We sat down with Dr Cha Kar Huei, Consultant General Surgeon at Subang Jaya Medical Centre, to find out more about bariatric and metabolic surgery and how it is different from the more popular gastric bypass surgery for weight loss and better health.
In layman terms, what is bariatric and metabolic surgery and how does it help reduce chances of obesity-related death?
Bariatric surgery helps patients achieve weight loss by reducing the size of the stomach. Talking about those who are morbidly obese, with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of between 35 to 40, by losing weight they can achieve better blood-sugar levels, and this helps decrease the chances of death due to diabetes or other weight-related medical conditions like hypertension, fatty liver disease, and others. Patients with sleep apnea breathe better after surgery. And, of course, weight loss means it’s easier on their knees and joints. In patients who need bariatric surgery, only about 30% are diabetic, but almost all are obese.