As the obesity epidemic continues in the U.S., bariatric surgery is becoming a more common – and often lifesaving – treatment option. Based on estimates of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (ASMBS), a total of 216,000 bariatric surgical procedures were performed in 2016, as compared to 158,000 in 2011.
Research has shown that bariatric surgery, when combined with a comprehensive treatment plan, can improve or resolve a number of obesity-related health conditions, including high blood pressure, heart disease, and Type II diabetes. Our OC & Los Angeles bariatric surgeons at West Medical perform a full range of weight loss procedures with a high level of skill and dedication to surgical excellence.
Bariatric Surgery Options
Sustained weight loss can produce many health benefits and improved quality of life for obese people. Wondering what types of bariatric surgery can help you? Our bariatric surgeons at West Medical perform a range of surgical weight loss procedures to help our patients lose the weight – and keep it off.
LAP-BAND surgery, also called gastric banding, involves the laparoscopic placement of an adjustable band around the upper portion of the stomach in a minimally-invasive procedure. This silicone band can be tightened or loosened by adding or removing saline solution through a port placed in the skin of the abdomen. The LAP-BAND restricts the size of the stomach and the amount of food it can hold, and slows the passage of food to the intestine.
The band creates a small pouch in the upper portion of the stomach. When this small pouch fills with food, signals are sent to the brain that allow for a feeling of fullness and satiety. Patients stay fuller for longer, consume fewer calories, and begin to shed the excess pounds, typically at a rate of one to three pounds per week during the first year after surgery.
Advantages of LAP-BAND procedure include:
- Minimally-invasive, laparoscopic procedure
- No stomach resection, cross-connections, or rerouting of the intestinal tract
- No protein-caloric malabsorption or vitamin and nutritional deficiencies
Gastric Sleeve Surgery
This is one of the most popular and successful bariatric surgery options. In the gastric sleeve procedure, our bariatric surgeon removes a portion of the stomach and joins the remaining portions together to create a new, much smaller stomach, in the shape of a “sleeve.”
As the new stomach is approximately one-tenth the size of the original stomach, the patient is not able to eat as much, which results in extensive weight loss. The gastric sleeve procedure also removes a part of the stomach that produces hunger-causing hormones which increase appetite.
Also known as “sleeve gastrectomy,” this procedure involves portioning off a large section of the stomach with staples (effectively removing it from the digestive system) through small incisions in the abdominal area. This surgery can be performed laparoscopically and is less complicated than other bariatric procedures.
Gastric sleeve surgery has many advantages, including:
- Laparoscopic procedure
- Does not require implantation, as gastric banding does
- Decreases both the size of the stomach and the production of hunger hormones
- No cross-connections or rerouting of the intestinal tract
- No malabsorption or vitamin and mineral deficiency
- Produces more weight loss and requires less long-term maintenance than adjustable gastric banding
Gastric Bypass Surgery
This procedure often leads to the greatest amount of weight loss of any bariatric surgery. This is because gastric bypass surgery makes changes to the digestive system to reduce the absorption of calories and nutrients, in addition to creating a smaller stomach pouch so the patient feels full faster.
There are two parts to the gastric bypass procedure. First, the surgeon creates a small stomach pouch (approximately one ounce in volume) by dividing off the top portion from the remainder of the stomach. Next, the surgeon divides the first portion of the small intestine, brings the bottom end up, connecting with the newly created stomach pouch, and connects the top end to the small intestine further down so stomach acids and digestive enzymes from the bypassed portion of the stomach will eventually mix with the patient’s food.
The new, smaller stomach pouch leads to significantly smaller meals and less calories consumed. The rerouted portion of the smaller intestine leads to less absorption of calories and nutrients. Rerouting of the intestinal tract and food stream also produces hormonal changes that suppress hunger, promote satiety, and reverse a primary mechanism by which obesity can lead to Type II diabetes.
Our OC and Los Angeles gastric bypass is one of the top choices in bariatric surgery options. Advantages of this surgical technique include:
- More weight loss than gastric banding
- Produces weight loss in two ways – restricted stomach capacity and less absorption of calories and nutrients
- Weight loss sustained due to limited diet
- No implantation of a foreign body
- Less long-term maintenance than with gastric banding
The gastric balloon is a nonsurgical weight loss treatment. Deflated, soft, silicone gastric balloons are inserted in the stomach through the mouth and throat, either by swallowing or in a quick non-invasive, endoscopic procedure performed under light anesthesia. After placement in the stomach, gastric balloons are inflated with saline solution or gas through a thin, attached tube, after which the tube is removed from the mouth by the surgeon.
Gastric balloons are left in the stomach for up to six months, jumpstarting weight loss and helping patients establish healthier eating habits. Diet and exercise coaching and support are provided as part of gastric balloon programs. After six months, the balloons are removed from the stomach in an outpatient, endoscopic procedure performed in a matter of minutes under light anesthesia.
We offer several types of gastric balloons to our patients at West Medical, including:
- Orbera: A soft, silicone, saline-filled balloon designed to fit comfortably in the stomach
- Obalon: A gastric balloon system involving three small balloons placed one at a time over a three-month period with no anesthesia required. The patient simply swallows the balloon capsule, after which it is filled with gas through the thin tube attached.
- Reshape: This system involves dual balloons inserted in a single procedure, with higher capacity to take up space in the stomach and less risk of balloon migration.
If you are struggling with obesity, schedule a consultation at West Medical. We can recommend the best weight loss surgery or treatment option for you.
Sources:Learn more about Gastric Balloon options »
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