Which Weight Loss Surgery Is Right For Me?

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Which Weight Loss Surgery Is Right For Me?
Dr. James Parrish

Many people have tried to lose weight for years and have been unsuccessful.  If this describes you, it may be time to consider weight loss surgery as a means to improve your health.  Currently, there are three minimally invasive (laparoscopic) weight loss procedures available.  These are commonly known as the “band”, the “sleeve”, and the “bypass.”  We perform all three here in Cenla.  Each is safe and effective, and has its own advantages.

Which Weight Loss Surgery Is Right For Me?The “band” or laparoscopic adjustable gastric banding is also known by its brand names: Lap Band and Realize band.  A soft band is placed around the top of the stomach creating a small pouch.  The band creates a restriction so the pouch fills with food quickly and empties slowly, thus causing your stomach to tell your brain that you are full.  A small port is placed beneath the skin of the abdomen and this port can be accessed to change the amount of fluid in the band and the amount of restriction.  This is the least invasive weight loss procedure and the most easily reversible.  While the weight loss results are excellent, they are not quite as good as the sleeve and the bypass.

Which Weight Loss Surgery Is Right For Me?The “sleeve”, or laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, is the newest of the weight loss procedures.  Unlike the band, there is no implantable device.  Instead, a portion of the stomach is removed, turning the stomach into a long thin tube like the sleeve of a shirt.  This causes you to feel full with less food, but more importantly, it affects the levels of a hormone named Ghrelin. Through lower levels of this hormone, your desire to eat is greatly reduced.  Weight loss results are better than the band and roughly equivalent to the bypass.

Which Weight Loss Surgery Is Right For Me?The “bypass“, or laparoscopic roux-en-y gastric bypass, is the gold standard of weight loss procedures.  This surgery has been performed for decades with good results.  In this procedure, the stomach is stapled to make a small pouch and the intestines are redirected so that they do not absorb calories as efficiently.  So, not only does this procedure restrict the amount of food that can be eaten, it also limits the amount of calories that can be absorbed from the food.  This is the most invasive of the three procedures, and while many patients are now choosing the band or the sleeve, it is still considered a mainstay of the surgical treatment of obesity, especially for patients with very severe reflux (GERD).

Education is the key to choosing a weight loss procedure and your choice should be based on a conversation between you and your surgeon.  Call Mid-Louisiana Surgical Specialists today at (318) 442-6767 for an appointment or to sign up for free educational seminar.