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Which Bariatric Surgery Is Right for You?

If you’re considering bariatric surgery, you should consider a few important factors first. One of the most important considerations to talk over with your doctor is which type of bariatric surgery will work best for you. The four options are intragastric balloon, sleeve gastrectomy, gastric bypass and duodenal switch. With a better understanding of your options, you can work together with your doctor to choose the bariatric surgery option that will provide you with the best results.

1 Intragastric balloon

In this type of bariatric surgery, an inflatable, balloon-like device filled with saline is placed through an endoscopic procedure, and, since it doesn’t require an incision, you can go home the same day. It works well for someone who needs to lose 20 to 40 pounds quickly, those with a BMI in the 30–40 range, and for people who need an additional, powerful tool to lose weight along with diet and exercise.

It’s generally removed after six months in the stomach. For people who don’t need or want weight loss surgery but could use some extra help, the intragastric balloon can be a good option.

2 Sleeve gastrectomy

In a sleeve gastrectomy, nearly 80 percent of the stomach is removed. The “new” stomach, which is now the shape of a sleeve or a banana, holds a much smaller quantity of food, which helps the patient get full faster and eat less. Another big benefit, however, is how this procedure effects gut hormones that control hunger and satiety.

This procedure is easier on the body than an actual bypass and doesn’t take as long to complete. That makes it a good option for patients who aren’t good candidates for gastric bypass surgery but still need a surgical intervention for rapid weight loss.

3 Gastric bypass

Gastric bypass is the procedure most people think of when they hear the term “weight loss surgery.” During gastric bypass surgery, the stomach’s size is significantly reduced in size, but the flow of blood is also re-routed. People who get this procedure often lose half their body weight or more.

They are not as hungry and cannot each much food at a time. If you choose this procedure, you will need to stick to your new way of eating for a lifetime, and you will also need to comply with follow-up appointments and vitamin and mineral supplementation to stay healthy.

4 Duodenal switch

The first part of the duodenal switch procedure is very much like the gastric sleeve, but the second part bypasses the first part of the small intestine. By bypassing nearly three-quarters of the small intestine, patients will initially eat smaller meals but will eventually be able to eat larger portions without weight gain.

That takes place because bypassing so much of the small intestine means that patients don’t absorb as many calories from the food they eat. This allows them to eat more without getting enough calories to gain weight, and it’s considered to be the most effective of the four types of bariatric surgery.