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Weight Loss Surgery

Everything You Need to Know About Bariatric Surgery

DFW Bariatric Institute is overseen by experienced weight loss specialists, but we do more than perform bariatric surgery. We are committed to empowering patients by providing the knowledge and tools that they need to reclaim their health and renew their confidence. Whether you are just beginning to consider professional help for weight loss or you’ve been thinking about bariatric surgery for a long time, our experts explain the different types of weight loss procedures and everything you need to know when considering bariatric surgery.

What Is Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery refers to a range of weight-loss surgeries that are designed to help people successfully lose weight in order to overcome obesity. While bariatric surgery is typically reserved for patients with severe obesity, there are also non-surgical procedures that are designed to help people who have struggled to lose weight through diet and exercise alone. In addition to significant weight loss benefits, bariatric surgery may also be recommended to treat a number of health conditions, including Type 2 diabetes and hypertension. Learn more about the importance of maintaining a healthy weight.

Weight loss procedures generally utilize two methods to promote weight loss – Restriction and Malabsorption.

  • Restrictive procedures limit the amount of food a patient is able to eat.
  • Malabsorptive procedures reduce the number of calories that are absorbed by the body.

Types of Bariatric Surgeries and Non-Surgical Weight Loss Procedures

There are a variety of weight loss procedures available, each with their own benefits and indications. If you are considering weight loss surgery, it is important to find a qualified bariatric surgeon in your area. An experienced weight loss specialist will help you determine which weight loss procedure may be right for you. Weight loss procedures include:

Bariatric Surgery Options

Gastric Sleeve Also known as vertical sleeve gastrectomy, or VSG, the gastric sleeve surgery is a restrictive procedure that is highly effective in helping patients lose significant excess weight. The surgeon removes 75 to 80% of the stomach, and the new stomach is small and tube-shaped. The stomach retains the natural digestive openings. Patients lose weight because the smaller stomach holds less food, which allows them to feel full with fewer calories, and the surgery also recalibrates the body’s hunger hormones. In addition to weight loss, patients may also experience improvements in Type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, and hypertension.

  • Gastric Bypass Also called roux-en-y surgery, is both restrictive and malabsorptive, which means that it limits the amount of food a patient is able to eat and also changes how that food is digested. At DFW, we typically perform bypass surgery laparoscopically, which means that only tiny incisions are made in order to access the organs. The stomach is reduced to a fraction of its original size and part of the intestine is bypassed. Gastric bypass typically allows patients to lose up to 80% of excess weight and can also cure Type 2 diabetes.
  • Weight Loss Revision Surgery We believe that everyone deserves a second chance. If you have had weight loss surgery but are not happy with your results, or feel that a different type of procedure will be better suited to you, we may be able to help. We offer a number of revision procedures, including band-to-sleeve conversions for patients who are seeking gastric band removal.
  • Duodenal Switch Also called the Biliary Pancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch, this surgery may be particularly helpful for patients with a BMI over 50. In this restrictive and malabsorptive procedure, the bariatric surgeon removes about 75% of the stomach and adjusts the digestive system to significantly decrease calorie absorption. This procedure can lead to nutrient deficiencies for some patients, but may also resolve serious obesity related health conditions.
  • LAP-BAND® System Gastric Banding Gastric banding is a restrictive surgery in which a band is placed around the stomach to limit the amount of food a patient can take in. Patients feel full with less food, which can help them achieve weight loss. The band is adjustable so it can be customized for each patient, and it is removable if needed.

Non-Surgical Weight Loss Procedure Options

  • Endoscopic Sleeve Gastroplasty (ESG) This innovative non-surgical procedure is performed endoscopically, meaning that the doctor accesses the stomach through the mouth to perform the procedure. The patient is sedated, but there are no incisions. The stomach is reduced in capacity by folding over and suturing a section to create a smaller pouch, but the stomach is not removed. Food consumption is restricted to help patients consume fewer calories and lose weight.
  • Gastric Balloon This non-surgical procedure is designed to encourage weight loss with the insertion of a medical-grade silicone balloon in the stomach, which takes up space so patients can feel full with less food. This procedure can be especially helpful for patients who may not be candidates for bariatric surgery because they have a lower BMI, as gastric balloon is ideal for people who can are struggling to lose up to 30 lbs. The gastric balloon is typically in place for up to six months which allows you to kickstart weight loss and learn healthy habits. The different types of gastric balloons include:
    • OBALON® Weight Loss System The Obalon balloon is a swallowable gastric balloon. During the insertion appointment, the balloon is swallowed as a capsule and then the doctor inflates it through a thin tube. It is removed endoscopically.
    • ORBERA® Weight Loss Balloon Orbera is a single balloon that is placed endoscopically and can help patients lose three times more weight with than with exercise and diet alone.
    • ReShape™ Weight Loss Balloon ReShape is a dual balloon system. The two gastric balloons, attached within the stomach, are placed and removed endoscopically.
  • Medical Weight Loss Program DFW Bariatric Institute offers a supportive weight loss plan for patients seeking a non-surgical approach, or for patients who have a health insurance plan that requires them to participate in doctor supervised weight loss prior to surgery. Your personalized plan may include sessions with our registered dietitian, prescription medications, and appointments with our Physician Assistants.

Is Bariatric Surgery Safe?

Any surgery or medical procedure carries some risk, but bariatric surgery has a very favorable safety profile. Consider these facts:

  • The risk of dying from bariatric surgery is extremely low and, with a 99.9% survival rate, is on par with many routine surgeries.1
  • Scientific evidence is mounting that bariatric surgery may in fact be the only reliable method of curing obesity.2
  • For patients suffering from life-threatening obesity related conditions, or comorbidities, bariatric surgery may actually be life-saving. In fact, a clinical study showed that patients with morbid obesity who underwent bariatric surgery were 89% less likely to die over any 5 year period than individuals with morbid obesity who did not have bariatric surgery.3

Your individual risk for any procedure will depend on your medical history and overall health. Talk to an experienced bariatric surgeon about the potential risks of bariatric surgery.

Is Bariatric Surgery Covered by Insurance?

Yes, bariatric surgery may be covered by health insurance for qualifying individuals. Health insurance can be complicated and many prospective bariatric patients become overwhelmed trying to figure out the details of their insurance coverage. If you are interested in learning which procedures may be covered by your plan, fill out our Free Insurance Check form and one of our knowledgeable insurance coordinators.

Keep in mind that many health plans that do cover bariatric surgery also impose prerequisites or waiting periods. Patients who would like to avoid restrictions may opt to utilize financing in order to take advantage of the ease of a self-pay procedure. Additionally, some non-surgical weight loss procedures, such as gastric balloon, are not covered by health insurance. Learn about payment options at DFW Bariatric Institute.

How Much Does Bariatric Surgery Cost?

The cost of bariatric surgery and non-surgical weight loss procedures can vary depending on your individual medical needs. The prices at DFW Bariatric Institute are competitive, starting at $7,995 for gastric balloon. See our special pricing on self-pay packages. If you are comparing prices at bariatric surgery centers in your area, make sure to take into account what is included in the price, as well as the experience and reputation of the surgeon.

Bariatric Surgery Results and Life After Weight Loss Surgery

In order to achieve weight loss success, it is important that patients are prepared for the lifestyle changes that will be necessary. Before you begin your bariatric journey, you must understand that weight loss surgery is not an easy way out. Patients who do decide to have bariatric surgery often report that they have an improved quality of life and they are able to be more active and confident than ever before. Some of the health benefits that patients may experience include:

  • Over 70% of gastric sleeve and gastric bypass patients experienced improvement or total remission of their Type 2 diabetes.4
  • Improvement in sleep apnea and hypertension
  • Relief from joint pain
  • Improvement in fertility5

What Kind of Diet Will I Eat After Bariatric Surgery?

Food choices and calorie needs will vary depending on your lifestyle and the type of bariatric surgery you have, but the there are a few things that any successful post-bariatric diet will have in common:

Smaller Portions – most weight loss procedures are restrictive and will limit the amount of food you can safely eat at one time.

Nutrient Dense Foods – Since your stomach will be smaller, it is important that the food you do eat is rich in nutrition. Foods like fresh produce, lean proteins, and healthy dairy will help ensure you are not deficient in nutrients.

Focus on Protein – Lean meats, low-fat dairy, and protein supplements will be in rotation to ensure adequate protein. Foods that are carb-heavy or full of sugar, such as desserts, bread, candy, or processed snacks will be strictly limited or eliminated.

Avoid Alcohol and Carbonation – Alcohol and carbonated drinks will be processed by the body differently after surgery and the empty calories that they contain should be avoided.

Before and After – Bariatric Surgery Success Stories