Weight Loss Surgery - The Benefits and Pitfalls You Should Be Aware of
By Sue Taylor
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Being overweight is difficult, and that is not just because people look down
on larger individuals. It is also difficult to find attractive clothes, make
large purchases, enjoy good health, play sports, and do all of the things so
many others can do easily and with little effort. Fortunately, for those
individuals who are overweight and cannot seem to find a way to lose the weight
through dieting or exercise, then weight loss surgery might be a viable option.
There are a wide variety of weight loss surgery options available as well, so
individuals interested in these procedures must do their research, talk to their
doctors, and think long and hard about the best procedure for them. Of course,
individuals should weigh the risks and benefits and make the wisest choice
regarding going ahead with weight loss surgery in the light of these results.
The Benefits of Weight Loss Surgery
First of all, there are many benefits of weight loss surgery. The most basic of
them being weight loss. Individuals who have any of the weight loss surgeries
lose a significant amount of weight most of the time. Of course, there are some
individuals who do not benefit from weight loss surgeries, but the majority of
individuals do lose weight. When individuals lose weight there are many benefits
including lower blood pressure, decreased risk for heart disease and diabetes,
increased self esteem, self confidence and many other benefits as well. So, if
you are considering any of the weight loss surgery options you now know the
benefits that you will more than likely receive. However, weight loss surgery
will not necessarily change the way others feel about you and this is not a good
reason to go through with the surgery. Additionally, you should not rely on
weight loss surgery to do all the work for you. Instead, you should go into the
surgery with a plan for a healthy diet and exercise afterwards as well.
The Drawbacks of Weight Loss Surgery
Any time you have surgery there are drawbacks and risks you should keep in mind.
While many times the risks are not high, sometimes they are, and should be
considered accordingly. Infection, internal bleeding, deep vein thrombosis,
anesthesia complications, ulcers, pulmonary problems, removal of spleen, and
other complications may arise during or after your weight loss surgery. There
are other complications as well that might apply to your personal situation and
only your doctor can inform you of these. There is a risk of the surgery not
going as planned, not being successful, or even not being performed due to
problems encountered at the start of surgery. Death is even a risk when weight
loss surgery is performed, although it is a slim risk for most individuals.
Obviously, all of these risks should be carefully considered before choosing to
undergo weight loss surgery.
Types of Weight Loss Surgery
There are many types of weight loss surgery and the American Society of
Bariatric Society notes two particular types of procedures that are used. One of
these procedures is to decrease the amount of food an individual eats and the
other type of procedure is to simply alter the way food is digested.
Vertical Banded Gastroplasty is a procedure that is also known as
bypass. Basically, gastric bypass surgery involves stapling the stomach
smaller so that food enters slower and that the individual eats less. A gastric
band is also used on the stomach's outlet to regulate the amount of food leaving
Another type of bariatric surgery includes laparoscopic adjustable gastric
banding. This procedure uses a gastric band to partially close off the upper
portion of the stomach. This allows the individual to feel full faster and eat
less, thus losing weight. The gastric band is really helpful in this procedure.
Other types of malabsorptive procedures include the biliopancreatic diversion,
extended gastric bypass, combined gastric bypass, as well as others. Each of
these procedures have their own risks and benefits, some use gastric bands while
others use a lap band,
gastric band, or a mixture of procedures.
Deciding on the Procedure for You
Unless you are a doctor there is no way you can decide which procedure will be
best for you. You might have a friend that was successful with one type of
procedure and another who failed with a different one, however these success and
failure rates with others are not necessarily the best information to base your
decision on. You need to meet with your doctor, evaluate your health and past
history as well as your expectations, and then your doctor will recommend the
procedure that is best for you. Of course, you are welcome to get a second
opinion or more if you want, but generally the surgeon knows what will be best
for you. So, if you believe the benefits outweigh the risks go ahead and have
gastric bypass or bariatric surgery and finally lose that weight. If the risks
outweigh the benefits there are still many weight loss options out there you can
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