Obesity can lead to a number of potentially harmful health problems if action is not taken to lose weight, including diabetes, heart disease, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. Many people are able to lose weight through dieting and exercise, in the process reducing their chances of developing health issues. For others, however, it is simply not possible to tackle obesity using these methods, and bariatric surgery becomes an option.
Bariatric surgery is the term for a group of procedures which aim to aid weight loss. Suitable candidates for bariatric surgery are those with a body mass index (BMI) of over 40, or between 35-40 with additional health conditions such as diabetes, and those who have unsuccessfully attempted traditional methods of weight loss. Although the procedure methods and techniques vary, most bariatric surgery procedures work by restricting the capacity of the stomach either temporarily or permanently. This results in a lower intake of calories and leads to faster weight loss. It also helps patients avoid binge eating and reduce portion sizes. Although bariatric surgery has a high success rate, it is only effective if when combined with regular exercise and a balanced diet. With so many different bariatric surgery procedures available, it is hard to know which one may be right for you. Each procedure is suited to different personal circumstances and weight loss goals. Consulting a bariatric surgery specialist is the best way to find out which method is most appropriate.
TYPES OF BARIATRIC SURGERY GASTRIC BYPASS SURGERY
The most popular bariatric surgery procedure is gastric bypass surgery, whereby the stomach is split into two different pouches. One of the sections is tied off from the rest of the stomach and food can only travel to the smallest pouch, which reduces stomach capacity. Food will also bypass the small intestine, which can lead to problems with the absorption of nutrients - many gastric bypass surgery patients will need to take dietary supplements for the rest of their lives to compensate for this. The surgery lasts around 4 hours, with a recovery period of about 2 weeks.
GASTRIC SLEEVE SURGERY
Otherwise known as a sleeve gastrectomy, gastric sleeve surgery also divides the stomach into pouches and is only performed on patients with a BMI of over 40. With this form of bariatric surgery, however, the sectioned-off portion of the stomach is permanently removed. The stomach's capacity will be reduced by approximately 20%. Sleeve gastrectomy procedures tend to bring the most dramatic results of all bariatric surgery procedures, with an expected weight loss of about three-quarters of excess weight. Gastric sleeve surgery takes up to 4 hours
A gastric balloon is an option for anyone who does not want to commit to a permanent gastric surgery procedure. Gastric balloons are temporary and can be removed, and are therefore seen as a first step towards more gastric surgery procedures. The procedure is performed with a sedative or local aesthetic, with the deflated balloon passed through the mouth and oesophagus into the stomach. A saline solution is then inserted, which give the sensation of the stomach being full much quicker than usual. This usually leads to an excess weight loss of about 25%.
Which bariatric surgery procedures can I find around the world? Sleeve gastrectomy in the UAE Gastric Bypass in the UAE Gastric Balloon in the UAE For more information, read our Bariatric Surgery Cost Guide .,
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