Gastric Sleeve Benefits: Hypertension

The Benefits of Gastric Sleeve Surgery: Reducing High Blood Pressure

Being obese increases the risk of acquiring chronic diseases such as hypertension and diabetes which may in turn lead to diseases of the heart and other organs which will eventually lead to death. Hypertension, or high blood pressure, is twice commonly diagnosed in obese individuals than those with normal body mass index. Knowing the risks obesity incurs, physicians are now strongly recommending obese individuals to trim down. Losing even 10% of the total body weight can significantly lower risks related to obesity.

The signs and symptoms associated with high blood pressure include dizziness, headache, shortness of breath and blurred vision. Sometimes, however, hypertension presents as an asymptomatic condition until it has other complications already, thus labeled as a ‘silent killer.’ Complications include heart disease, atherosclerosis, eye damage, renal failure and stroke. Taking into consideration the complications, it is consequently very important to diagnose and immediately manage the condition. Since hypertension has been associated with obesity, physicians also strongly recommend dietary and lifestyle changes such as decreasing salt and fat intake which eventually leads to losing weight. However, if attempts of weight loss cannot be achieved through dietary measures, weight loss surgery is of an option.

One of the weight loss surgeries physician highly recommend to very obese individuals is gastric sleeve surgery. The surgery can be done laparoscopically under general anesthesia. It is a much safer operation for individuals who are very obese. Gastric sleeve surgery reduces the stomach capacity typically by 70-80% without involving alterations to the intestinal tract, resulting in a person feeling satiated much faster as the result of the procedure. Additionally, metabolically speaking the surgery also helps in weight loss by decreasing the amount of ghrelin, the hunger causing hormone.

Lifestyle adjustments in diet and exercise and compliance with medication regimes are important factors in determining the outcome for people with hypertension who have had gastric sleeve surgery. Studies show that weight reduction and regular exercise improves blood flow and helps reduce heart rate and blood pressure. According to a 2004 article from the Journal of the American Medical Association nearly 75% of patients with high blood pressure can have improvement or resolution of the their high blood pressure after weight loss surgery. Thus, weight loss surgery remains a very viable hypertension management solution for obese individuals.

If you are struggling with your health and are ready to make a change, contact one of our experienced care coordinators today!