UAB Morbid Obesity Surgery

Introduction

Obesity is the #1 nutritional disorder in our nation. In fact, it is one of the major causes of suffering, disability, and death. About 1/5 of Americans are above ideaeight by 30%, a level which is clearly detrimental to health. Dietary measures in persons who are greatly overweight can be succinctly summarized: They rarely work.

In 1992, a National Institutes of Health study revealed that medically supervised weight loss programs failed 96 to 98% of the time over a five-year period. Statistically, this suggests that dieting alone will not work for most morbidly obese patients; thus, surgical treatments are used for extreme obesity.

Detriment of Obesity

Severe obesity may harm the victim in many ways, some obvious and some subtle. Injurious effects may be manifested by the following:

  • Hypertension (high blood pressure)
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (enlarged heart)
  • Hyperlidemia (elevated cholesterol levels)
  • Diabetes (high blood sugar)
  • Cholelithiasis (gallstones/gallbladder problems)
  • Gastroesophageal reflux
  • Obstructive sleep apnea (airway is obstructed during sleep)
  • Hypoventilation (shallow breathing)
  • Degenerative arthritis (aching,worn, and swollen joints)
  • Psychosocial impairments(emotional and social problems)