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Surgery in the Treatment of Obesity (cont.)

Classifications of Surgery

Surgeries for weight loss can be classified as follows:

  • Restrictive procedures that limit the amount of food intake by reducing the size of the stomach
  • Malabsorptive procedures that interfere with absorption of food from the digestive tract
  • Combined restrictive and malabsorptive procedures

The 2 most commonly performed operations for weight loss in the United States are the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and the adjustable gastric band (AGB). Both procedures could be done laparoscopically with smaller incisions than those required for traditional open approach (laparotomy). Small incisions result in less pain, early ambulation, and rapid postoperative recovery and less chance for wound complications (wound infection, fluid collection, and hernia).

Preoperative Workup

Careful preoperative patient screening, selection, preparation, and education are the keys for postoperative success. A comprehensive multidisciplinary approach to patients' screening and education, including consultations with a dietitian, psychologist, internist, and bariatric surgeon is mandatory. In selected cases, cardiac, pulmonary, and endocrine evaluation may be needed. Patients should have a clear understanding and realistic expectation of benefits, risks, and long-term consequences of surgical treatment.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 9/15/2014
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