Weight loss surgery, sometimes also called bariatric surgery, is a group of procedures that either limit the amount of food the stomach can hold, the number of nutrients the patient’s body can absorb, or both. Consequently, the patient loses weight.
The various procedures are considered major surgery, so the patient has to meet certain criteria. First off, the patient must have tried conventional and non-surgical methods for losing weight like diet and exercise. They also need to have a BMI of at least 40, which means they weigh about 100 pounds more than their ideal weight. A patient may also qualify for weight loss surgery if they have a BMI of 35 and a serious health problem linked to obesity like diabetes or heart disease.
Types of weight loss surgery
New Life Surgical Associates offers the following weight loss procedures:
• Gastric bypass
• Adjustable gastric banding
• Duodenal switch surgery
• Lap band surgery
• Sleeve gastrectomy surgery
The gastric bypass is a common procedure that restricts both the amount of food the patient can eat and the number of nutrients their GI tract can absorb. Under normal conditions, the stomach can hold up to 40 ounces of food, and most of the absorption takes place in the first parts of the lower intestine. During the procedure, the doctor will leave a “gastric pouch” that can hold about two ounces of food. Any food the patient eats will thus bypass the upper part of the jejunum.
Adjustable gastric banding
Adjustable gastric banding is the least invasive type of weight loss surgery, for it does not involve removing any parts of the digestive tract. Instead, the surgeon will place a band around the topmost part of the stomach. A tube will connect the band to a port just beneath the patient’s skin. The surgeon can use the port to add or withdraw liquid to make the band tighter or looser. Lap band surgery is a similar procedure.
Duodenal switch surgery
In duodenal switch surgery, the doctor removes the lower two-thirds of the stomach. That top third is then attached to the bottom part of the small intestine. Since the upper part carries enzymes needed to metabolize fats and proteins, the patient does need it. The surgeon thus attaches it to the bottom part of the small intestine.
The sleeve gastrectomy can be done on its own or as the first part of a two-step procedure. The surgeon removes the left part of the patient’s stomach, which is the part of the stomach that produces hormones that stimulate the appetite. Removing it thus reduces the patient’s appetite and the amount of food they can comfortably eat.
The professionals at New Life Surgical Associates are ready to help you finish your weight loss journey. Contact us today at our Jacksonville location to see if weight loss surgery is right for you, or schedule your initial consultation.