There are many different types of weight loss surgery in New Jersey. The JFK for Life Center team has extensive experience performing the following procedures with a proven record of success.
Defining Bariatric Surgery
Bariatric surgery is a treatment option for people living with morbid obesity—especially for those who have not experienced long-term weight loss success through other means. Often referred to as weight loss surgery, bariatric surgery has transformed the health and lives of more than 800,000 people in the past six years.
How Does Bariatric Surgery Work?
Bariatric surgery is the clinical term for several different procedures. The procedures use one or both of two approaches to help patients lose weight and improve or resolve co-morbid conditions.
During these procedures, the surgeon creates a small stomach pouch, that limits the amount of food patients can eat. The smaller stomach pouch fills quickly, which helps patients feel satisfied with less food.
Examples of restrictive procedures:
- Gastric banding
- Sleeve gastrectomy
During these procedures, the surgeon reroutes the small intestine so that food skips a portion of it. The small intestine absorbs calories and nutrients from food, and avoiding part of it means that many calories and nutrients are not absorbed.
Surgeons rarely perform strictly malabsorptive procedures. Most procedures that use malabsorption also use restriction.
Certain procedures use both restriction and malabsorption. For example, Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery uses a combination of restriction and malabsorption. During the procedure, the surgeon creates a small pouch. The surgeon then attaches a Y-shaped section of the small intestine directly to the stomach pouch. This allows food to bypass a large portion of the small intestine, which absorbs calories and nutrients. The smaller stomach pouch causes patients to feel fuller sooner and eat less food; bypassing a portion of the small intestine means the patient’s body absorbs fewer calories.
Example of combination procedures:
- Gastric bypass
These different methods work to help patients lose excess weight, lower their BMI, and transform their health by resolving or improving co-morbid conditions. Bariatric surgery has many benefits that can lead to a healthier, higher quality of life. It also has certain risks.
Gastric Bypass Surgery
The Roux-en-Y gastric bypass surgery is the most common weight reduction procedure. A small pouch is created along the inner curve of the stomach and a segment of the small intestine is attached to the pouch to allow food to bypass a portion of the intestine. This results in reduced calorie and nutrition absorption.
Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding
Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band surgery is a purely restrictive surgical procedure in which an adjustable Silastic (silicone) band, is placed laparoscopically around the upper stomach to create a small pouch with a narrowed outlet.
Your JFK for Life bariatric surgeon will help you decide which of the available bands would be right for you.
The Banded Gastric Bypass (The Capella Procedure) is a minimally invasive bariatric surgical procedure that adds an additional restrictive component to the bypass. A non-adjustable band is placed at the end of the gastric pouch to help maintain restriction. It offers the consistency of the bypass surgery with the permanence of a band.
Vertical sleeve gastrectomy works mainly by reducing stomach volume. During surgery, the stomach is divided vertically and 80 to 85 percent of it is removed. What is left is a long vertical “sleeve” that is shaped like a banana. The nerves to the stomach and the outlet valve (pylorus) remain intact to preserve the functions of the stomach while reducing the volume it is able to hold.
Open Versus Minimally Invasive Surgery
Bariatric surgery has been performed for decades. For most of those years, surgeons performed bariatric surgery using an open technique, which required a long incision and traditional medical instruments.
As medical technology evolved, the laparoscopic or minimally invasive technique was introduced and widely adopted. Using the minimally invasive technique, a surgeon performs the same operation, but creates several ¼ to ½ inch incisions and uses long-handled instruments. This technique is associated with faster recovery, less pain, and less scarring.
Both approaches have similar success rates in reducing excess weight and improving or resolving co-morbid conditions.
Not all patients are candidates for the laparoscopic approach, just as not all bariatric surgeons are trained to perform this less-invasive method.
In some patients, the laparoscopic, or minimally invasive, technique cannot be used. Here are reasons why you may have an open procedure, or that may lead your surgeon to switch from laparoscopic to open:
- Prior abdominal surgery that has caused dense scar tissue
- Inability to see organs
- Bleeding problems during the procedure
The American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery recommends that laparoscopic bariatric surgery should be performed only by surgeons who are experienced in both laparoscopic and open bariatric procedures. The surgeons at JFK for Life meet these criteria.