Bariatric surgery is a medical term that covers all types of surgical procedures for morbid obesity, not only gastric bypass surgery, which is actually only one type of operation. The dramatic weight loss resulting from these types of surgeries greatly reduces comorbidities, reducing the mortality rate of people suffering from morbid obesity by up to 40%.
A gastric bypass is a surgical procedure in which your stomach is divided into a smaller upper section and a larger lower section. Over the years, surgeons have found different ways of connecting the lower intestine to the two sections of the stomach, leading to a number of available gastric bypass surgeries. Anyone of these various gastric bypass procedures will lead to a significant reduction in the capacity of your stomach, as well as altering your body’s physiological response to food. The procedure is aimed primarily at patients who are defined as morbidly obese, meaning they have a body mass index of 40 or over.
The following information is for people who are preparing or thinking about undergoing laparoscopic surgery: a method which accounts for about 99% of the gastric bypass procedures carried out today.
After a gastric bypass procedure, you will probably need to spend one or two nights in the hospital for post-surgery rest and standard medical observation.
Activity after surgery
Most people will be able to walk within three to four hours after undergoing gastric bypass surgery with many being able to resume simple tasks such as going to the bathroom almost immediately. After you return home, you should be able to carry out simple tasks around the home such as fixing meals. Over the next few weeks, it is recommended that you slowly increase your daily activity without overworking yourself.
After returning home from the hospital, you will need to stay on a highly nutritional liquid diet for the duration of about two weeks, before slowing adding solid foods to your meals. It generally takes about two months before you can establish a long-term solid food diet.
Your Weight Loss
Nearly 85% of patients lose at least 50% of their excess weight after undergoing gastric bypass surgery. And according to a recent study carried out at the National Institutes of Health, all of these patients manage to keep the weight off once they have lost it.
Only about one in 200 gastric bypass patients is readmitted for treatment of a major complication. Still, every surgery carries some risk.
Because weight loss surgery is still “considered” cosmetic surgery, it can be excluded from insurance plans that are self-funded by the employer. Tell an insulin-dependent diabetic that now takes no diabetic medication after bariatric surgery that it is cosmetic surgery and see your response! I tell patients in my seminar that we do not do surgery so you look better and feel better. We do weight loss surgery so you live longer and live better. In keeping with the ASMBS position statement for low BMI patients, we believe the 1991 NIH criteria that insurance companies use to determine who qualifies for weight loss surgery is out-dated. We also agree that obesity is a chronic disease and that earlier intervention is associated with greater long term success. Therefore, we will provide the appropriate self-funding candidate a surgical option for BMI >30 with co-morbidities, especially with a strong family history of diabetes or metabolic syndrome. All of our insurance candidates must have a BMI of 35.
Dr. Westmoreland has had many years’ experience in the field of minimally invasive laparoscopic surgeries and is considered an expert in advanced laparoscopic procedures. He did his first sleeve gastrectomy in 2007 and has done 100’s since then with one leak and one death. As well as our lead surgeon Dr. Westmoreland, we also have a highly skilled team at the Murfreesboro Surgical Specialists that will assist you in your long-term journey of successful weight loss. Our non-surgical team consists of psychologists and dietitians to assess patients and help them with their long-term goals.
We look forward to serving you further.