What Is the Best Weight Loss Surgery for You?

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Posted: August 17th, 2019

Considering bariatric surgery? There are several different weight loss procedures that may work best for you. 

What is the best form of weight loss surgery? The truth is that the answer will depend on your circumstances. There are plenty of different medical procedures that can induce weight loss, both with and without surgery, each with their own benefits and drawbacks. All of them have the potential to reduce weight and help patients improve both their health and self-esteem, but many are better fits for some people than for others.

Your doctor will recommend the procedure that’s most likely to deliver the results you need based on your medical background. However, it’s still a good idea to go into a consultation knowing what each type of weight loss surgery entails and what the advantages are. To that end, we’re breaking down some of the most popular forms of weight loss surgery, as well as a few non-surgical procedures your doctor might recommend.

Gastric Bypass Surgery

The most commonly performed type of weight loss surgery is gastric bypass, also known as the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery. The procedure works by installing a small pouch on the stomach that limits food intake, bypassing part of the intestine to prevent too many calories from being absorbed during digestion. This affects the hormones that produce insulin, which is why gastric bypass is sometimes used to treat diabetes, often with more success than medication. 

Gastric bypass is both the oldest and most commonly recommended weight-loss surgery because it has a very high rate of success. Researchers have found that the procedure reduced health problems in patients by 96%, and eliminated an average of 75% of excess weight. However, if you are at a high risk of nutritional deficiencies, this surgery could heighten that risk, and you may want to consider an alternative option.

Gastric Sleeve Surgery

Unlike gastric bypass, gastric sleeve surgery involves the modification of the stomach rather than the intestines. A large section (85%) of the stomach is surgically removed and stapled off during the procedure, creating a long pouch. This both limits the patient’s stomach capacity and leads to a decrease in ghrelin, a hormone that stimulates the appetite. 

Gastric sleeve surgery is known to relieve hypertension, sleep apnea, and diabetes, and leads to an average weight loss of 60%. One drawback of the procedure is that weight loss tends to happen more slowly than with gastric bypass. 

Adjustable Gastric Banding

Adjustable gastric banding, more commonly known as lap band surgery, involves the placement of a device on the upper stomach that creates the sensation of fullness, causing patients to eat less. While this procedure has helped many patients lose weight, it’s also far more common for those who undergo the surgery to regain the weight later on than it is with gastric bypass and gastric sleeve surgery. In addition, the procedure is associated with issues like heartburn, food intolerance, and a phenomenon called “band slippage” that can cause pain and nausea. 

Robotics Surgery

Perhaps one of the most exciting technological developments in use by surgeons today, robotics surgery involves the deployment of very small robotic limbs to replicate the actions of human surgeons working at a console on a much smaller scale. This results in far greater precision and limits the risk of fatigue among surgeons, as well as quicker recovery, less pain and scarring, and a lower risk of complications for patients. 

Non-Surgical Options

Patients struggling with obesity also have access to non-surgical options, which include traditional diet and exercise regimens, certain medications, and procedures like the gastric balloon. A relatively recent innovation, the gastric balloon is a device that is placed in your stomach non-surgically and filled with a saline solution, limiting your appetite. The balloon is then removed after six months. These options don’t tend to have the same kind of dramatic impact as surgical procedures, but they’re great solutions for those who aren’t good candidates for surgery.

Choosing the Procedure Best for You

If obesity is making it difficult for you to maintain a healthy and fulfilling lifestyle, what’s most important is that you consult with a medical practitioner who understands your needs and can recommend the path to treatment that will improve your health most effectively. Provided that you’re willing to adopt or continue healthy lifestyle choices, including diet and exercise, you’re very likely to see transformative results from whichever procedure your doctor recommends.

Set up an appointment with the Long Island Laparoscopic Doctors today to find out if one of these weight loss procedures is right for you.