Weight Loss Surgery
Unfortunately as we can every day notice, almost 65 percent of Americans are overweight. Overweight increases the risk of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, as well as other diseases. However in certain cases diets, physical exercises or other traditional methods are inefficient. For those patients weight loss surgery appears as the last solution.
Since the 60s a weight loss surgeries called bariatric operations were available but it is not until recent times that the procedures have become well-known. The celebrity, high-profile patients that have undergone weight loss surgery with successful outcomes have dramatically increased the number of surgeries performed in recent years.
How is weight loss surgery performed?
Over the past ten years, weight loss surgery has become increasingly popular. However many potential patients do not know how exactly is the procedure performed and what kind of results they should expect. Basically there are two major types of weight loss surgery: lap-band surgery and gastric bypass surgery.
Lap-band weight loss surgery involves placing a saline-filled lap-band around the upper part of the stomach to create a smaller stomach pouch, that reduces the stomach from the size of a football to a golf ball. There are no incision made into the stomach or intestines but the reduction in stomach capacity allows less food and feelings of fullness just like gastric bypass surgery.
Doctors can also adjust the size of the lap-band, so while it can take lap-band weight loss surgery patients longer to lose weight than gastric bypass surgery patients, it will not include the cutting of major organs.
During the laparoscopic weight loss surgery several inch-long incisions are being cut into the abdomen, through which a light, camera, and surgical instruments are placed into the abdomen. The abdomen is inflated with gas in order to allow the surgeon to get a better view while surgical instruments perform the “bypass” of the stomach.
Laparoscopic surgery has become much more popular lately and some experts predict it will eventually account for over two thirds of all weight loss surgeries performed. That is mainly because the procedure has several advantages:
- shorter recovery time
- less pain
- less risk of hernias
- less scarring
What should patients pay attention to
The dramatic increase in laparoscopic weight loss surgery requests, determined many doctors to offer the procedure. While weight loss surgery can be very expensive, with laparoscopic surgeries ranging from $25,000, many insurance companies no longer cover them.
As more doctors are trying to reap some of the financial benefits of the increasingly popular weight loss surgeries, it is essential to find a surgeon with the necessary training and reputation to reduce the very dangerous risks a weight loss surgery can be associated to.
Another important detail is that in order to obtain truly efficient results patients must not rely only on the surgery. It should be associated with a healthy diet and physical exercises. Weight loss surgery can allow dramatic changes in a person's life but only when used as a tool for positive change.
Weight loss surgery will continue to change and improve but patients should also become better educated and informed about both the benefits and the risks before deciding if the procedure is right for them.