Prior to Covid-19, obesity was classified as the epidemic of the 21st century. In Ecuador, 60% of the population suffers from obesity, a classified disease and other related diseases such as hypertension, diabetes, heart, respiratory and kidney problems. Obesity reduces the quality of life and increases human mortality.
90% of cases are due to bad eating habits and lack of exercise. However, most obese patients can no longer lose the weight they need through diet and exercise alone. For them it is recommended to perform some surgical procedures.
Hernan Gonzalez and Sebastian Lerena, two laparoscopic surgeons who specialize in surgery and non-surgical treatment to combat obesity and overweight. They set up a gastrocenter two years ago, a center specializing in helping patients with weight loss, with a variety of options:
Surgery: gastric sleeve, gastric bypass and mini gastric bypass
Non-surgical: endoscopic intragastric balloon and digestible intragastric balloon.
For these specialists, the health of their patients is paramount, although they know that these processes also improve the aesthetic and psychological aspects. “Changes in health and metabolism are very important,” said Dr. Lerena
To choose a procedure, whether surgical or non-surgical, the first thing is a thorough assessment of the patient. The gastrocenter has a large team of professionals: psychologists, sports specialists, internists, nutritionists and bariatric surgeons. Prior to the operation, laboratory tests and a complete cardiac check-up are performed to determine the likelihood of intervention.
BMI and psychological assessment
Body mass index (BMI) is the best way to level patients. According to this and related diseases, the risk-benefit of the procedure is measured. BMI is very easy to calculate: weight in kilograms divided by the height in meters square. For example, if you weigh 68 kilograms and your height is 165 centimeters (68 ÷ (1.65) 2 = 24.98. com) and effectively check your BMI
While psychological assessment is also essential to identify whether the patient is ready and why he or she is deciding to choose treatment, it should be emphasized that his or her psychological assessment is crucial because effective and long-term outcomes depend on it.
They have a range of treatments, the goal being to find the best and specific treatment for each patient, the gastroenterologist stands to offer the best procedures, including quality supplies like intragastric balloons, which are performed with minimally invasive treatment and endoscopy for 20 minutes.
All gastroenteric procedures receive an appropriate six-month follow-up by gastroenterologist professionals. “Ever since we met the patient, we have been monitoring their weight all the time, we have been encouraging them at every stage. This is a very close follow-up with our post-surgical patients, in some cases every day they tell us how they are doing, how their clothes are starting to fit again and how they are starting to feel better, ”said Dr. Lerena.
This is part of the commitment of these professionals. According to Dr. Gonzalez, when they worked as assistants in the bariatric group, they realized that patients had no companions and that they felt alone, as most of the time they did not even see their surgeon. “Our efforts are directed so that the patient does not feel alone. The idea is to guide them, tell them what is involved in each method and be with them from beginning to end, ”he assured.
Gastrocenter Novaklinica is located in Santa Cecilia and has so far completed more than 250 successful procedures for weight loss.
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