How Bariatric Surgery Works
All bariatric procedures shrink your stomach, so you feel full after eating less food. As you begin to eat less, you lose weight.
Least Invasive Approach
You’ll recover sooner, experience less scarring and have a lower risk of complications (unexpected problems) because AnMed surgeons make the smallest possible incisions. Often, they use a surgical robot whose hands can bend and rotate further and move more precisely than human hands. You can feel confident in the experience of our surgeons because we’ve been using the robot for minimally invasive bariatric surgery longer than any other area hospital.
Ask what approach your surgeon plans to use for your procedure, so you know what to expect.
The most common and successful type of weight-loss surgery, gastric bypass works by dividing your stomach to create an egg-sized pouch. It holds just an ounce of food instead of the three ounces the full stomach holds. Everything you eat goes only into this pouch, bypassing the larger part of the stomach below.
Next, the surgeon divides your small intestine and connects it to the smaller pouch. This allows food to bypass some of the small bowels, meaning your body absorbs fewer calories.
This procedure can also reduce symptoms of diabetes and acid reflux—even before you start losing weight.
Gastric sleeve surgery removes about 80 percent of your stomach, including the part that releases a hunger-causing hormone. That means after surgery:
- You may not feel like eating as often as you used to
- Your blood sugar levels may improve
Unlike gastric bypass, sleeve gastrectomy doesn’t affect your intestines, so you’ll still absorb the same level of nutrients you did before.
Duodenal switch surgery starts with a sleeve gastrectomy, but also bypasses some of your small intestines, like gastric bypass. However, it bypasses much more—about 75 percent of the small bowels. This approach:
- Greatly reduces the calories and nutrients you absorb
- Decreases hunger
- Increases your sense of fullness
- Improves blood sugar control more than other types of bariatric surgery
If you have type 2 diabetes, duodenal switch surgery may be your best option.
Lap-Band® surgery places a silicone band around your stomach to limit how much you can eat. Your surgeon also will put a small port under your skin to inject a fluid that adjusts the band size. You’ll likely need to visit your surgeon’s office regularly after surgery to tighten or loosen the band to meet your weight goals.
If you’ve had bariatric surgery but weren’t satisfied with the results, ask an AnMed doctor about your options for a different procedure. Revisional surgery may benefit you if:
- You regained a lot of weight or lost less weight than you hoped despite following the instructions for life after surgery
- Your quality of life decreased due to side effects such as acid reflux, diarrhea or stomach ulcers
- Your stomach expanded, so you feel hungrier and eat more often
- Your gastric band slipped out of place or wore down
Your surgeon may be able to reverse your previous procedure or remove a gastric band, and then perform a different type of bariatric surgery to help you get better results.
Attend a Weight-Loss Seminar
Meet the AnMed team and learn more about our bariatric surgery program. Register for a Seminar
Preparing for Surgery
Look forward to a high level of support before any weight-loss procedure at AnMed.