Which surgery is right for you?
The type of surgery you choose is not only a very personal decision that should be discussed between you and your family, but also one that requires the professional expertise and knowledge of your surgeon. Surgery to promote weight loss is a serious undertaking, and patients who have had surgery require close monitoring as well as life-long use of special foods and medications.
Weight loss surgery has shown to be an effective tool in weight loss, but it's only a tool. No method, including surgery, guarantees to produce and maintain weigh loss. Success is possible only with your fullest cooperation and commitment to behavioral change and medical follow-up.
Minimally Invasive Laparoscopic Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass Surgery
During a minimally invasive laparoscopic Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery, our surgeons will make several small incisions instead of one large incision (as in open gastric bypass surgery). Through the small incisions, they will insert their instruments, as well as a tube with a tiny camera (called a laparoscope) attached to the end which projects images onto a screen in the operating room. By carefully moving the camera around and watching the screen, our surgeons can see the patient's inner organs and the area in they are operating. Laparoscopic gastric bypass surgery requires extreme technical precision and accuracy, but our surgeons are highly respected for their experience in minimally invasive and laparoscopic surgery techniques. Performing bariatric procedures laparoscopically greatly decreases the risk of complications and allows the patient to recover more quickly and comfortably.
Benefits of Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass Surgery
- Decreased appetite: Post-bariatric surgery patients report feeling full sooner, since the smaller stomach pouch doesn't hold as much food as before the surgery. Some patients lose their fixation on food.
- Rapid weight loss: A severe cut in caloric intake, coupled with decreased cravings for fatty, sugary foods and limited nutrient absorption causes patients to lose excess weight quickly and maintain a lower weight.
Lap Band Removal
A lap band procedure creates a small pouch in the upper part of the stomach with an adjustable band. This procedure essentially creates a 'new stomach' and dramatically limits food intake. The band can be inflated or deflated at any time after the operation to allow the patient to meet their weight loss goals. Patients who undergo the lap band procedure typically lose 50-percent of their excess weight in three years.
Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy
Sleeve Gastrectomy is a laparoscopic restrictive procedure which removes a large part of the stomach. This procedure is being performed throughout the world and has been very successful in achieving weight loss and resolving/reducing comorbidities, such as diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and many others. There is no "bypass" performed as in the RYGB so there is no malabsorption caused. If the desired weight loss is not achieved by the sleeve gastrectomy a second procedure may be performed to convert this procedure to a RYGB (see next section).
Two-stage Gastric Bypass: Sleeve Gastrectomy & Large Pouch RYGB
In very large or high risk patients, the RYGB may have to be performed in two stages to prevent complications and even death. The two stage operations include either a sleeve gastrectomy or a large pouch gastric bypass followed by another surgery a few months later. These options are usually reserved for patients with very high BMIs or significant medical comorbidities that preclude a safe performance of the gastric bypass. They are both performed laparoscopically, result in a 40-50% excess weight-loss, and are advocated as a bridge to a more definitive operation which can subsequently be done on a ‘healthier’ patient. You doctor may discuss this option with you.