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Dr.Weight // Bariatric surgery

Bariatric Surgery

Weight loss surgery

Bariatric Surgery - 2008

The name Bariatric surgery is derived from the Greek words baros and iatrike denoting respectively heaviness and medicine, and deals therefore with obesity and problems associated with excessive weight.

Sufferers who have tried unsuccessfully to lose weight through dieting, physical activity, pharmaceutical and dietary supplements and other forms of conservative treatment, and who find their health adversely affected, have still the option of bariatric surgery as the most effective and permanent means of weight loss.

With only 1% of sufferers maintaining their new weight after dietetic and medical treatment (and many of the other 99% returning to their full previous weight or an even greater one), more and more people are opting for surgical treatment to lose weight, improve their health and prolong their lives.

Whether weight loss surgery is suitable for a particular individual depends on his Body Mass Index (BMI). Surgery is recommended if this is 40 or higher, though the necessary BMI level decreases to 35 in the presence of such additional factors as high blood pressure, diabetes, joint problems and varicose veins. (BMI can be measured here.)

For half a century surgeons have been trying to improve the results of obesity treatment, and the basic procedures thus developed are detailed in the article History of bariatric surgery. The following table presents a classification of bariatric operations according to mechanism.


Mechanism of action




Decrease of absorbtion of nutrients in the digestive tract (malabsorption)

Jejunoileal bypass

No longer performed owing to high level of complications.

Biliopancreatic bypass

Rarely performed owing to relatively high incidence of long-term metabolic consequences.

Narrowing of the lumen of the stomach (restrictive operations)

Sleeve gastrectomy

Relatively new operation of high effectiveness.

Antireflux sleeve gastroplasty

New operation of high effectiveness.

Adjustable gastric banding

World standard.

Vertical gastroplasty

Rarely performed; does not give stable weight loss.

Combination of both above-mentioned mechanisms (malabsorption + restriction)

Gastric bypass

World standard.

Reduction of internal gastric capacity

Intragastric balloon

Not strictly surgery, but rather an outpatient endoscopy procedure. Gives a temporary effect.

Decrease of the appetite

Gastric electronic pacemaker


Experimental work.