Weight loss surgery is an option for people who are severely obese and cannot lose weight by traditional means. These people may suffer from serious obesity-related health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, joint pain and problems with sleep.
There are three main types of weight loss surgery:
3. Combined restrictive/malabsorptive.
Restrictive operations limit food intake by placing a row of staples or a band around the stomach. This limits the amount of food that can pass from the upper part of the stomach into the larger lower part. The restrictive operations reduce the amount of food the stomach can hold and slows the passage of food through the stomach resulting in a lower calorie intake. An example of a restrictive operation would be the laparoscopic adjustable gastric band or "lap band."
Malabsorptive operations do not limit food intake, but instead bypass a portion of the small intestine so fewer calories and nutrients are absorbed. Currently, Baystate Medical Center does not performed strictly malabsorptive operations.
Combination operations unite both the restrictive and malabsorptive operations to produce weight loss. Currently this type of operation is considered the “gold standard” in weight loss surgery. An example of a combination operation would be the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.
Like all treatments for obesity, the best results are achieved with healthy eating behaviors and regular physical activity.