What is weight loss surgery and its cost?

Weight loss surgery

Weight loss surgery

Weight loss surgery is called bariatric surgery in medical terminology. It is done to chronic obesity patients who cannot be treated with other non-surgical treatments or when other treatments have not shown any result. It focuses on weight and metabolism. Sometimes, these surgeries are beneficial to treat high blood pressure, diabetes, high cholesterol, and many other chronic diseases associated with obesity. It enhances patients’ quality of life, lifestyle and increases their lifespan.

The operation aims to modify the intestines and stomach to treat obesity. Some operations make the stomach smaller, and some make the bypass smaller. These changes in the stomach, bypass, and intestines make your food consumption and food absorption low. It decreases appetite and also makes you feel full quicker.

Types of weight-loss surgeries and procedures

There are many types of weight-loss surgeries available. Your bariatric doctor decides which surgery suits you according to your medical history and your existing medical conditions. Every surgery has its own set of advantages and disadvantages. 

Sleeve gastrectomy

Sleeve gastrectomy is called laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy or sleeve. 80%of the stomach is removed, and the remaining stomach is made into a banana shape.


The stomach is free from the organs surrounding it, and using surgical staplers, 80% of the stomach is removed.


  • The stomach holds less food, thus decreasing calorie intake.
  • It decreases hunger as the amount of hunger hormone reduces and also increases fullness.
  • Simple and short surgery time.
  • It can be performed in patients with certain chronic conditions.
  • It can be done as an initial process for severely obese patients.


  • Non-reversible.
  • It might cause an onset of reflux and heartburn.
  • Metabolism is not much affected.

Adjustable gastric band

A silicone device is placed on the top of the stomach to restrict the amount of food consumed.


The gastric band device is placed and secured around the top part of the stomach, making a small pouch-like shape above the band.


  • Low complications.
  • No division of the stomach or intestines is required.
  • The band can be adjusted or removed as per need.
  • Low risk of vitamin and nutrition deficiency.


  • The band needs several adjustments and requires regular office visits.
  • Slower weight loss process.
  • Risk of band slippage or damage to the stomach gradually.
  • High chances of re-operation.
  • It can enlarge the oesophagus and cause swallowing problems.

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass

Also called gastric bypass surgery, has been in existence for more than 50 years. The name is adopted from the term which means “in the form of Y.”


The stomach is divided into smaller top portions in the egg size, and the larger portion is bypassed so that it no longer stores and processes food. The small intestine is also divided and connected to the top stomach pouch. The bypass is connected 3-4 feet below the intestine to empty the stomach. This forms a Y shape connection.

The upper top stomach pouch receives less food and has less absorption. The stomach acids and enzymes from the bypassed stomach will mix with the food after going through the first part of the intestine.


  • The newly formed top stomach pouch holds less food which implies fewer calories.
  • It decreases hunger, makes you feel full.
  • Improves the symptoms of reflux or heartburn.
  • Long-lasting weight loss.
  • Decreases obesity-related conditions.


  • Technically more complicated than sleeve gastrectomy or gastric band.
  • Vitamin and nutrient deficiencies 
  • Small bowel complications and obstructions
  • Risk of developing ulcers

Biliopancreatic diversion 

Biliopancreatic diversion with duodenal switch (BPD-DS) surgery creates a tube-shaped stomach as in a  sleeve gastrectomy and gastric bypass where the small intestine is not used.


A sleeve-like stomach is created first, and then the first portion of the small intestine is separated from the stomach. That first part of the intestine is connected to the tube-like stomach that is created in the beginning.

When the recipient eats the food, the food passes through the sleeve-like pouch of the stomach and then the intestine.


  • Consume less food, lesser calories, and nutrient absorption.
  • Reduced hunger, feeling full quickly, and also improves blood glucose levels.
  • Efficient in decreasing obesity.
  • It is an effective surgery for the treatment of type 2 diabetes patients.


  • It has a high complication rate and operation time.
  • High malabsorption.
  • A high risk of vitamin and nutrient deficiency exists.
  • Can develop reflux or heartburn.
  • More frequent bowel movements.

Intragastric balloon system

It is a restrictive weight loss surgery where a deflated balloon is used to induce fullness and restrict food intake.


First, a deflated balloon is placed in the stomach through the mouth, and then it is filled with saline to occupy a significant space in the stomach.


  • It makes you feel full, decreases hunger.
  • No surgery is required. 
  • No hospital stay is required, but an experienced doctor must do it.
  • It is temporary and stays for only six months.


  • Stomachache, nausea, and vomiting can be observed during the initial stage.
  • Not for someone who had weight loss surgery before.
  • Not for someone with bowel disease or liver failure.
  • It may lead to a perforated stomach and can be over inflated with air or fluids.
  • It might cause acute pancreatitis as the balloon presses surrounding organs.
  • Caution: FDA reported 5 deaths by this procedure.

Weight loss surgery cost

Weight loss surgeries or bariatric surgeries are expensive abroad, and countries like India offer cheap and efficient bariatric surgeries. It might cost up to 7000 USD or approximately 512000 INR. But the average cost of bariatric surgery can be between 290000 INR to 350000 INR depending upon the state, hospital, and the facilities provided by the hospital. The surgery might require up to 10 days or even more days of stay in the country.

Take Away 

Weight loss surgeries are called bariatric surgeries and focus on restricting food intake, food absorption. Many types of weight-loss surgeries are practiced worldwide, but which one suits the best for an obese patient depends on the underlying cause, medical history, and other medical conditions. This article discusses the types of weight-loss surgeries and the cost of bariatric surgeries.

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