When contemplating a surgical solution to obesity, it’s important to understand what options are available to you. Each surgery is different and may have advantages and disadvantages for you. Education is vital to your understanding of the procedures.
Intragastric (Stomach) Balloon Weight Loss Procedure
Although intragastric (stomach) balloon devices are not yet approved in the United States, we are anticipating FDA approval. The intragastric balloon appeals to people who are not heavy enough to qualify for gastric surgery but want to lose a significant amount of weight. The intragastric balloon is also used in extremely obese people who need to lose enough weight before a surgical procedure. Read more about intragastric (stomach) balloon weight loss.
Malabsorptive Surgery for Surgical Weight Loss
The principle is to shorten the length of the intestine, and therefore the absorptive capacity. By doing this, fewer calories are taken up by the body, and therefore weight is lost. These surgeries are not currently performed in isolation today.
Malabsorptive Surgical Weight Loss Procedures:
Restrictive Surgery for Surgical Weight Loss
Here, the principle is to reduce the volume of the stomach, resulting in feeling full after only a small amount of food. Reducing the amount of food taken in leads to weight loss.
Restrictive Surgical Weight Loss Procedures:
A combination of the two approaches can result in better weight loss than either might achieve on it’s own. The classic surgery performed is the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass procedure, which is the “gold standard” by which other weight loss surgeries are measured. Here, a small stomach pouch (restrictive) is attached to the mid part of the small bowel (malabsorptive)
Weight loss surgery can either be performed open or laparoscopically. Open surgery is where the surgeon makes usually a single small incision through which s/he performs the surgery. With laparoscopic surgery, very small incisions are made and instruments are maneuvered with the help of a video camera in the abdomen. These latter surgeries are more popular today because they typically reduce hospital stays to less than 3 days, are associated with quicker return to normal activity, and are associated with less pain, and subsequently, less potential problems with breathing and lung function.
Obesity is known to increase the risk for other conditions and diseases, such as diabetes, sleep apnea, degenerative joint disease, high cholesterol and high blood pressure (hypertension). All of these conditions can be improved with weight loss, and some can even be resolved completely. Losing even small amounts of excess weight can improve overall health dramatically.
Research has shown that losing 10% of excess weight through diet and exercise can sometimes be more effective than medications for conditions related to obesity. For bariatric patients, most are able to reach 50-70% excess weight loss in the first few years after surgery. The majority of patients with high cholesterol see significant improvement two to three months after surgery. Most patients who suffer from Type II diabetes have a complete resolution, and many others gain much more control of the disease.
If you would like to schedule an appointment with one of our physicians at the Texas Center for Obesity Surgery in Plano, please complete an online appointment request or call our office at 214-501-1333.