Weight loss surgery
Weight loss surgery, also known as bariatric surgery, is generally performed on patients with obesity. There are several types of bariatric procedures, but all focus on making modifications to the digestive system with the goal of significant weight loss.
Surgical weight loss center in Largo, Florida
Bariatric surgery is considered the most successful approach to overcoming obesity.
This is an informed surgical decision, not a cosmetic procedure, and it is by no means "the easy way" to lose weight. You will still have to work hard to become healthier with better diet and exercise habits. And at Florida Bariatric Centers at HCA Florida Largo Hospital, we are proud to be able to help you do this with both nonsurgical and surgical weight loss solutions.
Conditions weight loss surgery can treat
Obesity can shorten your lifespan and increase your risk of developing serious health conditions. Weight loss operations offer you the opportunity to change that and live a healthier life. They can also reduce, and sometimes reverse, obesity-related medical conditions, including:
- Acid reflux
- Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD)
- Sleep apnea
- Unhealthy blood pressure levels
- Unhealthy lipid (cholesterol) levels
Weight loss procedures we offer
As a Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery Accreditation and Quality Improvement Program (MBSAQIP) Accredited Comprehensive Center, we provide surgical and nonsurgical weight loss solutions, including both traditional and robotic surgical techniques. These weight loss treatment options include the following:
Endoscopic gastric balloon (nonsurgical weight loss)
The endoscopic gastric balloon procedure is a nonsurgical bariatric option for many people with a BMI between 30 and 40. On average, patients lose about 35 pounds with the balloon in place, combined with dietary counseling and an exercise program.
During this minimally-invasive procedure, a medical balloon is inserted with an endoscope — a thin, flexible scope with a tiny video camera and light on the end. The procedure can take as little as 15 minutes, and you typically go home the same day.
The balloon temporarily occupies space in the stomach, helping you feel full with less food. While the balloon is in place, it enables you to make lifestyle changes, such as dietary modifications and exercise routines.
After six months of building these healthy habits and adapting to a healthier way of living, the balloon device is removed.
Adjustable gastric banding
The adjustable gastric band system involves a purely restrictive surgical procedure in which a band is placed around the uppermost part of the stomach. Because the amount of food that passes through the band is regulated, it makes you feel full faster. Food digestion occurs through the normal digestive process.
Gastric sleeve (vertical sleeve gastrectomy)
Gastric sleeve is a surgical weight loss procedure in which a portion of the stomach is removed, reducing it to about 15 percent of its original size. No bypass is involved in this procedure, making it a beneficial alternative if you have a higher BMI.
Gastric bypass (Roux-en-Y)
Gastric bypass restricts food intake and the amount of calories and nutrients the body absorbs by creating a smaller stomach pouch and changing the digestive process. As a result, food bypasses a large part of the stomach and most of the small intestine.
Minimally invasive bariatric surgery techniques
Robotic surgery involves surgeons using robotic technology to perform your procedure. These minimally invasive procedures usually require fewer and much smaller incisions, which means you get less scarring, less pain and a faster recovery.
The robotic system also gives our surgeons enhanced visualization, greater dexterity, increased precision and better control of surgical instruments.
Our hospital is the first in the area to have surgeons perform:
- Robotic adjustable gastric band
- Robotic single-incision adjustable gastric band
- Robotic sleeve gastrectomy
Diet and exercise changes after bariatric surgery
Ideally, your diet will have changed before bariatric surgery to solidify the habit of eating more protein, eating smaller portions and eating healthier foods. Immediately after weight loss surgery, your eating habits will then drastically change in ways that will permanently impact your life.
After weight loss surgery, you must strictly follow a specified diet to ensure proper healing and obtain adequate nutrition. For example, in the first nine to 12 weeks after surgery, you must gradually progress to eating solid foods.
The number one reason weight loss surgery "fails" is because patients abandon the postsurgical diet and modified exercise program prescribed by their weight loss surgeon or dietitian.
Weight loss surgery support groups
Support group meetings are an incredibly helpful way to get the emotional support and encouragement you need to have long-term, sustained weight loss. Our bariatric surgeons and weight-loss specialists will suggest support groups for preoperative and postoperative support for you.
These free group meetings offer opportunities to learn more about life after weight loss surgery, to share experiences and to gain support from our program’s professionals.
Candidates for weight loss surgery
Bariatric surgery isn't the right approach to weight loss for everyone, but you may qualify if:
- You are 100 pounds or more over the healthy body weight for your height
- You have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or greater
- You have a BMI of 35 or greater and obesity-related health conditions, such as high blood pressure or diabetes
- You are otherwise unable to sustain a healthy body weight, even through medically supervised dieting
Bariatric surgery requirements
The exact tests, forms and steps required before weight loss surgery can vary from person to person. However, we are here to help you navigate the process and have outlined the typical steps here:
Verify insurance coverage
Schedule a bariatric surgery consultation with us
After you have gathered required documentation, please make an appointment with our weight loss team and we'll talk about the next steps together.
Document medically monitored weight loss attempts
Complete a psychological evaluation
Complete a nutritional assessment
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