Weight Loss (Bariatric Surgery)
Weight loss surgery, technically called bariatric surgery includes a variety of procedures performed on people who have obesity. Weight loss is achieved by reducing the size of the stomach with a gastric band or through the removal of a portion of the stomach. It is a popular procedure in Iran. According to a report in 2017, more than 7000 bariatric surgeries are annually performed in the country. Weight loss surgery in Iran is performed using the latest laparoscopic techniques by specialists who have completed bariatric surgery fellowships.
Why Weight Loss Surgery?
Bariatric Surgery may be an option for people who are severely obese, suffer from weight-related problems or who cannot lose weight by traditional methods. Surgery promotes weight loss by restricting food intake or by interrupting the digestive process.
To be a candidate for bariatric surgery, you must:
- be 100 pounds or more overweight
- have a body mass index (BMI) over 35
- have made multiple attempts to lose weight by non-surgical means
Even with bariatric surgery, the best results are achieved by eating appropriately, modifying behavior and participating in regular physical activity.
Why Iran for weight loss surgery?
If you are looking for a safe and affordable weight loss procedure abroad, do consider adding Iran to your list of options for four reasons.
1. Excellent Doctors
Adopting the latest medical approaches and technologies, Iranian bariatric surgeons possess the practical know-how in laparoscopic bariatric surgeries. The fact that one of the most popular weight loss surgeries (gastric plication) was originally pioneered by an Iranian surgeon is a testament to the great competence of Iranian doctors in this field.
2. Modern Hospitals
Iran enjoys a host of well-equipped medical facilities, especially in large cities, which boast modern medical standards. These mostly private hospitals and hospital-hotels make use of sophisticated equipment and highly professional medical staff to offer the best healthcare services, including different kinds of bariatric surgeries, to local and foreign patients.
A great number of Iranian hospitals possess International Patients Departments (IPDs), which are specially designed to offer services to foreign patients in a very convenient manner. They also enjoy luxurious inpatient rooms and suites to accommodate patients and their companions while they are staying in hospital for treatment.
3. Attractive Prices
Weight loss surgery in Iran is offered at very affordable costs compared to other countries. Read ‘weight loss surgery cost in Iran’ section below.
4. No Waiting Lists
As a foreign health tourist, you will not need to stay on a waitlist for a long time for a bariatric surgery in Iran. If you seek a procedure through a medical tourism facilitator, it will organize the surgery and your travel in just a few days. Be careful to choose a well-known health tourism agency that has a fine reputation in offering services to foreign medical tourists.
Weight loss surgery cost in Iran
Depending on the type of weight loss procedure you wish to have, the cost of a weight loss surgery in Iran ranges from $2000 to $5000, including all costs (clinic, tests, medicine). If you prefer to pay for an all-inclusive package that includes all other services such as flight, hotel, transfer, interpreter and so on, a weight loss surgery in Iran would cost you some $500 to $700 more. The following chart is a comparison of gastric sleeve surgery costs in different countries.
Am I a candidate for weight loss surgery?
Generally, weight loss surgery is recommended for you in any of the following cases.
- Your BMI is above 40;
- Your BMI is above 30 and you have specific obesity-related conditions (comorbidities), such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, diabetes, severe joint pain, and sleep apnea;
- You have attempted to lose weight for at least two years but failed to do so;
- You have been obese for at least 3-5 years;
- You are determined to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle for the rest of your life.
Depending on your BMI and your conditions, the surgeon chooses the most suitable method among the various weight loss surgeries to achieve the most optimal result. Some of the techniques limit the amount of food you can take, some make changes to your digestive system including the stomach and the small intestine to reduce the absorption of calories.This is very simple BMI calculator. Enter your weight and height to get your current Body Mass Index.
Check this BMI chart. It shows how much you must weight to maintain normal BMI.
Body Mass Index calculation is based on World Health Organization’s BMI classification
According to this classification:
- if BMI is less than 18.5 it is considered underweight body
- if Body Mass Index is between 18.5 and 25 then it is normal body
- if BMI is between 25 and 30 then it is overweight category
- if BMI is greater then 30 it is obese
Body Mass Index values are the same for females and males and age-independent.
Common types of weight loss procedures
Gastric sleeve surgery
Top-Weight-Loss-Surgery-Procedures This is the most commonly performed weight loss surgery today largely because it’s the most effective with the lowest risk of complications.
What’s involved? “We go in laparoscopically through five tiny incisions or a single incision in the belly button and cut out 70 to 80 percent of the stomach so that it looks like a sleeve,” says Dr. Imani. “You feel full quicker, and there are marked decreases in levels of ghrelin, also known as the hunger hormone,” he says. “My patients are simply not hungry and have to remind themselves to eat.”
Benefits: “You can lose up to 70 percent of your excess weight in a year,” Dr. Imani says. There are also improvements, if not reversals, in some of the conditions linked to obesity such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and sleep apnea. Still, “surgery is just a tool, not a cure.”
Some things to know about weight-loss procedures in general: If they involve surgery, they carry the typical risks of excessive bleeding, infection, blood clots, and a potentially bad reaction to anesthesia. Depending on the nature of the surgery, risks can include gallstones, hernia, and stomach perforation. And because the operations can block the absorption of certain foods and nutrients, you may need to take nutritional supplements.
To qualify for these procedures, you must have a body mass index (BMI) of 40 or greater, be roughly 100 pounds’ overweight, or have a BMI of at least 35 and one or more obesity-related issues, such as diabetes or high cholesterol. In case you’re wondering, here’s what you need to know about BMI.
Gastric banding or lap band surgery was the hottest weight loss procedure for years, but it has fallen out of favor. In 2011, bands represented 35.4 percent of all weight loss surgeries; in 2016, they made up just 3.4 percent, according to statistics from the ASBMS.
What’s involved? Your surgeon places a silicone band with an inflatable inner collar around your upper stomach to restrict how much you can eat.
Benefits: The band is reversible and adjustable with saline fills. You may lose up to two or three pounds a week in the first year after the surgery, but one pound a week is the average.
Gastric bypass was once the gold standard of weight loss surgery.
What’s involved? In simple terms, your surgeon staples a part of your stomach to curb food intake and then re-routes a Y-shaped part of the small intestine so it attaches to the stomach pouch and food can bypass the duodenum (the first part of the small intestine). The Roux-en-Y bypass is the most common form of gastric bypass surgery.
Benefits: You will lose 60 to 80 percent of your excess weight, the ASBMS states. One man’s journey after gastric bypass ranks as one of the most inspirational weight-loss transformations of 2017.
What’s involved? SIPS involves the creation of a sleeve that is larger than the typical gastric sleeve with an attachment below the pyloric valve to control the emptying of the stomach into the midgut.
Benefits: “It’s not as drastic as the sleeve surgery, yet weight loss is comparable,” he says. Preserving the pyloric valve prevents the rapid rise and fall of blood sugar. This valve controls the flow of partially digested food from the stomach to the small intestine.
What’s involved? Endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty is basically gastric sleeve surgery without surgery. During the procedure, a flexible tube with a camera and an endoscopic suturing device attached is inserted down your throat into your stomach. The tiny camera allows the doctor to see inside your stomach, and create the sleeve using sutures sans incisions.
Benefits: Studies show an average weight loss of 39 pounds after six months, with a weight loss of 42 pounds at a year. There are also significantly fewer complications and shorter hospital stays compared with gastric sleeve and gastric banding, according to research data presented at the scientific conference Digestive Disease Week 2017. Also, it may be available to people not heavy enough to qualify for other procedures: If your BMI is above 30 and you’ve been unable to lose using diet and other methods, endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty may be an option, Mayo researchers suggest.
Benefits: “The data been pretty good, and it’s the only thing that holds a candle to the efficacy with bariatric surgery, but most people find this to be a non-starter,” Dr. Kashfi says. The reality of dumping your stomach after every meal can be off-putting for many people.
What’s involved? One or more balloons are placed into your stomach by swallowing or a minor procedure where they take up space in your stomach, reducing how much you can eat. They stay in place for up to six months. “You feel full quicker and learn portion control,” he says. “It’s a great jump start for a diet and is paired with nutritional counseling,” Dr. Garber says. Balloons stay in place for up to six months before they are removed. Expect regular follow-up throughout the process.
Benefits: “These are great options for people with a BMI of 30 to 40,” says Dr. Imani. (The Obalon system changed this dad’s life.) “I’ve done about 750 of these, and patients lose an average of 36 to 90 pounds,” he says.