Should Overweight Teen Get Gastric Bypass to Deal With Chronic Weight Problem?

PHOTO: WWYD - Should Overweight Teen Get Gastric Bypass to Deal With Chronic Weight Problem?
Hidden Cameras Roll in Diner as Teenage Girl Begs Mom for Gastric Bypass Surgery

It's a busy Sunday afternoon at the Edison Diner in New Jersey and some of the customers can't help but overhear what should be a private conversation between a mother and her teen daughter: "Mom, I've done a lot of research and I think gastric bypass is my last hope."

The emotional tone of this exchange escalates, as the daughter, who's overweight but not morbidly obese, says she's tired of trying to lose weight and coping with low self-esteem, social pressures and potential health problems.

Her mom tells her that she has not tried hard enough and that she cheats on her diet, and finally loses her patience: "It is not your last hope. No daughter of mine is getting her stomach stapled. Absolutely not."

What fellow diners don't know is that the teen and mom having this heated discussion are actors and they're playing out a scenario for "What Would You Do?"

Obesity is a health problem for 72 million people in the United States., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. More than 200,000 Americans turned to gastric bypass surgery, a procedure that surgically shrinks the stomach, making it hard to eat large portions and thus helping a patient reduce food intake and calories, in 2009, according to the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.

To provide insight for the scenario, "What Would You Do?" brought in Dr. Mehmet Oz, a heart surgeon and Emmy award-winning TV host.

"I want to learn from people intervening what they're thinking," Oz says, "because I think it reflects what's happening around the country when people hear the stories about the usefulness of gastric bypass or the horrors, fears you may have about it. Both are defensible. It's not a panacea."

Watch the scenario unfold on "What Would You Do?" Friday at 9 p.m. ET.

As we watch our hidden cameras with Dr. Oz, we see that people seem to be listening to the mother and daughter's conversation, but no one is reacting. So we decide to involve a woman sitting next to the mom: "Excuse me ma'am. Can you believe my daughter wants a gastric bypass?"

"You want to know how I feel?" the woman replies. "I think you should go with her to the doctor and let her see if it is the right thing for her or not. Because you are thin and you look at life differently. I am heavy and I'm on Weight Watchers, so I feel her pain."

The actors -- mother and daughter -- continue arguing to the point that the daughter leaves the table in tears. Then a woman who had been quietly listening at a nearby table gets up and follows the daughter to offer emotional support and advice on alternatives to a gastric bypass. She talks to the teen about a nutritional supplement she has used to lose weight -- something that has been a personal struggle for her, as well.

At this point, ABC News' John Quinones and Dr. Oz come out and reveal that it is all part of a "WWYD" scenario.

"You kind of discouraged her from getting any surgery," Quinones says to the woman.

"There are risks with having gastric bypass surgery and I was telling her that I could see exactly where her mother was coming from with the concerns," the woman says. "I kind of related to her in a sense, when she was saying how hard it was for her to lose weight. I'm still working on it, but I'm making progress, and just being dedicated to myself, knowing what I want to do."

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