Dr. GallagerWelcome DR. LAURA LYN GALLAGHER | Board-certified general and bariatric surgery specialist

What are the Benefits of Minimally Invasive Surgery?

Minimally invasive weight loss surgery can greatly enhance a patient’s experience during and after several bariatric procedures. Specialized surgical instruments, such as a laparoscope, are used to perform surgery with smaller cuts and a higher degree of control than traditional surgical methods. Depending on whether the right approach for you involves laparoscopic or robotic-assisted surgery, minimally invasive techniques can yield:

  • Shorter incisions compared to traditional surgery
  • More accuracy during your operation
  • Less bleeding, swelling, downtime, and overall discomfort
  • Less extensive scarring once incisions are healed

Dr. Bagshahi will evaluate whether our minimally invasive surgery options can benefit you, and explain every aspect of treatment so you’re well-educated on how a given procedure can achieve your goals. A consultation will give you insight into specific techniques, anticipated benefits, potential risks, and the approximate recovery timeline you can expect after surgery.

Is Minimally Invasive Weight Loss Surgery Right for Me?

Thanks to the less invasive nature of laparoscopic and robotic-assisted procedures, patients who may not be good candidates for traditional surgery may find more success from minimally invasive bariatric procedures, such as gastric sleeve and duodenal switch surgery. Although our team will be able to definitely confirm whether you would benefit from minimally invasive surgery after evaluating your needs in a consultation, our techniques can generally be helpful if:

  • You are obese and/or affected by weight-related/gastrointestinal conditions
  • You’re committed to making long-term lifestyle changes to alleviate your symptoms
  • You haven’t achieved your desired results with dieting, exercise, or other more conservative solutions
  • You don’t want to undergo a traditional open surgery

Discussing your health goals with a bariatric surgeon is the only effective way to determine whether your concerns can be treated with a minimally invasive approach. Dr. Bagshahi or Dr. Gallagher can review your medical history and advise you on the best treatment plan to alleviate your symptoms. 

Treatable Conditions with Minimally Invasive Surgery

Bariatric surgery is just one medical specialty that employs minimally invasive techniques to improve patient outcomes — laparoscopic and robotic-assisted surgery is also used to treat certain gynecologic, pelvic, and thoracic conditions as well. As it relates to weight loss and digestive issues, minimally invasive  surgery can benefit patients who suffer from any of the following conditions: 

  • Obesity 
  • Management of gastroesophageal reflux disorder (GERD)
  • Hiatus (diaphragm) hernias
  • Groin hernias
  • Abdominal wall hernias
  • Gallbladder disease

Types of Minimally Invasive Surgery

Incisionless Weight Loss Surgery

We offer laparoscopic nissen fundoplication and newer procedures to correct acid reflux (GERD), hiatal hernias, and other conditions. Transoral incisionless fundoplication is an effective, minimally invasive procedure to treat certain digestive disorders. Dr. Bagshahi uses the innovative and FDA-cleared EsophyX® device attached to a standard endoscope to perform incisionless techniques that are helping patients experience a new lease on life.

Laparoscopic Weight Loss Surgery

Laparoscopic or “keyhole” surgery is named after the cutting-edge tool used to perform each procedure — a laparoscope, which refers to a thin, lighted telescope with a camera on the end. The laparoscope is inserted into small half-inch incisions, allowing Dr. Bagshahi to view what’s happening inside your body on a chairside monitor. With the assistance of a laparoscope and other specialized surgical instruments, Dr. Bagshahi can complete the procedure through several tiny cuts. This eliminates the need for one long incision, which is often necessary with traditional surgical procedures. As a result, patients are typically able to recover faster and make a speedier return to their normal activities.

Robotic-Assisted Weight Loss Surgery

At the forefront of our robotic-assisted, minimally invasive surgery program is the da Vinci® Surgical System. Robotic surgery can be an excellent approach to complete complex portions of laparoscopic surgery, as well as for revision bariatric surgery cases. These methods only require small incisions, which  contrast with traditional surgery performed through a large, open incision. Dr. Hossein Bagshahi is one of few fellowship-trained bariatric surgeons in the country who utilizes advanced robotic techniques.

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Minimally Invasive Procedures

In addition to weight loss procedures, minimally invasive surgery can be incorporated into treatment for a range of digestive and gastrointestinal conditions. Conservative solutions will always be utilized first, but patients who require surgery to improve their symptoms may benefit from options such as:

Gallbladder Surgery

Certain issues or digestive problems may necessitate gallbladder removal surgery, a popular treatment option considered relatively low-risk and very rewarding for individuals who experience pain from gallbladder issues. For some patients, the formation of gallbladder stones can block normal function of the gallbladder and cause symptoms like indigestion, nausea, pain, or vomiting. Gallbladder removal can be performed laparoscopically to improve, or even eliminate, these symptoms without the downtime associated with open surgery.

Heartburn Treatment

The feeling of a burning sensation in the chest is typically indicative of gastroesophageal reflux disorder (or GERD), which often develops due to obesity or a poor diet consisting of highly acidic foods. If certain factors indicate you may benefit from surgery, minimally invasive heartburn treatment can be performed with incisionless, laparoscopic, or robotic techniques to help control acid reflux and reduce your symptoms. 

GERD Treatment

Gastroesophageal reflux disorder essentially refers to more severe cases of acid reflux, along with its associated symptoms (heartburn, damage to the esophageal lining, etc.). GERD can be managed through lifestyle changes and simple preventative measures, such as limiting your intake of spicy or acidic foods, but surgery may be recommended in certain cases. At our practice, Dr. Bagshahi offers several minimally invasive GERD procedures to minimize acid reflux and reduce esophageal inflammation. 

Hernia Surgery

Hernias can develop in the abdomen, upper stomach, groin, or a previous incision site. While some hernias cause no symptoms, others can lead to swelling, pain, or a visible lump at the site of the hernia. Fortunately, hernia surgery may be completed with minimal invasiveness using a laparoscope or the da Vinci® robotic surgical system. These techniques can allow Dr. Bagshahi to repair a hernia and alleviate symptoms without disturbing the surrounding tissues. 

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Will There Be a Recovery After Minimally Invasive Surgery?

Yes, any bariatric procedure involving surgery will require a period of downtime; however, minimally invasive weight loss surgery tends to allow a faster and more comfortable recovery period when compared to more traditional techniques. This accelerated recovery period is due, in part, to the shorter incisions possible with minimally invasive surgery, as well as the lower risk of complications typical of laparoscopic/robotic procedures. Dr. Bagshahi or Dr. Gallagher will fully explain what you can expect from your unique recovery period based on the details of your surgical plan. In most cases, you will have to adhere to a strict post-surgery diet and commit to a more active lifestyle in order to preserve your results. Downtime may last anywhere from one to two weeks depending on your treatment plan and which procedure was performed. Swelling, tenderness, and general discomfort are normal, although minimally invasive surgery usually results in less post-operative pain than open surgery. Patients should avoid smoking for a few weeks before and after their procedure, ideally quitting indefinitely in order to help maximize their health and results.

What Results Can I Expect From Minimally Invasive Weight Loss Surgery?

Minimally invasive procedures have generally provided excellent outcomes, both post-operatively and in terms of the total weight loss achieved. Patients typically experience less discomfort, bleeding, and swelling after their procedure when compared to traditional open surgery. The overall recovery period is also shorter than less invasive approaches since the incisions placed are not as lengthy. In this regard, patients also appreciate having less extensive scarring after their weight loss surgery. 

The amount of weight loss experienced after minimally invasive surgery depends on which procedure was performed, with the duodenal switch and gastric bypass procedures often yielding the greatest amount of total weight shed. However, your results are ultimately determined by how committed you are to changing your lifestyle. Dr. Bagshahi will talk to you at length about what you can expect after your procedure. 

How Much Does Minimally Invasive Weight Loss Surgery Cost?

Less invasive techniques can be used to perform a variety of weight loss procedures, so there is no “one-size-fits-all” cost for minimally invasive surgery. A personalized quote for your procedure will be provided during your consultation, but your cost estimate will be influenced by factors including:

  • The type of approach utilized (laparoscopic, robotic, endoscopic, etc.)
  • The type of procedure performed
  • The complexity of your treatment plan 
  • Fees for the anesthesia, surgeon, operating facility, and other standard surgical costs

Prices will also vary nationwide depending on your geographic location. Our office can speak with you about insurance coverage and bariatric surgery financing options at the time of your visit. We accept payment plans from CareCredit®, United Medical Credit®, Prosper® Healthcare Lending for qualified patients.

What are the Risks of Minimally Invasive Surgery?

Although the chance of complications is exponentially lower with minimally invasive procedures, every surgery presents a risk of negative reactions. Nausea and discomfort are possible after minimally invasive surgery, but these reactions are usually temporary and resolve on their own over time. Over-the-counter medications can typically manage any discomfort. Dr. Bagshahi or Dr. Gallagher will monitor the progress of your healing in follow-up appointments, and encourage you to contact them if you have any concerns. It helps to ensure you’re under the care of a highly skilled bariatric surgery team before your treatment, as selecting an experienced weight loss surgeon is the only way to maximize your safety before your procedure.

Why Choose Dr. Bagshahi for Minimally Invasive Weight Loss Surgery?

Dr. Hossein Bagshahi, lead bariatric surgeon and Medical Director of our weight loss practice, is the ideal choice for Dallas patients considering minimally invasive surgery to achieve their goals. Dr. Bagshahi is among few plastic surgeons in North Texas who are certified by the American Board of Surgery and who specialize exclusively in bariatric procedures. Dr. Bagshahi has also completed invaluable fellowship training in minimally invasive, laparoscopic, and robotic-assisted weight loss surgery, making him uniquely qualified to utilize these techniques. Dr. Bagshahi stands out for many reasons, including:

  • His status as a Fellow of the American Society of Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery (FASMBS), a prestigious credential that can signify a plastic surgeon’s ability to stay attuned to evolving techniques
  • As a published author and educator, Dr. Bagshahi has written about minimally invasive surgery in peer-reviewed publications like the Journal of Clinical Research and the Journal of the American College of Surgeons.
  • Dr. Bagshahi has completed highly competitive fellowship training in Bariatric, Endoscopic, and Minimally Invasive Surgery.
  • Dr. Bagshahi is passionate about utilizing a minimally invasive approach whenever possible. When asked about his favorite part of being a bariatric surgeon, Dr. Bagshahi replied “…taking a difficult situation that is often rejected by medical and surgical care, and performing an elegant minimally invasive operation to improve patients’ lives.”

Our team takes great pride in offering patients a less invasive approach to surgery that can still achieve weight loss goals with less downtime, discomfort, swelling, and scarring. No matter what your needs may be, Dr. Bagshahi has the skill and experience to develop the best treatment plan for you.

Dr. Bagshahi and our friendly medical team are committed to developing the most ideal treatment plan to improve your health, confidence, and quality of life. Don’t hesitate to contact Bagshahi General and Bariatric Surgery at our Fort Worth office to schedule your consultation with Dr. Bagshahi, or to learn more about our services.