Bariatric surgery

Bariatric surgery, or weight loss surgery, is a life-changing and sometimes life-saving decision, but long term weight loss is more than just surgery. At St John of God Geelong Hospital's Bariatric Centre, our experienced clinicians work with you to ensure you get the most out of your weight-loss journey.

Bariatric surgery at St John of God Geelong Hospital

Obesity is a chronic disease that can be overcome. It is no longer considered just a cosmetic issue caused by a lack of self discipline.

Making the decision to have bariatric surgery may not be easy, following a long weight management battle, but we work closely with you to tailor a program to help you reach your weight loss goals.

Am I candidate for bariatric surgery?

Bariatric surgery, also known as weight loss surgery, can help you lose weight and may help reduce associated chronic conditions.

This surgery may be suggested if you are overweight or obese. This is based on your body mass index (BMI):

  • if your BMI is between 25 and 30 you are overweight
  • if your BMI is above 30, you have obesity
  • if your BMI is 35, you have severe obesity

You can calculate your BMI online to help you understand your weight.

Research shows that obesity is not solely determined by behaviour which is why lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise on their own may not reduce your weight.

As there are a number of criteria that determines whether bariatric surgery is suitable for you, we recommend you speak to your GP who can refer you to our qualified bariatric surgeons to speak about your needs.

Bariatric surgery procedures

There are many surgery options for weight loss. Generally surgery works by reducing the portion sizes you can eat, controlling hunger and may have additional hormonal and metabolic effects that promote weight loss.

Your surgeon will discuss the best surgical option for you, based on your medical history, medications and other relevant factors.

Losing weight and keeping it off is not easy and requires planning and commitment to make life changes including healthy eating and regular exercise.

Our expert surgical teams use the latest minimally invasive techniques in weight loss surgery to help you recover faster and with less pain compared to open surgery. In most cases, your hospital stay will range between one and four days depending on the procedure.

Gastric balloon surgeryA gastric balloon is an inflatable device placed in the stomach using endoscopy for to six or 12 months. The balloon limits the amount of food the stomach can hold, creating a feeling of fullness and resulting in weight loss.
Gastric band surgeryGastric banding, commonly known as a lap-band, involves the placement of an adjustable silicone belt around the top portion of the stomach. This reduces stomach capacity which slows the passage of food to the intestine, signalling a sensation of fullness after consuming less food.
Gastric bypass surgeryThere are many different types of gastric bypass. The stomach is usually divided into two sections with food only going into the smaller section. The small bowel is often also divided and rejoined so that food bypasses the larger section of stomach and the first part of the duodenum where digestion starts. This procedure may have particular advantages if you have type 2 diabetes or gastric reflux.
Gastric sleeve surgeryThis procedure reduces the size of the stomach by surgically removing about two thirds of the outer part of the stomach. This leaves a long, narrow tube or sleeve which means you will feel full after consuming much less food. Removing most of the upper stomach (fundus) also decreases levels of the hunger hormone grehlin. This is the most common weight loss procedure performed in Australia.

Our expert care

Our doctors and nurses provide exceptional care to ensure you are offered the best surgery to meet your needs and care for you during your hospital stay.

Our physiotherapists, dietitians, psychologists and other allied health professionals are on hand from the moment your surgery is complete to help you recover and help you reach your weight loss goals.

Our care continues once you have left hospital to provide the ongoing support you need to maintain a healthy weight.

Our facilities

Our facilities at St John of God Geelong Hospital give you access to the best post-surgery care to help ensure your bariatric surgery is a success and you are able to maintain a healthy weight.

This includes:

  • fully-equipped gym
  • access to physiotherapists, dietitians, psychologists
  • hydrotherapy pool
  • outpatient support groups
  • ongoing care from our nurses and doctors.

Want to know more about bariatrics and weight loss?

Complete our enquiry form below to find out more about the St John of God Geelong Hospital Bariatric Centre. We are also hosting a Bariatric Surgery Information Evening for any community members who wish to know more about bariatric surgery.