Bariatrics: Surgical Options

The type of weight-loss surgery a patient chooses to have needs to be a well-informed, well-thought-out decision based on their individualized needs and goals. The two main types of surgical weight loss offered by Cone Health are sleeve gastrectomy and Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. With both of these procedures, patients can lose from 100 to 130 pounds, depending on their original size. Not only can weight-loss surgery serve as a tool in losing weight, it can help patients achieve overall well-being by improving, and sometimes curing, comorbidities such as diabetes and obstructive sleep apnea.

LAP-BAND® adjustable gastric banding is also available, but has become less popular in the last few years since the other procedures have been proven to help with other chronic diseases, such as diabetes, and provide more significant weight loss.

The sleeve gastrectomy has become the most common procedure and involves removing approximately 80% of the stomach, limiting it to the size of a cup of food. The portion removed produces hormones that increase hunger, so the result is a reduced desire to eat.

LAP-BAND® adjustable gastric banding involves the placement of an adjustable silicone band around the upper part of the stomach to create a small pouch, which can hold only a small amount of food. With the adjustable band, most patients can expect to lose 50 to 70 pounds over a 2-year period.

In the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass procedure, an upper stomach pouch about the size of an egg is created. This primarily restrictive procedure limits the food intake, also bypassing the first 3 feet of the small intestine to reduce calorie absorption. Gastric bypass also causes changes in the body’s gut hormones, which has been proven to be extremely beneficial for type 2 diabetic patients—making fairly prompt, helpful changes in managing their condition.

All operations are performed using minimally invasive techniques, which involve less pain, faster recovery and improved cosmetic outcomes.

Individuals who are interested in learning more about weight-loss surgery and getting started in the process are encouraged to attend one of Cone Health’s bariatric seminars. At “Bariatrics: Surgical Options for Weight Loss,” an informational seminar held at Wesley Long Hospital and Alamance Regional Medical Center, individuals considering bariatric surgery can learn more about the different procedures and the major lifestyle changes that must accompany the process. The informational seminars are now offered online, as well as in person.

Spokesperson Background:

Eric Wilson, MD, is a board-certified general surgeon in Greensboro and a member of the Cone Health Medical and Dental Staff. Wilson is a member and fellow of the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery.  He is also a fellow of the American College of Surgeons. Wilson is a 2004 graduate of Medical University of South Carolina and completed his residency in general surgery at the university as well.

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