Guide to weight-loss surgery types

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates overweight and obesity as a global epidemic problem. Over 1.9 billion people worldwide are overweight, and 650,000 of them are obese.

95% of patients suffer from obesity caused by excessive calorie intake and inadequate consumption. The remaining 5% of patients suffer from symptomatic obesity that is usually based on endocrine diseases.

The fight against the first type is a global problem. Doctors provide different weight loss techniques according to the patient body peculiarities. It is challenging and sometimes impossible to decrease weight using conservative methods, especially for patients with morbid obesity. That is why specialists have begun to help such patients using surgical techniques.

Weight loss or bariatric surgery is a particular type of gastrointestinal operation that reduces the number of calories consumed and/or decrease their absorption in the intestines. Bariatric experts developed several basic methods that allow to get rid of extra pounds, risk of serious illnesses, and improve the quality of obese patients life.

Types of weight-loss operations

Gastric sleeve surgery (sleeve gastrectomy)

During the sleeve stomach resection, a surgeon changes the shape and size of the stomach, decreasing the amount of food you can eat at one sit. The specialist removes the part of the stomach and creates a small “sleeve” or tube. Such changes restart the body’s ability to regulate the accumulation of fat and body weight.

The gastric sleeve surgery is performed under general anesthesia and takes about an hour. After the operation, the patient loses 50-60% of excess fat. Pay attention that sleeve gastrectomy is a nonreversible procedure.

Turkey is considered the most affordable place for the gastric sleeve. The gastric sleeve cost in Turkey is 2-3 times lower than in European countries due to the peculiarities of the Turkish economy and high competition between clinics within the state.

Gastric bypass surgery

Gastric bypass surgery is one of the most commonly performed bariatric surgeries worldwide. During the operation, the surgeon creates a small ventricle from the big stomach, so food immediately runs into the small intestine. A lower volume of the stomach helps to feel full faster, the amount of food that you can eat at one sit decreases, and calories amount absorbed during its digestion decreases.

The operation lasts 1.5-2 hours. The patient is under general anesthesia. The hospitalization usually takes 2-4 days. It’s possible to lose 60-70% of excess weight with the help of this surgical method. In contrast to sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass is a reversible operation.

Gastric bypass is the most popular method of surgical weight loss in Europe. Patients usually choose Germany when they want to get this type of bariatric operation. German doctors are world-renowned for their vast experience and following international quality standards.

Stomach band

The gastric band isn’t so popular bariatric procedures compared to sleeve gastrectomy and stomach bypass. So this option is not available in each medical facility. During the operation, a silicone cuff or gastric band is put on the upper part of the stomach, which narrows the stomach cavity and regulates the speed of food moving through it. Part of the stomach above the cuff is stretched, causing a feeling of fullness. The cuff size can be further adjusted. Doctors select the cuff size for a particular patient individually.

The advantages of this method are the short operation time, low risk of postoperative complications, and the ability to remove the bandage in the future. The operation is 100% reversible. Weight loss with this method is less than with bypass and sleeve resection — 40-50%. The process takes an hour. 20-30% of patients within ten years need reoperation. The operation gives the best results for patients whose body mass index is less than 40 kg/m2.

The gastric band is mostly carried out in Asian countries — Thailand & South Korea. Prices here are several times lower than in the States or UK. So patients from these countries choose Thailand or South Korea to get stomach banding procedures.

Gastric plication 

The above-mentioned bariatric procedures are the basic and most frequently performed. Patients choose these options due to high effectiveness and great results. Except for these surgical methods for losing excess fat, bariatric doctors also provide gastric plication, when a doctor does not remove the part of the stomach but stitches it. Plication takes 1.5 hours and helps lose 40-70% of excess fat. The operation is reversible.



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