Eligibility for Weight Loss Surgery

Evaluation Process

To be eligible for bariatric surgery, you must weigh less than 450 pounds because that's the maximum weight that hospital X-ray equipment can accommodate. A nutritionist is available to help you lose weight to meet this requirement, if necessary.

An orientation, medical and psychological evaluations and a consultation with a dietitian are also required.

The evaluation process consists of the following steps:

Step 1 — Mail the following four items to the Bariatric Surgery Center:

  • Completed new patient medical history questionnaire.
  • Formal letter from your primary care doctor, including a three-to-five-year summary of diet and weight history; a list of "comorbid" conditions or other conditions you have in addition to obesity; and why you are being recommended for bariatric surgery.
  • Current authorization for an initial surgical consultation.
  • Photocopy of the front and back of your insurance card.

Step 2 — After we review your information packet, we will schedule an appointment with a surgeon and an orientation to meet our team.

Step 3 — During your visit with a surgeon, we'll provide a list of tests and consultations. Please work with your primary care doctor to complete these tests and provide written reports and test results.

Step 4 — When you complete the tests and evaluations, please mail the reports and results to the Bariatric Surgery Center.

Step 5 — After we review the test rsults, we'll schedule a second consultation with a surgeon. If there are "contraindications" or risks, we will call you to discuss.

Step 6 — During your visit with a surgeon, a plan for your operation will be developed. We will answer any questions you have about the procedure to ensure you feel comfortable about the operation. Typically within a week of this visit, we will schedule a date for your operation.

Step 7 — After your operation is scheduled, an appointment at the Prepare Clinic, the anesthesia and surgical evaluation program, will be scheduled. Anesthesiologists will develop a plan for the day of your operation.


Reviewed by health care specialists at UCSF Medical Center.

This information is for educational purposes only and is not intended to replace the advice of your doctor or health care provider. We encourage you to discuss with your doctor any questions or concerns you may have.

Related Information

UCSF Clinics & Centers

Bariatric Surgery Center
400 Parnassus Ave., Sixth Floor, Reception Desk 6S
San Francisco, CA 94143-0338
Phone (existing patients):
(415) 353-2161
Phone (new patients):
(415) 353-2804
Fax: (415) 353-2505

Obesity and Weight Management
1701 Divisadero St., Suite 500
San Francisco, CA 94143-0320
Phone: (415) 353-2105
Fax: (415) 353-7901

How to Reach Us

UCSF Bariatric Surgery Center
400 Parnassus Ave., Sixth Floor, Room A-655
San Francisco, CA 94143-0338
Phone: (415) 353-2804
Fax: (415) 353-2505 Email bariatric@ucsfmedctr.org

Key Treatments