Benenden Hospital has launched a new weight loss service.
The first clinics will be in September with the Hospital having just opened new theatres and patient rooms designed specifically with larger people in mind.
The weight loss, or bariatric service, is being provided in response to a growing obesity trend across the UK along with its associated weight-related conditions such as type 2 diabetes, hypertension and obstructive sleep apnoea.
The new service will be led by Consultant Bariatric Surgeon, Ahmed Hamouda and will be run in partnership with Weight Loss Surgery Kent.
Mr Hamouda says: “Patients usually consider weight loss surgery after trying everything else, such as changing their diets, trying to exercise more, hypnotherapy and numerous other methods without much success and at a huge expense.
“Any surgery has a risk of complications however weight loss surgery is now as safe, if not safer than gall bladder operations.
“Outcomes are dependent on following healthy dietary patterns and weight loss can range from 30-70% of excess weight. People are very pleased with the results, seeing the benefits of increased physical ability, greater social mobility and a boost to confidence and self-esteem.”
The bariatric team at Benenden Hospital is a multi-disciplinary team of surgeons, specially trained nurses, dieticians and psychologists who will discuss cases to agree a tailored package based on individual needs and with patients' best interests at heart.
For patients who opt for surgery the team will offer a gastric band or a sleeve gastrectomy.
A gastric band is where a band is placed laparoscopically (through keyhole surgery) around the top of the stomach, creating an hour glass effect that both restricts the amount of food that can be consumed and also giving a sense of early fullness.
Sleeve gastrectomy is also performed via keyhole surgery. This technique removes around 70-80% of the stomach, also restricting the amount of food that can be consumed and reducing food craving. This technique is non-reversible.
Mr Hamouda said: “Successful treatment relies on the patient undergoing a lifestyle change and demands a commitment to pursue weight loss in conjunction with surgery.
“At Benenden Hospital we have the most modern facilities, a reputation for patient care which is second to none and an impeccable record of avoiding hospital acquired infections. So patients are in safe hands with us.”
The new service is available to private self-paying patients. Benenden members will be offered a discount.