbers:


  • BMI below 18.5 is considered underweight
  • BMI between 18.5 and 24.9 is considered healthy
  • BMI between 25.0 and 29.9 is considered overweight
  • BMI between 30.0 and 34.9 is considered obese
  • BMI between 35.0 and 39.9 is considered severely obese
  • BMI of 40+ is considered morbidly obese

Note: BMI just gives us a general range of your height/weight ratio and how it may affect your health. It cannot distinguish between excess fat and muscle. The BMI of an extremely muscular person may be classified as obese when, clearly, he or she is not.

If your BMI is above 30, please contact us to discuss weight loss surgery options. Ultimately, other factors play a role in answering your question “Do I qualify for weight loss surgery?”, but this is a very good indication that you should talk to the doctors at Sun Coast Bariatrics about our weight loss program. Call us at 727.289.7137 for a consultation.