Bariatric Surgeon

Bariatric-Surgeon-The-Sleeve-Center-1A bariatric surgeon is a medical specialist who performs procedures designed to help severely obese people lose weight. At our center, we provide patients with access to a top bariatric surgeon in Orange County. Board-certified surgeon Dr. H. Joseph Naim has performed several weight loss procedures and is committed to helping patients see results and live healthy lives.

Examples of Bariatric Surgery Procedures

Bariatric surgeons perform operations intended to facilitate weight loss by limiting the amount of food that the stomach can contain or by causing malabsorption of food, or both. Examples of such procedures include the following:

  • Gastric Bypass: The gastric bypass is probably the best-known bariatric procedure. The surgeon cuts the top part off of the stomach and makes a small pouch out of it. They then cut the first part of the small intestine in half and attach the bottom half to the stomach pouch. They move the top half of the small intestine further down the small intestine and attach it there, so the patient will benefit from the digestive enzymes and stomach acids it contains. Gastric bypass surgery can enable a patient to lose as much as 80 percent of their excess weight, and the typical patient keeps over 50 percent of the excess weight off. However, these results vary.
  • Bariatric-Surgeon-The-Sleeve-Center-2Gastric Band: The adjustable gastric band is an inflatable band placed around the top part of the stomach. It is attached to a tube that emerges out of the patient’s skin and has a device that can inflate or deflate the band and thus control how much food the patient can eat at a given time. The band has the large advantage of being reversible; when the patient reaches and maintains their healthy weight, the surgeon can remove the band. Patients that use adjustable gastric bands can lose 40 to 50 percent of their excess weight. These results may vary.
  • Sleeve Gastrectomy: In sleeve gastrectomy, the bariatric surgeon removes 80 percent of the patient’s stomach. The remaining 20 percent is a pouch shaped like a banana. The results of the surgery are comparable to those of the gastric bypass; the patient can lose 60 to 80 percent of their excess weight. Studies of patients that underwent the procedure three to five years ago showed that most kept over 50 percent of the weight off. However, these results vary from one patient to the next.
  • Biliopancreatic Diversion with Duodenal Switch (BPD/DS) gastric bypass: This procedure also involves removing most of the stomach and making a banana-shaped pouch out of the remainder.Bariatric-Surgeon-The-Sleeve-Center-3 The surgeon then cuts the duodenum or first part of the small intestine off the stomach’s outlet and sews the distal or last part of the small intestine into its place. As a result, the food bypasses three-quarters of the small intestine. Those three-quarters, however, contain pancreatic enzymes and bile that the patient will need to break down and absorb fat and protein. The surgeon therefore attaches that intestine to the distal small intestine. The BPD/DS enables patients to lose 60 to 70 percent of their excess weight, and it reduces the absorption of fat by at least 70 percent. The surgery is especially helpful for people with diabetes. Weight loss results vary for this procedure as well.

Bariatric surgical procedures can be open or laparoscopic. In an open procedure, the bariatric surgeon makes a large incision. In a laparoscopic procedure, the surgeon inserts a laparoscope with a small camera attached through a small incision. Surgeons tend to prefer the laparoscopic methods, for they don’t have to cut through muscle, there is less risk of complications, and the patient has a shorter recovery time.

How does bariatric surgery help people?

Bariatric-Surgeon-The-Sleeve-Center-4The various surgical techniques used have all enabled people to lose a substantial amount of weight. Studies have shown that 90 percent of people who undergo bariatric surgery not only lose weight, but are able to keep at least 50 percent of it off.

That weight loss provides all kinds of benefits like improved health and increased longevity. Patients with conditions linked to obesity like diabetes or sleep apnea can gain control over those conditions. As the patients lose weight, they find it easier to exercise, and exercising increases the speed of their metabolism, so they find it easier to lose still more weight. The weight loss induced by the surgery also improves the patient’s mental state, making them less prone to anxiety and depression. The patient can also experience increased self-esteem as a direct result of weight loss.

Each patient’s experience varies, so it is important to talk to your doctor about your realistic expectations and discover together how you could benefit.

Who is a candidate for bariatric surgery?

Bariatric-Surgeon-The-Sleeve-Center-5Bariatric surgery is for extremely obese people who have been unable to lose the needed weight through more conventional and less invasive methods like diet and exercise. If a person is otherwise healthy, they are considered a candidate for bariatric surgery if they have a body mass index (BMI) of at least 40. That means they are at typically least 100 pounds overweight. If a patient has at least two conditions linked to obesity like Type 2 diabetes, sleep apnea, or heart disease, they may also be considered a candidate if the they also have a BMI of over 35. By contrast, a person with a normal weight will have a BMI between 18.5 and 24.9.

While the vast majority of people undergoing bariatric surgery are adults, teenagers do sometimes undergo the procedures. To be a candidate, an adolescent must have tried to lose weight for at least six months. They also have to have stopped growing and reached their adult height. Thus, girls have to be at least 13, and boys have to be at least 15. Adolescent candidates for bariatric surgery also need to have a BMI of at least 40 and have health problems like sleep apnea that are linked to obesity.

To schedule a free consultation with a bariatric surgeon, contact us today.