Stomach Stapling Surgery

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Stomach Stapling Surgery

Stomach stapling surgery is a common name for one of the types of bariatric or weight loss surgeries that are performed today. The surgery, as the name suggests, involves having the stomach stapled in order to reduce the quantity of food it contains. For this reason, stomach stapling surgery is referred to as a restrictive surgery as opposed to a malabsorptive operation such as the duodenal switch or the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.

Strictly speaking however, the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery can be considered a form o stomach stapling surgery. This is because the surgery also involves reducing the size of the stomach as well as bypassing part of the small intestines. Therefore, the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery is both a restrictive and a malabsorptive operation.

The most common stomach stapling surgery performed is called vertical banded gastroplasty (VBD). This gastroplasty procedure involves using staples and/or a band to create a smaller stomach. During the procedure, the surgeon creates a small stomach pouch by reducing the upper part of the stomach. This results in having two stomachs, an upper and a lower one. A band is then placed between the two sections so as to create a small opening between them. This is done to restrict the amount of food the stomach can hold.

This type of stomach stapling surgery will take around an hour and is performed under general anesthesia. If it is done as open bariatric surgery the surgeon will make a relatively long incision from the breast bone to the navel. If the laparoscopic method is used the surgeon will only make a few very small incisions. This type of surgery is used whenever possible as there are less complications and the recovery time is greatly reduced. The band that is used in sectioning off the stomach is usually made of polypropylene, which is a type of plastic.

This type of stomach stapling surgery has several advantages. A major advantage is the fact that the digestive system is not interfered with. Therefore, there is no malabsorption, which results in nutritional deficiencies. Also, because the digestive system functions normally, the ‘dumping syndrome’ does not occur. Dumping syndrome is also referred to as rapid gastric emptying and happens when food passes through the stomach too quickly and therefore ends up in the small intestine practically undigested. Dumping happens after gastric bypass surgery and results in dizziness, headaches, nausea, vomiting, cramping, bloating and diarrhea.

Another advantage of the vertical banded gastroplasty and other kinds of stomach stapling surgery is that it is reversible. Reversing the surgery involves removing the staples and the polypropylene band. Other advantages include is gradual weight loss and that the procedure has a relatively low risk.

Patients who undergo a stomach stapling procedure should be committed to following a very strict diet. The diet will entail eating only very small amounts of food at a time. This is because a large amount of food will cause the stomach to stretch to accommodate the food. This in time will negative the weight loss benefits achieved from the surgery.

There are new forms of weight loss surgery available and you will need to talk to your doctor about which is the safest for you and your particular medical situation.