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For many, lifestyle changes are not enough to get the weight off and keep it off. The Center for Surgical Weight Control at Cabell Huntington Hospital offers effective, proven surgical solutions for weight loss and improved quality of life.

D. Blaine Nease, MD, FACS, is Chief of Bariatric Surgery at Cabell Huntington Hospital and has extensive experience and advanced clinical training in weight loss surgical procedures. Three of the most common procedures Dr. Nease performs are gastric sleeve resection, revision weight-loss surgery and gastric bypass.

“Traditionally, we’ve done all three of these procedures laparoscopically. However, I have been doing them robotically as well,” Dr. Nease said. “The benefit of using robotics is that the instruments have a larger range of motion. This allows us to do even more challenging operations.”

Gastric sleeve resection is a minimally invasive procedure where the surgeon removes up to 80 percent of the outer portion of the stomach, leaving a small, functioning pouch that is about the size and shape of a small banana. Unlike some other options, it does not involve rerouting the intestine. Through calorie restriction and changes in gastric hormones, patients feel fuller faster, longer. Studies show individuals who have had gastric sleeve resection lose approximately 60 percent of their excess body weight between 18 and 24 months after the operation. This procedure also has a low risk of malnutrition, the lowest long-term complication rate and can help resolve diabetes mellitus.

A patient may have revision weight loss surgery if they have had an adjustable gastric band inserted previously.

“We remove it and convert the person to another weight-loss procedure such as a vertical gastric sleeve resection or a gastric bypass,” Dr. Nease said.

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass involves creating a small pouch that is closed off from the rest of the stomach. This pouch holds about an ounce of food or liquid. The intestine is rerouted to take the food or liquid to the small intestine. Patients who have gastric bypass surgery lose an average of 66 percent of their excess body weight in 18 months.

The least invasive surgical weight-loss approach, the adjustable gastric band, creates a pouch at the top portion of the stomach, helping the patient feel fuller, longer. Patients with the gastric band lose, on average, one to two pounds a week. In 24 months, patients lose an average of 46 percent of their excess body weight. Though it is the slowest rate of weight loss, some benefits are no stomach stapling, cutting or intestinal rerouting; low risk of malnutrition; no dumping syndrome. The adjustable gastric band has the lowest complication rate in the immediate post-operative period.

“Because traditional open bariatric surgery has a higher rate of infection and hernias — as well as increased pain and a longer recovery time — the minimally invasive approach to bariatric surgery is the standard of care in the majority of cases,” Dr. Nease said.

“As the leader in bariatric surgery, Cabell Huntington Hospital strives to raise the standard of care to the next level. That’s what we are doing. Not many centers are performing robotic bariatric surgery, but soon this will likely become the standard as well. We are staying ahead of the game.”

For more information on bariatric procedures, or to take the first step in your weight loss journey and attend one of our bariatric seminars call the Center for Surgical Weight Control at 304.399.4118.

Semeret Munie, MD General Surgeon

Semeret Munie, MD, is a general surgeon specializing in bariatric and minimally invasive surgery. She is proficient in performing comprehensive weight loss surgery using a minimally invasive approach. She is also trained in minimally invasive anti-reflux and foregut surgery as well as the repair of simple and complex abdominal wall hernias. She is certified by the American Board of Surgery in both general surgery and surgical critical care.

Dr. Munie earned her medical degree from the Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont in Burlington, Vermont, followed by a general surgery residency as well as surgical critical care fellowship at the Henry Ford Hospital in Detroit, Michigan. She then completed a bariatric and minimally invasive surgery fellowship at the Medical College of Wisconsin in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.

For more information, please contact Marshall Surgery, an outpatient department of Cabell Huntington Hospital, at 304.691.1200.

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