Weight Loss Surgery Competes with Obesity Drugs

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Pending FDA approval, a weight-loss drug that blocks the absorption of fat may soon become available to consumers in an over-the-counter form and would contain approximately half the dose currently included in the prescription-strength drug. Studies have shown that obese people who took the drug lost about five or six pounds more than patients given a placebo.

Pending FDA approval, a weight-loss drug that blocks the absorption of fat may soon become available to consumers in an over-the-counter form and would contain approximately half the dose currently included in the prescription-strength drug. Studies have shown that obese people who took the drug lost about five or six pounds more than patients given a placebo.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 64 percent of adults aged 20 years or older are overweight or obese. As with any serious disease, curing it requires medical attention. In many cases, surgical treatment offers possibly the only effective long-term method of weight control. In fact, according to scientifically published reports, in 95 percent of cases, significant weight lost through nonsurgical programs is regained within three to five years.

Gastric bypass surgery is a surgical procedure in which the stomach is divided into two sections, and one of the two sections is a new, smaller pouch that will act as the new stomach. The procedure can be performed as an open or laparoscopic procedure. With either style, the new stomach has the capacity of roughly two ounces, as opposed to its former size of about two quarts. This drastic reduction limits the stomach’s ability to hold food, resulting in a feeling of fullness after eating only a small amount. Known as Roux-en-Y divided gastric bypass, the procedure is widely accepted as the most effective surgical weight-loss treatment available.

“We are committed to providing the best possible care and outcomes for our patients,” said Laurence Tanaka, M.D. “In our opinion, surgery the most effective tool to aid in the significant weight loss of clinically obese individuals.”

Surgeons at Pacific Bariatric Surgical Medical Group (http://www.pbsmg.com/) have performed almost 10,000 procedures on adult and adolescent patients at Scripps Mercy Hospital. As a result of outstanding aftercare programs and support groups, patients at Pacific Bariatric see a success rate of slightly higher than the national average.

Pacific Bariatric Surgical Medical Group and Scripps Mercy Hospital are nationally designated by the American Society for Bariatric Surgery as a Center of Excellence for bariatric surgery. Pacific Bariatric Surgical Medical Group, also known as Hillcrest Surgical Medical Group, Inc., has an 80-year tradition of surgical excellence and leadership in San Diego County. Scripps Mercy Hospital has been a health care leader in San Diego County for more than 115 years, offering patients an unparalleled continuum of care. For more information, visit http://www.pbsmg.com/.

Established in 1890 by the Sisters of Mercy, Scripps Mercy Hospital serves the San Diego and Chula Vista communities. With 700 licensed beds, more than 3,000 employees and 1,300 physicians, Scripps Mercy Hospital is San Diego’s longest established and only Catholic medical center. With two campuses, Scripps Mercy Hospital is the largest hospital in San Diego County and one of the 10 largest in California. For more information, visit http://www.scripps.org/mercy.

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Kristin Reinhardt
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