Risks and Complications of Weight Loss Surgery

Without a doubt one of the biggest issues we have in society is obesity. It is one of the biggest epidemics in North America, and people’s quality of life is being severely reduced because of it. Everyone’s heard of Super Size Me, and the media keeps talking about how our society has now become fat. It is logical then to say that, if people were to lose weight, their quality of life would increase significantly.

Right now, we have a wide variety of way of losing weight, from fad diets, to exercise, and of course, surgery. These methods work, but much of the success depends on the patient. Some people, no matter how hard they try, can’t keep weight off through dieting and exercising. For these people, surgery may be a viable option. There are four common surgeries for weight loss. How they all work is by making you feel full with less food; however, they have different risks, complications, and of course, weight loss rate.

First off we have the Vertical Banded Gastroplasty, aka “Stomach Stapling”. This procedure is known to be safer than the more drastic gastric bypass, which basically rewires your digestive system by bypassing your stomach. However, this procedure is not at all reversible, as it requires stapling and cutting of the stomach. There are many serious complications that can arise from this surgery. One real advantage of this surgery is though, it does not interfere with your body’s intake of nutrition, thus reducing the chance of malnutrition.

Up next we have what doctors call the Biliopancreatic Diversion surgery. As with the one before, this one be undone. A large part of your stomach is removed, while the remaining part is diverted straight to the final part of the small intestine. You can be sure that your stomach would be stapled, and cut up, along with your bowls. Because of this, this surgery has the highest mortality rate out of all the procedures. And you can look forward to a life time of mal-nutrition monitoring and supplements. But, this surgery does give you the fastest, most rapid weight lost out of all the surgeries.

We can’t forget the ever present gastric bypass. Your stomach would be stapled into a smaller pouch, reducing the amount of food you can store. This small pouch is then bypassed to the intestines. Not only would you eat less, but you also absorb less. This is a major surgery, and extremely difficult to reverse. Unfortunately this procedure is also highly correlated with dumping syndrome (where food goes past your system too fast, undigested, causing nausea and cramps). However, it does offer some of the fastest average weight lost than other procedures, along with rapid initial weight lost.

Last, but definitely the best, we have the Laproscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding procedure, aka Lap-Band. This procedure is gaining rapid popularity as it is not only the safest, and is completely reversible, but it also works. It works under the same principle as before; reduce the amount of food you eat and make you feel fuller faster. Since it’s a laproscopic surgery, this means it requires only small incisions for the surgery. Short recovery time, safe, and minimum risks and complications. The rate of weight loss is comparable to the other procedures, and again, this is one of the safest.

Before choosing surgery as an option for weight loss, always make sure to do your research and consult with your doctor. This is not a simple matter. Not only could you potentially transform your life, but you need to ensure that what you’re doing is best suited for you. Healthy living doesn’t come easy!

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