Weight loss surgery is a life saver for countless lives. This type of surgery is fundamental at its core and its primary objective is to restrict how much food can been taken into the stomach at any one time. The overall objective is to help the obese and extremely overweight individuals manage their diets moving forward in their mission to lose weight by preventing them from consuming excessive amounts of food.
Methods of Weight Loss Surgery
Lap band surgery works by incorporating a small adjustable silicone band around the top part of the stomach which ultimately leads to a smaller stomach capacity. This method is common among weight loss surgery candidates. On the other end of the spectrum, the more popular gastric sleeve involves the creation of a small stomach sleeve with the rest of the stomach being removed completely. The long-term complication rates are reduced with this type of procedure and aftercare is not as high maintenance. Another means of reducing the capacity of the stomach is implanting a permanent gastric balloon into the stomach which is then filled with a saline solution. The volume of the readily available stomach for incoming food is then subsequently reduced.
Which procedure is the most common?
The lap band surgery is one of the earliest known surgeries for weight loss. However, as with technology and everything else, medicine has made vast improvements over the years. Of the almost 200,000 patients in the last year, the gastric sleeve accounts for just over half (51.7%) of weight loss surgeries followed by the traditional gastric bypass procedure. The success rate and easier recovery for gastric sleeve surgery certainly explains its popularity. This is not to say that the gastric balloon or lap band surgery are not as effective because patients are unique on an individual basis and what works for one may not work for another.
Choosing the right procedure comes to down to preference and the patient’s individual needs. Picking the right surgery is a decision not to be taken lightly or without much consideration. Diet is more than half the battle and although surgery for weight loss may be looked at by some as a drastic measure, for those struggling with extreme obesity it is a last resort. Having a reduced stomach capacity forces these people to eat less which is the first step in losing weight. Surgery alone is not the only answer because exercise and a lifestyle change also needs to come into play but it is definitely a start.