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Question
Posted by: nans | 2003/01/16

bariartric surgery

Hi Cyberdoc,
I have searched your archives for any info an gatric bypass procedures. My stats are as follows: Weight 170, Height 1.65, Bmi 64. 28 years old. I do not have any serious illnesses but I am majorly concerned and I have tried everything from appetite suppressants, (Duromine as well) through to conventional diet groups, etc as well as physcological counselling.

I am actually looking for a surgeon within an extensive success rate in the Western Cape preferably. Do you think my Medical Aid will cover the costs? I have researched quite extensively on the subject and do know about all the dangers involved such as malnutrition, hair loss, fatigue etc. but I have to do something, I am desperate. I am especially interested in the lap. roux & y procedure and pref. not the open surgery. The laporostopic (hope spelling is correct) procedure is apparantly far less traumatic to the system.

I am also aware of the complete change in my lifestyle referring to my daily diet. I know that fluid intake is important after the op and I know that protein intake is of utmost importance. I also know about the different supplements & regular blood tests involved. Please advise me on your opinion. Do you think I am a candidate? I have heard about Dr de Beer in Pretoria but he performs an dated operation called the duodenal switch. Can you advice me on that option as well.

Thanks for the great service you are delivering...

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberDoc

Nans, you can expect a 40-60kg weight loss over 2 years with any of the operations that leave you with a stomach that can contain only about 25ml. The medical aid should pay as you are more than 100% overweight and it is a serious health risk.
A laparoscopic procedure is preferable, but it might prove to be too difficult technically. You have to understand that there is a serious risk of complications because you are so over weight.
I doubt that you need to come to Pta for the operation – your GP should be able to refer you to a competent surgeon in your area. You will need lots of support immediately after the operation, so it will be better to have your family and friends around you. Good luck.

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