Surgical Treatment for Severe Obesity [return to the list of articles]

Over 30% of the adult American population are overweight. It is estimated that over 30 billion dollars per year is spent pursuing diet related practices, but, unfortunately, research studies find that these diet efforts fail greater than 80% of the time. Considering 25 billion medical dollars are spent with obesity related diseases, such as hepertentson, heart disease, sleep apnea, diabetes and arthritis, obesity is a serious medical issue.

If you are obese, have failed diet regimens and wish to lose weight to improve your medical status and self-image, there are a number of medical and surgical options. Understand, one needs to lose only 5% of one's excess body weight to resolve greater than 80% of obesity related medial conditions. The first step in assisted weight loss is physician-monitored dieting, offered by your family doctor. If this is unsuccessful, a number of diet medications are available. These include appetite suppressors and fat absorption blockers. These again need physician monitoring and guidance.

Finally, if these strategies fail, and you are morbidly obese (defined as 100 pounds or 100% over your ideal body weight) surgical options such as gastric bypass are available. This is a proven successful treatment and is endorsed by the National Institute of Health. The procedure consists of stapling your stomach, thus allowing earlier saiety (feeling full faster). Literature reports approximately 70% loss of excess body weight one year after the operation. The risks of the surgery are low.

This treatment option is a serious decision and commitment between you and your surgeon and is reserved for those who are "morbidly obese," have failed diet regimens and exhibit obesity related medical conditions.

With careful pre-operative counseling and post-operative monitoring, gastric bypass can successfully treat morbid obesity.