Comparing Weight Loss Surgeries

by Asjid Sahil

Bariatric surgeries are one of the safest and the most common ways to treat obesity in the US. When opting for weight loss surgery, it is important to compare your options. This blog differentiates popular obesity surgeries, their advantages, disadvantages, and expected weight loss recorded for each. 

Let’s Begin!

Options for Weight Loss Surgery

Gastric Bypass

This procedure is done by surgically creating a small stomach pouch that limits the amount of food you can eat. The surgeon will also re-route part of your digestive system to absorb fewer calories into your body, resulting in significant weight loss. This procedure works great for those who have a body mass index (BMI) over 40. The advantages of this procedure include less hunger, eating less food, and better nutrient absorption. The disadvantages are the risk of nutritional deficiencies like vitamin B12 deficiency which can be covered up through multi-vitamins. The expected weight loss is reported to be around 65 to 80 percent over 18 months.

Lap Band 

This procedure is done by placing a band that restricts food intake around the stomach’s top part, creating a small pouch to hold less food while leaving more room in your stomach to expand when you eat, resulting in weight loss. The advantages include easy accessibility and removal if needed. Patients have experienced a decrease in risk of gallstones, diabetes remission, and improvement in heart disease. The disadvantages include less weight loss compared to gastric bypass surgery. The expected weight loss is about 40 to 50 percent over 18 months. 

Gastric banding 

A surgeon places an adjustable silicone gastric band around the upper part of your stomach and creates a small pouch that limits food intake. The advantages include less hunger, eating less, and better nutrient absorption than with other weight-loss surgeries. This procedure can also be easily reversed in case you decide to have children.  The disadvantages include the risk of nutritional deficiencies.  The expected weight loss is reported to be around 40 percent over 18 months.

Gastric Sleeve 

This procedure works by removing part of your stomach and turning it into a thin tube that limits the amount of food you can eat while leaving more room in your stomach for expansion when eating, resulting in weight loss. The advantages include rapid weight loss,  improved nutrient absorption, and less hunger. The disadvantages include the risk of nutritional deficiencies like vitamin B12 deficiency. This procedure is not reversible if you want to have children. The expected weight loss varies based on each patient’s condition, but research shows that this surgery works better in those with a body mass index (BMI) less than 50. The success rate reported for this surgery is 80-90%. 

Now, that we have compared several weight-loss options, let’s go over some frequently asked questions. 

  1. Which is better gastric bypass vs sleeve?

Both these surgeries are great choices for bariatric surgery. Sleeve Gastrectomy is usually the best option if you are looking to get rid of your excess skin left over after weight loss. It’s also a good option when there isn’t much fat around the stomach area, which is why it works well in people who need less than 130 pounds removed.

Gastric Bypass is a great option for people who have more weight to lose and also need the surgery sooner rather than later. This procedure works well because it reduces the amount of food you can eat at one time as well as how quickly your body absorbs calories after eating, which helps with losing weight faster. 

  1. What are the benefits of weight loss surgery?

Bariatric surgery reduces the risk for heart disease, diabetes, cancer, and other chronic conditions. These are life-threatening diseases that can be prevented with your new lifestyle after surgery!

Weight loss surgeries often improve quality of life in countless ways by reducing or eliminating symptoms related to obesity such as fatigue, depression, diabetes, arthritis pain & difficulty breathing. 

  1. Where to find a good weight loss surgeon?

There are many good surgeons for obesity surgery. If you live in the US, you can contact doctors such as Dr. Feiz who can guide you through procedures and treatments efficiently. 

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