Surgery for Morbid Obesity

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Surgery for Morbid Obesity

Surgery for morbid obesity represents one of the most promising frontiers in the battle against weight-related problems and thus far, advancements in the field have put it in a position to help transform the lives of many people. As the number of morbidly obese people continues to climb, the option to have surgery for morbid obesity is a real tool that can help turn the tide on such an alarming and worrisome trend.

In medical terms, doctors define morbid obesity as that when a patient has breached a Body Mass Index of 40. Body mass index is the ratio of one’s weight to one’s height and is a good determinant of one’s weight relative to his body frame. Breaching the 40 barrier is a surefire indicator that a person is already about 100-pounds above his ideal weight and that surgery can now be considered as an option.

Once a patient has been identified as a candidate for surgery for morbid obesity, the attention shifts into determining which procedure should be used to help reverse the weight problem. For this, doctors typically look at 2 types of weight loss surgery that are extremely popular nowadays:

Restrictive surgeries. These refer to methods that seek to physically restrict the amount of food that the stomach can hold thereby controlling the sizes of the portions that the patient can eat. A common way to do this is to use an adjustable band that can be clamped around the stomach reducing its effective volume to about an ounce. Over time, this may stretch to hold 3 ounces but the idea remains the same; being able to limit the food portions mean that weight loss can truly begin to happen.

Malabsorptive surgeries. These procedures are more invasive in nature as the main goal is to alter the way the digestive tract receives food. Bypassing some portions of the digestive tract, or removing some portions is a hallmark of malabsorptive surgeries. It works because the shorter path that the food takes as it journeys from the mouth to the lower digestive tract reduces the body’s ability to absorb calories. Given the invasive nature of the procedures, these are completely irreversible and will require the patient to embrace a lifetime lifestyle change.

Getting surgery for morbid obesity requires putting a lot of planning for the procedure, not to mention educating the patient on the consequences and effects that will arise from it. Post-surgery, the new lifestyle will require discipline and commitment to be effective. A new diet, among others, will compel the patient to adopt a new perspective towards eating which is essential towards realizing full weight loss.

Still, surgery for morbid obesity is allowing more and more people to quickly lose the weight and reclaim their lives back. It is becoming an ever more important tool to help people who are committed and willing to forget their pasts and move on towards a brighter future.

If you are considering having surgery for morbid obesity or have a friend or loved one who wants to do it, make sure to talk to a doctor to discuss the specific condition so the appropriate steps can be taken to ensure that the surgery will be a success.

Though surgery for morbid obesity is a way to lose a significant amount of weight, it is still usually considered a last option after non-invasive techniques such as diet, exercise and a number of other safer ways to lose weight have failed.