Types of Weight Loss Surgeries

The Cooper bariatric surgery team provides two of the most common types of weight loss surgeries—Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB) and vertical sleeve gastrectomy (VSG)—and has extensive experience in each. 

Our team does not perform laparoscopic adjustable gastric band (LAGB) surgery because the procedure is outdated. However, we do provide follow-up care for people who have undergone the procedure elsewhere, including adjusting or removing the band. 

Roux-en-Y Gastric Bypass (RYGB)

During this procedure, the surgeon reduces the size of the stomach to about the size of an egg and attaches it to the intestine. People typically lose 50 percent to 75 percent of their excess weight in the first 12 to 18 months after surgery. This procedure is usually performed using minimally invasive techniques.

Key benefits include:

  • The most common surgical weight loss procedure in the U.S.
  • Size of stomach is surgically reduced to form a small pouch, about the size of an egg
  • Roux limb of the small intestine is brought up and connected to the pouch
  • Food empties directly into the intestine
  • Patients spend about 2.5 days in the hospital
  • Changes the patient’s metabolism
  • The amount of food eaten must be regulated to prevent the pouch from stretching
  • 50 percent to 75 percent of excess weight is lost in first 12 to 18 months after surgery
  • Difficult to reverse

Vertical Sleeve Gastrectomy (VSG)

The surgeon removes a large portion of the stomach. This surgery does not change the way food passes into the intestines. It also does not change the way the body processes food and nutrients. People typically lose 50 to 60 percent of their excess weight two to five years after surgery.

Key benefits include:

  • The surgeon removes a large portion of the stomach, 85 percent or more in most cases
  • Reduces the stomach’s capacity to hold food while allowing it to function normally
  • Food continues to follow its natural path
  • Patients spend about 2.5 days in the hospital
  • 50 percent to 60 percent of excess weight is lost within two to five years after surgery
  • Impossible to reverse due to the amount of the stomach organ that is removed
  • Some insurance providers consider this technique “investigational” and do not cover this surgery; however, there is very good medical data that shows this procedure is safe and effective
  • More than one surgical procedure is needed in some cases and is planned for by the patient and physician well in advance

Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Band (LAGB)

The surgeon places a small, bracelet-like band around the top of the stomach to restrict the amount of food a person can eat. This surgery involves several small incisions, less than two inches each. The degree of band tightness affects how much food you can eat and the length of time it takes for food to leave the stomach pouch. This surgery does not change the way food passes into the intestines. It also does not change the way the body processes food and nutrients. People typically lose 45 to 72 percent of their excess weight three to six years after surgery.

Key benefits include:

  • By creating a smaller stomach pouch, the band limits the amount of food that can be eaten at one time, so you feel full sooner and stay full longer.
  • As you eat less food, your body will stop storing excess calories and start using its fat supply for energy.
  • The surgery does not change the way the body processes food and nutrients
  • Your hospital stay is between 1 to 3 days
  • This surgery can be reversed
  • People typically lose 45 to 72 percent of their excess weight three to six years after surgery