History Of Bariatric Surgery

When Was Bariatric Surgery Invented? A Brief History Guide

The history of bariatric surgery can be traced back several decades, and understanding its origin can provide valuable insight into the field's continuous development. As you delve into bariatric surgery, uncovering the inception of these life-altering procedures is essential.

Bariatric surgery originated in the 1950s, when doctors recognized the need for surgical interventions to help their patients with severe obesity. Dr. A.J. Kremen performed the first intestinal bypass procedure in 1954, paving the way for future advancements in the field. Over the years, surgical techniques have evolved, resulting in an array of options for individuals seeking assistance in weight management.

This article will guide you through the timeline of bariatric surgery's development, highlighting milestones and achievements within the field. As you explore the history, you will gain a deeper appreciation for the innovation and dedication of medical professionals who have shaped the landscape of bariatric surgery today.

What Is Metabolic Surgery?

Metabolic surgery, also known as bariatric surgery, is a surgical method used to treat obesity and its related complications. These surgeries primarily focus on modifying your stomach and digestive system to promote weight loss and improve metabolic health. You may consider undergoing metabolic surgery if you have a high body mass index (BMI) and have struggled to lose weight through conventional methods such as diet and exercise.

Various bariatric procedures are available, each targeting different aspects of your digestive system. Some of the common procedures include sleeve gastrectomy (gastric sleeve) and gastric bypass surgery. Sleeve gastrectomy involves removing a large part of your stomach, leaving a smaller pouch, like a "sleeve." This smaller stomach limits the amount of food you can consume, ultimately helping you control your calorie intake and reduce hunger.

Metabolic surgery has shown significant success in achieving long-term weight loss, improving obesity-related health issues, and reducing the risk of complications. Aside from weight loss, these surgeries also impact the hormones responsible for appetite regulation and glucose control. By altering your digestive system's structure, particularly the distal small intestine, metabolic surgery improves insulin sensitivity and glucose metabolism—a major benefit for those with type 2 diabetes.

However, it's important to remember that metabolic surgery is not a cure-all solution for obesity. As a patient, you'll need to commit to a healthy lifestyle, including a nutritious diet and regular physical activity, to ensure the best possible outcomes. Before opting for surgery, you should consult a qualified surgeon specializing in bariatric procedures to discuss your specific needs, goals, and potential risks.

History of Bariatric Surgery

First Gastric Bypass Surgery

Who Invented Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery has its roots in the 10th century when early surgeons employed various techniques to address obesity. However, the modern era of bariatric surgery began in the 1950s. Dr. Edward E. Mason, a surgery professor at the University of Iowa, is regarded as the "father of bariatric surgery." Along with Chikashi Ito, Dr. Mason developed the first gastric bypass surgery, significantly contributing to the bariatrics field.

When Was the First Bariatric Surgery Performed?

In the early 1950s, Dr. A. J. Kremen and Dr. Charles P. Humberd pioneered the jejunoileal bypass, a groundbreaking technique for weight loss. This procedure involved bypassing a large portion of the small intestine, limiting the absorption of nutrients and calories. However, the surgery had some severe side effects, including bile reflux, malnutrition, and liver problems, which led to the development of safer alternatives.

The Evolution of Bariatric Surgery

Over the years, bariatric surgery has evolved to become a safer, more effective treatment for obesity and related conditions. Here are some milestones in its development:

  • In the late 1960s, Dr. Edward E. Mason developed the first gastric bypass surgery, known as the Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. This procedure became the gold standard for weight loss surgery.
  • In 1971, Dr. William Pritchett documented the experimental evaluation of the nutritional importance of biliopancreatic diversion (BPD), which reduces caloric intake and absorption by bypassing a large portion of the intestine.
  • Dr. Patrick O'Leary introduced the first gastric banding technique in 1978. This method involved placing a silicone band around the stomach, which helped restrict food intake.
  • Dr. Howard S. Sword proposed the vertical banded gastroplasty (VBG) in 1980, a combination of gastric stapling and a restrictive silicone band. Although successful, it later fell out of favor due to its complications and the rise of adjustable gastric bands.
  • Adjustable gastric bands, such as the LAP-BAND® System, gained popularity in the late 1980s and early 1990s for their adjustable nature and minimally invasive approach.

The Year Gastric Bypass Surgery Develops

The genesis of gastric bypass surgery occurred in the year 1954, when Dr. A.J. Kremen first developed it. The surgery was a significant milestone in the realm of bariatric surgery – the surgical treatment for obesity.

Interestingly enough, the primary intent of the surgery was not to treat obesity. The main focus was on a condition known as peptic ulcer disease, which, at the time, was prevalent and troublesome. Gastric bypass surgery, initially called "intestinal bypass surgery," was formulated to reroute gastric juices and prevent contact with ulcers.

As time progressed, it became evident that patients who had undergone the surgery were experiencing significant weight loss. It led Dr. Edward E. Mason to refine the procedure, targeting obesity specifically.

Here is a simple timeline of crucial events in gastric bypass surgery development:

  1. 1954: Dr. A.J. Kremen developed the intestinal bypass surgery.
  2. 1966: Dr. Edward E. Mason improved the surgical procedure for weight loss.
  3. 1994: Dr. Alan Wittgrove introduced laparoscopic gastric bypass.

Fast-forward to today, there are multiple techniques used for gastric bypass, such as Roux-en-Y gastric bypass and mini-gastric bypass. These innovations underscore the tremendous progress made since the surgery's inception.

The Year Gastric Banding Develops

Gastric Banding

In the world of bariatric surgery, gastric banding has come to be a popular option for individuals seeking weight loss solutions. In the late 1970s and early 1980s, this surgical technique developed, revolutionizing how obesity was treated.

The foundation of gastric banding was laid by Dr. Edward E. Mason, who is also known as the "father of obesity surgery." He experimented with various techniques and designs, eventually leading to the development of the gastric band. One of the first notable examples was the Greene-Notley adjustable gastric band in 1980 developed in Canada. This marked the beginning of a new era in the field.

The 1980s saw several researchers working on improving the design and safety of gastric bands. This led to the introduction of the Lap-Band System in 1993, which received FDA approval in 2001. This system featured an inflatable, adjustable band placed around the upper stomach section, enabling restrictive weight loss without altering the stomach's structure.

Here is a brief timeline of the key milestones in gastric banding history:

  • Late 1970s: Dr. Edward E. Mason starts working on gastric banding techniques and designs.
  • 1980: Introduction of the Greene-Notley adjustable gastric band.
  • 1993: The Lap-Band System is introduced.
  • 2001: FDA approval and commercialization of the Lap-Band System.

Gastric banding quickly gained popularity due to its minimally invasive approach. As compared to other weight loss surgeries of the time, gastric banding offered a safer and less complicated option, with shorter recovery periods and reduced risk of complications.

Despite its numerous benefits, you must understand that gastric banding is not a universal solution for weight loss. Individual results may vary, and the procedure's success relies heavily on one's commitment to lifestyle modifications, such as maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise. Consulting a qualified healthcare professional is essential before undergoing any weight loss surgery to ensure the best possible outcome tailored to your unique needs.

The Year Gastric Gastrectomy Surgery Develops

In the early 20th century, bariatric surgery emerged as a medical procedure that ambushed the world of medicine. Specifically, gastric gastrectomy was developed in the early 1950s by Dr. A.J. Kremen, Dr. Henry Buchwald, and Dr. Edward Mason. As a landmark invention, it aimed to revolutionize the treatment of obesity and related health problems.

The invention of gastric gastrectomy kickstarted a whole new era in the fight against obesity. In order to understand the process and its impact on human health, a deeper dive into the surgery's origins is necessary.

Early History

Dr. Kremen, an American surgeon, developed the first form of gastric gastrectomy, known as the jejunoileal bypass, in 1954. This procedure involved bypassing a significant portion of the small intestine, thereby limiting the absorption of nutrients. Although this pioneering method had considerable success in terms of weight loss, it also came with a multitude of complications.

Refinements and Progress

As medical professionals continued to explore bariatric surgery, two surgeons, Dr. Buchwald and Dr. Mason, conducted their own research, which led to advancements in gastric gastrectomy techniques. Dr. Buchwald introduced the concept of malabsorptive procedures, which focus on limiting nutrient absorption but maintaining the stomach size, while Dr. Mason introduced gastric bypass surgery in 1966. This new technique combined both the restrictive and malabsorptive approach, cementing its place as a significant step forward in bariatric surgery.

The Year Duodenal Switch Surgery Develops

Sleeve Gastrectomy

In 1988, Dr. Douglas Hess introduced the duodenal switch procedure, an innovative development in the field of bariatric surgery. This breakthrough significantly advanced weight loss surgery options, thus providing patients with a more effective solution to obesity-related health issues.

Duodenal switch surgery is a combination of restrictive and malabsorptive procedures. The restrictive aspect consists of a sleeve gastrectomy, in which approximately 80% of the stomach is removed. This leads to a reduction in the amount of food you can consume. On the other hand, the malabsorptive component involves rerouting a part of your small intestine, causing a decrease in calorie and nutrient absorption.

Some notable benefits of this surgery include:

  • Significant weight loss: You may lose up to 70-80% of your excess body weight within 1-2 years after the procedure.
  • Improvement in weight-related health issues: Duodenal switch surgery can help improve or even resolve conditions such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and sleep apnea.
  • Long-term results: Studies indicate that the duodenal switch surgery tends to provide more sustained weight loss compared to other procedures.

It's also essential to consider the potential risks involved in undergoing duodenal switch surgery. These risks may include:

  1. Nutritional deficiencies: Due to the reduced absorption of calories and nutrients, you may need to take supplements and vitamins lifelong to maintain overall health.
  2. Surgical complications: As with any surgery, you may experience complications such as infection, bleeding, or leakage in the gastrointestinal system.
  3. Weight regain: While less common in duodenal switch, weight regain is still a possibility if you don't commit to a healthy, balanced diet and regular exercise regimen.

In conclusion, the invention of the duodenal switch surgery has made a significant impact on bariatric surgery options available for patients. It has proven to be an effective combination of restrictive and malabsorptive procedures, leading to substantial and sustainable weight loss. However, it's crucial to consider the potential risks involved and to maintain a long-term commitment to healthier lifestyle choices following the procedure.

Also Read: Best Surgical Procedure for Weight Loss: Complete Guide

Back to blog

Best Vitamins for After Weight Loss Surgery