Question: What is bariatric surgery, how effective is it in reducing weight, and what are the risks/side effects?
Answer: Bariatric surgery is the name of the group of procedures that really is used to cause weight loss. We now know it's a much broader type of surgery than that. We typically call it metabolic surgery now, because not only does it cause weight loss, but it improves diabetes and lipid disorders like cholesterol and other things. And there are a variety of different procedures.
The most common used in this country are gastric bypass, which involves rerouting the stomach and intestine, and gastric banding, which is a narrowing of a part of the stomach so that the food passes through it more slowly.