Bariatric Surgery Procedures
The goal of weight loss surgery is to live a better, healthier and longer life. Most patients enjoy an improvement in health and obesity-related conditions (such as mobility, self-image and self-esteem).
You should make the decision to have weight loss surgery only after careful consideration and consultation with an experienced bariatric surgeon or a knowledgeable family physician. A qualified bariatric surgeon should answer your questions clearly and explain the details of the procedure, the extent of the recovery period and the reality of the follow-up care that will be required. You should also be made aware of the pros and cons of each procedure – gastric bypass surgery and gastric banding vary greatly in nature and scope. The surgeon may, as part of routine evaluation for weight loss surgery, require that you consult with a dietician/nutritionist and a psychiatrist/therapist. This is to help establish a clear understanding of the post-operative changes in behavior that are essential for long-term success.
Ultimately, the decision to have the surgical weight loss procedure is entirely up to you. After having heard all the information, you must decide if the benefits outweigh the side effects and potential physical and emotional complications. This surgery is only a tool. Your ultimate success depends on your adherence to the recommended dietary, exercise and lifestyle changes.
Weight Loss Surgery Options
There are two basic ways that bariatric surgery works to help patients lose weight and improve or resolve obesity-related health conditions:
- Malabsorptive procedures that alter digestion, causing the food to be incompletely digested and absorbed so that it is eliminated in the stool.
- Restrictive procedures that limit food intake.
Both methods work to help patients lose excess weight, lower their BMI, and transform their health by resolving or improving co-morbidities such as diabetes, high blood pressure and asthma. Weight loss surgery has many benefits that can lead to a healthier, higher quality of life. But as with any surgery, it also has certain risks. Read on to learn more about the different types of weight loss surgery:
Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass Surgery
According the American Society for Metabolic & Bariatric Surgery and the National Institutes of Health, Roux-en-Y (pronounced Roo-en-why) gastric bypass surgery is the most popular weight loss surgery in the United States. Gastric Bypass, in most cases, offers average excess weight loss after surgery that is greater than purely restrictive procedures and has excellent results in reducing or eliminating co-morbidities.
For information on Gastric Bypass please click the following link: Gastric Bypass
Gastric Banding (Lap Band® and Realize Band®)
Gastric banding is a restrictive bariatric procedure in which a silicone band is placed around the upper part of the stomach. This band divides the stomach into two portions: one small and one larger. Since the stomach is divided into smaller parts, most patients feel full faster and therefore tend to lose weight. The band is connected to a small tube and reservoir positioned under the skin that allows the surgeon to adjust the diameter of the band by making it tighter or looser, depending on the patient’s individual degree of restriction. If the rate of weight loss is not acceptable, the band can be adjusted. At ASA we offer both the LAP-BAND® and Realize® Band procedures.
While the adjustable Gastric Band is usually a more conservative approach from a weight loss standpoint, it is also adjustable and reversible, making it a very versatile solution.
For more information please click the following link: Gastric Banding
Gastric Sleeve (Sleeve Gastrectomy)
During this surgery, the surgeon creates a small, sleeve-shaped stomach pouch by cutting the stomach along the greater curvature. It is larger than the stomach pouch created during gastric bypass: about the size of a banana. The sleeve gastrectomy was historically considered a treatment option for bariatric surgery patients with a BMI of 60 or higher and was often performed as the first part in a two-procedure treatment, the second part being duodenal switch.
More recently it has been performed successfully as a standalone surgery and is now considered a major bariatric procedure
For more information please click the following link: Gastric Sleeve (Sleeve Gastrectomy)