If you believe weight loss surgery is the right choice for you, the next step is determining along with your healthcare team which type of surgery will best suit your situation. There are multiple bariatric surgery options available, with the most common four methods being gastric bypass, gastric sleeve, adjustable gastric band and duodenal switch. All of the methods are effective in achieving significant weight loss when performed in conjunction with lifestyle changes made by the patient, but there are some differences between the procedures.
As you consider which type of weight loss surgery is right for you, you should consider what the expected weight loss is, how quickly you are expected to lose the weight, how reliable the weight loss estimates are and how comfortable you are with the characteristics of each procedure. Here is more information on the most common weight loss surgeries to help you determine which procedure might be right for you.
The Roux-en-y gastric bypass is the most extensively studied long term bariatric procedure, making it an attractive option for those who want a long history of knowing the risks and benefits of a surgery. The procedure consists of creating a small gastric pouch about the size of a golf ball and rerouting the small intestine so that the first four feet of it is bypassed. The two-pronged procedure both makes you eat less and decreases the amount of fat the body is able to absorb.
On average, gastric bypass patients can lose about 75 percent of their excess weight. Unlike gastric banding patients, the weight loss happens quickly, with patients typically losing five to seven pounds a week right after the surgery and reaching their expected weight loss in a year or so. Patients must make significant lifestyle changes within that first year, however, to keep the weight off long-term.
A gastric sleeve procedure, or sleeve gastrectomy, consists of removing the stretchiest portion of the stomach and reducing it to the size of a small banana. The remaining tubular stomach is known as the Sleeve and limits the amount of food a patient can eat at one time. It also reduces the sensation of hunger.
Gastric sleeve patients typically achieve about 65 percent of excess weight loss. It’s also a lower risk operation compared to the gastric bypass, providing an excellent option for patients who are aiming for weight loss comparable to the gastric bypass but has preexisting conditions that lower their tolerance for risk.
Adjustable gastric band
Adjustable gastric banding consists of placing an inflatable device around the upper portion of the stomach that can be adjusted through a port placed underneath the skin. The band helps train patients to eat slower and chew more, leading to an average of 35 percent of excess weight loss. Unlike the gastric sleeve and gastric bypass, where weight loss will likely occur quickly, weight loss with the gastric band is slower over time and requires an immediate change in lifestyle after the surgery to be fully effective. Once the weight is lost, however, gastric band patients are more likely to keep it off.
Gastric banding requires follow-ups every two months for the first year until a steady weight loss rate is established. It also carries the least operative risk among weight loss procedures.
The duodenal switch combines a gastric sleeve procedure with a malabsorptive operation to help limit the amount patients can eat while reducing the amount their body absorbs. The procedure is typically completed in two operations, the first consisting of the sleeve gastrectomy and the second rerouting the small intestine to lead to malabsorption of food. This dual approach leads to high weight loss, with an average of 85 percent of excess weight loss achievable.
If you want to learn more about your weight loss surgery options, talk to our experienced professionals at Lee Bariatrics in Denton, TX.