Bariatric and
General Surgeon

The Surgical Procedures

For patients with morbid obesity, Dr Puhalla distinguishes between their eating behaviour and existing comorbidities (e.g. diabetes, hypertension, heartburn). Dr Puhalla offers different operations – tailored to the individual – to achieve the best weight reduction and improve quality of life by decreasing comorbidities.

Regardless of the type of procedure, all patients need to be carefully evaluated before surgery to offer the best suitable operation. (e.g. Blood tests, Gastroscopy, Psychological evaluation – Nutritional evaluation)

Please be aware that all procedures are usually performed laparoscopically ( “keyhole surgery” ).

Dr Harald Puhalla

Associate Professor of Surgery

If you’ve been struggling with your weight for some time, you’re not alone. More than 14 million Australians are obese or overweight, and obesity is now a global health concern.

Regardless of the type of procedure, Dr Puhalla will first assess each patient to create a comprehensive health profile which will include blood tests, a gastroscopy, nutritional and psychological evaluations. Bariatric surgery procedures are usually performed laparoscopically (keyhole surgery).

What is laparoscopic surgery?
Laparoscopic surgery, also known as keyhole surgery, is performed using fine instruments which are inserted into a series of small incisions in the body. A camera, known as a laparoscope, is also inserted into the body. The camera projects high-resolution imagery onto screens in the operating room. When compared with traditional surgery, laparoscopic surgery can result in less pain, less scarring and has a shorter recovery time.
Sleeve Gastrectomy (SG)
During a SG about 80% of the stomach are removed leaving a narrow tube behind which connects food pipe and small bowel.

Weight loss: about 70% of excess weight (weight above normal range) in two years and 60% after five years. Individual weight loss will vary between individuals. Following SG, there is a period of rapid weight loss, however, this is somewhat slower than gastric bypass surgery. The Sleeve Gastrectomy is considered to have slightly fewer complications during surgery compared to a Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. Overtime the sleeve can stretch and portion sizes increase which results in substantial weight gain. To prevent the dilatation in the long term a Minimizer gastric ring can be placed around the upper part of the sleeve. Heartburn is not infrequent after a SG and often requires treatment. Some food (sweet liquids: soft drinks, fruit juices, ice cream) after SG can cause temporary discomfort, dizziness and sweating (dumping).

One anastomosis Gastric Bypass or Mini gastric Bypass (OAGB)
By completely dividing the upper part of the stomach a small gastric pouch is formed, which results in a drastic reduction of the gastric volume. Further, a bypass of the first section of the small bowel is created. The small gastric pouch restricts the oral intake and additionally the small bowel bypass reduces the food absorption.

Weight loss: about 80% of excess weight in two years and 75% after five years. The OAGB usually leads to a rapid loss of weight. This operation can be useful in the case of high volume eating and sweet eating (a preference for high-calorie sweets or beverages such as soft drinks and fruit juices).The OAGB induces hormonal changes, which greatly improve the regulation of blood sugars. Type 2 diabetes will dramatically improve and is often cured. Independent of any pre-existing diabetes, the intake of sweet liquids after an OAGB can cause temporary discomfort, dizziness and sweating (dumping). Sometimes ulcers can form at the junction of the gastric pouch to the small bowel which requires treatment.

Roux-en-Y gastric bypass (RYGB)

This type of gastric bypass has two connections (anastomosis) compared to the OAGB which has only one. Similar to the OAGB a small gastric pouch is formed followed by a bypass of the first section of the small bowel. This means that food from the small gastric pouch enters the small bowel (first anastomosis/connection) and further downstream digestive enzymes from the pancreas, liver (bile) and remnant stomach join the food via 2nd anastomosis (connection).

The small gastric pouch restricts the oral intake and additionally the small bowel bypass reduces the absorption (mild malabsorption).

Weight loss: about 79% of excess weight in 2 years and 70% after 5 years. Individual weight loss will vary between individuals. As the OAGB the RYGB leads to quick weight reduction. This operation is applied in patients with heartburn/reflux, high volume eating or sweet eating. The RYGB induces the same hormone changes as the OAGB, which significantly improves or cures pre-existing diabetes in most patients. The intake of sweet liquids after a RYGB can cause temporary discomfort, dizziness and sweating (dumping). Sometimes ulcers can form at the junction of the gastric pouch to the small bowel which requires treatment.

Contact Us for more information on Bariatric Surgery

Take the first step by making an initial appointment with Dr Puhalla, who has decades of surgical experience. Understanding your full medical history will assist Dr Puhalla in providing you with a holistic treatment plan to help you reach your goals. Our friendly and caring team are more than happy to answer your questions and guide you through your weight loss journey. Your health is worth your focus!

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Bariatric Surgery

Dr Harald Puhalla is a General Surgeon with a private practice in Gold Coast Private Hospital and Pindara Private Hospital. For more information about the surgical procedures offered by Dr Puhalla, please contact us to arrange a consultation or phone (07) 5563 1360.

Consulting At

Gold Coast Private Hospital
Ground Floor, Suite 7
14 Hill Street
Southport, QLD 4215

Contact Info

Dr Harald Puhalla, PO Box 927,
Southport, QLD 4215

Phone: (07) 5563 1360
Fax: (07) 5563 1950
E-Mail: admin@generalsurgerygoldcoast.com.au

Disclaimer: This website contains general information only about medical conditions and treatments and does not replace a detailed medical or surgical consultation. The information provided is done so without any representation or warranty of any kind, either expressed or implied.

All medical and surgical procedures carry a risk and visitors to this website are advised to consult a registered medical practitioner for advice applicable to their individual requirements. Treatment outcomes and results may differ from person to person.