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Types of Weight Loss Surgery continued...

Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding

This is the second most common weight loss surgery. Using laparoscopic tools, the surgeon places an inflatable silicone band around the upper stomach. He tightens the band so the stomach becomes a small pouch with a narrow outlet.

Afterward, the patient feels full faster, eats less, and loses weight. The surgeon can tighten or loosen the band to minimize side effects and improve weight loss.

Gastric banding is considered the least invasive weight loss surgery. Surgeons can reverse the procedure, if necessary.

Biliopancreatic Diversion

Biliopancreatic diversion is similar to Roux-en-Y gastric bypass:

Like a Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, the surgeon divides the stomach and creates a small pouch.

The surgeon then connects the stomach to an even further-down section of intestine, compared with Roux-en-Y gastric bypass.

After biliopancreatic diversion, the stomach is small, and food bypasses a large amount of intestine. You eat less and absorb fewer calories, causing weight loss.

Only a few weight loss surgery centers perform biliopancreatic diversion. It is highly effective, but is difficult to do. Also, biliopancreatic diversion often leads to low nutrition.

Vertical Banded Gastroplasty

Vertical banded gastroplasty creates a small stomach pouch using staples and a plastic band.

Vertical banded gastroplasty leads to less weight loss than other surgeries. Roux-en-Y gastric bypass and gastric banding have mostly replaced vertical banded gastroplasty.

What to Expect From Weight Loss Surgery

For most people, weight loss surgery leads to significant weight loss. Ask your doctor exactly how much you are likely to lose and what you will need to do to maintain the results.

Expect to eat very small meals and get regular exercise.

Remember, this is major surgery, and it has risks.

Most complications include infections, minor bleeding, ulcers, or hernias. It's rare, but there can be life-threatening complications, such as blood clots, major bleeding, or serious infections.

These risks may be higher at surgical centers that do not perform large numbers of weight loss surgeries.

Assuming no complications happen, most people stay in the hospital 2 to 3 days after weight loss surgery and return to normal activities within 2 to 3 weeks.

WebMD Medical Reference

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