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Frequently Asked Questions

Bariatric surgery, otherwise known as weight-loss surgery, describes a variety of surgical procedures designed to help those living with obesity lose significant amounts of weight in a short amount of time.

If a patient is experiencing severe health concerns such as heart disease, diabetes, high cholesterol, or depression as a result of obesity, bariatric surgery may be an option to improve quality of life.

If a chronic health condition has arisen as a result of obesity, controlling food intake and exercise may not be enough for some people to lose weight fast enough and surgery may be the only alternative.

The Peak program was designed by Dr Silverman in 2012 and aims to help patients achieve peak condition both physically and mentally. More than just surgery, the Peak Program also includes the disciplines of psychology, nutrition, and exercise guidance to help achieve significant, long-lasting results.

When you've tried everything else to win the battle with obesity, Dr Silverman's Peak Program will provide the solution to help you live a long and happy life.

The Peak weight loss program has helped over 2000 obesity patients achieve success.

Dr Silverman is one of the most experienced Bariatric surgeons in Queensland and northern New South Wales. She takes a holistic approach to obesity treatment using surgery as only one of a range of disciplines to help patients reach and maintain a healthy weight and active lifestyle.

A gastric sleeve is not a literal sleeve.

In this irreversible surgical procedure, 80-90% of the stomach is removed with the remainder resembling a sleeve or tube.

The surgery is a minimally invasive procedure carried out either laparoscopically or robotically under general anaesthetic.

The remaining portion of stomach can only hold approximately 200 ml of food or liquid in comparison to 1500 ml before surgery.

As a gastric sleeve is an irreversible procedure, patients will only be able to eat small meals for the rest of their life contributing to fast and long-term weight loss.

Every patient is different, but most patients will lose approximately 60-70% of excess weight within the first 12 months after a gastric sleeve procedure.

A gastric band, also known as a lap band, is fitted to restrict parts of the stomach. The patient physically can't eat as much food before becoming full.

A gastric band can be adjusted depending on results and is a reversible procedure making it a more flexible solution to weight loss.

Every form of weight-loss surgery is designed to help obesity patients achieve significant weight loss in a short amount of time.  As part of your ongoing commitment to a healthy lifestyle, exercise is highly recommended to continue weight loss post-surgery and to maintain it in the future.

As part of the Peak weight loss program, exercise guidance is provided.

Bariatric surgery is a major life decision, and if the gastric band or gastric sleeve isn't the most suitable surgical procedure, Dr Silverman offers a variety of surgical options that provide optimal results.

Sleeve gastrectomy: This option is a permanent removal of the majority of the stomach. While it's a highly effective method of achieving significant weight loss in a short period, it's an invasive procedure and the decision to go ahead shouldn't be taken lightly.

Intra-gastric balloon: This is a non-invasive procedure that can be reversed very easily. A balloon is inserted through the mouth which limits food intake and helps to decrease hunger pangs.

Dr Silverman will assess all options for weight-loss surgery thoroughly and decide which will achieve the most effective outcomes when integrated with your lifestyle and individual situation to ensure the most effective outcomes from treatment.

Gastric sleeve surgery performed by Dr Silverman is a laparoscopic or robotic procedure which means recovery time will be less and results will be seen faster. The advantages of weight loss surgery include:

  • Fast and effective extreme weight loss.
  • Lower blood pressure.
  • Reduce cholesterol.
  • Decrease depression.
  • Help to improve sleep apnoea.

Depending on your choice of surgery, the procedure can take as little as an hour, sometimes longer. The patient will be closely monitored overnight, but in general, patients are drinking liquids within a few hours and back to regular activities within a few weeks.

After weight loss surgery, your life will change considerably. You'll need to adapt to new ways of eating, exercise, and understand the role food plays in your life.

While this may take some getting used to, it's important to note that your future will be filled with hope and promise. Your energy levels will increase, your health will improve, and losing a significant amount of weight is likely to improve your confidence.

On average, patients lose approximately 56% of excess weight within the first 12 months after surgery. Depending on the initial condition of the patient and the method of bariatric surgery, this can be as much as 80%.

Dr Silverman consults and operates at The John Flynn Private Hospital and The Gold Coast Private Hospital on the Gold Coast and also at St. Vincent's Hospital in Lismore.

Unfortunately, weight loss surgery isn't yet available in the public system, but hopefully, it will be in the near future.

To find out more about surgery times and locations, contact the Core Specialist Group directly.

While private health insurance isn't essential. Dr Silverman prefers all patients to have private health cover.

In the unlikely event of complications during or after surgery, further treatment is unavailable in the public system, so private hospital cover, or individual funds to cover your stay, are essential.

Surgery involves many lifestyle changes and the more preparation, the more successful the procedure.

In the lead up to surgery, you will prepare with the Peak Team of psychologists and dieticians and to learn about exercise and nutrition to understand how your life will change afterwards.

Dr Silverman will give you a thorough consultation on how to prepare before surgery.

Weight loss surgery is always a success. Whichever procedure is the most suitable, it’s impossible for your stomach to hold as much food as you used to and weight loss is a natural result of this.

The overarching success of the surgery comes from how well you adapt to your new lifestyle which is why the Peak Program focusses heavily on the disciplines of nutrition, psychology and exercise.

The Australia and New Zealand Metabolic and Obesity Surgery Society will introduce surgery to treat severe obesity when all other methods have failed.

Dr Silverman is a leading contributor to the bariatric registry at Monash University in Melbourne.