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Published on November 21, 2016

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Innovative Weight Loss Option: When Diet & Exercise Aren’t Enough

If you want to lose 30 to 50 pounds, but have struggled to with diet and exercise alone, the latest in non-surgical weight loss procedures – known as endoscopic sleeve gastroplasty (ESG) – can help you eat less and lose weight without surgery. It’s also a great option for those who don’t qualify or feel ready for bariatric surgery.

Bradley Thaemert, MD, FACS, the only board-certified surgeon in the Avera region with the specialized training needed to offer ESG, is excited to offer this innovative solution to patients at Avera McKennan Hospital & University Health Center.

“As a non-surgical procedure there are no incisions. Instead, an endoscope with a suturing device is inserted into the mouth and used to sew the stomach down to a very tiny pouch,” he describes. “It’s a safe and effective way to create a smaller stomach without undergoing surgery to remove part of the stomach.”

With this non-invasive procedure, many patients are able to go home the same day and can expect a quick recovery followed by rapid initial weight loss. The majority of weight is lost within the first three to six months and studies have shown an average of 19.8 percent total body weight loss.

It can also help you sustain weight loss. Unlike the ORBERA Intragastric Balloon which is removed after six months, the ESG sutures stay in place and have shown to provide satiety and additional weight loss for at least two years.

While you lose weight, you’ll also lower your risk of serious weight-related health conditions such as diabetes, heart disease and hypertension, and enhance your energy level.

A Team Approach to Weight Loss

As with any weight loss procedure –whether surgical or non-surgical – the key to long-term success is lifestyle change. Eating a healthy diet and exercising are required to not only achieve, but also maintain weight loss. However, you won’t have to go at it alone. Avera’s multidisciplinary team, including registered dietitians, will provide you with the guidance and encouragement you need each step of the journey.

Follow-up appointments throughout the year after your procedure provide an opportunity to update your care team with your progress and talk with them about any challenges or questions you have.

“We know – both from studies and our experience – that the more patients engage with our team, the better their odds are for success,” says Thaemert. “So we really encourage them to check in with us for accountability. We’re here for them.”

ESG is recommended for patients who are 30 to 50 pounds overweight, with a body mass index of 30 to 40. Learn more about non-surgical weight loss procedures and weight management services available at Avera.

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