Weight Loss Surgery Options
Obesity is a national epidemic that threatens the health of millions of Americans and Las Vegas residents are no exception. Obesity is particularly dangerous as it increases your risk of many life-threatening conditions, like diabetes and heart disease. The best way to lose weight is with diet and exercise. However, many people find that they have a very hard time taking pounds off in the usual way. If diet and exercise isn’t enough, bariatric surgery can sometimes be the key to losing weight and improving general health. The two types of bariatric surgery are banding and bypass surgery.
Laparoscopic gastric banding is a popular weight control surgery. In this procedure, a band is placed over part of the stomach to reduce its size. People feel full when their stomachs are full and this can be achieved with far fewer calories if the stomach itself is smaller. The band used can be fixed or adjustable. Fixed bands cannot change in size, but adjustable ones can be tightened or loosened as needed by filling the band with saline.
Vertical banded gastroplasty involves creating a sleeve over the stomach pouch, which turns the stomach into a tube shape. This type of surgery also often involves creating a smaller stomach pouch above the sleeve. As with a horizontal band, a vertical band reduces the size of the stomach and helps people take in fewer calories.
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A bypass surgery is a different form of bariatric surgery. Both types of surgeries involve restricting the size of the stomach pouch to reduce the amount of food needed to generate feelings of fullness. A bypass also involves reconnecting the stomach further down the small intestine. This reduces the amount of absorption of nutrients, which also leads to weight loss. As you can imagine, though, reduced absorption has a high potential to create malnourishment, as the body is not getting all the nutrients from the food you eat.
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Though it can help immensely, bariatric surgery isn’t a cure-all. It’s vital to maintain a healthy diet and exercise routine after surgery to actually reduce your weight and continue to keep the weight off. Indeed, your diet for the first several months after surgery will be very restricted, to allow your stomach time to heal and to test your tolerance for certain foods. Because you’ll be eating much less and may have poorer absorption, you’ll also need to take vitamin and mineral supplements for the rest of your life. How healthy you are and how well you follow your doctor’s instructions can affect the side effects you experience. Talk to your doctor first to see how good your outcomes are likely to be before undergoing any bariatric surgery.