Bariatric surgery includes a variety of surgical procedures that help people lose weight. They’re performed on either the stomach or intestines. Two common bariatric surgical procedures include gastric sleeves and gastric bypasses.
Doctors who offer these surgeries may also provide ReShapeTM treatments. ReShape is another weight-loss procedure, but it’s non-surgical.
Both a gastric sleeve and a gastric bypass reduce the size of the stomach so that it can’t hold as much food at one time. The way they reduce the stomach’s size differs, though.
A gastric sleeve reshapes the stomach into a tube-like shape or sleeve. Once the stomach is in this shape, it’s not able to absorb as many calories from food, because food is passed onto the intestines faster.
A gastric bypass separates the stomach into a large, lower chamber and a small, upper chamber. Food is direct through the upper chamber only, bypassing the larger chamber. The larger chamber may be left in place or surgically removed, depending on the type of gastric bypass being performed.
Some bariatric surgeries require an overnight stay in a hospital, but many can be completed as outpatient procedures. When the surgery is done as an outpatient procedure, patients are able to go home after the surgery is finished. Going home both lets the patient recover in the comfort of their own home and can help reduce the total cost of the procedure.
Anyone who is significantly overweight may want to consider bariatric surgery. Doctors typically reserve surgery for patients who are obese and unable to lose all the weight they want to through diet and exercise alone. Even patients who aren’t sure whether they’re technically obese, however, are welcome to see a bariatric surgeon for an evaluation. Doctors regularly help patients decide whether they would benefit from a surgical or non-surgical weight loss treatment.
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