Why Gastric Bypass Surgery?
It's Life Saving
The research shows that patients who are morbidly obese are almost 10 times more likely to die within five years without surgery than with it.
Gastric bypass and gastric banding surgery isn’t for everyone. These operations are designed for people who are at a weight that has caused, or leaves them at significant risk for life-threatening weight related medical conditions. (See “Who is a Candidate”) The word “morbid” refers to death. Morbid obesity is the disease of obesity that leads to death. The research shows that a person's death rate skyrockets when they hit about 100 pounds overweight. It is at this time when the risk of death from obesity is far higher than the chance of death from surgery - and it is at this time when surgery becomes the only method that has been proven to help patients gain control of their weight long term.
Obesity is largely a genetic disease, being ingrained in a person’s metabolism. For the person suffering from morbid obesity (100 pounds or more overweight), diets are proven to have a 95+% failure rate. Diets actually alter the body’s biochemistry in a way that leads to increased hunger. Dieting leads to an increase in Ghrelin, a hormone that leads to hunger. This is most likely partially accountable for the fact that most morbidly obese individuals gain back more weight than they lost when the diet fails. Gastric Bypass Surgery actually decreases Ghrelin levels. After the surgery, patients frequently, for a period of time, lose their desire for food altogether. The surgery also gives the patient a very small stomach, so patients feel very full with much smaller amounts. These two aspects work together so the stomach fills quickly and the emotional desire (head-hunger) for food decreases as well.
The powerful combination of a small stomach and a much decreased desire for food gives the patient the best opportunity to lose the weight and keep it off. The NIH research proves that only surgery is proven to be effective in the long term for most patients with morbid obesity. Gastric bypass remains the gold standard amongst weight loss operations but gastric banding is gaining in popularity over the past couple of years.
One of the most important facts that everyone should know when considering surgery is that when the risk of gastric bypass surgery is weighed against the risk of obesity, the research shows us that patients who are 100 pounds overweight are almost 10 times more likely to die within five years without the surgery than with it.