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Important Facts On Lap-band And Laparoscopic Sleeve Gastrectomy

By Joseph Foster

Surgery is increasingly being accepted as an option of weight loss. The surgeries that are found in this category are known as bariatric operations. The advances that have been made in surgical practice in recent times such as the adoption of laparoscopic techniques have made the operations more effective and safer. Lap-band and laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy are among the most commonly performed types of bariatric surgeries.

Surgical weight loss options should only be considered if lifestyle changes have been tried with no success for a considerable period of time. Although the lifestyle modifications tend to take a bit long before results can be appreciated, they do not have any serious side effects. The two main areas where changes can be made are the diet and level of physical activity. Strive to have a healthier diet and to engage in regular physical exercise.

This surgery is also known as gastric banding. As suggested by the name, a silicon band is used. Fitting this band on the upper portion of the stomach significantly reduces the size of your stomach. As a matter of fact the remainder is just a small pouch whose capacity is about an ounce of food. This operation is done laparoscopically meaning that very small incisions (surgical cuts) are required to see it through.

With a reduced stomach volume, one tends to fill up rather fast. With filling, comes satiety meaning the overall effect will be a reduction in food intake. Most of the food that is eaten is channeled towards food production and very little is left for storage in tissues. Weight gain is therefore controlled and in a matter of weeks or months, there is net weight loss.

A plastic tubing is usually connected to the silicon tube on the stomach to help make adjustments when need be. This is made possible by filling this tube with saline or withdrawing the same. When the tubing is filled with saline, the degree of the squeeze is increased and the size is reduced further. The reverse happens when the saline is drawn from the tube.

Sleeve gastrectomy works the same way as the band procedure. In this type of surgery, a large section of the stomach is removed leaving between 20 and 25%. The result is a long tubular pouch which fills at a faster rate than the original organ. The pouch also empties at a faster rate meaning that there is less time for nutrients to be absorbed.

Sleeve gastrectomy, unlike the band procedure, is irreversible. However, both are restrictive surgeries. This means that they are aimed at reducing the holding capacity of your stomach. In the sleeve surgery, a large section of the stomach (75 to 80%) is removed to leave a tubular pouch that looks like a sleeve. The reduced capacity and the increased emptying time are the main causes of weight loss in this case.

Note that the results are not the same even when performed at the same center. The differences are due to patient as well as doctor factors. The most important patient factors include severity of condition, the type of lifestyle after the procedure and genetic factors. Doctor factors may include techniques used and skill level.

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