The emotional suffering associated with obesity may be one of the most distressing aspects of it. Obese individuals are often ridiculed and misjudged by others.
The reasons for obesity are multiple and complex. In fact, the underlying causes of obesity are not completely understood since there are many factors that contribute to the development of obesity.
The Surgical Obesity Program at Plantation General Hospital provides comprehensive bariatric services, and has helped many men and women obtain their weight loss goals.
To schedule a consultation with a Plantation General Bariatric Surgeon call 1.866.843.8248.
What is Obesity?
The term "obesity" refers to an excess amount of body fat. Over the years, the prevalence of obesity among adults in the United States has more than doubled.
Importantly, obese people are more prone to numerous health problems and diseases. Health problems and diseases that have been linked to obesity include but are not limited to:
- High Blood Pressure
- Cardiac dysfunction and heart disease
- Respiratory and pulmonary dysfunction, including sleep apnea
- Gall Bladder Disease
- Liver Disease
- Reproductive dysfunction, including menstrual irregularities and infertility
How Does Bariatric Surgery Work?
Bariatric Surgery promotes weight loss by restricting food intake or altering the digestive process. As with other treatments for obesity, the best results are achieved when combined with healthy diet and regular physical activity.
Types of Bariatric Surgery
Gastric banding is considered minimally invasive and the only adjustable and reversible obesity surgery available. During this procedure, surgeons place an inflatable silicone band around the upper stomach to create a new, tiny pouch that limits the amount of food that can be consumed and slows its progression into the stomach and intestines. The patient feels full sooner and satisfied with smaller amounts of food, ultimately losing up to 40 to 60 percent of his or her excess weight over three years.
The band itself is adjustable by adding or removing fluid from the band’s interior through a small port that is placed beneath the patient’s skin. Adjustments can be made as necessary in the surgeon’s office, where the surgeon can adjust the band via the port.
Gastric Bypass (Roux-en Gastric bypass)
If a patient requires even greater weight loss than banding techniques produce, a gastric bypass operation is considered. Gastric bypass restricts both food intake and the amount of calories and nutrients the body absorbs. Patients who have bypass operations generally lose 70 percent of their excess weight within one-and-a-half years.
In Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RGB), the most common gastric bypass procedure, a small (1.01 oz) stomach pouch is created with staples and is seperated from the rest of the stomach. Then, a section of the small intestine is attached to the new pouch to allow food to bypass the first portion of the small intestine to reduce calorie and nutrient absorption.
The limited quantity of food, combined with reduced absorption of calories, results in faster and perhaps more pronounced weight loss than is normally achieved by the gastric banding procedure.
This procedure usually requires a two-to three-day hospital stay, and normal activities can be resumed in one to two weeks.
Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy
The vertical sleeve gastrectomy is a restrictive form of weight-loss surgery in which approximately 80 percent of the stomach is removed, leaving a cylindrical or sleeve-shaped stomach. With this surgery, the outlet valve and the nerves to the stomach remain intact and, while the stomach is drastically reduced in size, its function is preserved. The vertical sleeve gastrectomy is not reversible.
The gastric sleeve results in fewer restrictions on the foods that patients can consume after surgery, although the quantity of food eaten is still considerably reduced. It does not involve any bypass of the intestinal tract, and it can be performed laparoscopically.
For obese patients with a relatively low BMI, the vertical sleeve gastrectomy may be a good choice, especially where existing conditions such as anemia or Crohn’s disease prevent them from having other forms of bariatric surgery. In addition, patients may choose this form of surgery if they are concerned about the long-term effects of bypass surgery or object to having a foreign object implanted into their body.
Criteria for Bariatric Surgery
- You are at least 18 years old.
- You weigh 100 lbs. over your ideal body weight, or have a BMI greater than 35 with a major medical condition, or BMI greater than 40.
- Your weight loss attempts have had short-term success.
- You do not have another condition that causes obesity.
- You are prepared to make changes in your eating habits & lifestyle.
- You do not drink alcohol in excess.
Even if you do not meet the weight criteria, you still may be considered for surgery if you are suffering from serious health problems related to your weight. Always consult your physician to determine if surgery is appropriate for your situation.