Bariatric (Weight Loss) Surgery

Bariatric (Weight Loss) Surgery

Bariatric (Weight Loss) Surgery
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Sometimes, being obese can lead to serious health challenges. Persons who are 100 or more pounds over their supposed body weight are more likely to have medical challenges. These include diabetes, heart disease, joint problems, sleep apnea and liver disease

Weight reduction surgery (also known as bariatric surgery) can help very overweight persons who have tried but failed to lose weight and face serious health challenges. But it's not a quick fix. People need to put in a lot of hard work before and after the operation.

The two major types of surgery for weight loss in teens are gastric sleeve and gastric bypass.

What is Gastric Sleeve Surgery?

Gastric sleeve (also referred to as sleeve gastrectomy) is the most popular weight loss procedure. With this operation, the surgeon takes away part of the stomach and makes a tube or "sleeve" out of the rest of the stomach. The new, banana-shape like stomach is smaller than the original stomach.

After the operation, the person will eat less food, feel full quickly and be less hungry. Part of the stomach that is taken out produces hormones that increase appetite and helps control insulin. So, the person's appetite reduces and insulin resistance improves after gastric sleeve surgery.

The gastric sleeve procedure is not be reversed.

What is Gastric Bypass Surgery?

In a gastric bypass (also referred to as "Roux-en-Y" gastric bypass), a surgeon makes a small pouch at the top of the stomach. This pouch will become the new stomach. Surgeons then connect the pouch to the middle part of the small intestine, bypassing the upper part of the small intestine.

At the end of the surgery, the stomach pouch retains a lot less food than a normal size of the stomach. The person will consume less food, feel full quickly and be less hungry. And fewer calories and nutrients are absorbed due to the fact that small intestine is shorter.

People who undergo gastric bypass tend to lose more weight than people who get the gastric sleeve, but there can be problems too. The gastric bypass procedure is irreversible.

What Are the Risks of Weight Reduction Surgery?

Like any operation, weight reduction surgery has risks:

People who have undergone weight reduction surgery may have pain after eating
. They might throw up, get diarrhea, or have acid reflux (heartburn) after eating — particularly if they eat too much or too quickly.

After surgery, they need to get used to eating very small amount of food. They need to chew their food more than they used to and space meals out for the duration of the day. If they do not do that they might feel sick. They may even start regaining weight.

Food can cross too fast through the stomach and intestines after weight loss surgery (particularly gastric bypass).Doctors describe this "dumping syndrome." It can lead to nausea, weakness, sweating, cramping, and diarrhea. Eating high-sugar or high-fat foods can increase and make dumping worse. Patients need to be careful about what they consume as their bodies get used to a different way of digesting food.

People who have had weight reduction surgery might not get all the nutrition they need. The reason is they are eating less. Also, when food does not move through the whole digestive system, the body cannot absorb as many vitamins and minerals. At the end of surgery, most people will have to start taking vitamin and mineral supplements.

In very few cases, some people have serious problems after weight reduction surgery, such as:

A bad reaction to anesthesia


Infection close to the cuts used for the surgery

A blood clot in the legs or lungs

Blockage in the intestines

Gastroesophageal reflux

Weights regain

A dripping stomach or intestine that can cause an infection of the area round the stomach and other organs

Mental health challenges, such as depression and anxiety, are a condition before and after surgery. Most people feel better about themselves after weight reduction surgery, however  some may continue to struggle. Young people who undergo surgery should reach out to a mental health professional and get assistance if they feel overwhelmed or sad, or have different emotional concerns.

What Else Should I Know?

Weight loss surgery is not a quick fix. But the hard work may be worth it for persons who are very overweight and have serious health challenges due to their weight.

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DisclaimerThe information provided herein is for patient general knowledge only and should not be used during any medical emergency, for the diagnosis or treatment of any medical condition. Duplication for personal and commercial use must be authorized in writing by

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