Bariatric surgery

Bariatric surgery, or stomach reduction surgery, is a surgical treatment for obesity. For people with great obesity (III degree), who need food is very strong, this is the only solution that saves their health and life. It allows not only to lose excess weight, but also to reduce the risk of obesity-related diseases (hypertension or diabetes).

Bariatric surgery was initiated in the United States as early as the last century. They were forced by the spreading obesity epidemic and growing statistics on the incidence of type 2 (obesity-related) diabetes.

Since then, many scientific papers have been produced confirming the thesis that bariatric surgery is the only way out for some patients. Such people failed to maintain a strict diet and observe a minimum amount of physical activity.

Qualification for bariatric surgery

The indication to perform bariatric surgery isvery high obesity threatening the health and life of the patient and when all other methods of treatment of obesity, based on diet, physical activity and pharmacotherapy have failed.

Thanks to bariatric procedures, the amount of food consumed by the patient is drastically reduced. A reduced stomach does not allow you to take more than it is able to hold. This also reduces appetite, and the message “I’m full” is sent from the stomach to the brain faster than normal.

Values that are criteria for eligibility for bariatric surgery are BMI >35 kg/m2, high risk of obesity-related diseases and body weight in women about 100 kg and in men about 120 kg.

Preparation for bariatric surgery

Before the procedure, patients must undergo a number of consultations and specialist examinations. This preparation period takes approx. 2 months (sometimes longer).

One of the stages of preparation is a psychological assessment, during which the specialist excludes more serious mental disorders and prepares him for life after the operation. The main focus is on the problem of excessive food consumption. The consultation also aims to strengthen the power of new eating habits.

Equally important is consultation with a dietitian, who will guide you through the process of losing excess weight and to educate the patient on the aspect of healthy nutrition and encourage increased physical activity.

Other specialists in the field of medicine are also essential to ensure that the patient is as prepared as possible for the procedure, to reduce the risk of possible postoperative complications and to speed up recovery.

Bariatric surgery – types

  • stomach reduction (restrictive operation)
  • gastric band – the stomach is squeezed at its top, which makes it difficult for food to pass further into the stomach. This will make the patient feel full faster, which will reduce the intake of food. This will force the patient to regularly eat smaller meals.
  • sleeve gastrectomy – this is a partial gastrectomy leading to the removal of its greater curvature and leaving a part of the stomach with a volume of about 100 ml.
  • vertical gastroplasty with a restraining tape – the upper part of the stomach is divided, forming a small reservoir. The mouth of this reservoir to the rest of the stomach is covered with tape. This technique has developed significantly in recent years.
  • by pass (restrictive-disabling operation) – bypassing gastrointestinal syndrome. The stomach becomes compact, only a small part of it is preserved and its upper part is connected to the intestine. This technique has been shown to have a significant effect (about 64% of positive cases) on weight loss and glycemic improvement in diabetic patients (76% of cases).

Bariatric surgery – nutritional recommendations

After the operation, you should take care of a proper diet and lifestyle and follow a few rules to avoid complications and recurrence of diseases.

  • thoroughly chew every bite of food
  • eat in peace and take a long time to eat
  • eat regular, but low-volume meals
  • do not lie down after a meal (this will prevent esophageal reflux – withdrawal of digestive content)
  • do not drink during meals and refrain from drinking for at least 30 minutes before meals
  • limit the intake of simple sugars in any form
  • avoid alcohol and carbonated drinks

During the first week after the operation, the diet should include only easily digestible products, such as: vegetable broth, yogurt and white cottage cheese, fruit and vegetable mousse, vegetable puree, dairy-based cocktails. This will allow for faster recovery after surgery, but also the appearance of gastric irritation.

Up to a month after the operation, the patient should maintain a light diet based on soft and mixed products. Meat should be introduced no earlier than 2 weeks after the operation. After the 15th day after the procedure, you can slowly introduce food into the diet in small pieces (only 1 new harder product at a time in one meal).

Also important from the perspective of physicians is the constant monitoring of blood parameters that may change postoperatively, such as: iron, ferritin, vitamins of groups B and D, albumin, CRP, total cholesterol, glycemia.

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