As 2020 approaches and people begin to contemplate their New Year’s resolutions, weight loss is often at the top of the list. There are two excellent options available for dramatic weight loss: the gastric bypass procedure and gastric sleeve procedure.
Both procedures have been performed thousands of times, and their outcomes have been studied and their risk and benefits evaluated. While the American Diabetes Association has accepted the gastric bypass as the recommended treatment for the obese patient with type 2 diabetes, both procedures are extremely safe when compared to other commonly performed operations. The overall 30-day mortality rate is less than the laparoscopic gallbladder removal.
Studies have shown weight loss at 18 months to be 60 to 70 percent with resolution of comorbidities to include hypertension, type 2 diabetes and sleep apnea approximately 60 to 80 percent of the time.
Robotic gastric bypass and robotic sleeve gastrectomy are replacing laparoscopy and open procedures. The robot provides a stable platform with improved illumination and visualization. Improved instrumentation also facilitates the procedure, making it shorter with less movement of tissues.
Sleeve gastrectomy typically can be performed in less than an hour and the gastric bypass in just over an hour, using the robotic approach, with typically an overnight stay in the hospital.
Both procedures are usually covered by insurance, to include Medicare.
John L. Mathews II, DMD, MD, FACS is a general surgeon who is Director of Bariatrics and Medical Staff President at Princeton Baptist Medical Center.
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