New Weight Loss Procedure Offers Alternative for Some

Addressing weight once and for all can be a big concern for people who are considered morbidly obese. If left unchecked, obesity can promote heart disease, diabetes and many other life-limiting conditions. While surgical procedures offer tremendous results and have helped thousands lose weight and keep it off, not everyone is an excellent candidate for operations like the gastric sleeve or gastric bypass. A relatively new option is providing hope for those who simply cannot or are not willing to undergo an intense procedure. Known as the endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty, this non-surgical alternative is considered minimally invasive and has proven itself quite useful in promoting effective weight loss without the need for a scalpel.

The endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty is designed to provide similar benefits to the traditional sleeve gastrectomy procedure that is performed surgically. The endoscopic version, however, takes about 40 minutes to perform and requires no cutting. Instead, an endoscope is inserted into the body. The scope carries with it a special suturing device that is used to shrink the size of the stomach, effectively limiting its holding capacity. Since the procedure involves no cutting, recovery time tends to be rather minimal.

Although lacking in some of the benefits associated with the sleeve gastrectomy, the endoscopic procedure has held up well in clinical testing. One study involving just under 100 patients treated in this manner showed about 18 percent weight loss after a year and roughly 21 percent over two years.

Obesity is a serious concern across the United States where an estimated third of the population is considered overweight. People who are obese find themselves at much greater risk for seriously life-limiting illnesses along with a host of other potential complications. Taking steps to address weight can greatly improve overall health. If obesity is a concern, speak with a healthcare provider for case-specific advice.

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