When it comes to weight loss, there are many options to choose from. Traditional weight loss programs include a combination of supervised or modified diets, exercise programs, and weight loss medications. If your BMI is 35 or greater (Calculate your BMI here) , or if it is under 35 and you have a combination of serious health problems related to weight, surgery may be an option for you.
Bariatric Surgery for Weight Loss
Dr. Russell Van Husen and the staff at the Midland Weight Loss Center are here to help guide you through the tough decision making process. Everyone on our staff understands that choosing bariatric surgery is not an easy decision. We operate with the utmost confidentiality and discretion, and we treat all of our patients with sensitivity and respect.
In order to determine if weight loss surgery is right for you, we gather an extensive medical history, have laboratory tests drawn, and complete a physical examination. We will make sure you understand all of the risks that are involved and the post-surgical care that is required. The process starts by attending a seminar on bariatric surgery presented by Midland Memorial Hospital. You will also go for a psychological evaluation. Through this process, you will be able to make an informed decision regarding your weight loss choices.
Bariatric surgical procedures assist you in losing weight by limiting the amount of food your stomach can hold and absorb. It is extremely important to realize that bariatric surgery is not a substitute for diet modification and exercise. Weight gain is still possible following bariatric surgery, therefore, diet and exercise remain vitally important for long-term success. The experienced staff at Midland Weight Loss Center will provide you with all the information needed to maintain a healthy lifestyle following your surgery.
Dr. Van Husen offers two different bariatric procedures. Both are performed with the patient under general anesthesia and may require a hospital stay of up to 5 days.
Sleeve gastrectomy is a laparoscopic procedure where a large portion of the stomach is removed and the open edges are sutured together to form a sleeve. This results in the stomach being reduced to approximately 25% of its original size. The stomach reduction is permanent and cannot be reversed.
Since the portion of the stomach that is removed seems to makes most of the hormones that are responsible for hunger, the surgery naturally results in appetite suppression. The combination of a smaller stomach and feeling less hungry, results in reduced food and significant weight loss.
Gastric bypass is a more complex procedure, but it is highly effective. During the surgery, the stomach is reduced to approximately 10% of its original size (about the size of a walnut) and the small intestine is divided with one end attached to the new smaller pouch. As a result, the food is rerouted through the smaller stomach pouch and bypasses a large portion of the small intestine. Your body goes from being able to eat three pints of food to being able to eat only one ounce. Since a portion of the intestine is bypassed, less food, calories, and nutrients are absorbed. This results in dramatic weight loss, but also requires lifelong vitamin and mineral replacements in order to make sure you are receiving proper nutrition. This surgery usually requires a longer hospital stay than the Gastric Sleeve procedure.
Recovering from Bariatric Surgery
Following bariatric surgery, our caring staff will give you full dietary and post-surgical instructions, including what vitamins to take, when and how much to exercise, and even how to shower safely during the healing process
Immediately following the procedure, food is avoided for two days to allow your body to begin to heal. You will then be advanced slowly from an all liquid diet for several weeks, to a soft food diet, and finally the transition is made to “normal foods”.
You may experience bruising, swelling, and discomfort following your procedure. While this is true for any surgery, our team will work with you to minimize your down time and get you on the road to recovery and a happier, healthier you.
Your care does not end after surgery. Dr. Van Husen and the experienced staff at the Midland Weight Loss Center will continue to follow you with regular checkups and lab tests to ensure you are maintaining your nutritional requirements and achieving optimum results.
Midland Surgical Associates, in conjunction with Midland Memorial Hospital, offers free information seminars on the third Thursday of every month at 4:00 p.m. at Midland Memorial.
If you are ready to discuss the next step for your weight loss, call us for a consultation appointment.